Bomb Squad Edition Detailed Instruction Set
Object of the Game: Be the first to create a clock face with Numerical Cards from 1 to 12. Each round, add to your clock from your hand or use an Action Time Card to enhance your turn or slow down an opponent. The first player to have a completed clock in front of them becomes the winner. Game Play generally takes about 30 minutes. The Bomb Squad Edition has a twist, which allows players to create Time Bombs from four unique Time Bomb Bit Cards. These can be collected and displayed along side your clock. When all four different Time Bomb Bits have been assembled the bomb is ready to take out a neighbor's clock. But beware, Bomb Squad Cards are afoot and may turn the tables back on you.
Before play begins designate someone as the dealer and have them thoroughly shuffle all of the cards together.
To begin play - dealer passes five cards to each player, dealing one at a time clockwise around the table until each player has five cards. In the Bomb Squad Edition the dealer also deals five cards to a Safe Hand, which remains unseen and facedown on the table. The players need to look at their cards and prepare for the Wind-Up Round. The dealer places the unused cards face-down in the center of the table, thus starting the Draw Pile. The top card is turned over and it becomes the beginning of the Discard Pile. Though there won't be any cards to start a Burn Pile at this stage in the game, a Burn Pile must be started next to the Draw and Discard Piles after the first Action Time Card is played. (See the illustration in the main directions or back of the box.) Be aware, there may be times when there are no cards in the Discard or Burn Piles. Should the Draw Pile ever become depleted, shuffle the Discard Pile to create a new Draw Pile - turn the top card over to start a new Discard Pile.
Note: The player who is actively taking their turn is called the Active Player and all other players are referred to as Passive Players. As well, cards with numbers on them are called Numerical Cards and all other cards, which have unique graphics on them, are called Action Time Cards.
The Wind-Up Round: This round is played at the beginning of each new game but is only done once to give each player an opportunity to Wind-Up or begin their clock. The player to the left of the dealer is the first to go. The player will draw either the top card from the Discard or Draw Pile. They will now have six cards in their hand. From these six cards the player will begin building their clock by placing as many Numerical Cards and/or Wild Whammy Cards as they can from their hand to the space in front of them. All Numerical Cards that can be played MUST be played, however, Wild Whammy Cards are optional. When all possible Numerical Cards have been played from their initial hand of six, the Active Player's turn comes to an end and they must draw enough cards from the Draw Pile to bring the cards in their hand back to five. Of note: players must always have five cards in their playing hand at the end of their turn. Once the first player has completed these actions, play moves to the next player to the left. That player does the same thing: drawing a card and then filling their clock with as many Numerical Cards as possible and then replenishing their hand to retain a total of five cards. Play proceeds in this manner until every player has had a chance to Wind-Up their clock. During the Wind-Up phase no Action Time Cards may be played with the exception of the Wild Whammy Card.
Standard Turn Play: With the Wind-Up Round behind you, game play proceeds in this manner, with the player to the left of the dealer taking the first turn.
1. At the beginning of each turn, the Active Player must first draw a card from either the top of the Draw Pile or Discard Pile. Hint: if the Numerical Card at the top of the Discard Pile is not in your clock, you may want to take it.
After taking a draw card the Active Player must do one of the following things:
A. Build their clock by playing a single Numerical or Wild Whammy Card from the cards in their hand to their clock; or,
B. Build their Time Bomb by playing a single Time Bomb Bit or Wild Whammy Card from the cards in their hand to their Time Bomb; or,
C. Play an Action Time Card and follow through with the appropriate action noted on the card. With the exception of Wild Whammy and Time Bomb Bit Cards, all Action Time Cards can only be played once; therefore, when played they are moved to the Burn Pile located next to the Draw Pile. As an example: the Active Player has a Time Warp Card and wishes to play it against a Passive Player. He selects which Passive Player he wants to swap places with and shows them the Time Warp Card. The Active and Passive Players then change seats, leaving both clocks in place. However, the Active Player has the option to keep or change hands. If hands are changed, all cards must be switched and not just a select few. Once done, the Time Warp Card is placed in the Burn Pile and play proceeds to the left.
Note: Familiarize yourself with the different Action Time Cards. They each have very unique characteristics and action properties. There are those that are offensive in nature and some that are more defensive. AND remember the 5-Card Rule: when a Passive Player uses a Bomb Squad Card in defense against a Time Bomb Attack they must move that Bomb Squad Card to the Burn Pile and draw a card from the Draw Pile.
D. The last possible action is for the Active Player to discard rather than playing into their clock. bomb or using an Action Time Card. This may happen when the Active Player has no Numerical Cards that will fit into their clock, no Time Bomb Bits that are needed for their bomb, or has no Action Time Cards they wish to use (the use of Action Time Cards is always optional), or they have a Numerical Card they wish to get rid of. Only Numerical Cards and Time Bomb Bits can be discarded to the Discard Pile. Action Time Cards, other than Time Bomb Bits, cannot be discarded to the Burn or Draw Pile. This would force a player with 6 Action Time Cards in their hand, after their draw, to play an Action Time Card against a Passive Player.
So...at this point the Active Player has drawn and played a single card into their clock/Time Bomb, used an Action Time Card or discarded. Once the Active Player has completed their turn the player to their left becomes the new Active Player. The new Active Player then repeats the same sequence; choosing A, B, C or D above to start and complete their turn.
Play continues in this manner around the table until a player completes their clock and wins the game.
Note: Once a clock has been started it does not leave its spot. Cards may be taken from it or the clock itself may be destroyed with a Time Bomb, but clocks never rotate or move about the table. That being said, players may be required to trade seats or rotate, either right or left, from their position as dictated by various Action Time Cards. A detailed description of each Action Time Card is included with the game's instructions.
A Word About Time Bombs:
Reading the description of each Action Time Card will go a long way to help you understand the game. The aspect that sets the Bomb Squad Edition apart from It's About Time is the creation of Time Bombs. These cards have a different border and each card has a part needed to complete a bomb: a Bomb Maker, TNT, Assembly Items, and, of course, a Clock for detonation. Once a player has completed their bomb it must be played immediately against another player. This action represents the Active Player's turn. If the Passive Player has a Bomb Squad Card they may negate the attack and save their clock, but sadly, if they do not, their entire clock must be placed at the bottom of the Discard Pile.
Okay...here's a fun little switch on the Bomb Squad Card. There are a couple of Bomb Squad Leader Cards in the deck. They are like gold. If you are attacked with a Time Bomb and have a Squad Leader Card, play it and bounce the Active Player's bomb back on their clock and watch it blow up. Getting to know the Action Time Cards, when and how to play them, is at the heart of becoming a Dagnabbit Game specialist.