Mille Bornes has had a number of versions released over the years. With each version some of the rules have changed. For this post I am using the 2016 version of the game. I will try to point out where the rules differ in older versions of the game in the corresponding sections.
Mille Bornes How to Play Quick Links: | Objective | Setup | Individual Player Card Placement | Playing the Game | Distance Cards | Hazard Cards | Remedy Cards | Safety Cards | Coup Fourre | End of Game | Variant Games | FAQ | Components
Objective for Mille Bornes
The objective of Mille Bornes is to be the first player to travel 1,000 miles or more and score the most points.
Setup for Mille Bornes
- Each player takes a Quick Reference card and places it in front of themselves. Return any unused Quick Reference cards to the box.
- Shuffle the game cards and deal six cards to each player. Players can look at their own cards, but shouldn’t show them to the other players.
- Place the rest of the cards face down in the middle of the table to form a draw pile.
- The youngest player starts the game. Play proceeds in a clockwise direction throughout the game.
Individual Player Card Placement
To make the game easier to follow while playing, the game recommends you create a number of different piles for the cards you play during the game.
On the far left side you should create a Speed Limit pile. Your opponents will play Speed Limit cards to the pile. To remedy Speed Limit cards, you will play End of Speed Limit cards to this pile. Whichever card is on top of the pile is the one currently active. If a Speed Limit card is on top, you can only play Distance cards equal to or lower than the Speed Limit (50). If a End of Speed Limit card is on top of the pile, there is no restriction on what Distance cards that you can play.
Next to the Speed Limit pile is your Drive pile. In your Drive pile you will play Drive cards. At the beginning of the game before you can play any Distance cards, you must play a Drive or an Emergency Vehicle card. Your opponents will play Hazard cards to the Drive pile. In order to play Distance cards, the top card on your Drive pile cannot be a Hazard card (unless you have played the corresponding Safety card). You will play Remedy cards to this pile to fix any Hazard cards played against you.
Next to the Drive pile you should create piles for the different values of Distance cards that you have played. Separating the Distance cards into different piles makes it easier to count the number of miles that you have played.
You should play Safety cards in a section along the top of your play area. You should spread these cards out so they are all visible at the same time. Should you play a Safety card in a Coup Fourre (see below), you will play it horizontally so you remember how you played it during final scoring.
Playing Mille Bornes
You will begin each of your turns drawing a card. You can either draw the top card from the draw pile, or the top card from the discard pile.
Note: In older versions of Mille Bornes, you could only draw cards from the draw pile. You could not take cards from the discard pile.
Should the draw pile ever run out of cards, shuffle the discard pile to form a new draw pile. Note: In some older versions of Mille Bornes, the round ends when the Draw Pile runs out of cards.
After drawing a card, you will look at the cards in your hand. You will choose one of the cards to play. Depending on what card you choose to play, you will either play a card to your own area, or another player’s area. For more details on how to play each type of card, check out the corresponding section in The Cards of Mille Bornes section.
If you cannot play a card on your turn, you will discard one of the cards from your hand. You will place your chosen card face up on top of the discard pile.
Your turn then ends. Play passes to the player on your left.
The Cards of Mille Bornes
Mille Bornes consists of a number of different types of cards. Each type of card has a different impact on the gameplay.
Before you can play any Distance cards in front of yourself, you need to play a Drive card to your Drive pile or the Emergency Vehicle card to the Safety card area.
After you have played one of these cards, you can play any Distance card from your hand to your own Distance piles. Should a Hazard/red card be on top of your Drive pile, you will not be able to play a Distance card until you fix the Hazard card with the corresponding Remedy or Safety card.
The number on each Distance card indicates how many miles you will move. The objective of the game is to move 1,000 or more miles.
Each player may only play two 200 mile cards to their distance piles during the game. Otherwise there is no limit on the number of Distance cards of a specific number that you can play.
Red Hazard Cards
You will play red Hazard cards against other players. A Hazard card should be played on another player in order to either slow them down or stop them from playing Distance cards.
You may not play a Hazard card on another player if they previously played the corresponding Safety card. Only one Hazard card can impact each player at a time. If a player already is impacted by a Hazard card, you cannot play another one on them. The one exception to this is that they can be impacted by a Speed Limit and another non-Speed Limit Hazard at the same time.
Note: In some older versions of Mille Bornes you can play a Hazard card on top of another Hazard card. This rule seems to be dependent on what version of the game you are playing. It seems to have changed back and forth a couple times.
You will play Accident cards to other players’ Drive piles. The Accident card prevents the player you play it against from playing new Distance cards until they remedy it.
You will play Flat Tire cards to other players’ Drive piles. The player you play the card against cannot play new Distance cards until they remedy the card.
Out of Gas
You will play Out of Gas cards to other players’ Drive piles. The Out of Gas card prevents the player you play it against from playing new Distance cards until they remedy the card.
A Speed Limit cards prevents the player that it is played against from playing certain Distance cards. You will play the card to another player’s Speed Limit pile. A player impacted by a Speed Limit card can only play Distance cards of 50 and lower.
