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Tablut Rules


The game concerns the fate of a Viking king (here seen in the centre) who is attacked in his stronghold. Assisted by his men he tries to reach the safety of one of the corner squares. The task of the attackers is to seize the king before he succeeds.All the counters can move as in chess, i.e. any number of squares at a time and either vertically or horizontally. Special rules apply to the four shaded corner squares and the “throne” square in the middle. Only the king is allowed to stop in those squares but all counters are permitted to pass through the throne.

How to take a counter

An enemy counter is captured when two of your own counters are positioned one on either side of the enemy, either vertically of horizontally (but not diagonally). If a counter chooses to move to a position between two enemy counters he will not be taken.You can also take an enemy counter by trapping him between your own counter and one of the shaded squares.

The king can capture counters in the same way as any other.

How White wins

White wins when the king has succeeded in moving to one of the shaded corner squares.When the king is able at his next move to reach one of the corner squares, the white player announces “Watch out!”; if the king is in a position to enter two corner squares he cries “Watch out in both directions!”.

How Black wins

Black wins when he has succeeded in defeating the king. The king is taken (like any other counter) when an enemy counter is located on both sides of him, or an enemy counter on one side and a shaded square on the other.If the king is on his throne (i.e. the middle square) he has to be surrounded by four black counters in order to be taken. And if he is standing on a square next to the throne then three black counters (in addition to the shaded throne square) are required


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