|Thursday, 18 March 2010 16:56|
En Garde is a very simple game. It actually has rules for three different levels of play, but even the advanced level is still a simple game. In brief, the fencers start at opposite ends of a 23-space linear mat. There is no sideways movement - only forward or backward. You cannot move through the other player or backward off the mat, so your movement is limited to the spaces between your start space and your opponent.
There is a 25-card deck consisting of five each of the numbers 1 through 5. Each player has a five card hand - play one card, move the exact number of spaces forward or back, then draw a replacement card. If you play a card which would take you to your opponent's space, instead of moving, you attack (thrust with your foil) from where you are. Your opponent can parry by playing a card equal to the number card you played. You can, if desired, play more than one card of the same rank in an attack - each must be parried by a separate card to avoid a touch. Thus, if you are four spaces away, and have three or more "4" cards, play them all - since there are only five "4s" total, you're guaranteed a touch. The most your opponent can have is the other two "4s", meaning he can't parry your third card.
The round ends when the 25th card is drawn. There are rules for resolving the end of a round if no one has made a touch. The game includes a scoring track (or scoring die in the later edition) - first one to score five touches on his opponent wins. -Steffan O'Sullivan