Terrain Vague (Junkyard)

Game by Franck Parcabe and Roland Scaron.
Published by Ludodelire.

For 2 to 4 players.

Aim of the Game

The aim of the game is for your gang to own the most turf in the Junkyard at the end of twelve turns by rumbling with other gangs and ripping off their turf.

In the four player game, a gang may win before the twelfth turn by expanding their turf to control 25 hexes at the end of a turn.


Summary of a Play

You lead your gang on a grand conquest of the junkyard.

The board is assembled by the players at the beginning of the game.

Each player has a variable budget of action points each turn of the game.

Turns are divided into several steps. All players complete each step before proceeding to the next. The player with the most points on his cheat sheet plays first and so on...

You have the following options during play:

In The Junkyard

The Board

The game board is made up of 91 hexes placed side by side within an overall hex shape. The construction of the game board is explained later and changes slightly depending upon the number of gangs playing.


Each hex represents a piece of turf and is color coded to show which gang owns it.

In Junkyard, there are two types of turf for each gang:

Let's make it clear up front that all of the gangs are rivals but each of the gangs has a particularly strong hate on for one other gang. The Rubbles are the sworn enemies of the Brambles while the Cesspools have a grudge match going with the Scrappers. The effect of these special rivalries will be explained later.

Tough Turf and Wimpy Turf

The scrap (rusty), cesspool (blue purple), brambles (dark green), and rock (beige) hexes represent the tough turf. The garbage (yellow), pool of water (light blue), nettles (light green), and rubble (grey) hexes represent the wimpy turf.

The cost to capture tough turf is higher than for wimpy tough. This cost may reach an astronomic sum when the turf belongs to your sworn enemy and when it is protected by garbage can lids (see garbage can lids). The costs of capturing the various turf types are itemized in the table provided on your cheat sheet (see cheat sheet). Captured hexes are replaced with the conquering gang's turf (the player takes a hex from their reserve).

The Toxic Waste

This hex represents an indescribable jumble of nasty trash. The Toxic Waste cannot be captured and always remains in the center of the Junkyard.

The Toxic Waste has a special ability that a player may use during the course of play (see relays via the Toxic Waste).

Important: No pawn may remain on the Toxic Waste.

Action Points and Movement


Turns are divided into five steps:

Gird your loins (step 1)
Consult your hideout for the number of action points available during this turn, except for the Indian Wrestling spaces (see Indian Wrestling).

Calling Out The Troops (step 2)
Add one or more pawns to the hexes within range of your clubhouse (see range).

Tumble and rumble (step 3)
You may move all or part of your pawns. During this step your big brother may clean house.

Nail the bastards (step 4)
Your slingshots may fire on pawns from other gangs.

Rip 'em off (step 5)
Your wheelbarrows rip off turf by changing the hexes of the Junkyard from your opponent's turf into your turf.

Your Hideout

Your hideout is on your cheat sheet (see cheat sheet). The hideout is divided into 12 numbered spaces representing the 12 turns of play. On the eight white spaces a number indicates the total of action points for that turn. The four remaining, red spaces correspond to the indian wrestling spaces, (see indian wrestling).

For example, if you are the boss of the Rubbles, you have 20 action points for the first turn. If you are the boss of the Brambles then you only have 6 points on that same turn.

Action Points

You start each turn with a certain number of action points. Action points are used to manage the actions of your pawns. Once all of your action points are used up you cannot go back and reconsider any of your actions in order to recover action points. Any points which are not used by the end of your turn are lost.

Order of Play

The order of play is established by the number of action points given to each player on this turn. The player with the highest number of action points begins each step of the turn. Then play passes to the second highest and so on until all players have completed a step. The next step then begins with the first player.

Note that this means that the play order may be different on each turn.

Players may end up in a tie for the most action points after Indian wrestling. The player who suffered the lowest number of counters plays first.