You will play a Stop card on top of another player’s Drive pile. When you play a Stop card, you prevent that player from playing new Distance cards.
Green Remedy Cards
Green Remedy cards are used to offset red Hazard cards played against you. When another player plays a Hazard card against you, you are unable to play Distance cards until you play the corresponding Remedy or Safety card. After you play the corresponding Remedy card, you can start playing Distance cards immediately. You do not have to play a Drive card.
Note: In older versions of Mille Bornes after playing the corresponding Remedy card, you also need to play a Roll/Drive card.
Drive (aka Roll)
In order versions of Mille Bornes the Drive cards were instead called Roll card.
Drive cards allow you to play new Distance cards to the piles in front of you. You will play Drive cards to your Drive pile. To start the game you need to play a Drive card before you can play any Distance cards.
When another player plays a Stop card to your Drive pile, you must play a Drive card in order to play Distance cards again.
End of Speed Limit
You will play an End of Speed Limit card in order to stop a Speed Limit card played against you. You will play the card to your Speed Limit pile. After you play the End of Speed Limit card, you can play Distance cards of any amount.
Gas (aka Gasoline)
Gas cards are played to your Drive pile. When another player plays an Out of Gas card to your Drive pile, you need to play a Gas card to remedy it. Once you play a Gas card, you can start playing Distance cards again.
Repairs cards are played to your Drive pile. When a player plays a Accident card to your Drive pile, you can play the Repairs card to remedy it. You may then start to play Distance cards again.
You will play Spare Tire cards to your Drive pile. Should another player play a Flat Tire card to your Drive pile, you can play a Spare Tire card to remedy it. Once you play the Spare Tire card, you can once against play Distance cards.
Blue Safety Cards
Each blue Safety card protects you from one specific Hazard card for the rest of the game. Once you play the Safety card, it will override the corresponding Hazard card (if it is currently affecting you) and players can no longer play that Hazard card against you for the rest of the game.
When you play a Safety card, you get a free turn to draw and play another card.
The Driving Ace card is the Safety card for Accident cards. Should an Accident card be played on your Drive pile, you can play the Driving Ace card to remedy it.
After a Driving Ace card is played, no one can play another Accident card against you.
Emergency Vehicle (aka Right of Way)
The Emergency Vehicle Safety card is used to remedy Stop and Speed Limit cards. An Emergency Vehicle Safety card can be played to remedy a Stop or Speed Limit card played against you. You can also use the Emergency Vehicle card at the start of the game to allow you to play Distance cards without the need for a Drive card.
Once you have played the Emergency Vehicle Safety card, players can no longer play Stop or Speed Limit cards against you.
Fuel Truck (aka Extra Tank)
The Fuel Truck card remedies Out of Gas cards. You can play a Fuel Truck card to remedy an Out of Gas card played against you.
Once you have played the Fuel Truck card, players may no longer play Out of Gas cards against you.
The Puncture Proof card remedies Flat Tire cards. If another player plays a Flat Tire against you, you can play a Puncture Proof card to remedy it.
Once you play a Puncture Proof card, players may no longer play Flat Tire cards against you.
Should a player play a Hazard card to your Drive pile and you have the corresponding Safety card in your hand, you may play the corresponding Safety card immediately. This is called a Coup Fourre. You can use this action even if it is not your turn.
You will draw a new card immediately to replace the Safety card you played. Then take the next turn. If it wasn’t normally going to be your turn, all of the players between the player who played the Hazard card and you are skipped. After you take your turn, play passes to the player on your left.
When you take this action you will play the Safety card horizontally in front of you to show how you played it. Playing a Safety card in this way scores you more points at the end of the game.
End of Mille Bornes
Mille Bornes ends once one of the players play Distance cards totaling 1,000 or more miles.
Note: In some older versions of Mille Bornes you can’t play a Distance card if it would put your total above 1,000 miles. The game can also end once all of the cards have been played.
All of the players than count up how many points they scored in the game. You will score points as follows:
- Distance cards: 1 point per mile traveled
- Safety cards (not played for Coup Fourre): 100 points
- Coup Fourre : 200 points
The player/team that scores the most points wins the game.
Scoring in Older Versions of Mille Bornes
The scoring in older versions of Mille Bornes is quite a bit different. You normally would play a number of hands until one player/team scored 5,000 or more points. Below is how you score points in those versions of the game:
- Distance cards: 1 point per mile traveled
- Safety cards: 100 points
- Coup Fourre: 300 additional points in addition to the 100 points for a Safety card
- One player/team plays all four Safety cards: 300 additional points
- Player/team that completes 1,000 mile trip: 400 bonus points
- Completing your trip after all cards have been drawn: 300 bonus points
- Don’t play any 200 mile cards and complete the 1,000 mile trip: 300 bonus points
- Preventing another player/team from playing any distance cards: 500 bonus points
In the older versions of Mille Bornes, the first player/team to score 5,000 or more points wins the game.
