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Oath Board Games Rules

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The Oath: Chronicles of Empire ad Exile game is a board game that can be played alone or with up to six players who take charge of the ancient land. One player takes the role of a chancellor, who becomes the custodian of oath keeping during the day. 

The chancellor has the power to rule many lands with an advantage of one less action during the game in every turn throughout the entire game. The other players resume exile roles and try to find ways to get the throne for their era of authority. 

In order to play the game fairly and make gameplay enjoyable, we highly recommend to understand the core rules prior to beginning.

What are Oath board game rules? Players take turns within the Chancellor’s realm and the lands around them. The goal is to gather support, recruit war bands, and discover the hidden secrets.

Most players start the game as Exiles, which are powerful figures in the society. They win the game by challenging the Chancellor’s power or by attempting to fulfill a new Vision.

Every Oath game does not have the same outcome each round, nor it is a legacy game. It is about the players making choices to determine what will happen next. 

In this article, we are going to share easy ways to understand Oath board game rules to help you to select resources and actions to increase chance to win. Answered below are frequently asked questions about the Oath game rules and how to play the game in your favor.

How to setup Oath board game?

Prior to beginning the game, it is important to setup the Oath board game properly. Start with placing, map, chronicle site cards including Edifice, Denizen and Relic cards, round maker, and chronicled goal reference on the table.

The shared bank collects ten attack dice, 36 favor tokens, 20 secret tokens, six defense dice, and two banners including the darkest secret placard and people’s favor placard.

On both people’s favor and secret, place one favored in each. Decide which player becomes the chancellor. 

The chancellor is issued with the Chancellor board. Apart from the chancellor, other players can choose any Exile or Citizen board from the turning order.

The players place their supply manager on the leftmost side of their track.

The chancellor places the two favor tokens and one secret token on the board from the shared bank. Then, place three Warbands on the board and two Warbands on the face-up site.

The player then takes either Darkest Secret or People’s Favor depending on the mode of play. Next, the chancellor then takes Oath Keeper Title on its side.

Other Exiles and citizen players place one Favor Token and one Secret Token on their board. The player who plays the citizen role places three Warbands purple in color.

Finally, the chancellor draws four Relic Cards and puts the cards on each of the four spaces of their imperial placard. The rest of the 15 Relic Cards are then placed on the relic deck on the map.

Every player apart from the chancellor draws three cards from the world deck at the bottom. All players, including the chancellor, place the Pawn in the face-up site, choose one card as facedown advisor, and discard any other two cards.

How to play the Oath board game

The gameplay of Oath board game is one player takes the Chancellor role who rules the empire, and other players take Exile roles that make them the citizens of the game. 

The chancellor is given the Oath Keeper Title, which has to be kept for eight rounds. The main goal for the citizens is to beat the chancellor in their yard.

Every round in the oath game consists of three steps for every player apart from the chancellor, who gets two actions. 

The first action is the influence. The active player in a round gains the coins from one of the other factions, represented by the suit on cards. When a player draws a card that matches the suit of cards in the pawn site, the player gets a chance to earn coins or a magic token. 

If the card doesn’t match, the active player gains nothing in that turn. Every player in the Oath game owns the treasury. 

Therefore, if the suit selected for influence doesn’t match their drawn card, their pockets become empty, and they gain nothing. For a player to take any action, the player has to spend some effort. 

A Master Action costs one effort, and a player has a disc of effort track with eight spaces. If a player loops back a Master Action, the player has to pay some coins in the site in which they stand.

What are the Major Actions in the Oath board game

During the Oath board game, there are couple of Major Actions that each player can take to strategy each round. These action include spend the supply, draw three cards, discard the cards, and play the last leftover card. 

  • Spend the supply: Involves drawing cards from the discard pile.
  • Drawing three cards: Can draw the cards from the world deck one at a time or from the discarding pile.
  • Discarding cards: Must discard all the cards they drew apart from one card.
  • Playing the one card left: Play the remaining card on the site, or the player can reveal the card on the vision space if the player took the Exile role.

