Scout’s Chess

Scout’s Chess game from Chapter IV Indoor Games section of Scouting Games (1910) available here free  in the 6th edition.

This indoor wide game of Scouts Chess is in some ways similar to what I am trying to do in recreating Scout Wide Games as a ‘Tabletop Game’ or ‘Garden Game’.

The whole Scouting Games book is available free here:

With these [maps or boards], various kinds of Scouting Games can be played” –  Interesting to have a permanent map or game board or  tabletop etc, mapped “on a very  large scale” with marked in and restricted terrain, along with other game mechanisms of how to capture the runner scout (two cubs required) as well as movement rates.

Two scouts to catch one seems to be fairly standard form of capture in many Wide Games.

Suggested movement rates are:  1 inch per Scout each turn so if running, other scouts would presumably  move 1/2 inch walking. Alternatively it could be 2 inches per runner and 1 inch walker per walker “or other distance according to the scale of the map

I’m  sure a Bob Cordery chessboard gaming board variation could be worked out. However Scout’s Chess seems to get its name from its chess piece scouts (or flags), rather than a chessboard,  as the naturalistic map element of roads and tracks seems to be the important part, rather than the grid.

It reminds me a little of an old cornering Chessboard game called ‘Fox and Hounds’ that I used to play with my late cubmaster Dad.

Blog posted by Mark Man of TIN (1970s Cub Scout, Bronze Arrow, Retired).


4 thoughts on “Scout’s Chess”

  1. What a fascinating find. I wonder if there is any evidence of Scouts reading,playing Little Wars? To my mind it potentially something that they did.. As an aside l noticed recently that Games Workshop is a provider to Scouting to help them get their Model Maker Activity Badge..
    l wonder if our Edwardian Scouts, especially in countries like Germany with a home cast tradition, cast their own figures?
    I think think that the indoor scouts games material may provide some very useful material l will have a read later…


    1. I’m glad Games Workshop / Warhammer do this badge sponsorship. It might encourage some more more figure / tabletop gamers of both sexes. The glimpse I saw of War Games for Boy Scouts from the online pdf seemed to feature little of toy soldier combat and more of maps and campaigns. Little Wars it isn’t but it has modern aspects that complement the Wells type figure gaming. Interesting stuff..


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