More than 50 Games with 281 Dice
Published by Franckh-Kosmos
Designed by Reinhold Wittig
Translated by Lutz Pietschker
"Das Spiel" ("The Game") is a dice game of a different kind. It contains a triangular base plate and hundreds of dice of different colours, and a rule book that gives rules for some 50+ games based on this material. Most of the games are centered around building or demolishing pyramids of dice, but there are also racing games and games of skill, even puzzles.
The game has been originally published by the Edition Perlhuhn (Reinhold Wittig), Göttingen, in 1979 ("Perlhuhn" = guinea fowl, the name of the company is probably going back to a nonsense poem by Christian Morgenstern. Ed.). Like many other games of this small but excellent workshop, the Franckh-Kosmos Verlag has re-published this game in very good quality. This translation is based on the Franck-Kosmos 3rd edition, published in 1991.
Texts in Italics and signed "Ed." are my own additions and (hopefully) clarifications. Otherwise, I left the rules as they were written by the publishers.
I've often been asked how you go about it to invent a game. I want to add one answer now. Is perhaps the best answer possible to show the many different ways of designing a game. The answer is also a challenge:
Invent rules of your own to my dice pyramid. Play with numbers, colours, with chance, but most important... with fun.
With this preface the history of "The Game" began in 1979. At that time there
was a small, hand-crafted edition of the dice pyramid, without any rules.
If today you get a large collection of rules together with the game this
is proof that many players do not just use ready-made products but
are also willing to take part in forming and creating a game.
Quite a few of these games have been invented by novice players, by children, elder people, and game clubs. I hope you will also find some fun to dabble around.
Please consider that not all games in this collection are master strokes or completely fresh. To acquaint yourself with the games, and for a quick start, you should begin with No. 1, 10, 25, 27 and 39. My own favourites, however, are No. 30, 31, 32, 33, 40, 43, 44, 55, 57.
The following hints are especially important:
For all games you must decide who goes first. The other players follow in
clockwise order. In some games groups may play instead of the given number
of individual players. In a two-player game of A against B, group A would
then play against group B in the following turn order:
A1 - B1 - A2 - B2 - A3 - B3 ... A1
The symbol to the right of the game title indicates the role the dice take in that game:
In some games the player with the most die faces showing at the surface of the pyramid wins. Dice on the edges count double, the one at the top triple, so the total is 135. This kind of scoring (which was introduced with the game pyramid) has one special advantage: the question who has won remains open until the final tally.
A "free" die on the pyramid is a die that can be removed without causing other dice to move (fall down). Ed.
The games are grouped into different categories (see Table of Contents). Some games belong to more than one group, e.g. games of construction that also demand skill. For this reason there is an additional representation in the Perlhuhn Triangle. If you want to get an impression of the scope of games at one glance this unusual diagram will help.
Now I hope that you will not only find out soon your favourite game among the multitude of rules, but also that it will not take long until your self-invented variant will be entered under "My Game".
In the corners there are symbols for game of chance (die), game of skill (billard ball), and game of tactics (knight). Every game can be arranged in this triangle. The nearer it is to a corner the more it falls into that category. On the side opposing a corner, only the other two factors are relevant for the game. Exactly in the center of the triangle is a game that needs equal shares of luck, skill and brains. Depending on how you play certain games their position in the triangle may vary slightly.
1) Captain Flint's Skeleton Trick
6) Dice Mikado
9) Hide Away
10) The Most Simple Game
11) The Green Amoeba
12) The Forbidden Number
13) Up and Down
14) The Clever Mole
15) Storing Scores
16) Trulla (Latin: The Ladle)
17) The Vain Guinea Fowl
18) Spotted Cow
19) Dishing Up
20) Malicious Pleasure
22) Golden Centre
24) Summit Storm
26) DoRa (Domino Rasanto)
27) Mucho (Spanish: Much)
28) Tabula Rasa
29) Quadrula Rasa
30) Fire and Water
37) Mound Mover
39) El Dado (Spanish: The Die)
43) Greedy Grabber
44) Cui Bono?
47) Wolf in a Sheep's Coat
48) Witches' Dance
50) The Pharaoh's Curse
51) Steps to the Throne
54) Falling Rocks
55) Flea Chase
57) The Fire-Red Devil
Captain Flint offer the booty just won to that one of his pirates who
is first to build (with steady hands) only the edges of the pyramid on the
base plate, right up to the top.
None of them succeeds (too much rum).
There, Captain Flint takes the base plate into his right hand, heaps up
a complete pyramid, presses his left index finger firmly on the top of it,
tilts the pyramid, and shakes it...
...and what's left over is the pyramid skeleton (and the booty for Captain Flint).
On the Göttinger Kunstmarkt (art market), 1980, one visitor came up
with the following interesting variant:
Arrange 17 dice into an "L" shape on the table. Stack 8 more dice as a column on the corner die. Position the base plate cautiously against the arrangement so that the three point dice fit into the corner funnels of the base plate. Press the top die to fix the "struts" against the base plate, lift, and be amazed.
An unusual game of skill, for any number of little or big people.
Playing time: Lightning speed.
Four dice are put into the starting positions. By blowing, you must assemble
them into a small pyramid at any place on the base plate. The player to achieve
this fastest wins.
(When a die is blown from the base plate the next player gets his turn.)
(Figure: Start / Object)
Equally-charged particles repel each other and increase their distance as
far as possible.
A game of skill for any number of players.
Three dice are placed in the centre of the base plate. By tilting and shaking the base plate you must bring them into the corner funnels.
Who is fastest to achieve this?
(When a die falls from the base plate it's the next player's turn.)
