The Exercises/Games

This page presents various games that we have always enjoyed playing. With each of the games, a certain aspect of the overall game is practised at the same time. We have sorted the games by type and from top to bottom in ascending order of difficulty.

Games recreate motivational or local partial situations, as they can occur in battles. Here, at least two groups are in a confrontation in which both sides try to win the game. The division of roles into trainer and learner no longer exists here. The learning effect comes from dealing with the situation repeatedly. In order to learn as much as possible, it is worthwhile to vary one's own behaviour.
Games are much more complex than exercises, as the learning pace can no longer be adjusted individually and one encounters requirements from many different sub-areas.

You can find more about our training structure here.

f you know of other exercises, games or training methods that have not yet been listed here, we are always happy to receive criticism and suggestions.

K = commando
L = two-handed weapon (spear)
D = two-handed weapon (daneaxe)
O = one-handed weapon (axe/sword/one-handed spear)
E = one-handed weapon (one-handed spear)
R = runner

  1. Small Groups Training for single fighters or teams of two.
    1. Warm up with obstacles
    2. couple therapy
  1. All Against All Used to practice fighting and movement of single fighters and small groups.
  2. Confined Areas How to move groups within closed borders and around obstacles.
  3. Special Tasks Achieving a task that requires a bit more than plain fighting.
  4. Linefighting The usual.
  5. Open Borders Again some special tasks have to be met.
  6. Formations Moving around in a group, staying in formation.

(Der Gewinner bleibt stehen)
Schematic representation: The Winner Stays On
The defender faces a queue of attackers which attack seperately in turns. The defender should not leave his position. The attacker should attack with a combination of moves which he made up beforehand.

  • The defender may move by a one step, not more.
  • The one who gets hit first looses.
  • If both score at the same time, the attacker wins.
  • If the attacker finishes his combinations without striking the defender, the defender wins.
  • The winner takes up the defenders position.

What is trained:
The attacker practices to think ahead and incorporate the possible reactions of the defender into his combination. The best outcome is that the defender exposes himself to the next hit of the attacker by his own reactions. The defender practices to stay at his position and defend himself with minimum effort without beeing hit himself. Both can easily try new things.

Fighters: 4-7 (or more, simply play the game multiple times, i.e. have more defenders and switch were you queue up next.)

(Der Gewinner muss gehen) Schematic representation: The Winner Must Go
This is basically the same game as „The Winner Stays On“ only this time the looser becomes the defender.

What is trained:
Mainly defending plus beginning fighters get a chance to stay on longer.

Fighters: 4-7 (or more, simply play the game multiple times, i.e. have more defenders and switch were you queue up next.)

(Zombie und Paladin)
Schematic representation: Zombie and Paladin
A single fighter (the paladin) opposes a group of fighters (the zombies). The zombies move in slow motion and get one hitpoint each. The paladin gets hitpoints according to his armor (1 to 3). Every time a zombie gets killed, he starts counting. If he reaches 20 and at least one other zombie is still in the game, he respawns.

What is trained:
Controlled fighting against multiple opponents. The correct sequence of duells. The movements of the zombies tend to get very round as they try to keep the momentum.

some pictures

Fighters: 4-20

(Wilder Hase)
Schematic representation: Funny Rabbit
A single fighter opposes a group of three. He will try to pick the teamplayers of one by one. This means a lot of running and is a game for the more advanced.

What is trained:
The attacker practices to realise and use gaps in the team. The team learns to move quickly and react to a fast changing situation.

Fighters: 4-7

(Das Turmspiel)
Schematic representation: The Tower Game
All fighters inside a circle (the tower) fight everyone else. The aim is to be the only one on top of the tower. If you are hit, you leave the tower, queue up, count to ten and step inside the tower again. There are two or more opposing entry-points (ladders). People on the ladders don't participate in fights. If you step outside the circle, you fall from the tower and have to climb up again.

