Each player chooses a color and receives a series of tokens of that color shaped like cubes, a disc, an Erlenmeyer flask, and a microscope. There are point tokens shaped like Erlenmeyer and volumetric flasks, and a test tube is placed off to the side. Circular energy tokens are distributed based on play position, starting with the first player receiving three tokens. The second gets four, the third gets five, the fourth gets three, and the fifth gets four. Each player places their microscope on one of the Element Groups. Starting with the first player, a microscope is placed on every other Element Group card except for the fourth and fifth players, who both place their microscope on the seventh Element Group card. The Elemental Group card indicates the placement of the player’s flask upon the periodic table (at the beginning of that Elemental Group, just find the left-top most element of that color). Each player is dealt a number of Agenda cards depending on the total number of players. One card is selected, and the rest discarded. It is kept secret and contains a unique Goal that if achieved acts as a type of personal score multiplier. Each player places their discs on the first level of the Academic Track. The game ends when either one stack of Goal cards are depleted or two players advance to the two rightmost levels on the Academic Track.