The (easier?) counterpart to Faraday.
Differently-charged particles attract each other.
A game of skill by Jürgen Wagner.
Three dice are placed in the corner funnels, a fourth in the middle of the base plate.
By tilting and shaking the base plate these four dice must be assembled into a small pyramid.
Who is fastest to achieve this?
(When a die falls from the base plate it's the next player's turn.)
The "Game" principle reversed!
The dice must be built as high as possible. Who will be able to stack the greatest number of dice?
A game of skill by Heike Kaufmann for 1 or more players.
Preparation: 165 dice are piled up in a pyramid..
Object: Remove as many dice as possible from the pyramid without toppling the topmost die.
Play: One player starts. Using only one hand he takes dice
from the pyramid until it collapses. The "conquered" dice are counted and
the pyramid is set up again. Then the next player takes his turn.
If you play alone you try to better your own score.
A game of skill for 2 to 3 players.
Each player gets 5 dice of one colour.
Each player in his turn tries to flick the dice onto the base plate (one die after the other, of course). Initially the base plate is empty.
Whoever is the first to have all 5 of his dice on the base plate wins.
Own dice, or those of other players, that are pushed off the plate by a thrown die must be flicked anew.
A game of skill for any number of players,
named by Jochen Corts,
invented by visitors of the Göttinger Kunstmarkt, 1980.
Object: Mount as many dice as possible on the pyramid.
Principle: If you pull two adjacent dice a little bit out of the pyramid (e.g. using a bit of self-adhesive tape) you can place a die on the resulting "balcony".
With this technique you can "attach" more and more dice to the pyramid.
To build a little faster you can you can place small balls of paper in the
outer funnels of the base plate to push the lowest row of dice a bit outward.
Thus, the pyramid may begin with a complete "over-coat" of dice to start
Of course, such aids are not permitted in a real game of skill!
A game of skill for 2 or 3 players.
Preparation: Each player builds a small pyramid with 4 dice of his colour (green, red or blue). This pyramid must not be placed on the edge of the base plate (see fig.). Each player gets a handful of black dice.
Game: Each player, in his turn, throws one black die onto
the base plate from a certain distance (e.g. 15 cm), with the object to hide
(cover ) his pyramid with them.
Frequently, another player will benefit from the throw.
If the thrown die falls off the base plate it may be re-used later.
"Destroyed" pyramids are re-built immediately.
A game of chance for 3 players, or groups of players
- to become acquainted to the pyramid -
by Jürgen Wagner
Each player (each group of players) gets the dice of one colour.
Each player, in his turn, rolls a die. The number rolled is the number of dice he may place on the pyramid.
The winner is the player with the most die faces of his colour showing on the outside of the completed pyramid.
A fast dice game for 3 players that may end quickly or run endlessly.
The amoeba is represented by 6 green dice that are placed in the 6 central funnels at game start (see fig.). Those dice are owned and moved by all players equally. Each player is assigned a home corner, and he also gets a black die. Players in turn roll the black die on the table and may move that number of amoeba dice to adjacent funnels (he may move the same amoeba die more than once, Ed.). The amoeba dice must, however, always remain connected.
The object is to move the amoeba in the direction to one's own home corner funnel. When it arrives there that player wins.
A bit of tactics and a lot of luck decide in this game.
Figure: Starting position
Example: The player who owns the lower left corner goes first and rolls a "2". (With a "2" you may move one die by two funnels, or two dice one funnel each.)
A risky construction game for 3 players by Jürgen Wagner.
Preparation: Each player chooses a colour. Before play starts, a "forbidden" number (1 to 6) is decided upon.
Game Play: Players, in their turn, each roll a die. If the number rolled is not the "forbidden" number the player may place that number of dice of his colour on the pyramid.
If a player rolls the "forbidden" number he must remove all free dice of his colour from the pyramid.
Decision: The winner is the player with the most die faces showing on the outside of the completed pyramid.
A game of construction and demolishing by Jürgen Wagner, for 3 players or teams.
A game of observation for little players of 5 years and up, and a game master.
Figure: "Looking from below, I see 10 eyes on the top die."
The game master builds 6 mole hills on the base plate: 6 little pyramids, made of 10 dice of different colours each. One of them he builds in a way that it can be identified by the description he gives.
The first player to discover the right hill scores one point. The player with the most points (dice or sweets) is overall winner.
The hill the mole is currently hiding under may be described like this:
The game master m ay choose any degree of difficulty.
For larger children, the players may take turns to be game master.
You could also build the hills randomly and then try to find descriptions that identify exactly one hill.
He who stores may score!
A game for 2 or more children to show they're not slow.
All funnels of the base plate are filled with black dice, and immediately covered by a layer of green dice.
The first player rolls 3 red dice and totals the numbers. Then, he lifts any one green die, revealing a funnel of 3 black dice. He totals the numbers on the black dice and announces the result.
If this total happens to be the same as the total of the red dice he may keep the green die and gets another turn (roll the red dice, etc.). If the numbers are different he puts the green die back.
All players try to memorize the number hidden under that die (store it in memory).
Now, the next player rolls the red dice and lifts one green die of his choice.
Each player in his turn may decide to roll a new number or to use his predecessor's number (if, for example, that player had forgotten which green die covered that number).
The player with the greatest number of green dice at game end wins.
Construction game for 2 or 3 players or teams.
Needed accessory: a ladle
Object: The winner is the player with the most die faces showing on the outside of the completed pyramid.
Preparation: The dice are distributed evenly. Each player gets the dice of one colour.
