Saigim: Explore the Realm through Scent
Game Assets (PDFs)
All Saigim Rules and Instructions
* If you have purchased custom creature aesthetics, please email or call us so we can send you to appropriate downloadable material
** Siagim is a free Grey Tavern game and the supplies are accessible for you to download. However, if you'd like us to help you save on printing costs and time to prepare this game, we can as long as you subscribe to a Contribution Path.
Purpose of the Saigim Game
The Saigim game focuses on how an animal navigates the world through scent. As players match cards, this represents a creature picking up a scent and following it until they either find the source of the scent or lose it.
Yet, this game does have slight elements of intensity because the players will not know what type of creature they are smelling until they’ve unlocked it. But what they find could be prey, things they don’t eat, or dangerous predators.
How to Play
The players need to find enough food for their Den before Winter sets in. The amount of food points the players need collectively is equal to their size. Players should always play creatures of the same kind.
Food is found by acquiring Favorable Food cards through matching them. Matches occur when three matching cards are found. The cards will be described more in the Creature Card section.
To start, players lay out a certain number of cards equal to:
- 1 Player = 18 Cards (6 sets of 3)
- 2+ Players = 18 Cards + the number of players
Turns and Rounds
The eldest Bixi player begins the game. Following this player, the second oldest player should go, then the third, and so on until the youngest child plays. Then, the player cycle restarts. Player organization should always follow the players’ ages, even in the case of twins.
Guardians can choose when they wish to take their turns, but this should be done at the beginning of the game and should not change from round to round.
A Round is complete when all players have taken their turns.
A Turn is each player’s opportunity to play. On each player’s turn, a player can flip over three cards. At the end of a player’s turn, they either flip the cards back over, if a match wasn’t made, or remove a match from play.
The game is won when players accumulate a number of Food Points equal to or greater than their Den size number (found on the Player Card).
The circled box is a creature’s Den size number
Scent Patterns are the three overlapping dots on each Creature Card. Cards are matched according to the Scent Patterns.
Not a Match
The game always starts in Fall. The players have 10 rounds to have a Den Food Point total greater than 0 before Winter sets in. If the Den Food Point total is 0 or lower by the end of the 10 rounds, the player’s Den is disbanded.
If the Den Food Point total is between 1 and the player creature’s Den size number when Winter sets in, the game continues through Winter which is 8 rounds. Before starting round 1 of Winter, the remaining cards in play are reshuffled. Do not put discovered cards back into play.
Everything players do is for their Den. Even when players are playing separately (which will occur until all the players have gained certain unlockables together through other Grey Tavern games), they all bring food back to the same Den.
Den Food Points
Food Points are necessary for a Hunt objective. Food Points determine when a Hunt has succeeded and when it hasn’t. Food Points increase or decrease according to what Creature Cards are revealed. Refer to the Creature Card descriptions below to see how each one affects Food Points.
A Den’s Food Point total can go below 0 and the deficit must be made up to reach the Food Point total needed to win the game.
When a player is stunned, they do not take their turn in the next round.
Stuns occur when:
- Competitor Creature Cards are matched. This always stuns the player that made the match.
- If a creature is matched that is larger than the player’s creature (Refer to den size number), that player’s creature is stunned.
- When they have acquired a number of Den Food Points equal to their creature’s Den size
- When their Food Point total is below 0 at the end of Fall’s tenth round
- When they have not reached their Food Point objective by the end of Winter
Global Grey Tavern Rule
Due to the structure of Grey Tavern games, Guardians and/or Bixis should NEVER change game rules to make things easier or harder for players unless areas of adjustment are specifically mentioned in a game's rules.
Grey Tavern games not only provide educational material through their games that would be dampened if rules are changed, but would also be unfair to other players. Many, if not all, Grey Tavern games, provide opportunities for unlockable items, creatures, abilities, etc to be shared and be cross-compatible. If rules are made easier or harder, this robs ultimately from each player’s achievements and ability to achieve in comparison to other players in the local area.
Mystery Creature Cards vs Known Creature Cards
When a player has not met or discovered a creature before, the cards with Mystery Creature Cards should be used. This mimics animals needing to learn by experience what scents are associated with what creature.
Once three cards with matching scent patterns have been revealed and matched, several things may occur:
- Players are immediately shown the Known Creature Cards. However, they have not completely unlocked the ability to always play with the Known Creature Cards.
- Players are told what kind of creature they’ve found. These are specific to the creature the Bixis are playing. For example, a Moose is a “Good Food” for a Red Wolf, but may be a “Favorable Food” for a Hunched Wolf.
- Players gain or lose Food Points according to the creature discovered and matched. (See the 6 card types to learn about the results).
- Players must win the game in order to fully unlock a creature and use its Known Creature Cards the next time Saigim is played. If they lose a game, the players go back to using the Mystery Creature Cards for any discovered Scent Pattern during that game. If creatures were unlocked in a game previous to this one, Bixis do not lose access to it when a future game is lost. Only creature cards revealed in that lost game should return to Mystery Creature Cards.
The next time the game begins, players can play with the Creature Cards that have the creature image at the top to show they are now familiar with the scent. If players that have revealed a creature play with a player that does not have the scent unlocked, they can play with the creature revealed.
Creature Card Types
There are 6 types of creature cards.
- Favorable Food
- Good Food
- Scavenged Food
Favorable Food are cards that, once found and matched, provide a Den with a high number of Food Points. The number of Food Points gained from a Favorable Food is equal to the number in the Favorable Food’s Point Box. The number is only revealed to players once they know the creature.
