Hnefatafl: the Game of the Vikings

Hnefatafl Tournament in Tromsø

Tuesday, 20th August 2013

Hnefatafl will be played as part of the Chess Olympiad in Tromsø for the first time next year. The event lasts for two weeks, from 1st to 14th August 2014, and hnefatafl enthusiast Frank Prohl has arranged for the hnefatafl tournament to occur during one of the Chess Olympiad's "rest days", probably on 7th August.

Hailing originally from Lübeck, Prohl wants to revive the ancient game of hnefatafl which is, he says, a proud tradition of strategic gaming in Northern Europe. He is the organiser of the "Tromsø Tafl Laug" (Tromso Tafl Guild) which has a Facebook page for members to keep in touch, and who meet face-to-face regularly in Tromsø.

The rules to be used for the tournament are as yet unannounced, but in a German news article earlier this month Prohl described a game of 11x11 squares where the king escapes to the corners, as in the Fetlar rules which have been adopted for a number of tournaments around Europe.

The news article can be found at (in German). The Tromsø Tafl Laug's Facebook pages is at (in Norwegian).


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