Construction: Each player make fill as many dice into the ladle as he likes, and then "fill" them onto the pyramid. Once the ladle is empty or touches the pyramid the next player gets his turn.
When a die falls off the base plate the next player gets his turn.
A fast game for 2 or 3 players.
The guinea fowl has been invited and wants to dress up quickly in it's finest pearly coat of feathers (guinea fowl = in German, "Perlhuhn", literally translated "Pearly Hen". Ed.).
The player who is fastest to help the creature wins.
Preparation: The "naked" guinea fowl is built on the base plate as a small pyramid of 10 green dice.
The black dice needed for the "coat" are distributed to the players. In a 2-player game each player gets 23 dice, in a three-player game each gets 15.
Object: The guinea fowl must be covered with black dice so that each of the three faces of the pyramid shows only one number. One side may only show ones, the second only fours, and the third only fives (those are the numbers that show the same pattern any way you look at them).
As a reminder of which side must show which number you might place a red die in one corner funnel, showing the "1", "4" and "5".
Figure: "Reminder Die"
Example for the bottom layer of the coat. The naked fowl (the small core pyramid) is not shown.
Game Play: After getting a starting signal, all players roll dice simultaneously (not in any turn order) and as fast as possible into open funnels on the base plate.
A stirring action game for 2 to 6 players by Erika Wittig
Preparation: The base plate is covered with one layer of 45 dice. 120 dice are divided equally between players, regardless of colour. (2 players: 60 each, 3 players: 40 each, 4 players: 30 each, 5 players: 24 each, 6 players: 20 each)
Choose a game master.
Rules: The game master rolls 3 extra dice on the table, in plain view of all players. The players total the numbers shown and look out for a funnel showing the same total. The first to discover such a funnel places a die in it.
The game master then rolls again, etc.
If no funnel shows the correct total the first player to call out "Blank!" may place a die in a funnel of his choice. However, if he is wrong and there is a fitting funnel he may not place a die (Ed.) but gets one die from each other player as a penalty.
Object: Whoever is first to have placed all his dice wins.
A construction game for 3 to 6 players.
Preparation: A core pyramid of 56 dice is built on the inner 21 funnels of the base plate.
108 dice are divided equally between players.
In a 4- to 6-player game each player is assigned one number (1 to 6). In a 3-player game each player gets 2 numbers.
Game Play: The first player throws single dice onto the pyramid from a distance of about 20 cm, ending his turn when a die falls off the base plate. The number shown by that die determines which player goes next. If, in a 4- or 5-player game, an unassigned number is rolled play passes on clockwise.
Decision: The first player to have placed all his dice wins.
A construction game for 2 or 3 players, by Michael and Bernd Opitz.
Preparation: Each player gets dice of one colour (82 each in a 2-player game, 55 each in a 3-player game).
Object: The first player to have placed all his dice wins.
Game Play: In turn, each player throws one die onto the base plate. (The recommended distance is 20-25 cm, but it may be decided upon freely).
If the die hits a funnel containing at least one die of that player, the player may place as many dice as the number shown on that existing die. (If more than one die is already in the funnel you may choose which number you want to use.)
If the die hits a funnel that does not contain an own die the player may not place any more dice in this turn.
Rebounding dice, or dice pushed off the base plate, may not be put back.
The dice placed additionally must be placed so that they touch each other face to face, or along an edge. The thrown die counts towards the number of placed dice.
(The rules are not quite clear- don't blame it on me. Personally, I use the "hard line" interpretation, meaning that all dice must touch (including the one thrown) and that an existing "1" die in the funnel does not allow any more placements. Ed.)
A construction game for three players by Martin Callis, Jürgen Wagner and Reinhold Wittig
Preparation: Each player gets 55 dice of one colour.
Game Play: Each player in his turn places one die. Only after one layer is completed another layer may be begun.
During construction, funnels are created. A player that places a die in a funnel created by 3 dice "cashes in" dice, or pays with dice:
|Dice/Colours in the funnel||Balance (pay/get)|
|a||3 own dice||pay 4 dice to each other player|
|b||2 own, 1 other||pay 4 dice to other player|
|c||1 own, 2 others (different colours)||pay 1 die to each other player|
|d||1 own, 2 others (same colour)||pay 2 dice to other player|
|e||3 others of the same colour||get 8 dice from that player|
|f||3 others, in a 2:1 ratio||get 4 resp. 2 dice from other players|
Decision: A player that goes broke loses and must quit the game.
Variants: Each Player gets 60 (or more) dice. The game ends, at latest, when the pyramid is completed. Whoever has collected the greatest number of dice by then wins.
A construction game for 3 players, by Gabriele Lagemann
Preparation: Each player gets 2 dice of one colour.
Object: To be the first to build a pyramid in your own corner of the base plate.
Game Play: All players roll a die. The one who rolled the middle of the three numbers may add one die to his pyramid.
If doubles are rolled, the player who did not roll part of the doubles places a die.
If all players rolled the same number, each player must remove that number of dice from his pyramid.
A fast construction game for 2 players or teams.
Object: The player who has most die faces showing on the outside of the completed pyramid wins. Dice on the pyramid edges count double, the one at the top triple. The eyes shown on the dice are irrelevant.
Preparation: Each player gets the dice of one colour. Players decide who goes first.
Rules: The first player places one die into a base plate funnel of his choice. From now on, players take alternate turns to place one die each. If the placement results in one or more funnels made up of 3 dice they are filled immediately:
Resulting funnels are also immediately filled. Only then the next player takes his turn to place one new die.
Variant: Players alternate to place single dice on the base plate (not necessarily adjacent to existing own dice). Only after all 45 funnels of the base plate have been filled the filling process as described above begins.