Indian Wrestling (red spaces)

On turns 3, 6, 9 and 12 the number of action points for the turn is determined by a fight between sworn enemies:

How to Indian Wrestle

[Ken: The original rules are very vague about how to Indian wrestle. The following rules are derived from discussion with Catherine. Her understanding was, in turn, derived from reading both the original French and an article in a French magazine, Cassus Beli.]

There will be four wrestling matches: two for each set of sworn enemies. First one gang will be on the attack and then the other. Each player in a wrestling match consults their hideout and notes the red number associated with the current turn.

There are two sets of tiles with numbers on them included in the game. One set of tiles contains a single number ('digits'). The other set of tiles contain three numbers each ('slides'). The gang on the attack secretly chooses a number of 'digits' corresponding to the number from their hideout. The defending gang then secretly chooses a number of 'slides' corresponding to the number on their hideout.

The slides and digits are then revealed. Each number on a slide cancels out one digit containing a matching number. The attacking team is awarded action points for this turn equal to the total of the numbers on any remaining digits.

[Ken: Hope that helps. Now back to the rules translation...]

How to Indian Wrestle

On the third turn, the Brambles have a 3 on their hideout. The Brambles get to choose three tiles this turn. Their sworn enemy, the Rubbles, have a 1 on their hideout. They only get to choose one tile.

That established, we begin:

The First Indian Wrestling Match

The Bramble player has picks three digits but does not reveal them. Then the Rubble player chooses one slide.

A Drawing

The players have secretly choosen their tiles and bring them on the table.

B Drawing

The players reveal their tiles at the same time.

C Drawing

Result: the two 5 digits chosen by the Bramble player are eliminated by the 5 slide chosen by the Rubble player. The 7 digit may only be removed by a 7 slide so it is not eliminated.

Conclusion: the Bramble gang has 7 action points at the beginning of this turn.

The Second Wrestling Match

During this same turn, the Brambles get a chance to defend. The Brambles are allowed 3 slides while their unfortunate opponent may only choose one digit this turn. The Rubbles bet all on an 8 but the Brambles countered with 5, 7, and 8. The Rubbles have no action points for this turn!


Each pawn may act on the six axies radiating from his position in a direct line up to 3 hexes in distance (see drawing).

No matter what the range (1, 2 or 3 hexes), the cost in action points remains unchanged. Only protection may modify the cost.

The presence of an enemy turf or pawns may block this range.


During movement a pawn may not:

Note that the clubhouse and the big brother do not follow these rules. Their movement is described later.



Your clubhouse is the headquarters of your gang, its presence in your territory is mandatory. The clubhouse enables you to call out your gang and it is also used as a relay to improve the range of your pawns (see relays).

Moving Your Clubhouse

You can move your clubhouse anywhere on your Home Turf without restriction.

Calling Out the Troops

When you add pawns during the second step of the game, you place them on the board within range of the clubhouse (see drawing). When doing this you must place the pawns on empty hexes around the clubhouse without crossing enemy turf or pawns (see drawing).


The clubhouse and the Toxic Waste may be used as relays.

Relays enable pawns to reach turf or other pawns located out of normal range (see drawing). In order for a pawn to use a relay, it must be at most 3 hexes from its clubhouse or the Toxic Waste.

You may use the clubhouse and the Toxic Waste together to relay the actions of your pawns. In that case, there must be no enemy turf between the pawn and the clubhouse or between the clubhouse and the Toxic Waste. Even one hex of enemy turf nullifies the effect.

Clubhouse Relays

You can relay any action (adding pawns, moving, slingshot fire, protection, capturing turf, cleaning house) via your clubhouse. You cannot use an opponent's clubhouse as a relay.

Using a relay does not require any supplementary action point expense. You only pay the normal cost for the action (see cheat sheet).

Toxic Waste Relays

Toxic Waste relays operate on the same principle as clubhouse relays, with the one difference being that any player may use the Toxic Waste to relay actions.

Destruction of a Clubhouse

If your clubhouse is destroyed by slingshot fire, the following effects apply:


Your slingshots may bean any pawn in their action range. Slingshots fire without moving. Slingshots may fire over one or two hexes of empty enemy turf but may never fire through an opponent's pawn (a player may use a pawn to cover an other, more important pawns), (see example). Each slingshot may only fire once per turn (during step 4). Each shot may only bean one target.

