Actions of Brass

By: Dennis B. B. Taylor

Actions of Brass

So, how do you go about building an Industry counter in a specific location? Well, let me break it down for you:

  • First things first, you need to play a card that gives you the green light to build there.
  • Next, you gotta make sure that the symbol on the space matches the Industry counter you want to construct.
  • If coal is required at that location, you’ll need to move some over.
  • Similarly, if you need an iron cube, don’t forget to grab one.
  • Lastly, you need to have enough money to cover the cost of the counter, which might include extra expenses for taking cubes from the Demand tracks.

Choosing the Right Card

Now, let’s talk about the different types of cards you can use. There are two main kinds: Location cards and Industry cards. If you want to build somewhere, you’ll need a Location card for that specific spot.

An Industry card lets you create a specific type of industry, but only in places where you are connected. During the Canal Period, you can build in any location that you are connected to through your own canal links. In the Rail Period, you can build in any location that you are connected to through your own rail links or where you already have an Industry counter. If you play an Industry card as your very first ‘build’ card, you can construct in any space that has the same symbol as the card.

IMPORTANT: There’s a ‘virtual’ connection between Liverpool and Birkenhead that works the same as an owned canal or rail link. However, you cannot transport coal or sell cotton through it.

Matching the symbol

Building industry counters requires careful consideration of the different spaces available in each location. Every space is equipped with one or two symbols that correspond to the industry you want to construct.

Transporting Coal for Industry Construction

When constructing an industry counter that has a black cube symbol, you must be able to transport a coal cube to the designated location. There are two sources of coal available: the coal mines and the Coal Demand track. It is mandatory to take a coal cube from any coal mine in Lancashire, regardless of who owns it, if it is possible. Only when there are no coal cubes legally available in Lancashire can you take one from the Coal Demand track. There are two main reasons why you may not be able to take coal from Lancashire: either you are not connected to a source through canal or rail links, or there is a complete absence of coal across any locations in Lancashire.

If you can get coal from Lancashire, you should get it from the closest place, counting the distance in the canals or railways that connect to each option. If two sources are the same distance away, you can choose which one to use.

To transport the coal to where you want to build, you have to move it along the canals or railways that have been constructed. You can also move the coal through an External Location. Once you move it to its final destination, you take it out and put it back in the stock.

If you can’t get coal from Lancashire, you can get it from the Coal Demand track. Just make sure that the space where you’re building is connected to a constructed port via canal or rail links. You’ll have to pay extra for this cube, as indicated on the Demand Track. But if there are no cubes left on the Coal Demand track, you can purchase one from the stock for ?5. It’s the same as getting it from the Coal Demand track.

When you take the last cube from a coal mine, the counter flips to its other side. And the owner of the mine gets to move their income marker along the Income Track by the value shown in the gold circle.

When it comes to playing the game, you don’t have to worry about paying another player if you take coal from their mine. Moving coal along any canal or rail links is free of charge, even if it’s on someone else’s link.

Getting iron to construct

When you want to build an Industry counter with an orange cube on it, you need to acquire an iron cube. Ideally, you should take it from an iron works in Lancashire, even if it belongs to another player. The good news is that you don’t need to be connected to the source through canal or rail links, nor do you have to take it from the nearest source. However, if there are no cubes available in Lancashire, you can take one from the Iron Demand track. Keep in mind that this option will cost you an additional amount, as indicated.

In the event that there are no more cubes left on the Iron Demand track, you have the choice to pay ?5 to obtain one from the stock. Once you’ve taken the cube, make sure to place it back in the stock.

If you take the last cube from an iron works, you simply turn the counter over. The owner of the counter then moves their income marker along the Income Track, based on the value shown in the gold circle.

You don’t have to pay other players to take iron from their counter.

When you buy an industry counter, you have to pay the full cost of the counter, as well as any additional amounts for coal and iron. This money should go in your ‘Amount Spent’ box.

There are more rules about what you can build and where you can build it. You always have to build the top Industry counter from one of your five stacks of counters.

Hey there! Let’s talk about building industries in different periods. It’s pretty interesting!

So, here’s the deal – you can’t start building an industry if your Tech Level is zero. You have to have at least some level of technology to get things going. Makes sense, right?

Now, let’s talk about the Canal Period. If there’s a Canal symbol on a counter, it can only be built during that period. In other words, you can’t build a Tech Level 1 counter in the Rail Period. Each period has its own rules!

In the Canal Period, you can only have one Industry counter in a location. Gotta keep it simple! But in the Rail Period, you can have as many counters as there are eligible spaces. So it’s all about using the available space wisely!

Oh, one more thing – whenever you build a counter, you always place it face-up. No secrets here! Everything is out in the open.

Cotton Mills

I’m going to talk about cotton mills, which make textiles. These textiles can be sold through a port. When you sell cotton, the counter changes to the other side.


Now let’s talk about ports. Ports are places where cotton mills can sell what they produce. When a port is used to sell cotton, it changes to the other side. You can also get coal from the Coal Demand track using a port.

Coal Mines

Lastly, I want to tell you about coal mines. Coal mines are where you can find coal cubes. When you build a coal mine, you put some coal cubes on it, as shown on the counter. A coal mine changes to the other side when all the cubes on it are taken away.