By Peter Pallat and Reinhold Wittig
You will understand the name once you have played the game!
A construction game for 3 players or teams.
Object: The player who has most die faces showing on the outside of the completed pyramid wins. Dice on the pyramid edges count double, the one at the top triple. The eyes shown on the dice are irrelevant.
Preparation: Each player gets the dice of one colour. Players decide who goes first.
Rules: The first player places one die into a base plate funnel of his choice. From now on, players take alternate turns in clockwise order to place one die each. Funnels of 3 dice that are created by the placement are filled up immediately with bonus dice, as described below.
Bonus Dice: If two dice forming the funnel are of the same
colour, the player using that colour places the bonus die.
If all 3 dice are of the same colour the player to the left of that player places a die.
If all 3 colours are present in the funnel all players roll a die, and the player that rolled highest places a die.
Funnels created by placing bonus dice are also filled immediately.
Only when all these actions have been completed the next player takes his turn and places a die. Once all 45 funnels of the base plate have been filled the pyramid is completed by placing bonus dice, and the winner is determined by counting the die faces showing on the outside of the pyramid.
By Karin Wittig, Alexandra Leitz and Kati Wittig.
A destructive construction game for 3 constructive people.
Each player gets 55 dice of one colour. In turn, each player places one die on the base plate. The dice must be placed adjacent to other dice already placed (except the first one, of course).
The resulting funnels are immediately filled up, using these rules:
The game will end before the pyramid is completed. Whoever has used most of his dice wins.
For 2 or 3 players, by Nicolai Wittig
Each player gets 55 dice of one colour (in a 2-player-game, each player gets 83 dice).
The player who is first to place all his dice wins.
In turn, players roll a die onto the base plate. After that, the die must be placed adjacent to another die already on the plate. The orientation of the die may not be changed in the process.
The resulting funnels are filled up using these rules:
Domino Principle: When placing a filler die that die must
be placed using the domino rules against the die that caused for the
If, for example, the greatest number is a "5" it must be placed with his "5" side against it.
If two "6"s and one "1" is visible, it must be placed against the "1".
When all numbers are equal the player chooses the side it is placed against. If all dice are of the same colour it is placed against the greatest number. If that number is present twice, the player again has the choice.
Construction game taking 10 minutes, for 3 little players
Figure: Bases of the three pyramids in the Mucho game
Object: Using 20 dice of one colour, each player builds a small pyramid on the 10 funnels in his corner of the base plate. The player whose completed pyramid shows the highest total of eyes on the outside wins.
Game Play: The first player rolls a die onto the base plate and then places it into one base funnel of his pyramid, without turning it. Of course he will be careful to place it in a way that high numbers point outward.
Then, it's the next player's turn, etc.
All dice must be used exactly in the orientation they had after rolling them.
After 20 rounds, the small pyramids are completed, and scores are totalled.
Variant: A more difficult variant makes it mandatory to
place the dice of the second and third layer, as well as the top dice of
each pyramid, in a way that the number on one of the faces pointing downward
must match one of the faces shown in the funnel (domino principle).
It may happen that a player cannot place a die, or does not want to place it.
When one player has completed his pyramid, the round is completed by the other players. From then on, the rounds needed by the remaining players to complete their pyramids are counted. For each round a player needs, two points are subtracted from his final score.
Again, the winner is the player with the highest resulting score.
Construction game for 3 players with a good power of 3D imagination, or training for it.
Idea: Each player gets 55 dice of one colour which he places before him as a block of 5 by 11 dice. From this block he will "break off" coherent chunks of dice that must be added to the pyramid exactly as they were taken. The block may not be changed by any other method.
Game Play: In turn, each player "breaks off" a chunk of one, or three, or six dice and uses it to add to the pyramid.
Because the object is to be the first to use up his block completely players try to use chunks of 3 or 6 dice as often as possible (which will not be possible at game start!).
The diminishing block must remain one coherent structure, it may not be split into separate parts.
You should take care to break down the block in a way that yields coherent chunks of 3 or 6 dice as long as possible.
Figure: Example how to break off a "6" chunk.
A construction game for 2 or 3 players, by Jan Dirk Buschmann and Georg Thimme
Preparation: Each player builds a cube of 64 or 125 dice near the base plate. Eyes shown and colours are not important.
Object: Remove dice as fast as possible from the cube, adding them to the pyramid.
Game Play: In turn, each player takes a chunk of up to 10 dice from his cube and adds it to the pyramid, without changing the form of that chunk. You may only add to existing parts of the pyramid. (Except in the first turn, probably. Ed.)
You may take corner pieces, blocks, columns etc. from the cube and place them on the base plate, preserving the shape of the chunk.
A tactical construction game, based on an idea of Georg Thimme
Players: 2 to 6, best with 4 or more.
Preparation: Each player gets a certain number of red and green dice:
The black dice are common possession.
Object: The first player to have used all his red and green dice in the pyramid wins the game.
Rules: Each player, in turn, adds one die to the pyramid.
A red die and a green die may not touch, neither with the face nor any edge. Black dice may touch all other dice, even black ones.
A player that cannot place a red or a green die must place a black one!
Tactics: It is especially "mean" to force the next player to "play away" all dice of one colour.
A nasty dice game for 3 players
Object: The player who is first to use up all his dice wins. The numbers shown on the die faces are irrelevant, the dice are used as building blocks.
Preparation: Each player gets 55 dice of one colour. Each player rolls a die, and the first player to roll a "4" starts. A harmless variant would be to allow another roll to any player who rolls a "1" during the course of the whole game.
