Fauna is a game of both knowledge and guesswork, either educated or wild! It can be played educationally with children but equally enjoyed by adults.
The board is a map of the world divided into geographic areas, and beneath it a set of scales for weight, length, and tail length. Each player has a set of ‘marker’ cubes they will place on the board.
During a turn the top card in a plastic container is looked at but not removed – the visible part of the card shows a picture of an animal and the amount of areas it can be found in on the board. This information can be passed around so everyone gets a closer look – the latin name is also supplied.
Players then take turns to guess at where the animal appears in the world, and/or it’s height, length, weight, and tail length if applicable. You can make as many guesses as you have cubes to guess with, but beware that wrong guesses cost you a cube (i.e. one less to guess with next time) – so be strategic.
Once everyone has passed – some people may have more guesses than others – then the rest of the card is revealed and black markers are used to show the areas on the map the animal in question can be found. A right answer gets you a lot of points – especially if the animal is not widespread – but being adjacent also scores a few points too. Right answers in the height/weight/length categories always score 7 points, or 3 for being adjacent.
Cubes are returned to players (minus a cube for each wrong answer, down to a minimum of three cubes per player) and the starting player moves to the left. Play continues until a certain number of points (which varies depending on how many players there are) have been scored, and the leader at the end of that round is the winner.
Fauna can be played competitively, collaboratively, as a quick-fire let’s-guess-stuff filler game or a more thoughtful and strategic game, where you can hedge your bets by going for less points than a direct hit. It’s one of the few games that work on a directly educational level, where learning something actually feels like fun. Fans might want to check out the very similar Terra (facts about Earth) or America (facts about the 50 states).
None really, though you can be blocked out of areas and forced to go adjacent/elsewhere.
Not much, as long as everyone plays in the same spirit.
There's no maths here.
Very simple rules and play, with huge variety in the cards.