May 27, 2011

Board Games Studies 2011

This year edition of BGS happened in Brugge, Belgium. The meeting was held at the KHBO-Spellenarchief. The game archive has several thousand board games and has a database (in Dutch) which is being slowly uploaded with game information and, hopefully, game rules. Here are some pictures from their public section:

And here is a panoramic view (as usual, click to enlarge):

Lots of thousands of games were donated by the Dutch game collector and inventor, Fred Horn, who still collaborates with the Museum. Here is a picture of him (the middle guy, talking math & games with Jorge Nuno and Carlos Santos, two Portuguese friends):

Irving Finkel presented "On to Square Two – the question of dissemination" talking about how games travel between cultures. This travel is useful for game survival but has also the problem of game contamination. Some games may even replace and destroy old games. For a game Historian the modern waves of European migration (like colonists or missionaries) to the rest of the world meant terrible news.

In the colloquium a participant (I don't recall his name...) presented a rediscovered picture from an old book, picturing Adam & Eve in the garden of Eden. Some say they are playing a board game (I saw just them picking and eating grapes or something like that...). Anyway, the picture is pretty:

Michel Boutin made a nice presentation called "The structure of games" were he made an historical perspective of how games were classified in the past.

May 22, 2011


Anyone knows Dutch German?

[Feb 2013] Fred Horn was kind enough to translate the rules:


A Tactical Game for 2 Persons from 8 years on, with both two Knights and nine Squires.

Aim of the Game is to get your Knight occupying the Opponents Knights’ start-position; or tocapture the Opponents’ Knight by jumping over or in the same way capture all Opponents Squires.

The two Knights (Balls) start, at the beginning of the Game, on their same colored Field (Cirkle), the nine escorting Squires start on the 9 surrounding yellow Fields (Cirkles).
Players draw who begins and then Turns go alternately by moving in his Turn one Piece of the Players’ color. Moving goes in all directions, including diagonal.
A move is only to a next, free adjacent Field (Cirkle).
When it is a Players’ Turn and an Opponents’ Piece is adjacent to one of his Pieces and the Field (Cirkle) behind is empty, The Player MUST in this Turn jump over the Opponents’ Piece.
This Piece is captured and removed from the Board.
Does the Players have more than one opportunity to jump he is free to choose which capture he wants to make.
Only one Piece can jumped over and it is not allowed to jump over your own Pieces.
Knights can move or jump to all Fields –a color does not count-, but Squires are only allowed to occupy their own yellow Fields(Cirkles)-their start-position- or the grey Fields(Cirkles) =No-Mans-Land=. The Squires may jump over an Opponents’ yellow Edge only, when after the jump they occupy a grey Field (Cirkle).

Winning is by 
  1. capture of the Opponents’ Knight; 
  2. capture of all Opponents’ Squires or 
  3. moving the own Knight on to the start-position of the Opponents’ Knight.
Translated from German to English by Fred Horn 12/02/2013

May 21, 2011


A Bavarian game from early 20th century (click to enlarge):

May 20, 2011


A 1887 game from George Parker (click to enlarge):