Construction Rules: The number of dice a player may use for building in a turn is determined by his roll of a die.
Dice added must be in contact with each other by at least one die face.
Moreover, at least one of the new dice must have contact to an existing own die face (the first round, of course, is an exception to this).
Bonus: If you build in a way that the freshly added dice are a column of 4, you may place 1 bonus die. If it is a column of 5 you get 2 bonus dice, and for a column of 6 dice, 3 bonus dice.
The bonus dice must also placed in contact to the existing dice and other bonus dice.
Game Start: You can only start with a rolled "4" because a small pyramid of 4 dice is the only valid construction on the empty base plate. The second player will be able to add dice if he rolls a "3", "5" or "6". (I do not see why a "4" should not be valid for him as he is only requested to build in contact with existing own dice. Ed.)
Squeezing: A free space must be preserved on the small start pyramid until the owner of that pyramid has added to his construction once. Now the general "squeezing" can begin, i.e. you build in a way to reduce other player's chances by covering their dice. In any phase of the game it may happen that a player can no longer add dice because all of his dice have "grown over".
For 2 or 3 players or teams
Object: The player or team owning most of the 135 die faces on the outside of the completed pyramid wins.
Preparation: Each player/ team chooses a colour. If there are more players than colours you play in teams, with the dice distributed between players of a team. Players should sit in order of alternating colours, e.g. red- green- black- red- green- black in a 6-player game.
Game Start: The first player places one die on the base plate, in a funnel of his choice.
Game Play: From now on, all through the game, each player in his turn places 3 dice. The dice may be in an L-shape (Triangel) or a straight column (Triops).
Triops or Triangel must be placed with face-to-face contact to existing dice of any colour (touching the start die in the second turn). In the end game it can happen that there is no space for either Triangel or Triops. In this case, a column of two dice may be placed. If even that is impossible, place a single die.
Bonus: When a Triops has been placed that player may (must) place another die (bonus die) in any place. It is recommended to place it on pyramid edges because it scores double this way (2 outside faces!). Bonus dice do not count as "existing dice" for the mandatory contact requirement as long as they are isolated from the main structure.
Tactics: One one hand you should try to place as many dice as possible in outward positions, especially on the pyramid edges, on the other hand you should try to deny this to other players.
A fulminant construction game for 2 or 3 players, by Joe Nikisch
Object: Be the first player to have used up all your dice.
Preparation: In a 2-player game each player gets 82 dice of one colour, in a 2-player game each player gets 55 dice. Players using the same dice colours may not sit adjacent to each other.
In addition, each player gets one die of the colour his right-hand neighbour uses.
The start player then gets a golden die. This die is passed on clockwise after each turn.
Game Play: Each player takes up 10 dice of his colour, plus the one of his neighbour's colour. The start player even has a twelfth die, namely the golden one.
Construction Rule: On a signal given by the player in possession of the golden die, e.g. "Los!", all players throw their 11 resp. 12 dice onto the table.
All dice of your own colour, that show the number rolled with the die of your colour by your left-hand neighbour, may be used for construction. In addition, players not in possession of the golden die may place dice showing the number rolled with the golden die.
The player with the golden die will end the construction phase of this turn
with a "Stop!" command once he has used all dice he is allowed to place.
If he calls the "Stop!" before he has used all possible dice the other players may continue to place as many of their dice as he has left over of his.
Now the golden die is passed on, and all players take up 10 dice of their own colour again (plus the one of the neighbour's colour, plus the golden die, Ed.)
If a player has less than 5 dice he may add blue dice for a total of 5. He may place the blue dice, too, but must change them into dice of his own colour once the construction phase stops.
The first player who has placed all of his dice wins.
A fine lookout, indeed!
A 3-dimensional game of tactics for 2 or 3 players
Preparation: Build pyramids of 20 black dice each in the corners of the base plate. From those pyramids, remove the top dice and all edge dice (i.e. 10 dice per pyramid). Replace them by 3 red, 3 green, 3 blue dice per pyramid in the most colourful sequence possible, plus one black die for the top.
Training Game: Each player owns one pyramid. Players take turns in clockwise order. In his turn the player must remove a die from one bottom corner of his pyramid and place it on top, the top being vacant now because the edge dice slid down.
The object of the training game is to sort the edge dice so that one edge is all green, one all red and one all blue, with a black die on top.
The first player to achieve this wins the game.
Main Game: Now, the object is to sort the edge dice into the same sequence of colours on all edges, e.g. blue, red, green, black (bottom to top).
For 2 or 3 players, by Hajo Bücken
It's time to slide, neatly down from the summit.
Preparation: Build a pyramid that shows only black dice at the outside. The three edges to the top are left out and filled with green dice.
Each of the three players only looks at his side of the pyramid, a black surface with a green roof.
Object: Who is the first to have
Move: Each player in turn removes one green die from one of the two "spars" of green dice. He lets the other dice of the spar slide down and places the die he removed atop. By tricky combinations of removal and sliding each player tries to attain the object.
For any number of players, by Jürgen Wagner
Preparation: As for the "Slide", but players do not get a pyramid face assigned.
Move: As for the "Slide", but each player may remove dice at any edge.
Object: Different objects are noted on slips of note paper (there should be more objects than players). Before game start each player draws an object and must attain this in the course of the game. Objects are secret, so each player knows only what he himself has to do to win.
The first player to achieve this wins. He calls out "Slipped!" and shows his paper to prove it.
For 3 players, by Reto Walt and Gilberto Zappatini
Preparation: Each player builds a pyramid of 20 dice of his colour in one corner of the base plate.