If you would like to play a quicker game, you can choose to use the fast play rules.
The fast play rules allow you to immediately remedy a Hazard card played against you. If an opponent plays a Hazard card to your Drive pile, you can immediately play the corresponding Remedy card to your Drive pile. You will immediately draw a new card to replace the card that you played. Using this action does not count as a Coup Fourre
Play will then return to normal continuing with the player to the left of the one that played the Hazard card.
Additionally on any turn you can choose to discard as many cards as you want from your hand. You will then draw the corresponding number of cards from the draw pile (until you have six cards in your hand). If you choose this action, you will skip the rest of your turn.
If there are four to six players, you can choose to use the team play rules. All of the players will play with another player.
Each player has their own hand. Teammates will play to the same area though. The players on each team will alternate taking turns.
Mille Bornes FAQ
Before I get into the FAQ I want to mention that the rules for Mille Bornes have changed over the years. Some of these answers will not apply to all versions of the game or may differ based on your version of the game.
Can you take a Remedy card from the Discard Pile in anticipation of a player playing a Hazard card against you?
This is going to completely depend on what version of the game you play. In some versions of Mille Bornes you can take cards from the Discard Pile and others do not allow you to. It seems like it is mostly the newer versions of Mille Bornes that allow you to take cards from the Discard Pile.
In versions of the game that allow you to take cards from the Discard Pile, I see no reason why you couldn’t take a Remedy card before you were planning of using it.
Can you play a Hazard card on top of another Hazard card, or can you only play them on top of Drive/Roll cards?
This depends entirely on the version of the game that you are playing. This rule seems to have actually changed back and forth a couple of times. Some versions of the game allow you to play a Hazard card on top of another Hazard card. Others only allow you to play Hazard cards on top of Drive/Roll cards. How you play it depends on what version of the game you are playing and how you want to play the game.
Do you have to play a Roll/Drive card after remedying a Hazard card?
This rule has changed over time so it depends on the version of the game you are playing.
Most older versions of the game force you to play a Roll/Drive card after you remedy a Hazard card.
Some of the newer versions of the game do not require you to play the Roll/Drive card though. After you play the Remedy card you can immediately start playing Distance cards again.
I played a Remedy card on top of a Hazard card but have yet to play the Roll/Drive card. If I draw the corresponding Safety card, can I play it for a Coup Fourre?
The only time you may play a Safety card for a Coup Fourre is immediately when the Hazard card is first played against you. You can play the Safety card even if it is not your turn when you are playing it for a Coup Fourre. After you play the card, you immediately get to take another turn.
What happens when all of the cards have been taken from the Draw Pile?
Like a lot of the other questions, this depends on what version of the game you are playing.
Most older versions of the game end when the Draw Pile runs out of cards. You will continue playing cards until no one can still play cards. The round then ends.
In newer versions of Mille Bornes you will shuffle the Discard Pile to form a new Draw Pile.
Can you play Hazard/Speed Limit cards on other players when you can’t play a Distance card yourself?
This rule might have changed between different versions of the game.
It seems like most versions of Mille Bornes allow you to play Speed Limit cards against other players even when you can’t play Distance cards yourself. This includes when you haven’t played a Drive/Roll card to start the round, or a Hazard card is impacting you.
As for Hazard cards, several versions of the game mention that you can’t play a Hazard card before you play your first Roll/Drive card. It doesn’t seem like the rules specifically mention if you can play a Hazard card against another player if you are currently being affected by a Hazard card. Therefore I think the players should decide whether this should be allowed or not.
If you have any questions about how to play Mille Bornes, leave a comment below on this post. I will try to answer any questions asked as best and as quickly as possible.
Mille Bornes Components
- 112 cards
- Distance Cards
- 10 – 25 Miles
- 10 – 50 Miles
- 10 – 75 Miles
- 12 – 100 Miles
- 4 – 200 Miles
- Hazard Cards
- 3 Accident
- 3 Flat Tire
- 3 Out of Gas
- 4 Speed Limit
- 5 Stop
- Remedy Cards
- 6 End of Limit
- 6 Gas/Gasoline
- 6 Repair
- 14 Roll
- 6 Spare Tire
- Safety Cards
- 1 Driving Ace
- 1 Emergency Vehicle/Right of Way
- 1 Fuel Truck/Extra Tank
- 1 Puncture-Proof
- 4-6 Reference Cards (Depends on Version)
- Distance Cards
- Card Tray
For my thoughts on the game, check out my Mille Bornes Review.
Year: 1954 | Publisher: Asmodee, Dujardin, Fundex, Hasbro, Parker Brothers, Winning Moves | Designer: Edmond Dujardin | Artist: Hergé, Pierre Praquin
Genres: Card, Family
Ages: 8+ | Number of Players: 2-6 | Length of Game: 45 minutes
Difficulty: Light | Strategy: Light | Luck: Moderate-High
For more board and card game how to plays/rules and reviews, check out our complete alphabetical list