The Main Board Setup Steps section depicts the basic setup for a standard four-player game. Rules for other numbers of players are in the Appendix.
THE BASIC GAME MODE: Cerebria is a deep and complex game that takes a few playthroughs to master. To make it easier to learn the game, we developed a basic game mode that excludes some of the more advanced game concepts and helps you learn the game step by step. If your group is new to the game, we strongly recommend starting with the basic mode. After a few plays, you can move on to the full game, but feel free to return to the basic version whenever you like. For specific rules regarding the basic game, look for text boxes like this throughout the rulebook. You can also find a summary in the Appendix.
BASIC GAME: The Point counter will not be used until the end of the basic game.
BASIC GAME: In the basic game, before shuffling the Common Aspiration deck, remove the cards Reflection and Sensibility from it, and only deal seven cards.
WILLPOWER ( ): This is the energy that flows through Cerebria. It is possible to take Willpower directly from the supply, but usually players will get Willpower by Absorbing it from one of the five Spheres. Willpower can be spent on various Actions. Spent Willpower is returned to this supply. When a Sphere is emptied of Willpower, Cerebria experiences a Revelation, after which the Sphere is replenished with 7 Willpower from this supply.
ESSENCE ( / ): This is the life force required to sustain the Emotions. During play, players will take Essence from this supply and store it on their Spirit boards. Sometimes it is spent and returned to this supply, but usually it is given to an Emotion to make it stronger.