Object: To move the own pyramid into the next corner in clockwise direction. If two or all three players achieve this in the same round the game is a draw.
Game Play: In turn, players move one die in an oblique plane parallel to the faces of the pyramids. In effect, each move is a jump along a right angle (of the base plate, or the dice). This is illustrated in the figures of game no. 49.
Each jump into a funnel blocks the dice below, even own dice. Blockades may be kept for any time. A blocked player may want to act in a way to force the other to abandon the blockade (even if this means to demolish the own pyramid partially).
A game of re-construction for 3 players, by Jürgen Wagner
Preparation: Each player builds a pyramid of 10 dice of his colour in one corner of the base plate.
Object: To be the first to re-erect this pyramid in another corner.
Game Play: In turn, each player rolls a die and moves according to the number shown. The number must be used fully, with each movement counting (up/down, forward/backwards).
For example, you can only start with a 4 or 6, you can move in one layer
only with even numbers, move up or down one layer only with a 3 or 5, and
move up or down two layers only with a 4 or 6.
You cannot move with a 1.
You may block another player's dice, but this time the "1" helps: If a blocked player rolls a "1" the blocked die swaps positions with the blocking die.
A Faster Variant: To win, it is now sufficient to place the top die of a target pyramid. That is, you may use convenient "enemy" dice in your pyramid. For this reason you are advised to remove your start pyramid as fast as possible in order not to help other players involuntarily.
"You there, play Dado!"
A game of demolition for any number of players, by Karin Wittig
Object: The player with the highest total of points at game end wins.
Preparation: The pyramid is complete. This may be the result of a previous construction game like "Trulla", or you may "pour" the dice on the base plate (preferably hidden under a cloth).
Before game start, the colours are assigned values, for example
|golden die||10 points|
|blue dice||5 points|
|green dice||3 points|
|red dice||1 point|
Game Play: Players in turn remove one die each.
You are not allowed to skip your turn!
The game ends when the pyramid has been removed completely. Total your points to determine who won the game
A game of demolition, by Heike Kaufmann
Object and Preparation: Like for El Dado
Game Play: Players in turn remove one free die or a column
of dice of the same colour.
You are not allowed to skip your turn.
The game ends when the pyramid has been removed completely.
A demolition variant for any number of players, by Jürgen Wagner and Reinhold Wittig
Preparation: The pyramid is complete. It consists of dice of different colours (recommended are at least 3 colours).
Object: The player who has most dice after demolishing the pyramid wins.
Game Play: In turn, one die is removed. If the dice in the resulting funnel show doubles, the player may take one more die.
If triples are shown (all 3 dice show the same number) two more dice may be taken. These rules remain valid for the bonus dice taken (chain reaction).
A demolition variant for any number of players, by Eberhard Wegner
Preparation: The pyramid is complete, made up of a random mixture of 3 colours (The rules below seem to suggest that you should use red, green and black dice. Ed.).
Game Play: In turn, players remove one die each. The rule is "green before black before red", i.e. free green dice must be taken if possible, black dice only if there are no free green dice, and red dice last.
The dice score: green = 3 points, black = 2 points, red = 1 point.
Object: The player to the left of the player scoring highest wins the game.
A game of demolition for 3 players, by Uwe Beul
Preparation: The pyramid is built of randomly mixed dice. Each player gets one extra die and places himself so that he sees only one face of the pyramid. Thus, he sees only one face of the dice as well.
Object: The player who has collected the greatest number of dice wins.
Game Play: The first player rolls his extra die on the table. If the top die shows the number rolled, the player who sees this number may "grab" that die.
But: the first player may call "Stop!", prohibiting further "grabbing" in this turn.
If he is too slow, or the number on the top die points (by chance) in his direction, each player now sees 3 more free dice once the top die has been taken.
Players may grab those as well, freeing more dice in the process, until the start player calls his "Stop!".
If the top die does not show the number rolled, or the start player has stopped the grabbing, it's the second player's turn to roll his die to provide the number that may be grabbed.
Until he calls "Stop!" and it's the third player's turn, each player grabs as many free dice as he can that show the right number.
You may grab with one hand only!
If a player takes a die after the "Stop" he must replace it and pay a penalty of one die to each other player.
(Latin: In whose favour? Ed.)
A game of demolition by Jens-Peter Steuck for at least 2, but preferably many players
Preparation: The pyramid is built of thoroughly mixed red, green and black dice, 55 each. They score: green = 1 penalty point, black = 2 penalty points, red = 3 penalty points.
Game Play: Each player in turn takes one die that shows 2 faces from the bottom layer (!) of the pyramid. At game start, this can only be one of the three corner dice. In the course of the demolition new edges and funnels are created. As before, only bottom layer dice showing at least two free faces may be taken away.
The die taken may immediately be placed again, according to these rules:
To forestall an endless repetition of moves, a die may not be placed in a way that it would establish an edge of only one single colour with the edge dice below it. This is true even if the funnel is in the bottom layer.
If a die cannot be placed the player must keep it, thus increasing his penalty point balance.
The game ends once all dice have been removed from the base plate.
A game of tactics for 2 (or 3) players
Each player gets 6 dice of one colour.
In the first phase of the game players alternate to place one die at a time on the base plate. You can try to begin to "sandwich" the other player's dice even now.
A die is sandwiched when it is positioned between two of the other player' s dice. It is captured and taken from the board.
Once all dice have been placed, players take alternate turns to move their dice.With one move you may either move one die into an adjacent funnel, or make one straight jump over an own or an enemy die. Sequential jumps are not allowed in one move.
If you move or jump into an enemy "sandwich" position the die is captured
One move may also create a double sandwich.
