Author Topic: Brandubh  (Read 736 times)


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« on: August 08, 2022, 21:53:56 »
While at the Tampa Bay Comic Convention last weekend, we were introduced to an old game called Brandubh, also known as Tafl or Viking Chess. My son, Isaac, was challenged to play in a medieval room, Society for Creative Anachronism - Barony of Wyvernwoode and since he won the match, he was awarded a copy of the game. We were shown that there are different versions of the game, some with more pieces, but the set that Isaac played on and received has a simple 7x7 grid, 8 pieces for the Attacker, and 5 pieces for the Defender (1 King and 4 Guards).  The King starts in the center, on the Throne, with his 4 Guards surrounding him. The Attackers are positioned straight out from the center, in line with the Guards.

When we were taught the game to begin, we were told that all the edges of the board could be used to capture an opponent's piece with one of your own, otherwise you'd need to surround your opponent with 2 pieces on opposite sides. The King was an exception to this, needing 3 to capture him against the wall, or surrounded on all 4 sides in the open. This ended up being a mistake and we struggled playing multiple games, switching sides, and never managing to win from the Attacker side. After checking online, we found that the walls weren't nearly that deadly and the game seemed much more balanced.

"Hello IT. Have you tried turning it off and on again? ... OK, well, the button on the side. Is it glowing?... Yeah, you need to turn it on. Err, the button turns it on. Yeah, you do know how a button works, don't you? No, not on clothes." - Roy (The IT Crowd)