Handy Board Game Rules

Handy Board Game Rules

Have you heard it's Board Game Week at Solesmith?! We are celebrating the recent release of what we think are some lovely Personalised Board Games  (we may be just a little bit bias!) So to give our lovely customers the best game night  ever we have put together an essential check list!  We've also got you covered for all the food and drink ideas you need for your upcoming game night.
The Rules

To save any future family disagreements, we have put together some easy, simple rules for some of our Solesmith Board Games. You can download our printable versions so you can keep them with your games for years to come. 


Simple Chess Rules

Chess is one of those games you always forget all those rules to! So to save you any disagreements we've got the rules ready for you!

For our Simple Chess download just click here.


 The aim of the game is to capture your opponents king. So to win you need to always be thinking about protecting your king, whilst trying to capture your opponents.

To start the game the white coloured square (or lighter coloured square) of your chess board needs to be in the bottom right hand corner.
Before you get going, here’s some basics to remember:

• Each type of chess piece moves differently. There are 6 types!
• You cannot move your piece to take the place of another one of your own pieces.
• You cannot move through other pieces on the board; however, your knight can jump over other pieces, but we’ll get to that!
• To capture your opponents piece you need to land on their square and replace them.

The King
To remember – the king is important but weak! The king can only move one square, in all directions.
The king should never be moved in to a position where it can be captured. When the king is attacked this is ‘CHECK’ and therefore, the end of the game.

The Queen
Unlike the king, the queen is very powerful! This piece can move as far as possible in any direction, as long as it’s in a straight line and doesn’t move through any of her own pieces.

The Rook
The rook can move as far as it wants, as long as its forward, backward or left or right (not diagonally basically!)

The Bishop
The bishop can also move as far as it wants, as long as it’s diagonally. Therefore the colour the bishop starts on, they must remain on.

The Knight
The knight moves in what is described as an L shape. It moves two squares left or right, then 3 squares in a 90 degree angle. The piece can move over other pieces!

The Pawn
The pawn moves one square forward at a time (apart from their first move), never backward. However, the pawn can only capture diagonally and only one square away.
This means that if there is a piece one square in front of the pawn, it cannot move or capture that piece.

 For the perfect gift for a chess lover see our gorgeous Personalised Multi Game Set, that includes a high-quality wooden pieces and board.

Ludo Rules

For our downloadable pdf version click here.

You can play ludo with 2-4 players. Each player picks a colour from the board to play as.

When you’ve picked your colour, put all four of the pieces in the corresponding colour pocket.

The board has a large cross in the centre made up of three rows of smaller tiles. The aim of the game is to make an entire lap around the outer tiles of the cross and back to your corresponding colour’s row.

Every player rolls the dice. Whoever rolls highest gets to have the first go.

1.) For the first player to move their first piece or pawn they need to roll a 6. If they do not roll a 6, the turn moves on to the person to their left. This will continue until someone rolls a 6!

2.) Once the 6 has been rolled, that player then rolls again to determine how many spaces you can move your first piece.

3.) You can only move one of your pieces in this turn. The turn then moves on to the next player.

4.) Each player takes a turn in a clockwise fashion. Each time a player rolls a six they can place a new piece on the board and roll a second time to determine how many spaces that piece can move (Like in step 2).
If a player rolls 1-5 and has a piece already on the board then the they can move that piece accordingly.
If a player rolls 1-5 and hasn’t yet moved any pieces, then the turn moves to the next player.

5.) You can capture an opponent’s piece every time you land on the same square as the opponent’s piece. Once you have taken their piece off the board that player will need to roll another 6 to move a different piece.

6.) You cannot move past a piece; you must land on that space to capture it. If you cannot capture the piece you must wait until your next turn.

7.) You can create a block, this will stop other players moving past or capturing your pieces. To do this you need one piece to land on the same square as another piece. The pieces on the same square create the block.


To win the game you need to be the first player to have all your pieces back to your colours home space. If your pieces have been captured, then you need to roll a 6 to get them back on the board.
In order to get back to the home, you need to roll the exact number. For example, if there is one space left, you must roll a one. If you were to roll a higher number your turn would be over.



For Battleship downloadable rules click here.

To play you need 2 players. You will both have a naval fleet of your own to protect.
You will sit opposite to your opponent with your bottom half of the board being your ocean grid and the upright board is the target board.

1.) Plot your ships on your ocean grid, and don’t let your opponent see!
Place the ships in horizontal or vertical positions (not diagonal.) The ships must also not overlap one another. Once the game has started you cannot move your pieces.
2.) Choose a player to go first. This player will shout out a coordinate from the target grid. The opponent will respond with either ‘hit’ or ‘miss’ according to whether that coordinate had a boat there.
3.) Track your missed and successful guesses on your target board, red meaning hit, white meaning miss.
4.) You should also track your own ships hits and misses with white or red pegs.
5.) A ship has been sunk when all holes have been filled on that ship. When this happens, the player must declare ‘You sunk my Battleship’
6.) The winner of the game is the person who destroys all the opponents ships first.

 Feeling nostalgic and fancy giving battleships a try, check out our colourful wooden battleship set!

Secret Code Game

For our downloadable easy Secret Code Game Rules click here.

The aim of the game is to be the player that guesses the correct code in the fewest turns.

At the end of the board you will see 4 holes separate from the rest. This is where the original code is set, so only the player that set the code should be able to see this part of the board.