What is trained:

  • defending in multiple directions simultaneously
  • quick movement and reaction in a confined area

Fighters: 7-17 (4 on each ladder and 3 on the tower)

(Das Quadratspiel)
Schematic representation: The Square Game
Two defenders take up position inside the square. The remaining fighters queue up on one side of the square. The first counts to three, enters the square and figths the defenders. The moment he enters, the next one in line starts counting. If the first attacker is still alive the moment the second one enters, they team up. The longer they survive, the stronger their team grows. If an attacker wins against a defender, he takes his position.
Leaving the square is death.

What is trained:
Attacking two defenders at once, fighting in a crowded situation, watching out for multiple people, quick changes of teams.

Fighters: 5-9

Schematic representation: Spear Hunting
Two spearfighters try to defend their position against a single attacking short-weapon fighter. The attacker tries to get past the spears and kill them.
The other fighters queue up behind them to replace those who got hit. The winner(s) of the fight stay in for the next fight.
It's best to have the queues sideways so everyone can watch and learn.
Discuss which side the daneaxes will join.

What is trained:
The short-weapon fighters practise to get past the spears.
The Spears learn how to defend themselves without hiding behind a line of shields or running off.

Fighters: 3-7 Swords 4-8 Spears (more if you got multiple instances of the game running at the same time)

Schematic representation: Running In Squares

Four fighters form a square. The edges should be about 10m long. The fifths one attacks the corners one after another. After he completes a round, he switches with the last corner, who has to run around the square next. The edges must not leave their positions while defending.

What is trained:
The runner practices fighting while running. Not to get stuck up in a fight, if not scoring immediately, but to go on after a short attack.
The corners practice to stop a runner.

Personen: 4-6 (get equal distances between the corners)

(Läufer Reihe)

Schematic representation: Runner Row

You need two runners. Everybody else is in the opposing team. The opponents get in a row with about 4m distance between each other. The runners start with an adequate distance to the oppenents. Their goal is to win against all opponents in one go.
The opponents have to stay in their spots until the first one in line is fighting a runner. From then on all opponents are allowed to attack.
After a few rounds change positions.

What is trained: attacking while running, coordinating attacks with a second person, how to intercept an opponent

Fighters: 5-8

(Kleine Kneipenschlägerei)

Schematic representation: A Small Barroom Brawl
Everyone fights everyone else in a small rectangle. Acces to the rectangle ist via to opposing corners. When entering the barroom, announce yourself by saying „knock knock!“. Only close combat weapons such as sax, dagger, sword should be used. No shields.

What is trained:
Fighting with just the weapon, movin in close quarters, single combat techniques

Fighters: 6-12 (Or as much as you like when using multiple instances of the same game. Move on to the next game after defeat.)

(Jeder gegen jeden „fair“)
Schematic representation: Circle Of Honour
All fighters position in a big circle. Everyone who is ready to fight lifts his weapon. If a fighter does not lift his weapon, he is not playing. Upon beginning everyone engages an opponent. Others may not interrupt the duels. The winner waits for another duel to finish and fights the winner. The last one left may start the next circle.

What is trained:
This game is for training the classic duel situation.

Fighters: 4-16

(Jeder gegen jeden „unfair“)
Schematic representation: Circle Of Dishonor
All fighters position in a big circle. Everyone who is ready to fight lifts his weapon. If a fighter does not lift his weapon, he is not playing. In this game, everyone fights everyone else. Sneak attacking someone from behind is part of the game. Two or more players can create a spontaneous alliance that can most easily be ended by one partner killing the other. The last one alive may start the next circle.

What is trained:
This game practices to keep a good view on the battlefield while fighting. You should learn how close other players can get before becoming a threat to you. Avoiding contact, realising and taking advantage of the unawareness of other fighters is also trained.

Look out!

Fighters: 4-20

(Jeder gegen jeden „Kreiskampf“)
Schematic representation: Circle Fighting
Form a circle. One person is inside the circle fighting short duels against everyone in turn. After he completed the round its the next fighters turn to be in the circle. If the circle is big enough, you can have more than one person inside at a time.

