Tawlbwrdd 11x11

Tafl rules
Hagbard
Posts: 409
Joined: Sat Mar 14, 2015 6:07 pm

Re: Tawlbwrdd 11x11

Post by Hagbard » Thu May 25, 2017 1:57 am

May 22nd, Jarl Herjan on Facebook, photo of a fine tawlbwrdd board 11x11 with throne and no corners, and diamond-Bell setup, just as we recommend it here.
But also with a dicebox and six dice, and the comment
This is my new Tawlbwrdd (Welsh Tafl) which I had designed. In addition I have come up with a set of rules for Tawlbwrdd that is in keeeping with its literal translation meaning "Throw Board" which suggests the possible use of dice in the game. What I have come up with following my research and playing various versions of Tawlbwrdd is a game that is fun and easy to play with an element of luck and a gamble that would have appealed to Vikings and the Welsh in the early medieval world.
"Throw Board" is an old mistranslation of the word "Tawlbwrdd", Tawlbwrdd simply being the wellknown Scandinavian word Tavlbord = Game Board, in my opinion.

But in any case Herjan has invented an interesting tawlbwrdd variant. How do one play this game?

Hagbard
Posts: 409
Joined: Sat Mar 14, 2015 6:07 pm

Re: Tawlbwrdd 11x11

Post by Hagbard » Tue Oct 17, 2017 10:42 am

Hagbard wrote:
Sat Oct 17, 2015 10:53 am
Yesterday I brought with me the Hnefatafl game to a family birthday party. All the guests were very unaquainted with Hnefatafl, only four or five even ever heard about it.

Image

I invited three of the guests for a game of Hnefatafl and decided to use the Tawlbwrdd 11x11 variant (Tawlbwrdd Lewis cross).

This is a very efficient game in company with beginners, the simplest tafl game ever! Even simpler than Sea battle tafl. All squares are alike, there are no special squares on the board. All pieces are alike, the king is no different from any other piece, it's just that one of the pieces (the king) has to make it to any board edge square. Any piece is captured this way (show a custodian capture). That's all, very simple to explain to a beginner and simple to play.

The game works very well, the game balance is till now measured to a fine -1.06 (106 black wins per 100 white wins).

To help a beginner, the experienced player can beforehand remove some of his pieces:
  • when white, pieces f3 and f9, and perhaps c6 and i6 etc.
  • when black, pieces f1, f11, a6 and k6, or perhaps e2, g2, e10, g10, b5, b7, j5 and j7, etc.
And despite the removed pieces, the game still works well against a beginner.

I brought again the game to a family birthday and used again this variant,

Tawlbwrdd throneless Lewis cross 11x11.

It was a great success with the children, two children 5 and 6 years old fast got a grasp of the game. Even a child 2 years old understood how to move the pieces. And two children 10 and 14 years old had many good games and much fun.

At other family birthdays I've earlier invited an elderly gentleman to play tafl but used other variants with more complex rules. We met about once per year, he found the game complex and now refuses to try it anymore.

So, for children and for people unfamiliar with tafl, the "Tawlbwrdd throneless Lewis cross 11x11" is much to recommend to give them a good experience with the game!

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