Point Box- Known Creature Card
Point Box- Mystery Creature Card
All three Creature Cards will show the number of Food Points, but these should not be added together. For example, the Reindeer provides 3 Food Points, not 9, even though all three cards show the number 3.
When a match has been revealed and matched, then the Food Point number is revealed to the players.
The Favorable Food varies from creature to creature. Refer to the Player Cards to see what the Favorable Food is for the creature being played.
Favorable Food must be removed from the play area to show it has been taken to the Den.
Good Food represents food that will provide a good amount of energy to the Den, but it is not the most nutritious or desirable food for the creature being played. The number of Food Points earned from a Good Food source is equal to that source’s Point Box number minus 1. The minimum Food Point earned from a Good Food source is 1.
The Good Food varies from creature to creature. Refer to the Player Cards to see what the Good Food is for the creature being played.
Good Food must be removed from the play area to show it has been taken to the Den.
Scavenged Food is food that sustains but provides the bare minimum of nutrition for the creature being played. The number of Food Points earned from a Scavenged Food source is equal to that source’s Point Box number minus 2. The minimum Food Points earned from a Scavenged Food source is 0.
The Scavenged Food varies from creature to creature. Refer to the Player Cards to see what the Scavenged Food is for the creature being played.
Scavenged Food must be removed from the play area to show it has been taken to the Den.
Nuisance Creatures Cards represent creatures that share some of the same food preferences as the creature being played, but do not share the same Favorable Food. When a Nuisance creature is revealed and matched, it will subtract 1 Den Food Point from your current total.
Nuisance cards can be removed from the play area, if that is allowed by the Light and Dark Guardians. If they are not removed, they must be flipped back over at the end of that player’s turn.
Keeping a Nuisance in play rather than removing it shows that Nuisances, though annoying and troublesome, are necessary for ecosystem balance.
Competitor Creatures Cards represent creatures that share the same Favorable Food as you and so make it harder for animals to acquire the food they need most. When a Competitor creature is revealed and matched, it will subtract 1 Food Point from the current Den total and Stun the player that made the match.
If the Competitor cards are of a size equal to or smaller than the creatures being played, the Competitor cards can be removed from the play area, if that is allowed by the Light and Dark Guardians. If they are not removed, they must be flipped back over at the end of that player’s turn.
Keeping a Competitor in play rather than removing it shows that Competitors, though dangerous, are necessary for ecosystem balance.
Predator Creatures Cards represent creatures that consider the creatures players are playing as Prey or food. When a Predator creature is revealed and matched, it will subtract 2 Food Points from the current Den total, symbolizing the Predator attacking your Den directly.
Predator cards always remain in play after being revealed and matched. These cards should be flipped back over at the end of any turn in which any number of Predator Cards are revealed.
Personal Cards are for playable creatures. These cards show the playable creature, its size, and its specific creatures that fill each of the 7 Creature Card types described above. These cards show the creatures, but do not show the scent patterns associated with each creature.
Player Cards also depict the “skin” or presentation of the creature you are playing. Each playable creature has 4 free skins. 2 are male and 2 are female. All other versions are purchasable. Unlike other games, the purchase of a new skin unlocks that skin for all Guardians and their specific Bixis, so families and Orders (friend and family groups) can all have access to and play with that skin. Ask a Grey Tavern employee for the price of these custom skins.
Objective Cards set different missions for the creature the players are playing.
The first Objective is “Hunt”. This Objective is set around the acquiring food for the Den, as described in the rules above.
Other Objectives will be launched with Saigim additions and expansions.
How to Start
If this is your first time playing Saigim, welcome and enjoy!
On your first game:
- Prepare the Mystery Creature Cards associated with the Favorable Food, Good Food, and Nuisances on the Players’ Cards. A Light or Dark Guardian should assemble these cards so Bixis do not know what Scent Pattern is associated with which Creature Card from the get go.
- Set aside the Known Creature Cards. These should be out of sight of Bixi players but should be within easy reach of the Dark or Light Guardian.
- Shuffle the Mystery Creature Cards and then lay them out face down in ordered columns and rows.
- Begin play following the turn instructions above under Turns and Rounds above.
- When a match is made with the Mystery Creature Cards, find the three matching Known Creature Cards and place them to the side of the play area where all players can see the revealed creature. If players do not win by the end of Fall (See the Season rules above), Guardians should return the Known Creature Cards back into the Creature Card stack that is hidden from Bixi players.
- Refer to the Creature Card rules above for how each Creature Card affects the players.
In following games, follow the same process as the first with the following key differences:
- If a win occurred in the previous game, place only the discovered Known Creature Cards into the playable deck and remove their associated Mystery Creature Cards from the game. Any Mystery Creature Cards that remain undiscovered should continue to use the Mystery cards. Shuffle the discovered known Creature Cards into the deck.
- If a loss occurred in the previous game, the Known Creature Cards discovered in the lost game are no longer discovered. Their Mystery Creature Cards are shuffled back in instead and the known Creature Cards are returned to the stack that is out of the Bixis’ sight.
- Creature Cards discovered in games previous to a loss are never replaced with their Mystery Creature Cards again unless specific Light or Dark Guardian abilities are enacted.
- Guardians may start adding in Competitors and Predators into the game at a rate that is good for the Bixis. But the playable deck should never exceed a number of cards equal to 18 + the number of players. When Competitors and Predators are added, some Prey or Nuisance cards should be removed.