Octiles is an abstract game. The game set includes
18 beautiful wooden board pieces, a vinyl board they fit on, 16
lucite "stops" with felt padding, 20 wooden "runners", five each
of four colors, four matching felt-padded "markers", one of each
color, and a rules booklet which includes rules for there different
games plus 28 puzzles.
Each of the three games can be played with two, three, or four
The wooden board pieces are octagonal shaped, giving the game its name.
Each one has four "paths" on it, running from one of the edges to a
different edge. Each tile is unique - there are exactly 18 ways you
can create four paths on an octagon.
The roll-up vinyl mat has 20 starting/finish circles printed on
it, plus a few line segments that match up with the paths on the
The basic game included in the rules is simply called
Octiles. It resembles Chinese Checkers slightly in
that you start with your five runners on adjacent starting circles
on one side of the board, and have to get them to the finish circles
on the other side of the board - which are occupied by your opponent's
runners at the start. However, that's really the last resemblance
there is to Chinese Checkers - the board in Octiles
has to be created as you begin play, then constantly alters throughout
play as players rotate and replace existing tiles.
Each turn you may either place a tile or move a runner. Runners
can only end a turn on the "stops" or a finish circle. Once they've
moved from a start circle, they can't return to it, and once they've
landed on a finish circle, they can't leave it. Moves are along
paths created by the tiles. Once all seventeen spaces for tiles
have been filled in, there is one tile left. At that point, a
player can either replace an existing tile with the spare (the
replaced tile becomes the new spare), or rotate an existing tile,
or move a runner.
There is a rule which prevents unlimited rotation of tiles - use
the provided markers when you rotate a tile. No one can rotate or
replace that tile until after your next turn. When you first make
a tile move (rather than move a runner), place your marker green-side
up on the tile. If you make another tile move before moving your
runner, place your marker white-side up on the new tile. If ever
all the markers are on the board white-side up, the next player
must move a runner rather than make a tile move. This is a good
rule which prevents endless rotating and rerotating of tiles.
A second game is called Move Over because each turn you
must place a tile and then move a runner over that tile. There is
no rotation of tiles in this game - simply place or replace a tile,
then move over it. The object is the same: be the first to get
your runners to their finish spaces.
The third game is called Team Up and has a different
goal and starting position from the first two games. The runners
start interspersed around the edges of the board, on the starting
circles, and the object is to position them and the tiles so that
all of your runners are directly connected by paths - either in a
chain, a star formation, or a Y-formation. There is no rotation
of tiles in this version, and once a player has formed a link
between two runners, other players may not break that link. If
they replace a tile containing a link, they must maintain the
All three games are excellent. I had earlier posted here that the
first two games needed a fix - that they could become stalemated
with the rules as written. The game designer has since written me
to point out I have missed a rule, and that I was in error thinking
they needed a fix! In my defense, I can only say that the rule he
quotes is actually only listed for the second game, though I have
no excuse for missing it there. He assures me it should also be
applied to the first game. So if you own the game (and you should!),
please note that the rule that you must always have an empty starting
circle applies to both the first and second games.
Octiles is a very fine game, one that is attractive
to look at while playing, and one with a high replay value. While
expensive, the game is worth it for those reasons. Recommended.
I like this game so much that I've come up with my own rules. I'm
still working on other rules using Octiles components,
and will post them here later if I come up with any, and change the
"Last updated" header so you'll know.
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