What is trained:
You practise to adjust to different levels and styles of fighting. Duels all around…

Fighters: 8-14

Schematic representation: Hunting Groups
Two to three fighters team up. It's a good idea to have a polearm (spear or daneaxe) or a marksman in the team. Those groups fight each other in a similar way the circle of dishonour works. If a fighter is hit, the remaining part of the team proceeds. The last group left wins. Or maybe only the last one left of this group. 😉

Variation: Have a respawn area for dead fighters. If there's enough of them to form a new team, they may start again.

What is trained:
Coordination within the team.
Try assigning a commander.

Fighters: 8-45

Schematic representation: Teams
This game is a variation on Hunting Groups. This time, when a fighter dies, the whole team leaves the battle. Teams can work together for some time, but in the end only one team can win.

Variation: Have a respawn area for dead fighters. If there's enough of them to form a new team, they may start again.

What is trained:
Coordination within the team. Not getting hit. 😉

Fighters: 8-27

INTRANZ (Start Spiel)
Schematic representation: Start Game

The game is a good introduction to group training, as everyone can warm up well. The game has several phases. In the first phase, everyone looks for a duel partner with whom they would like to train. In the second phase, everyone joins forces with their duel partner and looks for an opponent team. In all subsequent phases, the process is repeated: the groups join up with their previous opponents and look for a new group as an opponent.\ In all fights, everyone tries to determine and correct the mistakes of their own group and the opposing group.
In order to get balanced groups, the groups should strive for the average strength when choosing opponents. This means that if one of the groups has started to like to find a particularly good opponent, in the following phases the group should look for opponents with whom they can get closer to the average fighting strength on the battlefield. If necessary, someone will coordinate this.

What is trained:
Fighting in small groups, spotting and correcting mistakes, Coordination in different group configurations

Fighters: 12-600

INTRANZ (Fangen den Läufer)
Schematic representation: catch the runner
Two fight defensively and line up opposite each other at a distance of about 15m. Three fight offensively and stand between the defensive fighters so that there are two people on one side and one on the other and they are about 7 metres apart. On a common signal, it is the task of the offensive fighters to defeat the defensive fighters in 5 seconds. If they succeed within the time, they have won, otherwise the defenders have won. The time can also be increased to 7 seconds, depending on experience and distance, and all positions can be doubled. The time is counted loudly and audibly for all by the offensive player who is in the offensive 2-person team.

What is trained:
Acting quickly together in space and running over opponents. Fighting opponents together. Defensive holding. Speaking loudly enough during fighting for all to hear.

Persons: 5 or 10 or any number of instances.

(Auf der Brücke)
Schematic representation: Brigde
Two teams fight on a bridge. One team tries to defend while the other tries to cross the bridge. If you fall from the bridge, you are dead. You don't need to take a real bridge, a small path or two lines on the ground will do.

What is trained:
Tactical positioning with regard to a bottleneck. Defining the place and way of a fight by ones positioning. A bridge is a classical bottleneck, but it could as well be a hole in a fence or a doorway (only then you can't see the other team). Additionally the teams train fighting in confined areas as evading is not possible.

some pictures

Fighters: 10-40 (depends on the width of the bridge)

(Zaunkampf / Grenzkampf)
Schematic representation: Frontiergame
One group defends an obstacle (fence, trench, a line drawn in the ground) the other group tries to pass the obstacle and overcome all defenders. Depending on the obstacle the defenders can be short-handed.

What is trained:
What position to take in relation to an obstacle. Dealing with obstacles:

  • How to use an obstacle and hinder the attacker
  • How to cross an obstacle safely

Fighters: 8-24

(Das Bootspiel)
Schematic representation: The Boat Game
Similar to „Capture The Flag“ the goal is to reach a certain place. In this game, the place is confined by a rope on the ground which has the shape of a boat. If you leave the area inside the rope, you fall from the boat and are dead. One member has to reach the opposite side of the boat to make his team win.