Hey there! Just a heads up – when you build your mine and it’s connected to a port, it’s super important to immediately move coal cubes from the mine to fill any empty spaces on the Coal Demand track. The amount you take from the bank is equal to the number shown to the left of each space. Make sure to fill the track from the bottom upwards. Oh, and this money is taken after you’ve paid for the mine, so you can’t use it to cover the cost. Now, if your mine isn’t connected to a port when you first build it, but gets connected later on, you don’t need to move any cubes to the Coal Demand track. Just something to keep in mind!

Iron works

Iron works are where iron cubes come from. When you make an iron works, you put a certain number of iron cubes on it, as shown on the counter. An iron works gets flipped over when all of its cubes are taken off.

IMPORTANT: When you make an iron works, you need to move cubes from it to fill in any empty spaces on the Iron Demand track. You don’t have to be connected to a port to do this.

You get money from the bank for each cube you put on the track, just like with coal.

Shipyards don’t really do anything special, they’re just a good way to get victory points. Once you build a shipyard, you flip it over. Just so you know, during the Canal Period, you can only build a shipyard in Liverpool because Birkenhead and Barrow-in-Furness can only be reached by rail.

Creating new buildings over existing structures

Hey there! Did you know that you have the freedom to construct buildings on spaces where you already have your counters? Pretty cool, right? Here’s how it works: if the new counter you want to build is of the same type as the existing one but has a higher Tech Level, you’re good to go. Just make sure to remove the old counter and any cubes on it.

Wait, there’s more! You can even build on top of another player’s coal mine, but only if there are no coal cubes in Lancashire or on the Coal Demand track. Oh, and your coal mine needs to have a higher Tech Level than the one you’re replacing. It’s all about staying ahead!

Now, let’s talk about iron works. If you want to replace one, go for it! Just make sure there are no iron cubes left in Lancashire or on the Demand track. And don’t worry, this won’t reduce your income. Phew!

Supercharging your actions

If you’re looking to double your impact in Lancashire, I have some great news for you! You can actually combine two actions into one, which allows you to build in any available space and play two cards at the same time. It’s like hitting two birds with one stone!

Let’s Build a Canal or Rail Link!

The card you played earlier doesn’t affect where you can build your link. It’s all up to you!

You have two options for building your link: either on a potential link that connects to one of your Industry counters or on a location that already has one of your canals or rail links.

If you’re in the Canal Period, you can only build canals on potential canal links. In the Rail Period, you can only build rail links on potential rail links.

But here’s the catch: building a rail link requires a coal cube. You need to move the coal cube to one of the two locations where the rail link is being built. Just like when you build Industry counters, you have to transport the coal via rail links to its final destination. Make sure to take the coal from Lancashire first, if you can.

If you’re connected to an external location, you have the ability to create a link. In a single action, you can build two rail links, but it will cost ?15. Remember, you’ll need one coal cube for each link you build. Unfortunately, you can’t build two canal links in one action.


The card you played prior to choosing this action doesn’t affect the development options available to you.

As one action, you can remove and discard one or two Industry counters from the top of your stacks. These counters can come from the same stack or different ones. For each counter you remove, you’ll also need to take an iron cube from the board. The rules for Taking Iron will tell you where you can find these cubes. Keep in mind that you can never add counters to a stack.

Sell cotton

The card you played before selecting this action doesn’t affect your ability to sell cotton.

When selling cotton in the game, you have the freedom to choose from any of your visible mills. It’s important to note that each mill you sell from must sell to either a face-up port or a Distant Market. It’s crucial to treat each mill separately when making these sales.

If you want to sell your cotton to a face-up port, your mill must be connected to it. Once you sell your cotton to a face-up port, both the mill and the port will be flipped. Keep in mind that you can also sell your cotton to a port owned by another player, and they cannot deny you the use of it. You have the flexibility to choose any available port to sell your cotton to, and you can even go through a face-up port to reach the port of your choice.

Selling your products to a faraway market requires a connection between your mill and a built port. The process starts with you flipping over the top tile from the Distant Market stack and moving the Cotton Demand marker down the track, based on the number shown on the tile. As long as the marker hasn’t reached the bottom space, you have the green light to flip your cotton mill. In return, you receive extra money for the sale, according to the amount indicated on the side of the track. This action is repeated every time you make a sale to this market. The tile you remove is then placed at the bottom of the stack.

If the Cotton Demand marker does reach the bottom space, then you don’t flip your mill. From that point on, no one can sell cotton to the Distant Market for the remainder of the period, and all Distant Market tiles should be taken out of the box.

Get a Loan

When it comes to getting a loan, the card you previously played doesn’t affect the amount of money you can borrow. You have the freedom to take a multiple of $10 from the bank, with a maximum limit of $30. Keep in mind that for each $10 you borrow, you’ll need to move your disc down one Income band on the Income track. However, remember that you can’t go below -$10.

It’s important to note that once the deck of cards has run out during the Rail Period, you won’t be able to take a loan anymore. So make sure to consider your options and plan ahead!

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