When one player is down to two dice, he and his opponent make one more move each. Then, the third game phase begins:
Each player now may make two moves in his turn, using on or both dice.
The game ends when a player is reduced to one die.
The game may also be played with 3 players; in this case, each player only gets 5 dice.
Fast game of demolition, for 2 or more players
Situation and Object: 15 green, 15 red and 15 black dice are mixed and placed in the 45 funnels of the base plate randomly.
One player, with eyes closed, removes one die at random.
>From now on, players in turn may take one die each, according to the demolition rules. In the final tally, green dice count 3 points, red dice 2 points and black dice 1 point each. The player with the highest score wins.
Demolition Rules: Each visible number on each die points into two (opposite, Ed.) directions. You may move the die into any direction according to the number pointing to it and may cross both empty funnels and dice, but the move must end in an empty funnel. You may not leave the base plate. A "1" cannot be used, a "2" jumps over one funnel and lands in the second, a "3" jumps over 2 funnels and lands in the third ,etc.
With the jump, you must cross at least one non-empty funnel. The moving die is removed from the board and kept by the player.
If you cannot jump you must take one die of your choice from the base plate, roll it back onto the plate and place it in its original funnel without turning or tilting it. Perhaps the next player can jump with it now.
Once there are only 15 dice left each player that cannot jump immediately may
Once only 5 dice are left over, each player may make up to three moves with the same die, or he may roll a die once and then move twice.
The game ends when only one die is left on the base plate.
A game of tactics for any number of players
A wolf camouflaged in a sheep's coat is hidden in the flock. An unknowing player must discover it with the aid of his shepherd dogs and drive it away.
45 black dice are placed on the base plate. One player (the shepherd) looks away while the others decide which die shall be the wolf.
The shepherd has red dice as dogs and places them, one after the other, in funnels of his choice.
The dogs can look into the directions their faces point to, for
example into six directions from a funnel in the middle of the board
(see figure). With every die he places the shepherd asks whether this dog
can see the wolf.
The other players must answer correctly.
An important limitation is that no dog can look through another placed dog.
Figure: Directions of view of the first two dogs. They can already see a large part of the flock.
A dog also sees the wolf when it sits atop the wolf.
If the shepherd asks directly if one specific die was the wolf this question also "costs" one dog, regardless of the answer. This dog is placed beside the board and is counted in the final tally.
By proceeding with logic, the wolf can often be detected by very few dogs.
Once the wolf has been found the next player takes up the role of the shepherd.
If you are interested to determine a winner it would be the player who had needed the least number of dogs to find the wolf.
The flock is grazing in a landscape dotted with bushes. Some black dice are removed and replaced by green dice (bushes). The game is played exactly as before, but the dogs cannot look over the bushes. So, the wolf now has better a chance to hide!
A game of tactics for 2 players, by Heike Kaufmann
Preparation: 13 black dice are placed on the base plate (see figure). Each player gets the dice of one colour and places one of them as his "moving die" into the "start" position (corner funnels).
Game Play: Players take alternating turns. In a turn, the "moving" die is either moved to an adjacent, empty funnel or it jumps over one own, one enemy, or one black die. After that, the funnel where the die came from is filled with a "filler" die of the player's colour. It is important to note that only the "moving" die may move!
The player to have most "filler" dice on the base plate at game end wins.
A common tactic is to encircle the other player with barriers that are two dice wide and cannot be passed at all.
A game of tactics for 2 players, by Harald Markowski
Preparation: 7 green dice are placed in the funnels along one edge of the base plate, leaving the corner funnels empty. 2 red dice are placed into the adjacent parallel row of funnels so that 2 empty funnels remain to the right and left (those dice cut the row in three). 10 black dice are placed symmetrically as a regular triangle in the remaining space (accordingly, this triangle is surrounded by empty funnels).
The black dice are the smugglers that try to get through to the green border. The red customs officers try to forestall this.
Game Play: Both smugglers and customs officers may move in each turn along a right angle into an adjacent empty funnel.
The funnels along the edges are forbidden for the smugglers.
The customs officers capture the smugglers by jumping over them. It is allowed to do more than one jump in sequence in one turn. However, jumps are not mandatory.
The smugglers win when 4 of them get through, i.e. when 4 green dice have been replaced by black dice.
A mightily mazey game for 3 players, by Carsten Volle
Three explorers must explore a pyramid, starting from different positions, and must find an exit.
Preparation: 42 green dice are placed randomly on the base plate. The middle funnels of the edges remain empty.
A red, a blue and a black die are placed in those middle funnels.
Each player is assigned one of those dice.
Game Play: Each player must try and get to the opposite corner. Whoever arrives there first has won the game.
Moves: (I assume this is an "either-or" for your turn but the text is not really explicit about that. Ed.)
For 2 players, by Carsten Volle
Preparation: 3 red dice are placed in the corner funnels of one corner. They constitute the goal. 1 green die is placed in the middle funnel of the opposite edge. In addition, you need 1 blue die and 41 black dice.
Object: One player tries to get the green die into the red funnel. His opponent tries to prevent this, using the black dice.
Game Play: Roll the blue die onto the base plate. It shows 3 numbers now, each pointing in two directions.
The green die may now be moved into one of those directions, according to
the number shown. However, it must remain on the base plate, may not jump
over black dice, and the move must be taken fully. If it lands exactly on
a black die this die is captured and removed from the board.
The opponent now places one black die so that it touches the green die along one edge. By this, he tries to block the way to the goal.
If the green die is surrounded and can neither move nor capture a black die no black die may be placed in that turn. Instead, the player gets one black die for future use, as a replacement for a captured die.
