I'm reasonably experienced playing Agricola - but the family friendly version only, because the people I've played with find the game complicated enough as it is.

I understand how the minor improvements and occupations are supposed to be used; at the start of the game each player will have seven occupations and seven minor improvements, which they'll play through out the game.

The question is - how do I decide which deck (E, I, K) to use, and how do I select nPlayers * 7 occupations and minor improvements from it?

From what I've seen, the purpose of the different decks is to provide differing levels of complexity to game, the E deck being more suitable for beginners and the K deck for very experienced players.

I also see there are various ways to distribute the initial seven cards, a draft commonly being used, as suggested in this question.

Say I am playing with a draft, with three players. Do I just randomly select 21 minor improvements from the E deck?

Can someone please provide a step by step guide to setting up the game, from deciding which deck to use, to selecting the cards for draft/mulligan and then drafting them?

1 Answer 1


The decks you use are completely at the discretion of the players. I like to use all the decks I own. Some people like to use certain decks. Some people like to ensure a particular distribution of cards from each deck, but I find that tedious. Here's how I set things up:

  • Set up the game board normally.
  • Shuffle all Minor Improvements together from all decks.
  • Remove all Occupations that carry a number greater than the number of players in the game (this number appears in a colored square and is either 1+, 3+ or 4+).
  • Shuffle all remaining Occupations together from all decks.
  • Randomly deal out 7 (or more) Occupations to each player.
  • Randomly deal out 7 (or more) Minor Improvements to each player.

(The next two steps are the drafting steps, which you can skip if you want to.)

  • Each player chooses on Occupation and one Minor Improvement to keep, then passes the rest of their dealt cards to the person on their left/right.
  • Repeat the previous step until all cards have been chosen.

  • If you chose to deal more than 7 Occs/Minors, each player discards until they have 7 each.

  • Play the game.
  • Also, when you deal out occupations, make sure that you remove any that carry a number greater than the number of players in the game (this number appears in a coloured circle and is either 1+, 3+ or 4+). Feb 17, 2016 at 16:35
  • Great thank you - That's what I thought was the case, just wasn't sure.
    – dwjohnston
    Feb 18, 2016 at 0:30

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