What is trained:

  • Keeping a formation in confined space
  • Breaking through a line

Fighters: 10-22

(Dreieckige Brücke)
Schematic representation: Triangel Bridge
This game is similar to „Capture The Flag“ and „The Boat Game“ in that you have to get to another groups base while defending your own. Only this time it's three groups.
The area is divided into the central triangle and the three areas belonging to the groups. The groups areas are devided by walls, you must pass through the central triangle to get to another area. The walls are flexible though i.e. if you are fighting someone who is in the same area they don't matter. You can't fight people in another area.
You win by killing both other teams. If a base is taken, the whole team dies.

What is trained:

  • tactics, movement and positions with regard to several other groups
  • breaking through a line

Fighters: 12-33

Schematic representation: Confined Area
Similar to the Bridge a confined area is drawn on the ground or otherwise marked. This time the field is asymmetrical. Playing the game works like with the bridge.

What is trained:
Moving in a confined area. Varying the width of a line to adjust to an asymmetrical field. This will produce chaos and holes in the line until the fighters get used to it.

Fighters: 9-50 (depends on the area)

(Zwei Brücken)
Schematic representation: Two Brigdes
Both groups try to use the bottlenecks to their advantage and defeat the other group. If you fall into the water, you are dead (grey rectangle in the middle and outer border).

What is trained:
Similar to the bridge game, tactical positioning with regard to a bottleneck, regrouping with longer distances to run.

Fighters: 12-40

Bro (Schwedische Brücke)
Schematic representation: Swedish Brigde
Two groups face each other on a bridge (or otherwise confined field). In the middle of the bridge are two lines, 1 to 2 meters apart. The first clash has to be between these lines. One group will push back the other, until they cross the far line. Now the stronger group has to move backwards, behind their own line. Only then can they attack and finish the other group to win.

What is trained:
Keeping formation even when the others push. Moving while fighting. Killing while retreating. Moving backwards when winning. Staying aware of the whole situation while fighting.

Fighters: 16-60

(Das „Links fällt“-Spiel)
Schematic representation: The "Dress Left" Game

Two equal groups fight on a bridge. A fighter who gets hit rejoins the same group on the rightmost position. To do that, he will have to talk to the other fighters so they make space for him. This results in the whole group „dressing left“ every so often. Fighters with long weapons (spears and daneaxes) face the decision either to dress left with the group or switch position to the right, effectivly staying where they started. No group is supposed to go forward. It will still happen though. If the other group is not regaining the bridge in an adequate time, the first group should back off a bit. This is an endless game.

What is trained:
communication when joining a line, listening to commands while fighting, monouvering while fighting, individual compensation of gaps in the line. Long weapon fighters practice to switch positions (without getting in conflict with other long weapons who might want the same spot) and coordinating fighters in front of them.

Fighters: 10-60

(Töte den König)
Schematic representation: Kill The King
Two groups select a king each. A fighter who got hit can return to the game after reaching a special area (resurrection area). The teams have separate resurrection areas. When the king is killed, he has to go to his teams resurrection area immediately. He does not get resurrected, instead his fighters can not resurrect either after his death, but stay in the resurrection area when killed. When all fighters of one group are dead, the other group wins.

What is trained:
To guard a person (moving object). Reforming in different situations, reintegrating in a fighting group after resurrection.


  • Unknown King: Don't tell the other group who's your king.
  • Kingslayer: To begin, place a special weapon in the middle of the field. Only this weapon can kill a king. If the fighter carrying the kingslayer dies, he has to drop the weapon and go to his resurrection area. Someone else can take up the kingslayer. Hardest part is to get the weapon safely.

Personen: 12-40

(Kampf um die Flagge)
Schematic representation: Capture The Flag
You need two teams, two flags and two positions to put the flags on. The teams try to capture the enemy flag by getting to its position. If a member of the team takes the flag and shouts (whatever you agreed on) his team wins.

What is trained:
Reaching and defending a position. Dividing your forces the best way to match both tasks simultaneously.

