background Ludii Portal
Home of the Ludii General Game System


Home Games Forum Downloads References Concepts Contribute Tutorials Tournaments World Map Ludemes About




Category Board, War, Replacement, Eliminate, All


After starting from the centers of the rings there are three important rules:

# STEP-Lenght: Sum of the pips of your color on occupied sites on the track of colored ring-sites. Each step moves orthogonal forward, left or right.
# STARTER-Generation: Reach same color of friendly piece in opposite ring to get an additional Starter to your base.
# CAPTURE-Move: Reach same color of enemy piece in opposite ring to capture it directly. Captured pieces form a stack and have to be brought to the center between the rings to send them to jail.

WIN = Get 3 Prisoners or Extinction of opponent.

See details in rules section.


Pieces start from the centers of the rings to the colored positions and later move orthogonal forward, left or right. The total STEP-length is equal to the sum of the pips of a players color on all the positions occupied by their pieces.
If you can move you have to do so, even if it is a bad move.
If you stalemate yourself, the other player can move until you can move again.

STARTER-generation: If you reach the same color of one of your own pieces in the opposite ring, you get a new starter to your base (center of the rings) from your reserve. This also works from the base with a start-move (base to own ring).

To CAPTURE an enemy, you need to be able to reach the same color of the enemy-piece in the opposite ring, then the possibility to directly capture the enemy on its board-position will be available.
Capturing is not mandatory, you can also just go to the opposite-color position (move 'into the shadow'). Capturing with a start-move from the base is not possible.
RingCapture: with steplenght 8 you could theoretically move in a circle to your own position, but as normal move this is not allowed.
But if there is an enemy-piece on the opposite same color, the (ring-)capture-move ist allowed! For steplengths of 12 or 14 etc this is also possible from some other positions.

The captured pieces remain under the attacker in a stack and have to be brought to the Transmitter (field in the middle of the board) with the according steplength.
If you reach the transmitter, your pieces in the stack go back to base as starters, and the enemies land in your prison.
First player to make 3 prisoners wins.

Only pieces with a captured enemy can land on the Transmitter for prisonertransport. (Exception: #LastMan)
Single pieces just step over it. With high steplength you can move in circles or to the other side and back, but not turn 180 degrees.

Special Rules to balance the Start:
From the Start-situation (or later, when there are temporarily no picese on colored positions) you cannot copy the move of the enemy, ie move to the same color with your first piece.

#CounterAttack: If your first starter is attacked immediately (by the first enemy move), you are allowed to start also to the colors in the enemy-ring with your second starter. In this case, there is no Starter generation, if you move to the opposite color of your first piece (to protect it from capturing).

Special Rules for Endgame:
#LastMan: If you are left with just a single piece on the colored board positions (and no starter on your base), you may enter the Transmitter to move the piece to your base and get a second starter (if you still have one in your reserve)!

#PrisonerExchange: Move a prisoner to your (empty) homebase, and you get an additional Starter taken from your reserve & the prisoner goes back to his reserve. You have to move this new starter immediately: the PrisonerExchange itself counts not as a full move.

History : 'Mensa Spiel' invented by Andreas Pichler (Mensa Austria).
Ludii file implemented by Franz Pichler. (June 2022)

Strategy : Early starter-generation is important to have more options.
Indirect or dynamic defense is sometimes best: if you are captured, to be able to capture back or dominate the opponent with controlling many positions is vital.
In general, a move that attacks an enemy-piece and would make possible a Starter-Generation in the next move simultaneously, is good.

But be aware: almost all moves change the steplength and attack & defence-patterns, ie. the whole situation.
This makes it complicated to calculate, but entertaining to play.


Andreas Pichler

Creation date


Ludeme Description



Browse all concepts for MensaSpiel here.



     Contact Us

lkjh Maastricht University Data Science and Knowledge Engineering (DKE), Paul-Henri Spaaklaan 1, 6229 EN Maastricht, Netherlands Funded by a €2m ERC Consolidator Grant (#771292) from the European Research Council