Sep 16, 2013

Three Games with the material of the game COM:POSITIE

[Fred Horn words]

In june 2013 Mr. Han Heidema, a friend but also the ‘editor in chief’ of the Dutch game-magazine SPEL!, called me and asked if I had ever heard of the game COM:POSITIE. He had found one at a church-fair, but without Rules and only a Box with board and gamepieces.  

He thought it was some abstract game and that is why he called me. Curious, I tried to find out more about the game, so I phoned the firm COMPANEN. In their archive they still had 2 games and they were willing to give me one for the Games-Archive in Brugge. Han did pick up the game so he was able to make a copy of the Rules and afterwards handed it over to me. The game itself turned out to be a simple Trivia-game and the beautiful Board and Pieces were only used for a Tic-Tac-Toe-like counting system to get the winner. When Han gave me the game for Brugge he challenged me by saying: “You can do better, this is really something for you to invent an abstract game with these materials”. Do not say such things to me, because that absolutely triggers me to really go to work on the thing. And here is the result: 2 NIM-like games and 1 Strategic game (all games © Fred Horn  1 september 2013)

The material is a 6x6 square game board and a set of game pieces:


a NIM-game for 2 or 3 Players 

The method of play is a bit similar to a former game of mine: PLANKO from 20/3/2007. This is played on a GO-board and in his Turn a Player places 2 of his Stones on 2 adjacent ‘crossings’. These stones control the direct surrounding ‘crossings’ where it is further not allowed to place stones. The aim of this game is completely different à To control most ‘crossings’.

The Game Plan-A-Head starts with an empty Board.
All Game-pieces are sorted out in selections of 4 different colored Pieces: in total 9 selections.
Selection after selection must be played.

In his Turn a Player takes 1 Piece (if there are 4 he can choose any he wants; if there are 3 too; etc. ; the last one of a selection MUST be taken) and places it anywhere to his wish on the Board, except that: a Piece cannot be placed adjacent ( horizontal, vertical or diagonal) to an already placed Piece on the Board with the same color.

If played with 2 Players:
After a selection has been played the Player, who has played the last Piece of that selection, starts with the next selection.

If played with 3 Players:
Turns go clockwise and remain so after a selection has been played.

Player who can play the last Piece according to the Rules, WINS.

PICK Tw=O=ne 

The Game starts with a filled Board.      

Turns alternate.
In his Turn a Player MUST take at least ONE Piece from the Board.
Out of  a straight line ( rows; columns; diagonals; but also for example a1,b3,c5 form a straight line holding 3 Pieces) with:
  • Pieces in 3 colors or more than 3 colors in that line  the Player can take in his Turn 1 or 2 Pieces (of any color) out of that line and removes it/them from the Board.
  • Pieces in 2 colors in that line the Player can take only 1 Piece out of this line and removes it from the Board.
  • Piece(s) with only 1 color in that line stay put and cannot be removed.

N.B.: A Piece can be on the crossing of two lines (or three or even four) and must stay put on one. If  another line allows taking the Piece, this can be done!
N.B.: The Start-setup may be changed according to the Players wishes.

The Player who can take the last Piece from the Board, according to the Rules, WINS.


This Game is based on “an idea for a way of capturing” that I has been dragging along with me for some tenth of years:

“How can I use the way CANNONS capture in Chinese-Chess for a Game of mine?”

And within “a Flash of Inspiration” triggered by these materials of COM:POSITIE I think I do have a nice solution.

Both Players devide the Pieces in 2 sets of 18 Pieces in 2 colors
Player 1 gets the Red and Blue Pieces.
Player 2 gets  the Green and Yellow Pieces.
The Board is placed on the Table between the 2 Players.
Each Player now ‘lines up’ secretly a start-situation with his Pieces on the first 2 Rows on his side of the Board. 
N.B.: A screen may be placed in between on the middle of the Board, to be sure the opponent cannot see the other Players line-up. Remove the screen when starting play.
The 9 not used Pieces for the line-up became ‘Reserves’, to be used during play.

Aim of the Game:
To be the first Player with 6 of his Pieces placed on his last Row: or reducing the number of the opponents Pieces on the Board to less than 6.


Turns alternate.
In his Turn a Player MUST move one of his Pieces.
A Piece can move only forward (straight or diagonal) or sideways (left or right) ONE step to an empty square.
After moving (and only after that) a Piece may (this is optional, the Player can choose for not capturing) capture an opponent Piece.
Order of capture is: 
Red à captures Green à captures Blue à captures Yellow à captures Red  à captures Green,  etc..
Capture is ALWAYS through re=placement in a straight line  (horizontal; vertical; diagonal; forward as well as backwards or sideways) crossing, if there are, empty squares, BUT only One Piece of the other color of the Player has to be in between.

Next to each other, after Red’s move, are a Red, a Blue and a Green Piece, in that order.
Red can now decide to capture the Green. He removes the Green from the Board and places his Red Piece on that square.

Only        a) moving 1 Piece
or            b) a capture,
ends a Players Turn and the other Player is on.

When one of his Pieces has been captured and removed from the Board, the next Player must start his Turn (before moving) by placing one of his ‘Reserves’ on his first Row, if there is an empty square and if the Player still owns ‘Reserves’. If not, he continues his Turn by moving one of his Pieces.

The first Player with 6 of his Pieces on his last Row, WINS the Game.
A Player can also WIN when his opponent has less than 6 Pieces on the Board.

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