Fighters: 16-40

(Transport mit Verrat)
Schematic representation: Treacherous Transport
One group hides (best if you have some forest), the other group has to pass the area where the first group is hidden. The second group has to carry some load (a chest).
Some additional fun: Allot a traitor in one of the groups.

What is trained:
Using the advantages the training ground has to offer. Looking out for the other group, a good sense of what might happen next. Paying attention to what your teammates do (mind the traitor!)
You practice to keep in mind what the others of your group should do, so you can fill in for the traitor once he's revealed and dealt with. The traitor learns to watch for the weak spots in his own team, so he can be most efficient.

Fighters: 14-40

(Vier Könige)
Schematic representation: Four Kings

Plce four pins in a big square. Each pin belongs to a group which has to defend it. The square should be big enough so the groups can't attack other groups without leaving their pin. If a pin is kncked down, all remaining players of that group have to leave the game. The winner is the last group remaining.

What is trained:
Moving in an open field, defendig a position, redirecting opponents, overview and group coordination

Fighters: 20-100

INTRANZ (Plänkler Linie)
Schematic representation: Skirmisher Line

Two groups are formed. The two groups line up, with a large distance between them, on a limited field. When both groups are ready, both groups send out their skirmishers on a signal and the lines/formations go off. The task of the skirmishers is to take up as much space as possible and allow the group to manoeuvre. The task of the group is to use the opportunities created by the skirmishers and either integrate the skirmishers or let them through to the rear to form a reserve. As an alternative to defeat, it is also possible for a group that is in danger of collapsing to attempt to retreat to its baseline, thus creating a stalemate. This requires more than 1 person to reach the baseline with in an orderly fight back. The task of the opposing group in such a case is to knock down this attempt quickly and in a controlled manner without losing their own consistency.

What is trained: suitable skirmishing and corresponding counter-tactics. Use of the situations created by the skirmishers. Controlled retreat instead of collapse. Controlled defection of a nearly defeated group.

Persons: 10-40


Schematic representation: Card Game

Two groups of equal size are formed and two persons made gamemasters, accepted by both groups. Both groups get cards with maneuvers and tactics written on them.
Both groups chose one manouver that they want to use in the next fight. The according cards are handed over to the game masters. Then the fight takes place. Both groups try to follow their tactic and simultaneously try to disrupt the other groups tactic.

One of the groups wins the fight. If the chosen tactic was used successfully, the group gets one point. When a tactic was used successfully, the card is taken off the game.

This is repeated till all cards have been played or a set score has been reached or a set time is reached.

Card game cards

PDF: Card Game Karts

Cards Ribe 2014

What is trained:

Using different tactics, deception to prepare tactics.
Observing the opponent, recognition of tactics, flexible line-up and flexible reaction to tactics

Persons: 20-300

(Linienkampf ohne Umlaufen)
Schematic representation: Linefight Without Runners
Two equal groups fight one another by forming two lines. If one group is reduced to two fighters these to may give up the line and start running around the other group.

  • The groups form two lines
  • No one is allowed to run around the edge of the other line to get in their back
  • Breaking through the line (in the middle) is ok

If one group is reduced to two or less fighters the two start running to produce chaos. The situation turns into the game „Funny Rabbit“.

What is trained:
Working as a team without other tactical movements.

Fighters: 9-30

(Linienkampf mit Umlaufen)
Schematic representation: Linefight With Runners
Two „equal“ groups fight each other in line formation, it is allowed to leave formation at any time (runners etc).

What is trained:
This is the actual game.

Fighters: 12-60

(Linienkampf ohne Formation)
Schematic representation:  Linefight Without Formation

Two equal groups fight each other.

What is trained:
The other actual game. Coordination between fighters, taking initiative.

Fighters: 6-60

(Linienkampf mit Formation)
Schematic representation: Linefight With Formation
Two equal groups fight each other.

What is trained: The other actual game. Coordination between fighters, taking initiative (groups aswell as single fighters).

