Hnefatafl: the Game of the Vikings

Compact 37-piece Hnefatafl Game

Compact 37-piece Hnefatafl Game
Compact 37-piece Hnefatafl Game
Price: £39.95+P&P. Out of stock. Order:

Some of the most popular hnefatafl games today are played on boards of 11 rows of 11 squares. This hnefatafl set brings such a game to you in a compact package. While it uses the same small squares as the low-cost Basic hnefatafl games, it emulates the style and refinement of the Deluxe range. This makes it both practical and attractive: find a place to display this in your home and it will be an instant conversation piece!

The board is made of the 10" square (250mm) birch plywood, with an ornamental border of American Walnut veneer. The grid pattern uses 3/4" eleven rows of eleven, with just the central and corner spaces indicated. As with most ancient boards, the starting positions of the pieces are not shown. In this case it is deliberate, as there are a number of different starting layouts you can use. The board is finished with a cellulose lacquer and polished with beeswax.

The pieces are small wooden pawns, and this is the first game in The Hnefatafl Shop to use them. A brown king in the centre of the board is surrounded by his twelve brown defenders. He must escape from the board, but his way must be blocked by the 24 white attackers who lie in wait for him at the edges of the board. The pieces are supplied in a wooden box, finished and polished to the same quality as the board itself.

An 8-page rules booklet is supplied with the game. It contains the history of the game, along with two sets of rules, one historic and one modern. The historic version is tawlbwrdd, a game played in Wales until the sixteenth century. The modern version is based on those from Fetlar, used for the annual hnefatafl tournament.

The game comes with the same after-sales service you expect from The Hnefatafl Shop. Before and after the sale, you'll find here a passion for the game: strategic tips and alternative rules for the board on the web site, and a readiness to answer any questions about history, rules and strategy that you may have.

The game is hand-made in a rustic style. Please do not expect machine-made precision; there may therefore be blemishes in the work. Not suitable for young children due to small pieces.



Is it possible to buy just the Board from this set? I already have a set of pieces and just want a new Board.

Colin Talbot - 13:30, 29/04/2014

Hello Colin, thanks for your enquiry. I can certainly make a separate board up for you. I'll price it up and get back to you privately.

Damian Walker - 14:50, 29/04/2014

Would it be possible to buy this set with both 24 white and 24 dark pawns? I'd prefer it if I had the option for the white pieces to be the defenders. I realise I'd have to find my own white pawn king though.

Neil - 08:23, 08/05/2014

I'd be happy to make a reversed set. I think I've got enough of the pawns in stock to make up a set now. I can throw in one of the white pawns from the bigger sets (like the Deluxe 25) as a king.

If you're interested, then please place an order for the set as advertised and send me a reminder about the pawns by email - I'll make the changes to the set before I send it out.

If anyone else reading this is also interested, please do check with me beforehand. I'm always happy to do bespoke sets, but there may sometimes be a delay as I'll not always have sufficient pawns in stock at the time.

Damian Walker - 08:27, 08/05/2014

Hi! Just a word to tell you that we enjoy playing with our game. I sent you back the 25 pieces set. I think you should receive it next week. I would like to have a precision. We play the Fetlar rules. Is the king captured if he is surrounded by 3 attackers when he is on the edge? This happened a couple of times. Thanks a lot for the information and for the 37-piece game.

Benoit Robert

Benoit Robert - 22:51, 30/01/2015

Thanks for letting me know, Benoit. The king is never captured by less than four attackers in Fetlar - you need to force him away from the edge. This might mean capturing or trapping every one of his remaining defenders!

Damian Walker - 08:32, 31/01/2015

I'm a little confused. You say that sets are hand made and then you'll find plenty of sets that say they are out of stock. Can't you just make a set, even though it shows as out of stock.

Thank You

Arthur Reilly - 06:12, 25/07/2015

Thanks for your enquiry, Arthur. My ability to make the games has been impaired by a shoulder injury for much of this year, which is why they've run out of stock (and why I started buying in The Viking Game to offer instead). Having had surgery earlier this month I hope to be back to making games within the next few weeks, depending on my recovery.

Damian Walker - 09:13, 25/07/2015

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