Once you have (eventually) arrived in the row adjacent to the red funnel you must roll an even number to enter it if you are in one of the outer funnels, or an odd number if you are in the central funnel.
Variants: The game can be played with alternating roles. The winner is the player who arrived fastest, ...or who captured more barricades,... or who used the least number of black dice...
A game of tactics for 3 (or 4) players, by Martin Callis
Preparation: Each player gets 5 dice of one colour. One board edge is the starting line. The opposite corner is the finish area. Players agree on a start player.
Object: The finish area is a regular triangle in the opposite corner, with edges 5 funnels long. Of those funnels, only the 12 outer funnels are relevant for scoring. The game ends when those 12 funnels are occupied.
Scoring: Only the numbers shown on the outward-facing die
faces in the finish area score. They are multiplied as follows:
Seen from the start line...
The players scoring the highest total wins the game.
Variant: In a 4-player-game, each player gets 4 dice.
A game of tactics for 3 players, by Jürgen Lutze
Preparation: Each player gets 6 dice of one colour. They are distributed symmetrically into the corners: the corner, the central row of two funnels, and the rows of three funnels near the board center all have dice of different colours. The sequence of colours is interchanged in cyclic order.
Object: Build a triangle of your own dice anywhere on the base plate.
Game Play: Rows of dice are always moved as one piece. You may choose one move in every turn:
A combat game for 3 players, by Jochen Baurmeister, Peter Pallat and Reinhold Wittig
Figure: Start position of a player, and possible moves of a piece.
Attack moves can be directed against "A" funnels, escape moves can go to the "F" funnels.
Preparation: Each player gets 6 dice of one colour. They are placed in the 6 funnels in his corner of the base plate.
Object: Move your 6 dice to the opposite edge. The player to make it first wins.
Players move turn by turn in clockwise order. The special thing about this game is the way the pieces move.
A die, in its move, goes either up a ridge and then slides down into the funnel beyond it (attack move), or it is lifted from the funnel and slides down a ridge (escape move).
Accordingly, if a die is in the middle of the board it has 6 options for its move. When doing an attack move an enemy die in the funnel beyond the ridge is captured and placed in one start funnel of that player (attacker's choice).
This placement has a distinct tactical touch because you may place the die in any empty start funnel of that player. Often you will be able to place it in a way that it immediately becomes dangerous for the third player.
Dice that arrived at their finish line may neither capture nor be captured any more.
Dice in the finish line may be moved sideways to make place for other dice. To move such a die into an adjacent funnel counts as one move.
10 minutes of tension for 2 players of 10 years or up, by Karin and Reinhold Wittig
What's Special: Using new tactics of jumping, the dice (fleas) move across the board.
Figure: Starting positions
Preparation and Object: Each player gets 10 dice of one colour which are placed in the start positions in two corners of the base plate. The object is to build a pyramid of 20 dice in the third corner.
Moves: Players take alternate turns to move one die in an oblique plane, parallel to the outer faces of the base plate. The die moves along a right angle with every move.
Each player tries to get his dice into the target pyramid as fast as possible, and into the front rows at that.
Blocking: Every jump into a funnel made up of other dice blocks those dice. The blockade may be kept up as long as the blocked player has left a free die outside the pyramid to move (in other words, the dice already in the pyramid and possibly able to move to and fro in it do not count as "free" dice).
Else, the blockade must be given up after one turn (i.e., the blocking player gets one free turn).
Scoring: Once a player has moved all of his dice into the pyramid, players count the additional turns the other player needs to complete the pyramid (if that player started second, he has one free move before counting starts).
In the completed pyramid, the die faces showing at the outside are counted. The second player to arrive now subtracts the number of additional moves he needed from that result.
The player scoring most points wins (this is not necessarily the first to finish his moves!).
How to Jump: The die to the left can jump into the funnel marked with a dot.
This funnel is either a base plate funnel, or it is made up of dice.
In the third and fifth figure a die must be in the row behind the movement plane, so that the moved die does not slide off into the back row.
The "long jump" shown in the bottom figure is very rare.
A fast game of tactics for 3 players
Figure: Starting position of one player; finish line
Each player gets 7 dice of one colour and places them in the start positions in his corner.
The object is to move all 7 dice to the finish line opposite the start corner.
In turn, the players "jump" one die per turn along a right angle, as described in game 55 "Flea Chase".
Blockades must be lifted when the blocked player cannot do a useful move any more, i.e. he would either have to move backwards or move dice to and fro along the finish line.
Once played, always played!
A tricky game in space for 2 players, by Oliver Stuhr
Basic Idea: A chase goes on in an ever-changing landscape.
Preparation: Players agree who is to play the chasing devil (red die) and the escaping angel (golden die).
Then, each player gets 45 green dice (this number may be increased or decreased, depending on the players' proficiency).
Figure: Positions of the three small pyramids built before game start.
On the base plate, 3 small pyramids are built of 4 black dice each.
The red and the golden die are rolled onto the base plate.
Moves: The dice are moved along right angles (see game 55) in planes parallel to the base plate faces.
The angel gets the first turn, the devil follows.
Turn by turn, green dice are placed in the funnels just vacated by the angel and the devil. Thus, the board surface changes constantly.
Object: The devil tries to catch the angel before all green dice have been used. The angel, on the contrary, tries to escape until the last green die has been placed.
Figure: Here, the angel (arrow) has been caught by the devil (dark die).
(Perhaps you will even invent a game that can only be played if the base plate is turned upside-down?)
The Game Cabinet - email@example.com - Ken Tidwell