Stratego

Stratego is a version of the board game Stratego (marketed in the United States by Parker Brothers), also known as l'Attaque.

Equipment

The game uses two double six domino sets. Because the tiles have to stand on their edges, it is best to use what are called "Junior Club" tiles, which are smaller and thicker than the tiles in most sets. You also need a game board of rectangles wide enough to hold one tile standing on its side. The grid should be eight cells wide by ten cells deep.

The Deal

Each player takes one set of tiles and extracts the [0-0] and [6-6]. Players then shuffle the remaining tiles of their sets and draw twenty-two more tiles. The remaining four tiles from each set are put aside and not used. This introduces a slight element of chance.

Each player arranges their 24 tiles standing on edge on the three rows of the board closest to them, in such a way that each player can see the faces of their own tiles but their opponent cannot.

The Play

Every tile has two halves. The number on the left is the attack strength, the number to the right is the defense strength.

Each player can move one tile in his turn. The tiles move one space orthogonally; diagonal moves are not allowed. The cell the tile occupies after the move can be either empty or occupied by an opponent's tile.

If the square you move to is occupied by an opponent, a battle ensues. The moving tile is called the attacker, the non-moving tile is called the defender. The two tiles are lay flat and the attack strength of the attacker is compared with the defense strength of the defender. The [0-0] always beats the [6-6].

  • If the attacker's attack strength is greater than the defense strength of the defender, the attacker wins.
  • If the defense strength of the defender is greater than the attacker's attack strength, the defender wins.
  • If they are equal, both lose.

The losing tile(s) are removed from the board. The surviving piece (if any) is then returned to it original position -- you cannot change the attack and defense values by turning the tile.

Scoring

The player who destroys the opponent's [6-6] wins the game.

Comments & Strategy

If you are familiar with Stratego, there are certain parallels. The [6-6] is both the Flag and the Marshall, the [0-0] is the Spy.

There are no bombs. So hiding your [6-6] behind bombs in a corner is impossible. Second, you have no in-depth defense. The original Parker Brother's Stratego has four lines of pieces, and now you have only three. Also, instead of two pieces which can beat your Marshall [6-6], there are now eight.

Basic strategies should be taken from Stratego rather than from ordinary domino games. There are many important differences affecting initial setup and play. In particular, you have to decide how to place each non-double tile to favor attack or defense.