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The Traditional Board Game Series Leaflet #53: Asalto

the fortress and so could their cause marked, using doubled lines or lines by Damian Walker
may be considered lost. of a different colour. This is for the
related game German Tactics.
Rebels may not move along these
On some boards, most of the specially marked lines, but officers
horizontal lines are specially may. See Illustration 3.
More information on the game of asalto and some interesting variations of it
can be found in the following books.
Bell, R. C. Board and Table Games from Many Civilizations, vol. 2,
pp. 46-47. New York: Dover Publications, Inc., 1979.
Bell, R. C. The Boardgame Book, pp. 52-53 & 54. London: Marshall
Cavendish Ltd., 1979.
Bell, R. C. Games to Play, pp. 25, 26 42-43 & 92. London: Michael
Joseph Ltd., 1988.
Grunfeld, F. V. (ed). Games of the World, pp. 94-95. New York: Plen-
ary Publications, Inc., 1975.
Murray, H. J. R. A History of Board-Games Other Than Chess, pp.
104-105. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1952.
Parlett, D. The Oxford History of Board Games, pp. 190-192. Oxford:
Oxford University Press, 1999.
German Tactics is covered in
Bell's book Games to Play. The rules
for asalto in his book The Boardgame
Book are also from German Tactics,
and the board is expanded to accom-
modate three officers and fifty rebels,
but the image on p. 54 is a standard
asalto set.
Copyright © Damian Walker 2011 -

Illustration 3: movement in the German

Tactics variation. Note routes along dotted
lines may be used only by officers. Capture Board Games at CYNINGSTAN
of rebels is by the same method as in asalto. Traditional Board Game Series
(Second Edition)
4 Leaflet #53
The Traditional Board Game Series Leaflet #53: Asalto The Traditional Board Game Series Leaflet #53: Asalto

4. The rebels make the first able, then the rebel player may
INTRODUCTION & HISTORY move. point out the capture and remove
Asalto is a siege game, where a ingly. By the nineteenth century the officer who failed to make it
Moving the Pieces
couple of officers face a rebellion these experiments had resulted in (called huffing), before continuing
by a large number of soldiers. The the game of asalto. Movement and capture are with his own move.
officers begin the game in a fort- The precise origins of asalto shown in Illustration 2. 12. This is the only way an of-
ress, and attempt to defend it and are unknown. It is not Spanish, des- 5. A rebel may move along a ficer can be captured, as the rebels
themselves against the rebellious pite its name. The game was popu- marked line in any direction which cannot leap.
onslaught. The game was based on lar in Germany, where some vari- does not lead him away from the
fortress. Ending the Game
a medieval game of fox & geese. ations were made, and in Britain the
Fox & geese pits one fox game was marketed as Officers & 6. An officer may move in any 13. If the nine points of the fort
against a number of geese, but in Sepoys after the 1857 Indian direction along a marked line, with- are occupied by the rebels, they win
the seventeenth century experiments Mutiny. The game was also played in, away from or towards the fort- the game.
were made by adding a second, and in France under the name assaut. ress. 14. If the officers are trapped
sometimes a third, fox and increas- But it is not known which of these 7. Only one piece may occupy by the rebels so that they are unable
ing the number of geese accord- games came first. a point at any one time. to move, they lose the game and the
8. Officers cannot leap over rebels win.
HOW TO PLAY each other, and rebels cannot leap at 15. If both the officers are
Asalto is played by two players on a Beginning the Game all. huffed, then they have lost and the
board resembling that used Capturing rebels win.
1. Players decide at random 16. If the of-
nowadays for solitaire. The differ- Enemies
who takes which side. In sub- ficers capture so
ences are that the playing spaces are
sequent games the players should 9. An officer many rebels that
linked by lines, in-
swap sides. can capture a rebel their task becomes
cluding some on
2. The rebels by leaping over impossible, then
the diagonals, to
are placed on the him onto the va- they win the game.
indicate allowable
board, filling cant space beyond. 17. The pre-
directions of
every space out- 10. Such a cise number of
movement. One
side the fortress, capture must be rebels needed to
end of the board is
as shown in Illus- along a marked win the game var-
also marked out as
tration 1. line, and the of- ies according to
the fortress, en-
3. The two of- ficer cannot turn a whether one or
compassing nine
ficers are placed corner while leap- two officers re-
squares in total. Illustration 2: moves of the pieces. Officers
anywhere in the ing. can move in any direction, but only where a main on the board.
One player has
fortress, at the dis- 11. If the of- marked line exists (note the lower officer But if only eight
two officers, and
cretion of the play- ficers' player fails cannot therefore move diagonally). Rebels remain on the
the other has Illustration 1: the asalto board, with rebels are subject to the same limitation see
er who controls to make a capture board, they will be
twenty-four rebels. set out for play. Officers will be placed on rightmost piece), and may not move away
any two points of the fortress. them. when one is avail- from the fortress. unable to occupy

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