Elemental: How to play (Page Three)

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Manipulations and progressive moves

When playing online, you select the move you wish to perform from the following menu, and then push the button marked "Make your move".

I will explain all of them over the next few pages. For now, notice that they are divided into two types - progressive moves and manipulations.

You may not perform more than three manipulations in a row. Performing a progressive move resets the number of manipulations you can perform, so you can perform up to three manipulations after each progressive move. Notice the message underneath the menu saying how many manipulations you have left.

Any time a face-down card is exposed, it can be turned face-up. When playing online, this is done automatically.

Eliminating cards

Because Elemental is an elimination game, the most important rule is the one that lets you get rid of cards. If you can find a BLOCK where the cards on top of its four piles include one card of each suit (in other words, a different suit on top of each pile), then you can place those four cards on the discard pile.

That is, we need to find a block where exactly one pile has a diamond on top, exactly one pile has a spade on top, exactly one pile has a heart on top, and exactly one pile has a club on top. Then we can discard the aforementioned diamond, spade, heart and club.

Here are two examples from the same tableau:

Notice the piles that have been selected above, and see how they meet the criteria of being blocks with a different suit on top of each pile.

To eliminate cards while playing online, select the piles in the relevant block and choose "Discard from selected piles" from the menu of possible moves. (This move is selected by default.)

A worked example

Below is our first move in an example game. We select the four piles from an applicable block and choose "Discard from selected piles" as shown:

We then press the button marked "Make your move". This takes us to a page that shows what the tableau looks like just after the move has been performed. It also describes the move we just made, and if we made a mistake it would explain what we did wrong. In this case, here is what we see:

Notice how the numbers of cards in the piles (including the discard pile) have been updated. Blue squares represent piles where the top card is face-down.

To keep playing, we press the button labelled "turn over cards and continue".

Continuing the worked example

The above is the first move in an example game. You can see the whole game on its own page, which contains some useful strategy tips. It is cross-referenced with these instructions so that you can easily alternate between the instructions and the worked example in any way you please.

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