The other player must now try and guess this code.
In order to do so, the other player guesses a random colour code on their first turn. The code setter will then give feedback about this code. Next to the first code guess is a smaller set of holes for the smaller black and white pegs included. The code setter will use these pegs to tell the other player how close the code they guessed is to the original code. In no particular order the code setter places the black and white pegs according to the colour and position. A black peg means the coloured peg is in the right place and the right colour. A white peg means that the colour is correct but in the wrong place. If there has been a coloured peg guessed which is not at all correct the code setter will leave a blank hole.

From this information you then take another guess. You must learn from the code setter’s hints and make alterations with each guess.


The code set is Red, White, Red, Yellow.

The code guessed is Green, Blue, Black, Yellow. The code setter will then put in just one black peg because the yellow is in the right place.

From this information the player knows that just one colour is correct and in the right place. Obviously the player doesn’t know which so has to the make an alteration accordingly.

The next guess is White, Red, Black, White. This player hopes that the black is the correctly placed peg and changes the rest.

As a response to this, the code setter places two white pegs. The other player now knows she has gotten rid of the correctly positioned one so therefore the black was not in the right place.

The other player will learn from each guess until they guess the full code.
Once the code has been guessed, swap the board around and the other player will now set the code.



Click here for downloadable Mikado Rules.

To play Mikado, you must try to retrieve a coloured stick from a pile of sticks, without disturbing the others.

Each stick has a different value of points assigned to it. Each stick you pull from the pile you keep until the end so each player's points can be counted.

The Sticks
- The game has 41 sticks, in 5 different colours.
- One stick is white, this is known as the Mikado. This is the most valuable, and would give you 20 points.
- Five Blue sticks are worth 10 points.
- Five green sticks are worth 5 points.
- Fifteen red sticks are worth 3 points.
- Fifteen yellow sticks are worth 2 points.

A player holds the sticks in a bundle above the playing surface and then drops them to form a pile.
The player to the left of the player that dropped the sticks takes the first turn. This player will aim to retrieve a stick from the pile without disturbing anything else in the pile. Once this player has attempted to take a stick, they must then continue to pick only this stick up, they cannot choose another. If the player retrieves the stick successfully, the player can continue to take another stick. If however, any sticks move, they must drop the stick they’re holding and finish their turn.

The Mikado stick
The player that retrieves the Mikado (the white stick) can then use it to aid their play. It can be used to prevent any other sticks from moving and the Mikado can also be used to force other sticks out of the way.
Once there are no more sticks the players count their collected sticks’ points. The winner is the player with the most points.

Fox and Geese

Click here for downloadable Fox and Geese Rules.

The Basics

Fox and Geese is a game that is based upon inequality. The fox may be outnumbered by the geese but the fox can capture the geese whereas they cannot capture the fox.

To Begin
Flip a Coin to choose who will be the fox and who will be the goose.
The goose will have the first move.
The board is a cross shape with 33 intersecting points. The 13 geese will begin on one the bottom three rows of the cross, the fox begins on any empty point it pleases.

The goose will go first, moving any goose along a marked line to an empty point.
The fox then moves in the same manner as the goose.
This play alternates until the fox can capture an adjacent goose with a empty space behind. The goose is then taken from the board.

If by completing the ‘kill’ the fox has another opportunity to capture another goose it can do so immediately. This can continue to happen in the same turn if the geese are positioned in such a way.

For the geese to win the they must trap the fox making them unable to make the next move.
For the fox to win it must capture enough geese to ensure it can no longer be trapped.
To fairly establish the winner overall you should play a few games to an even number, swapping who plays the fox and geese.


Chinese Checkers

 Click here for downloadable Chinese Checkers rules.

The Chinese Checkers board is in the shape of a six-pointed star, each star’s point makes up a triangle of ten peg points. Each star’s point has a different colour, with ten corresponding coloured pegs.

The game can be played by 2-6 players. If six players are in play, all points are used. If it’s 4 players playing, opposing pairs of triangles should be used. If it’s 3 players then equally space the triangles apart. 2 players should play on opposites sides of the board.


Each player picks a colour and puts in the matching pegs in the triangle’s holes.

The aim of the game is to move all ten pegs across the board and in to the opposite triangle.

To Begin

To decide who goes first toss a coin. 

Players take turns to move a single peg, moving just a single space at a time or hopping over another piece with an empty space on the other side.

There is no limit to the number of hops one player can do if the pieces allow it. It is possible for one piece to go from one side of board to another in one turn.

No pieces leave the board at any time in the game. Once a piece gets to the opposing triangle it can’t move out of the triangle but it can move around the triangle.

To win you must be the first one move all your pieces to fill the opposite triangle.




click here for downloadable backgammon rules

The game is played by two players each with fifteen checkers of his own colour.

Each player also has their own pair of dice and dice cup.

A doubling cube with the numbers 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, 64 is used for tracking the stakes of the round.

The objective of the game is to move all of one’s own checkers to the home board and then remove (bear off) the pieces from the board entirely. The players move their checkers in opposing direction following a horseshoe path.

At the end of the game, if a person has borne off all fifteen of his checkers and the opponent has borne off at least one checker, that person wins the current stake. If the opponent has not borne off any checkers, then the opponent loses a gammon and loses double the current stakes. If the opponent has not borne off any checkers and still has one or more checkers on the bar, the opponent loses a backgammon and loses triple the current stakes.


Are you inspired to get out the dusty games?! Or treat a loved one or yourself to a gorgeous new and personalised game that you can cherish for years to come. To browse our Personalised Game Collection click here.

We would love to see your happy memories and share them with you! Take photos to remember this night and tag us with #solesmith. 

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