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Introducing the Engine

Engine Rules are a revisioning and reordering of the published Babylon 5 rules. They attempt to fix problems with the published rules by rebuilding the rules in a manner that means there is no need to change the cards; most of the changes refine how rules and cards interact with each other. That said, there are some significant changes to major game elements.


Engine Errata for Published Cards

Elizabeth Trent, Full Mobilization and Eyes and Ears have Errata. No published cards are banned however it is assumed that no one will play with the Masterpiece Collection cards. 


Major Rules Changes


A new term for an old rule. Shadow-tainted and Vorlon-tainted cards and marks are allergic to each other.

  • You cannot play, face-up or face down, any card that is allergic to your faction as a whole or allergic to anything in your faction. Nor can you reveal such a card.
  • No card can join your faction if that card is allergic to a card in your faction as a whole or allergic to anything in your faction.
  • You cannot gain a mark that is allergic your faction as a whole or to anything in your faction.


Babylon 5 Votes

If you are not playing a Babylon 5 Faction (e.g. you’re playing Psi Corps) you can still cast your race’s vote if your race’s Babylon 5 faction is not in play. Note that in a tournament, dual races don't normally occur. If you are playing a game where you can have more than one faction of a single race in a single game (e.g. two different human factions such as The Psi Corps and a Babylon 5 faction) then see the Engine Rules for an expanded explanation.


Corporate Faction

This is a new type of faction. A corporate faction starts play with a corporate character as their ambassador. Corporate factions can sponsor, play and promote corporate cards of any race at normal cost but must apply 3 influence as an additional requirement to sponsor, play or promote non-corporate cards of their race. Corporate Factions are allergic to non-corporate agendas of their race. There are no other rules. If you are not a corporate faction you can still play corporate cards as normal but cannot play any cards which state corporate only.


Dual Faction Games

Discard all the old rules about them. Basically each faction has its own tension levels and unrest. If a card targets a race and there is more than one faction of that race, then choose one faction of that race to be targeted.



Forget all the old rules about bidding on mercenaries and having them act at the end of the action round. The person who sponsors a mercenary has control of it. However: any player may pay the mercenary’s printed influence cost to take control of it for the rest of the turn.


Power Cap

No card can count more than +5 Power except for Major Agendas and Drakh Agendas which can count up to +10 Power. This only affects cards which count power (E.g. Support of the Mighty), not cards which gain power such as Eyes and Ears or Collaboration.


Shadow War

If the Shadow War starts you do not have to win a major victory anymore. Instead, at the start of the Shadow War each Shadow-tainted faction declares war against each Vorlon-tainted faction. While the Shadow War is in effect, if any faction becomes Shadow-tainted, it immediately declares war against all Vorlon-tainted factions. Similarly, if any faction becomes Vorlon-tainted, all Shadow-tainted Factions immediately declare war against it.


If the Shadow War has ever started then it is no longer possible to win the game through a Babylon 5 victory. The Shadow War is a unique state - it can only be declared once per game.



This is a term referring to the elder races. A card is tainted if it is either Shadow-tainted or Vorlon-tainted. A faction is tainted if there is a tainted card in the faction.

  • A card is Shadow-tainted if it is loyal to the Shadows or the Drakh, if it is a card with a Shadow Mark or it is a non-character card which provides, pictures or requires a Shadow Mark.
  • A card is Vorlon-tainted if it is loyal to the Vorlons, it is a ranger, it is a card with a Vorlon Mark or it is a non-character card which provides, pictures or requires a Vorlon Mark.


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