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Ark Nova (Solo Option)


In Ark Nova, you will plan and design a modern, scientifically managed zoo.

With the ultimate goal of owning the most successful zoological establishment, you will build enclosures, accommodate animals, and support conservation projects all over the world. Specialists and unique buildings will help you in achieving this goal.

Each player has a set of five action cards to manage their gameplay, and the power of an action is determined by the slot the card currently occupies.

The cards in question are:

  • CARDS: Allows you to gain new zoo cards (animals, sponsors, and conservation project cards).
  • BUILD: Allows you to build standard or special enclosures, kiosks, and pavilions.
  • ANIMALS: Allows you to accommodate animals in your zoo.
  • ASSOCIATION: Allows your association workers to carry out different tasks.
  • SPONSORS: Allows you to play a sponsor card in your zoo or to raise money.

255 cards featuring animals, specialists, special enclosures, and conservation projects, each with a special ability, are at the heart of Ark Nova.

Use them to increase the appeal and scientific reputation of your zoo and collect conservation points.

—description from the publisher

Ark Nova Solo Playthrough

Ark Nova Video Review

Player feedback

The forums at BoardGameGeek often have good discussions about gameplay.
We have selected some of the best links below. (Links will open in a new window or tab)


A selection of files from BoardGameGeek. Links will open in a new window or tab.

Cards Action Solo Variant to Simulate Multi-player Play

These days, I always play Ark Nova solo with my revised Card Action rule. I believe it makes for a more strategic game, and implementing the rule is quick and easy.

>> Click to download PDF <<

Ark Nova Starting decks English

You can use these starting decks in your first game for an easier start. Suggestions for the first couple of actions are included for each deck.

>> Click to download PDF <<

Ark Nova – A Plain and Simple Guide

Teaching Aid for Ark Nova. Issue 2 to correct wording in game end summary per comments.

>> Click to download PDF <<

Zoo Design Bonus (Ark Nova Variant)

Rules for Zoo Design Bonus variant for Ark Nova. In this variant, you can gain additional appeal by grouping similar animals together. This grouping can be by type (Bird, Herbivore, Predator, Primate, Reptile) or continents (Africa, Americas, Asia, Australia, Europe).

>> Click to download PDF <<

Ark Nova Junior and Family Variant

Two variants for Ark Nova with less rules and less game duration.

* Junior variant for younger people that concentrates on zoo building and playing animals.
* Family variant for casual board gamers that plays a little bit faster and feels almost like the original game.

>> Click to download ZIP <<