Objective of Elf Journey from the North Pole Game
The objective of Elf Journey from the North Pole Game is to guide Buddy the Elf towards the locations on your Goal card in order to score more points than the other players.
Setup for Elf Journey from the North Pole Game
- Assemble the puzzle game board.
- Place the Buddy the Elf mover on the start space in the North Pole.
- Place the seven Location tokens on their corresponding spots on the gameboard.
- The New York City Snow Globe token is placed on the end space.
- Randomize the Gingerbread Man tokens with the point/star side face down. Choose one tile at random to place on each of the corresponding locations on the board.
- Shuffle the Path cards. Create a face down pile for the cards next to the board.
- Each player chooses three Path cards and places them face up in front of themselves.
- Each player draws one Goal card. They can look at the card, but shouldn’t show it to the other players. See the Goal Card section below for more details.
- The player whose birthday is closes to Christmas (December 25th) becomes the first player.
At the beginning of the game each player receives a Goal card. The Goal card will feature three different locations from the gameboard. Your goal throughout the game is to move Buddy the Elf through these locations on his journey to New York.
For each location pictured on your Goal card that Buddy visits, you will score points at the end of the game. The earlier Buddy visits a location, the more points that it will be worth. All of the players that have the location on their Goal card will score the same number of points.
The locations do not need to be visited in the order that they are printed on the card.
Playing Elf Journey from the North Pole Game
Each player begins their turn by playing one or more of their Path cards to the gameboard. You may play as many of your Path cards as you want on your turn. See the Playing Path Cards section for more details.
After you are done playing Path cards, you will move the Buddy the Elf mover to the last Path card that you played.
Next you will draw two Path cards from the deck to add to your group of cards.
Play will then pass to the next player clockwise/left.
Playing Path Cards
On your turn you can choose to play as many Path cards from your hand as you want. When playing Path cards you need to follow a couple rules.
When playing a Path card the line on the card you play must line up with the arrow on the previously played card. For the first card played in the game, the line must touch the arrow on the house at the North Pole and the arrow needs to point away from the North Pole.
You can play Path cards even if they move the path off the gameboard.
You can play Path cards even if they cross over old Path cards.
When the previous card’s arrow is in the corner of the card, you can play the next Path card however you want. You may rotate the next card in any direction. The only rule is that the next card cannot overlap any part of the previous Path card.
Landing On A Location
When a player plays a Path card that touches any part of a Location tile, Buddy visits that location.
You will take the corresponding token and place it in the highest valued Scoring Slot remaining at the top of the gameboard. The first visited location tile will be placed on the furthest left space (has three stars on it). For every location after that, you will take the corresponding token and place it on the next space to the right. The number of stars below the space that you place the token in is how many points that it will be worth at the end of the game. Any player that has that location on their Goal card will score the points. Players will score the points at the end of the game.
As there are only six Scoring Slots, if all seven locations are visited the last will score no points at the end of the game.
If you play a card that touches a location, your turn does not immediately end. You can continue to play additional Path cards if you want to.
Special Locations in Elf Journey from the North Pole Game
If a player plays a Path card that touches any part of a Gingerbread Man token, the player that played the Path card takes the token from the board and places it in front of them. They can look at the other side of the token to see how many stars/points it is worth. They shouldn’t let the other players see the other side though. The player will score points for the token at the end of the game.
When you play a Path card that touches any part of one of the two Ice Floes on the board, you have an option for where to play your next Path card. You can play your next Path card like normal connecting it to the arrow on the last card you played. Otherwise you can choose to play a Path card on the other side of the board anywhere you want as long as it touches the other Ice Floe.
This special ability can only be used once during the game.
Should a player play a Path card that touches any part of one of the Maple Syrup jars (including the syrup), they will get to draw one Path card. The player can play the card immediately, or use it at a later time.
Only the first player to play a card that touches a Maple Syrup space gets to draw the extra card.
End of Elf Journey from the North Pole Game
Elf Journey from the North Pole Game can end in one of two ways:
- All of the Path cards are played.
- Someone plays a Path card that touches the New York City Snow Globe Space.
The player that plays the Path card that touches the New York City Snow Globe takes the token from the gameboard. This token scores them two points.
Players will then tally their scores to determine the winner. The player that scores the most points, wins the game.
Each player looks at their Goal card and counts up the points earned for each location featured on the card. A location scores points equal to the number of stars printed below the space where the corresponding token was placed during the game. If a location was not visited by Buddy or it was the seventh location, it will score zero points.
Scoring Gingerbread Men
Any players that collected Gingerbread Men tokens score points equal to the number of stars on the token.
Year: 2020 | Publisher: Funko Games | Designer: Prospero Hall | Artist: NA
Genres: Children’s, Tile Placement
Ages: 8+ | Number of Players: 2-4 | Length of Game: 20 minutes
Difficulty: Light | Strategy: Light | Luck: Moderate
Components: game board, 12 tokens, 7 Goal cards, 60 Path cards, Buddy the Elf mover, instructions