My copy of Power Grid has an strange reversal of terminology between the cards:

Power Grid "Phase 3" and summary cards

... and the rules:

Power Grid rules excerpt

Obviously this isn't a huge deal, but I just wonder which is correct in terms of the other editions of the game available?

Update: after the answer below confirmed that the cards are wrong rather than the rules, I contacted Rio Grande Games to ask about getting replacement cards. They directed me to the BoardGameGeek store, which sells a Power Grid promotional pack called "Power Grid: Theme Park (BGG Promo Card Set)". This contains a replacement Step 3 card, but sadly no replacement player summary cards... If anyone knows how to get them, that would be great to know.

  • Power grid's terminology is totally backwards from what it should be. Phases should be bigger than steps. I would love to have cards that refer to phases rather than steps because it would make the game so much easier to explain.
    – Zags
    Commented May 17, 2017 at 2:24
  • 1
    @Zags It's simply a bad translation. The German word Stufe can be translated into English as step or stage - whoever translated the rules should have picked the second one instead of the first. Commented Aug 9, 2019 at 10:02

1 Answer 1


In later revisons of Power Grid phases are used to describe the difference phases of a turn. Steps are used to describe the 3 different game states that happens when a player builds 7 cities or pull the card in OP post from the top of the power plant pile.

The card does say "Step 3" in the later revisions that I played.

For more information check the Power Grid FAQ

  • 2
    This is correct, I believe it was a simple mistranslation on the card. Personally, I think they should have fixed it the other way – making the game have three "phases" and outlining the five "steps" of each turn, but what's done is done. :)
    – ghoppe
    Commented Aug 22, 2011 at 23:23
  • Thanks for clarifying that, FuleSnabel. @ghoppe: I'd agree that in English it would make more sense for the phases to be the longer period! Thanks for mentioning the translation issue - I see that indeed in Funkenschalg, each round is made up of 5 Phasen, and the 3 periods that the game is divided up into are Stufen. Commented Aug 23, 2011 at 8:34

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