A pawn beaned by slingshot fire is immediately removed from the board. The costs to bean a pawn are shown on the cheat sheet (see cost of actions).

Note that when a slingshot beans a clubhouse, it uses the famous, explosive, anti-clubhouse bullets.

Garbage Can Lids

When you place or move a garbage can lid on your turf, each element (pawn or turf) in its action range is automatically protected. All of the usual range restrictions apply so even one hex of enemy turf will limit the range of the protection along an axis. It is legal to protect an element (turf or pawn) with more than one lid. Maintaining the protection costs no action points so the lid will remain on the board for free after it is placed.

The costs to capture protected turf or bean a protected pawn are multiplied by the number of lids protecting the element plus one. That is:

A garbage can lid may never be used to:


Each wheelbarrow may capture (rip off) all enemy turf within the wheelbarrow's action range. Wheelbarrows don't move when ripping off enemy turf. They stay where they are and the turf is replaced with a hex of turf from its owner's reserve.

Each wheelbarrow may rip off two hexes of enemy turf during step 5 of a turn. A wheelbarrow may never rip off a hex located behind another enemy turf hex so wheelbarrows may only transform the first hex of enemy turf located along each axis of its range.

A wheelbarrow cannot rip off:

Big Brothers

While calling out your troops a player would rarely call out their big brother just to have a picnic or shoot some marbles. If you're going to bother your big brother then you better have a serious problem on your hands.

When called out your big brother is placed near the clubhouse like any other pawn. Big brothers only act during the movement step (step 3).

Cleaning House

When your big brother cleans house he moves across enemy turf, rips off that hex (replace it with one of yours from your reserve), beans any pawns he finds there, and replaces the beaned pawns with ones from your gang! While cleaning house your big brother may skip over one or two unoccupied hexes of enemy turf but he may not skip over any occupied enemy turf to clean house on turf located behind it. Your big brother is also limited to the same action range as all of the other pawns. Cleaning house always costs 5 action points because garbage can lids are no protection from big brothers.

Cleaning House on Empty Turf

Move your big brother onto any hex of empty turf within range and it is transformed into a hex of your tough turf. Your big brother is then removed from the board.

Cleaning House on Occupied Turf

Move your big brother onto any hex of empty turf within range and it is transformed into a hex of your tough turf, the enemy pawn is removed and replaced with an equivalent pawn from your reserves (if you have one). Your big brother is then removed from the board.

In case of a duel between two big brothers, the attacking one remains on the captured turf and is not removed from the board. (Well, for the pedantic, both big brothers are removed from the board but your big brother is the equivalent of the big brother that just got beaned so he returns to the board. Which means the exact order of events while cleaning house is poorly defined but give it a rest, okay?)

Big brothers may never clean house on turf occupied by a clubhouse.

Terrorizing the Opposition

Calling in your big brother always creates a certain agitation, shall we say, among the other players. You may decide to let your big brother cruise your turf for many turns without actually cleaning house and wait until the appropriate time to send him in to rough up the opposition. While he's cruising you may notice a strange paleness on your opponent's faces.

Home Turf

Your Gang's Home Turf

Your home turf is composed of the set of adjacent turf hexes (at least two) belonging to you and with your clubhouse located on one of the hexes. Any isolated turf hexes, whether occupied by pawns or not, are never considered as part of your territory.

The Toxic Waste never belongs to anyone's home turf even if it is completely surrounded by turf belonging to the same player. On the contrary, turf hexes adjacent to the Toxic Waste and not touching one another belong to the same territory (see the territory example next page).

The Big Rip Off

A clever gang can encircle an area of enemy turf by carefully ripping off choice pieces of enemy turf. This leads to a big rip off. The area affected by a big rip off must be unoccupied and must be completely surrounded by a combination of your gang's turf and the edge of the board. The surrounded area may include turf belonging to several gangs.

