Hnefatafl. The Viking Game. The Fetlar Rules. For boards 11 squares by 11 squares. The Game. There are two sides. The attackers arranged in groups of 6 at. Dragonheel’s lair: Free online boardgames. Play hnefatafl online. Hnefatafl (“the king game”) is an ancient boardgame played by the Vikings to It was probably derived from a Roman game with similiar rules and was later.

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Hnefatfal enemy rook can be captured by surrounding it on either side between two of your pieces In version 1the king cannot participate in captures, in version 2, and rulex, the king can capture if he’s the moving piece. During the early stages, white cannot to lose too many pieces or else the king could slip through the gap created. Drabant in row 2, square one. How to capture pieces: If the board position is repeated three times, the player in control of rulles situation must find another move.

All pieces including the king can move horizontally or vertically any number of spaces like a chess rook. Capture has to be an active rrules by the aggressor, so in this case one of the black pieces would have to move away and back again. The extra rule 10 where the attackers win by surrounding all of the defending pieces without capturing the king addresses the drawish nature of large corner games, where the king sets himself up in an invincible fort. Thanks for your query, Paul!

A Rule Book for Hnefatafl | Hnefatafl: the Game of the Vikings

Some versions of the game say that the king himself can’t capture attackers, so it’s best to check the rulesheet for the particular version you’re playing. It’s not “check” as such; when the king is surrounded he’s hnefqtafl to be captured. There are minor variations on these rules, as the game was spread across northern Europe in an age before the printing and mass communication necessary for international standardisation.


What do your rules say about taking the king? A black warrior may be captured by being caught between a white warrior and the throne square, or between a white warrior and a corner square. The attackers white are whoever the Vikings were fighting at the time!

Captures are done by flanking the opposition piece with two of your own – note that multiple captures are possible. A number of different boards have been found in Viking burial mounds and there was some variations in the rules as well. The king will also win the game by constructing an “edge fort”: In the same place as the “Rules Leaflets” link, there’s a “Print-and-play Downloads” link too, with PDF game sets that also include the rules. So in the situation you describe, the Muscovite when it moves into the second square on the first row would be vulnerable to capture by any enemy that can subsequently move up to the third hndfatafl on that first row.

In that situation the white piece can safely come to rest between the two black pieces. In his turn a player can move a single piece any number of spaces along a row or column; this piece may not jump over nor land on another of either colour. The board is an 11 by 11 grid, the centre square of which is the throne.

Hnefatafl: the Game of the Vikings

You only capture pieces when you surround an enemy piece on that turn. Hi, im curious of whether or not you have a digital copy of the main rules in downloadable format. Tawlbwrdd and Sea Battle Tafl are the easiest to learn, and both can be played well on boards from 9×9 to 13x In version 3, the king can be captured by 3 pieces only, if he’s standing on an edge In version 2, the king is captured like a ‘simple’ rook.

Black’s goal is to hneftafl the king to one of the 4 edges version 1 and 2 or to one of the 4 dark corner squares version 3. No pieces can move onto the center square.


Only the king may stand on the central throne and the corner squares. Perpetual repetition is illegal. Then, a white warrior on the square next to the throne, with the king behind him, cannot be captured by a single black warrior. Notify of replies Yes No. The king moves and captures like any other piece he can participate in captures regardless of whether he is the moving piece or the non-moving piece.

Hi, I haev a sert of this and teh rules I got with it say that to capture the king, you have to surroudn it on 4 sides, rather than the usual 2, but i find this massively unbalances the game in favour of the defenders. Thanks for your query, Simon!

Rules of the game hnefatafl

Travis Fimmell is from a place near to were I grew up, and has his part nailed perfectly. All can be found through the search feature on this site. If it is a piece that can be captured by surrounding it on two sides, then two enemies are still able to capture it, by moving to either side of it along the edge of the board.

If either player is unable to make a legal move because all movement is blocked the game is a draw by stalemate. In version 1 and 3, white’s goal is to capture the king, surrounding him from all four sides and capture him.

The king may be surrounded, but he has a way out on the next move. By releasing this App, my intention is primarily to promote interest and discussion of these games, and to give people a taste as to how they could have been played strategically over years ago.

The corner squares can act as capturing pieces for either side, though. Thanks for your question, Heidi. The image below shows how white captures 2 black rooks by playing h11 to h8.