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Fortress

Source: Games For The Playground, Home, School And Gymnasium
Category: MISCELLANEOUS ACTIVE GAMES





_10 to 100 players._

_Out of doors; gymnasium._

This is one of the very strenuous games based on the idea of
warfare. The underlying idea is exactly opposite to that of
Robbers and Soldiers, being a game of attack and defense rather
than of chase and capture.



A fortress is marked on the ground, in the shape of a large square or
oblong, the size differing with the area at disposal and the number of
players. It should be not less than twenty-five by forty feet in
dimensions. One or more sides of this may be situated so as to be
inclosed by a wall or fence. A line should be drawn five feet inside
of the fortress boundaries and another five feet outside of it; these
mark the guard lines or limits for making prisoners. Each party
should also have its priso
a small square marked in the center of
the fortress for the defenders, and another at some distant point for
the besiegers.

The players are divided into two equal parties, each under the command
of a general, who may order his men at any time to any part of the
battle. One party of players are defenders of the fortress, and should
scatter over it at the beginning of the attack and keep a sharp
lookout on unguarded parts at any time. The other players, forming the
attacking party, scatter under the direction of their general to
approach the fortress from different directions. This may be done in a
sudden rush, or deliberately before attacking. At a signal from their
general, the besiegers attack the fortress.

The method of combat is entirely confined to engagements between any
two of the opposing players, and is in general of the nature of a "tug
of war." They may push, pull, or carry each other so long as they
remain upright; but wrestling or dragging on the ground are not
allowed. Any player so forced over the guard line becomes a prisoner
to his opponent and is thereafter out of the game. If he be a
besieger, captured by a defender, he is placed within the prison in
the center of the fortress, and may not thereafter escape or be freed
unless the general should make an exchange of prisoners. Should he be
a defender, pulled over the outer guard line by a besieger, he is
taken to the prison of the attacking party, subject to the same rules
of escape. In the general engagement, players of equal strength should
compete, the strong players with strong ones, and _vice versa_. The
commanders should each give general directions for this to their men
before the engagement opens.

The battle is won by either party making prisoners of all of the
opponents. Or it may be won by the besiegers if one of their men
enters within the guard line inside the fortress without being touched
by a defender. Should a player accomplish this, he shouts "Hole's
won!" Whereupon the defenders must yield the fortress, and the two
parties change places, defenders becoming besiegers, and _vice versa_.
The possibility of taking the fortress in this way should lead to
great alertness on the part of the defenders, as they should leave no
point unguarded, especially a fence the enemy might scale. The guard
line should be drawn inside any such boundaries, and a player entering
in this way must of course get inside the guard line as well as over
the fence. The attacking party on its part will use all possible
devices for dashing into the fortress unexpectedly, such as engaging
the players on one side of the fort to leave an unguarded loophole for
entering at another.

The attacking general may withdraw his forces at any time for a rest
or for conference; either general may run up a flag of truce at any
time for similar purposes. Under such conditions the generals may
arrange for an exchange of prisoners; otherwise there is no means of
freeing prisoners.





Next: Fox And Geese

Previous: Forcing The City Gates



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