The Petra Board Game

The Treasury

Recently the city of Petra was voted as the seventh wonder of the ancient world. This ancient city was located in a narrow valley between two mountains. It was a natural fortress that was home to the Nabataean people who controlled a great merchant empire from this city. Their secret was not so much a powerful army, but rather, economics. Using their monopoly on the supply of frankincense to Europe's temples, the Nabataeans built an empire of wealth and opulence never before seen in the deserts of Arabia.

Today tourists are awed by the spectacular ruins left in the ancient city of Petra, the most famous city in the Nabataean Kingdom. You may be interested in reading Dan Gibson's book: “The Nabataeans, Builders of Petra” for more background information on these fascinating people. (Available from the Canbooks store)

This game was designed to introduce the player to the hectic land grab and quest for fame and fortune that took place in Petra from 100 BC to 500 AD. Powerful Nabataean families vied for a place of honor in the rapidly developing city. When the land was gone, they started to take each other to court, seeking to expand their properties and their honorable place in the community, as illustrated in the Petra scrolls.


In this game, players seeking to gain riches and build large and impressive monuments and buildings in order to be the most honorable person in Petra. But be careful, if you get too far ahead of your opponents, they may haul you before the city council and try to sue you for your property. Always make sure you have adequate funds to purchase legal defenses so you can defend your properties and perhaps even attack your opponents.

The Treasury

The Petra Board Game is a well balanced fast moving game that takes 1 to 2 hours to play. The land pieces are shuffled and placed on the table face down. As the game proceeds, players buy land and turn over the piece to see what sort of property they have purchased. They can graze sheep on this land to earn a minimal amount until they have enough money to purchase buildings or monuments. Players can also invest in camel caravans to increase their earnings. Eventually, as they build up properties they begin to earn more and more money, which will allow them to build bigger and better monuments. Players can also travel to nearby civilizations (Ptolemys, Seleucids, and Jews) to form political deals that will better utilize their properties. Throughout this process they continue to add to their ‘honor points.’ If, however, someone has a property, building or monument that a player wants, he can take the owner to the courts and sue them for that property. Money can be invested in the court case to better your chances of winning. In the end, the player with the most honor (land, buildings, political deals and cash) wins the game.

This game simulates the rich hey-days of the first century BC and ends in the Petra land struggle of the 4th to 6th centuries. Now you can own it and play it for as little as $5.00. Similar board games sell for over $ 50.00 in the stores. But now you can cut out all the middle men, and download the game and play it within a few minutes after cutting out the pieces. The game looks best if printed in a color laser printer and printed on card stock.

The Petra Board Game comes as a downloaded 25 megabyte PDF file, in North American letter size format. The currency is best printed on different colored papers. The game will require five dice and some small coins to use as markers. (North American dimes work well)

Use your Paypal account to pay for the game and down load it now.

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