However, if even 1 hex is occupied then the area can't be ripped off but it does become isolated (see A for an example of rip off/isolation next page). Because of this rule, Home Turf can never be caught in a big rip off.

The ripped off area may include the Toxic Waste but, after the big rip off, the Toxic Waste does not belong to the gang that ripped it off.

Big rip offs still cost action points: divide the cost of ripping off all the turf in the affected area by two. Its cheap but it ain't free.

Isolated Turf

Every hex of turf that is not part of the Home Turf is isolated. If the isolated turf contains pawns then it cannot be taken in a big rip off. However, the isolated pawns become slackers and can tack no actions until they are reconnected to the Home Turf.

Note that your clubhouse is never isolated since its presence defines the Home Turf.

Remember that gangs can encircle enemy pawns on purpose in order to isolate them and force them to slack off.

Your Home Turf may be reinforced by transforming your own turf from wimpy to tough. Tranforming Home Turf always costs 2 action points.

Playing with 4 Players

The players choose a gang they like or, if they can't agree, by drawing lots.

Installation of the gameboard.

Each player places their cheat sheet and gang in front of them.

To build the intial board, make one stack of eleven hexes for each turf type. When they are all stacked you should have 8 stacks of 11 hexes, sorted by color.

Put the Toxic Waste in the center of the game table.

Construction of the board must obey the following rules:

Repeat until an hexagonal game board is built out of the 88 turf hexes and the Toxic Waste. You'll notice that two hexes are still missing. Don't look under the table, place two hexes from the remaining reserve.

Building of Your Clubhouse

In the same order that was used to build the board, the players choose a site for their clubhouse somewhere on the board. A player may choose to put their clubhouse on a hex of an opponent's turf. This automatically transforms the hex into tough turf belonging the clubhouse's gang. If a player wants to build their clubhouse on an opponent's turf, the site must be adjacent to turf belonging to the clubhouse's owner since their Home Turf must be at least two hexes big. If a gang screws up and can't call out any troops on the first turn (because their Home Turf is only one hex big) then they are eleminated. What losers!

Note that the clubhouse may only be placed on enemy turf during this first placement. If your clubhouse is destroyed by deadly anti-clubhouse slingshot fire later in the game, then you must rebuild it on your own turf.


If at the end of a turn a gang has 25 hexes in their home turf then that player wins immediately. If no one wins that way then at the end of the 12th turn of play, the gang with the biggest Home Turf wins.

Remember that isolated turf and the Toxic Waste are never counted as part of any gang's Home Turf.

Playing with 3 Players

The board for games with 3 players is made up of 61 hexes.

Before building the board make stacks of eight wimpy turf hexes and seven tough turf hexes per gang (including the gangs that are not in play). Then build the board as in the four player game.

The range of action is reduced to two hexes.


The game ends after the 12th turn the gang with the biggest Home Turf wins.

Indian Wrestling with 3 Players

The gang without a sworn enemy chooses either of the other gangs to wrestle. The challenged gang uses the cheat sheet of the sworn enemy of the challenging gang instead of their usual cheat sheet. This ensures a better wrestling match. The substitute gang receives no benefits from the wrestling match even if they win.

Playing with 2 Players

The board is made up of 37 hexes: five wimpy hexes and four tough hexes from each gang (including the gangs that are not in play).

The action range is two hexes.


The game ends after the 12th turn and the winner is the gang with the most hexes in their Home Turf.


With 4 players, you may play until one of the gangs has 25 hexes in their Home Turf. When you finish the 12th turn just with turn one.

You can add tension to the game by limiting the time for consideration during each step (anywhere between 1 and 3 minutes works well).

Game Advice

Never forget: in Junkyard everything can be negotiated!

Have fun!

Translated by C. Soubeyrand on January 25, 1995 -

Soubeyra@sept.fr C.Soubeyrand.

Edited by Ken Tidwell on January 28, 1995 - (How's that for snappy service?)

And finally finished on March 7, 1994 - (But what do you want for free, eh?)

The Game Cabinet - editor@gamecabinet.com - Ken Tidwell