As an Apprentice in the School of Magic, you must complete your final exam. This takes place in the Eternal Forest. A location so remote, it is only found in the 4th dimension. This is the space between the spirit world and our known world. No one can traverse the Eternal Forest alone, because it is rife with magical Portals. These Portals are sealed, and may only be opened with magic words. Yes, the words are simple...people, places, or things found in our world... But you may not utter them. You must count on your teammates to speak to them for you. You will soon see, my young Apprentice, the Eternal Forest is capable of connecting the spirit world with the real world, BUT only after you connect with the minds of your teammates.
- Assemble the game board and place it in the center of the table. Randomly pick 19 Portals and place them into the empty spaces on the board. Place the 5 Round Cards in one stack (face up) on the table.
- Each player takes one color of an Apprentice with Base, 5 Progress Tokens, and 7 NOT Tokens. Each player takes the 3 Progress Tokens that are numbered 1, 2, & 3, and places them face-up in front of them. Keep the rest in reserve.
- Each player places their Apprentice with the Base on the Portal that’s connected to a starting icon. (Choose the starting icon closest to you on the board. This is your starting spot).
- Shuffle the deck of Clue Cards and deal 4 faces down to each player. Clue Cards should remain hidden in your hand unless played on the table.
- Shuffle the Map Cards and deal one face down to each player. This card shows your private mapped-out Path and is never revealed until the end.
The base game is played cooperatively to achieve the highest score as a team. All of you have been transported to the Eternal Forest. Your objective is to successfully navigate each of your mapped Paths through the mystical labyrinth. Each player’s Path is unique. And only you know your own map. But your teammates are needed to open the sealed Portals along the way. Give clues to your teammates as they are the ONLY ones that can get you through to the end.
ORDER OF PLAY
1 – STUDY YOUR MAP
The Map Card contains the pre-determined Path that each player must take through the Forest. Each player takes a moment to compare their own Path to the game board. The symbol on the Map Card represents each player’s starting Portal on the board. The numbers 1—10 represent each player’s step by-step Path that corresponds with the Portals on the game board.
2 – PRESENT CLUES FOR THE FIRST 3 STEPS IN YOUR PATH
In order to make progress along any Path, each Portal must be identified by other players. The player must give a clue so others can successfully guess the secret word that corresponds to the next Portal in their Path.
To do this, each player selects one clue that best describes each step along their Path. The Clue Cards from your hand is the ONLY thing you may use to describe which step you are supposed to move onto next. Begin with step 1. Take a card from your hand that best describes the word on the Portal for the 1st step in your Path. Place that card facing the other players so they can easily read it.
Place the ‘1’ Progress Token on top of the unused word on that Clue Card. This indicates that the visible clue is for that step. Then do the same thing for the 2nd and 3rd Portals in your Path. Once everyone has done this, there will be three Clue Cards in front of each player.
3 – GUESSING THE PATH
Decide as a group which player’s Path to guess first.
When players try to guess the next Portal on a player’s Path, they will collectively discuss and decide on an answer. When the group reaches a consensus, they must touch the word on the board to indicate which Portal is the correct next step. Once a Portal is touched, the guess cannot be changed! As a matter of strategy, players should examine the subsequent Clues to help identify the possible correct Path.
If the players make an INCORRECT guess:
- Be careful not to reveal the correct answer.
- Place one of your NOT Tokens on the incorrect guess. This will remind the other players not to guess that Portal again next round.
- Guessing on your Path stops. Your turn ends.
If the players make a CORRECT guess:
- Yay! Move your Apprentice to the new Portal just guessed. (Make sure your Apprentice does not block the word on the Portal. Also, make sure your Base is placed where your Apprentice was, to keep track of the Portal your Apprentice just vacated.)
- Remove all of your NOT Tokens from the board, the Progress Token and the Clue Card guessed. For example, if the first step is guessed remove the Progress Token 1 and the Clue Card under it. Place the Clue Card in a discard pile.
- Your turn continues — Players may then make a new guess for the next Portal in your Path. If all of your active Progress Tokens have been guessed your turn ends.
4 – PREPARE FOR THE NEXT ROUND
Once all players have had a turn, everyone draws back up to 4 Clue Cards in their hand. If the Clue deck is depleted, shuffle the discards and replace the deck. Replace Clue Cards guessed with new Clue Cards and Progress Tokens for the next steps in your Path. You should have 3 total Progress Tokens displayed.
5 – THE END
The game ends immediately after 5 rounds.
If you successfully reached the end of your Path before the game ends, take a Wizard Cup.
- Place it in front of you; Gold side up if you achieved this in round 4 or Silver side up if in round 5.
- Add 2 points to your final score for a Gold Cup and 1 point for a Silver Cup.
Once a player has reached the end of their Path they continue to help make guesses for the other player’s Paths.
Each player’s score is the number of the last step successfully reached in their Path. So if Joseph still has Progress Tokens 5 through 7 displayed, then his last successfully reached step was 4. Thus his score is 4.
Add up all the scores of each player and divide by the number of players (round down). This final score shows how well your group of
As an apprentice wizard, you have been transported to the Eternal Forest — an ancient forest, not of this world. Armed with only your wits and a map, you will attempt to successfully navigate the mystic paths to the end. Only then shall you graduate as a full wizard!
But your progress is blocked by sealed portals. These may only be opened by specific magic words — words that you are forbidden to utter. In this deductive mind game, strategic communication is key. Reveal one word clues to your teammates, and hope they speak the magic words for you. Each who passes all ten portals shall be proclaimed Champion!
Mystic Paths® is a deductive word game with an everchanging board. Players must play cards to give clues to the other players about your path through the Forest. Progress through the portals relies on clear communication. But with only 3 clues per round and 5 rounds per game, efficient and clever cluegiving are the real keys to success. Playable as cooperative, teams or individuals!
Ages 12+ | 2 to 6 players | Play time 30-45 minutes