Saturday, December 11, 2010

King of the Ring

King of the Ring is a brilliant little game by Chien Sauvage. His blog is and I've discovered he has a lot of other good stuff there as well that can be enjoyed with the help of an online translator if your French is not up to the task.  Mike West brought this ingenious little home made ring to Mag Con 2 and this was the first I heard of this game.  It was wildly popular because it is very fun and fast playing.
Each player has a miniature avatar and the movement and strikes are driven by drawing cards from a regular card deck.  I think it was two combined decks.  The cards you hold in your hand dictate your available options.  Anyway, I have been getting bombarded with emails about an English version of the rules so I contacted Chien and he graciously has allowed me to post them.  So go build yourself a ring and have fun with your friends and family!  I have posted the rules after these snapshots from the convention.  This the sheet we used, if there are any questions about it we will have to translate Chien's pages.

At Start of Game

  • Game starts with everyone being dealt 5 cards face down

  • Each player starts with ten beads 

  • The players figures start in one of the four corners

  • Aces are lowest card. Jokers can replace any card and in case of a fight are the best card in the game. However, they can still be parried by the other joker.


  • Move cards are the black suits, Spades & Clubs

Ø  Clubs move left, right, up and down

Ø  Spades move on the diagonals

  • The card numbers have no impact in movement


  • Fighting cards are the red suits, Hearts & Diamonds

Ø  Diamonds fight to the left, right, up and down

Ø  Hearts fight on the diagonal 

  • Attacker plays card first and the Defender MAY parry with a higher card

  • If the attacker/winner is on the center square they do double damage, two beads

  • You can attack to "push" instead to damage in which case you move the victim one square back (you do not follow) if there is room. This can be resisted (same as a parry). Red cards, of course.

  • If you fail to parry an attack you looses a bead


  • During the player’s turn they must use at least one card and can play all five. You have the right to "hit the air"; spend an attack card with no one in range. You must move when you play a move card, unless you can’t (surrounded in a corner)

  • At end of the player’s turn they draw up to 2 cards, so they have a maximum of 5 in their hand


  • Game is over after you played the deck twice (you play the deck and then the discard pile)

  • The player with the most beads left wins


  1. Simple, fun and easy to play. What more can you ask for? Thanks for sharing, Willy!

  2. There are variants for tag teams, team matchs and even one that includes using face cards as power attacks (feint, charge, dirty trick, ranged attacks...) My next project now is to build a SW ring and convert a handful of Jedi and Sith to brawl out on it.

  3. Thanks for sharing indeed! I did spend a whole day online looking for an english translation of the rules. The translation made by yahoo! could as well have been in elbonian (or is it elbonese?).

  4. Hmm, I'd say Elbonian because it sounds funnier!
    Speaking of Elbonians, I think it is about time to take our travels back there.

  5. Sounds like a blast, thanks for this!

  6. Is this Mike West the one I initied to the Rois du Ring ?

  7. THANKS for this info - gonna link it to our Mag-Con Recap!

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  8. Wow, we had a blast playing this with the whole family during our christmas vacation!

    First with my girl's parents on an old table-cloth (with squares on it), a few items from Ubongo (Tetris-like game) for beads and playing field delimiter and PopCo's Super Mario figurines.
    Later with my parents (with whom I did not play anything in quite 10 years) on an old chess board, chess pieces as delimiter and some items from "Cadwallon: City of Thieves".

    Thanks so much for sharing.

    Wish I had taken pictures... :(

  9. Sorry for the late replies guys.

    Gregory: I'm not sure, but I'm willing to bet it is!

    Stefan: Glad to hear that you guys had fun. Great idea about the chessboard, I have an old one around here with no pieces. Time to fire it up!