|Number of Players
||John Coveyou, Paul Salomon, Ian Zang
Gregor Mendel is the 19th Century Augustinian Friar credited with being the father of modern genetics. In Genotype, you are his assistants, competing to collect experimental data on pea plants by trying to control how the plants inherit key Traits from their parents: seed shape, flower color, stem color, and plant height. The observable Traits of a Pea Plant (its Phenotype) are decided by its genetic makeup (its Genotype). The relationship between the Genotype and Phenotype and the nature of genetic inheritance are at the heart of Genotype: A Mendelian Genetics Game.
During the game, players get Pea Plant Cards which display a set of Phenotype Traits they hope to produce and collect (such as pink flowers and tall height) in order to score points. Every round, Dice are rolled to represent Plant breeding, which may result in the Traits players are looking for. After the Dice Roll, players will take turns drafting Dice towards completing their Pea Plant Cards or advancing their Research. The Traits produced during the Dice Roll come through the science of Punnett Squares, which show how parent genes combine, one from each parent plant. By changing the genes of these parent plants, players can influence the likelihood of rolling the Traits they require. The completion of Pea Plant Cards via the Dice Draft is the primary way players score points.
Every round consists of 3 phases:
- Worker Placement
- Dice Drafting
- During Worker Placement, players will take actions to get more Plant Cards, change the genes of a parent plant, Garden, Research, stake Phenotype claims, gather new Tools, or even position themselves ahead of other players for the Dice Drafting Phase in a couple of ways.
- Dice Drafting features a couple of interesting steps, including the possibility to get first pick of dice, but only for one type of Trait (like plant height), or the option to get a pick of any dice, but only after those first picks have happened. The De Novo Mutation Dice allow players to change the Trait of other Dice or gain additional Research.
- The Upgrades phase allows players to spend their Research to gain upgrades that let them work on more Plant Cards, draft more Dice each round, or gain additional Workers to be used during the Worker Placement Phase of each round.
Players work to match their Pea Plant Cards to the outcome of the Dice Draft and fulfill the cards for points. If they've placed a Phenotype marker, they will earn bonus points for every fulfilled card that matches their claim. At the end of 5 rounds, the player with the most points wins the game.