Note, these major actions are conducted in any order and the limited depending on the supply.

What are minor actions in the Oath board game

Compared to the major action explained above, the minor actions are actions with no supply requirement, and they allow the players to play the card. 

These Minor Actions include;

  • Playing or discarding face down adviser
  • Using action power
  • Peeking at a Relic card
  • Peeking at the Imperial relic
  • Moving Warbands to and from the site
  • Offering citizenship


Powers in an oath game are exercised in the following circumstances:

  • Access: The card power is used if a player can rule the card or has a pawn at the site with the card. The Chancellor is mandated to use powers to uncover spaces in the Imperial Reliquary.
  • Cost: The power is only used if it’s paid for in the game, both the sites and the conspiracy have their cost.
  • Persistent powers: These are powers with effect on all the players, and they take effect when an action is taken.

Technical rules 

In addition, here are technical rules that you need to be considering while playing Oath board game:

  • A player should not infer rules that are not written.
  • Rules with MUST, If Able, Ignore and Cannot will override other rules.
  • The component limit and capacity rule exclude secret and dice, where the banks and player boards hold for any number of components unless those components have been prompted.
  • Public and private information entails drawing and discarding cards from the pile or the world deck.
  • A player cannot sacrifice, burn or place more resources. 
  • Negotiations and promises are done even in a future game, but bidding is not promised except for offers of citizenship.  

How to win the Oath game

Compared to many other board games, Oath has slightly different rule and concept when it comes to determining the winner and loser. 

Oath is won through four primary victory goals namely including usurper, visionary, stable regime, and war exhaustion win.

Usurper Win: In usurper win case, the Exile wins the game during the Wake phase. This happens when they hold The People Favor card or when a player holds the Oath Keeper Title.

Visionary Win: The Exile wins the game during the Wake up phase, but after revealing the Vision card for accomplishing a goal. The goal can either be a Conquest goal which is controlling most sites, Sanctuary which holds most relic cards and banners, or faith when a player holds the Darkest secret card.

Stable Regime Win: In stable regime win, the potential winner can be both chancellor and citizen. This winning event happens on the fifth, sixth, and seventh rounds, and a die is rolled if the player is the Oath Keeper.

War Exhaustion Win: The war exhaustion win comes at the end of the eighth round. And the winner is determined after considering the following;

  • The player is the Oath Keeper at the end of the game.
  • The exiled player is the Usurper.
  • If the exiled player has already revealed the Visionary card.
  • Check the empire where the chancellor wins, but the citizen wins if the player has already met the goal.
Oath board game rules

Board Game Rules for Oath: Conclusion

The Oath board game tends to look complex with rules, winning strategy and actions to be taken. The gameplay goes where the Chancellor takes power to hold the oath-taking control of the empire, and the goal of Citizens is to overthrow the Chancellor from the kingdom.

Step up the game by having all the pieces together including map, chronicle site cards, round maker, and reference for chronicled goal. In addition, there are dice, tokens, and banners to place the darkest secret and favor card. 

There are a couple of scenario for Exiles and Chancellors to win the game such as usurper win, visionary win, stable regime win, and war exhaustion win. These winning events are based on the card selection and who plays the Oath Keeper. 

In order to strategize the game, each player is responsible for major and minor actions to gather support, recruit warbands, and discover hidden secrets.

Each player needs to consider how accessible, costly, and persistent the powers are to effect each action.

The game starts as the roles played as the Chancellor and Exiles who are the citizens of the game. The Oath Keeper titles are kept by the Chancellor throughout the eight rounds.

In every round, there are three steps that each player can select where the Chancellor gets two actions. 

At the end of each Oath game, the players will take account on the happening during the Chronicle Phase. Where the play is re-centered around the territory and the new cards will be introduced to the deck.

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