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Game of the Goose (Giuoco dell'Oca, Juego de la Oca, Jeu de l'Oie, Ganzenspel, Gänsespiel, Gaasespil)DLP Game   

Period Medieval

Region Southern Europe

Category WishlistDLP, War, Replacement


The Game of the Goose is a simple race game, but was one of the most popular games in early modern Europe. It is one of the earliest printed games, which likely led to its popularity.


Players agree on the stakes. Each player places on stake in the pool. Players roll dice once, player with highest roll plays first. If a player’s first roll is 6 and 3, they move to space 26. If the first roll is 5 and 4, they move to space 53. When a piece lands on a space occupied by another player’s piece, both players pay another stake to the pool and the opponent’s piece is moved back to the space where the player’s piece began their move. If a piece lands on: 6- pay one stake and move to space 12; 19-pay one stake and lose one turn; 31 and 52-pay one stake and wait until another piece lands on that spot, move to the spot where the other player’s move began; 42-pay one stake and move back to space 39; 59-pay one stake and go back to start.

Pieces moving forward which land on a space with a goose move forward again by the same amount of the throw.

To win and claim all the stakes, a player must land on space 63 by an exact throw.

If the player overthrows space 63, the player must move backwards by the remaining amount.

If while moving backwards in this way the piece lands on a goose, the player must continue moving backwards according to the throw. If the player lands on death, they must go back to start.

Seville 2019: 21-22.



Ludeme Description

Game of the Goose.lud


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Murray 1951: 142–143

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Murray, H.J.R. 1951. A History of Board-Games Other Than Chess. Oxford: Clarendon Press.

Seville, A. 2019. The Cultural Legacy of the Royal Game of the Goose: 400 years of Printed Board Games. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press.

Statuta Argentae e veteri manuscripto codie nunc primum edita.1781. Ferrare: Typografia Camerali.



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