This is an AutoGeneratedTextVersion of Skyscrapers

A Solitary Confinement game for the piecepack by Michael J. Schoessow
Version 1.4, 19 January 2004
Copyright © 2003 Michael J. Schoessow
2 players, 15-30 minutes

License Agreement Skyscrapers, Copyright © October 2003 by Michael J. Schoessow.
These rules may be copied and distributed as long as this header is
left in place or the author is credited.

Equipment Needed One standard piecepack

Skyscrapers is a solitaire city-building game. The player works to construct the most
lucrative combination of commercial and residential zones, by clever movement and
inspired planning.

Separate the coins into four suit-side-up color groups of six coins each. Turn all the tiles
suit-side-down and shuffle them, or place them in an opaque bag to mix them up. One tile
at a time, form a 5x5 board of randomly distributed suit-side-up tiles with a hole in the
center. Tiles should all be spaced approximately _ inch from their neighbors, to facilitate
easy sliding. Tile orientation is of no concern. Place the four pawns on top of their color-
matched null tiles. The pawns are called work crews. Keep the coins, suit side up and
handy in their groups, off to the side of the board. The dice are not used and may be left
in the box. In the rare circumstance that the four null tiles boarder the four sides of the
center hole, the crowns null tile is exchanged with the crowns ace tile.

The object of the game is to arrange the tiles and coins into the highest point scoring
configuration. This means developing the commercial zones of the city by building
upward, while arranging the residential zones for high property value, which means
placing them away from the commercial zones. The tiles represent commercial zones in
the city, and coins represent residential zones.

Game Play
There are three types of plays allowed:

1)  Stack a tile onto an adjacent tile of the same color.
2)  Slide a tile or coin already on the board into the hole in the board.
3)  Move a pawn orthogonally, landing on a tile or coin of the pawn’s color.

Stack a Tile

A tile may be stacked on top of an orthogonally adjacent tile if, and only if, the two tiles
are the same suit and there is a work crew adjacent to the tile that is being moved. The

pawns are work crews, and a work crew (of any color) must be setting adjacent to the tile
that is going to be moved (not the tile that is going to be stacked onto). Whenever a tile is
stacked, the resulting empty space is immediately filled with a coin of the same color as
the tile that previously occupied that space (the tile that was just moved). Once a stack is
formed, its position is frozen in place; stacks may never be moved. Stacks may not be
deconstructed; once a tile is part of a stack, it remains there permanently. Tiles may not
be added to a stack that has a pawn setting on it.

Slide a Tile or Coin

There will always be exactly one empty space (or hole) on the board, and its position on
the board will shift as tiles and coins are slid. At the start of the game, the hole is in the
center of the board, and there are no coins on the board. Any tile orthogonally adjacent to
the hole may be slid into the hole. The new hole is then at the space formerly occupied by
the tile just slid. Later in the game, some of the spaces will be occupied by coins instead
of tiles. Coins may also be slid into the hole in exactly the same way as with tiles. By
sliding tiles and coins in this way, the board configuration may be altered. Tiles and coins
may not be moved if they hold a pawn. Stacks of tiles, and individual tiles within stacks,
may never be moved. All movements must be within the original 5x5 outline of the city.

Move a Pawn

Pawns represent work crews in the opening and middle game. They move orthogonally,
and may move any number of spaces as long as they land on a tile or coin of the same
color as themselves. Pawns may not move over or through other pawns. Pawns may not
move over the hole in the board. Pawns may not move over tile stacks. A pawn freezes
the tile or coin beneath it (i.e., a tile or coin that holds a pawn may not be moved). Pawns
may be moved onto tile stacks if they match the color of the top tile on the stack, but a
pawn on top of a stack is frozen for the remainder of the game. Once a pawn is placed on
top of a stack, no additional tiles may be added to that stack. Stacks represent city zones
containing numerous multi-story buildings, and when a pawn is moved onto such a stack
it becomes an architectural feature that enhances the attractiveness of that city zone. A
pawn that is an architectural feature setting on top of a stack may no longer be used as a
work crew.

Unimproved commercial zones (single tiles, not stacked) score no points.

Developed commercial zones (stacks of 2 or 3 tiles) score points equal to the number of
tiles in the stack.

Skyscraper zones (stacks of 4 or more tiles) score points equal to twice the number of
tiles in the stack.

Placing a pawn on top of a stack doubles its score. Thus, artistic architecture is rewarded.

Residential zones (coins) each score 3 points if, and only if, they are not orthogonally
adjacent to any commercial zones, and they don’t hold a pawn. Thus good city planning
is rewarded.

Note From the Author
Some readers will have noticed that the tile and coin sliding mechanic reveals that
Skyscrapers shares some ancestry with the old 15 Puzzle, in which square tiles numbered
1-15 were slid around in an effort to achieve a specified numerical sequence. Players who
excel at the 15 Puzzle will also do very well playing Skyscrapers. If the locations of tile
stacks are chosen wisely, the game may always be completely solved with sufficiently
clever play. This does not mean that Skyscrapers will be an easy game for many players.
However, for those players who desire more of a challenge, and who prefer a game in
which it is not always possible to win, some more challenging variants are provided.
Please note that as of version 1.4 of the game, the variants have not been well play-tested.

Rules Variants for Increased Challenge
Variant #1 Same rules as regular game except for the following. After initial setup, but
before commencing play, any null tiles bordering the hole in the center of the board are
swapped with their suit-matching ace tiles. During play, null tiles may never be moved.

Variant #2 Same rules as regular game except for the following. No more than three tile
sliding operations may be made in succession. Then some other operation (tile stacking,
coin sliding, or pawn movement) must be made before further tile sliding is done.

Each of these variants is made slightly easier if pawns are allowed to move over stacks.