Fighters: 60-400

Schematic representation: Dots And Boxes
One group forms a triangle with the spears and daneaxes in the middle. The fighters at the corners are supposed to defend their positions. The triangle is not supposed to move around. The spears and daneaxes fight from the middle of the triangle.
The other group are all runners, trying to destroy the triangle formation.

What is trained:
The triangle practices to stay in formation and defend a position. The runners learn to attack edges and distract a group.

Fighters: 7-30

(Kleines Nachschub Spiel)
Schematic representation: Small Reinforcments Game
Split up into two equal groups. Two fighters from each group start the game with a small line (2 vs 2). The rest waits in a reasonable distance behind their respective groups. The moment one fighter dies, he is immediately replaced with one fighter from the reinforcements. The dead fighter joins his waiting group.
From time to time the lines get one person larger, until everyone is fighting or you get enough of it.

What is trained:
Working in a group with changing partners. Defending the line with inferior numbers. Gaining ground with a superior / equal group. The reinforcements learn to watch the line and to integrate quickly and efficiently if needed.

Fighters: 10-30

(Nachschub Linie)
Schematic representation: Reinforcements Line
Divide into attackers and defenders. The defenders seperate again, so they form a weak group and the reinforcements. Attackers and the weak group of the defenders oppose each other in a linefight. The reinforcements starts 15m behind the defending line. 10 to 15 seconds after the main fight started the reinforcements joins with the remaining defenders.
The attackers should try to finish the weak group fast and without losses, so they are still in advantage when the reinforcements arrives. The defenders try to hold the line without losses untill reinforcements arrives. If this works out, they are the stronger group in the second stage of battle and should be able to overcome the attacking group.

What is trained:
The attackers train to finish of remaining fighters of a already beaten line and keeping track of possible reinforcements. It's usefull to coordinate the attacks of diffrent fighters to kill an opponent in the first attempt. The defenders practice to hold the line against a superiority. The reinforcements practise how to join with a group in a fight.

Fighters: 16-100

INTRANZ (Große Nachschub Brücke)
Schematic representation: Big Reinforcements Bridge

Two groups are formed. Each group chooses a commander. The goal of the two groups is to completely defeat the opposing group.
The battle starts in a bridge situation. Those eliminated gather and form a reserve of their own group. The commander may call the reserve three times (bring the eliminated back into the game). When the commander is eliminated, the reserves can no longer be called, but the game is not yet over. For the commanders, the later the reserves are called, the bigger they are. But too late is too late.

What is trained: Replenishment and targeted breakthrough. calling in the reserves at the right time.\

Persons: 20-300

Schematic representation: Tunnel
You need a line and a punshing group. Both groups should be about equal in strength. The punshing group tries to break the line getting at least 1/3 of their fighters through. The line tries to evade the punsh, preferably by forming a tunnel.

What is trained: Punshing and tunneling

Fighters: 28-80

Schematic representation: Spearcoast
You need one spears-only group and one group with one hand weapons and shields. That's it, fight!

What is trained:
The spears practice to open the shields and to keep the right distance as well as slowing down the assault of the other group. The other group practices to get past the spears. This works best in close order.

Fighters: 7-50

Schematic representation: Runnerstorm
You need two teams, one approximately twice the size of the other. The bigger group decides on a commander. The commander does not fight, his task is commanding only. The smaller group is made out of runners who should cooperate but act on their own.

What is trained:
The bigger group practices to get rid of the last opposing survivors after the main battle, the commander has to react to diffrent situations and guide his team, the runners learn to fight in a short-handed situation.

Fighters: 7-25

Schematic representation: Border Guard

First you need two groups: The border guard and the runners.
The Guards are one fighter short of twice as much as the runners (G=R*2-1). The guards have to defend a line and are not supposed to leave the line by more than 2m. The runners win if one of them manages to cross the border.

What is trained: The guards practice to guard a certain area (rear guard), the runners train to break through.

Fighters: 5-14

(Formationszirkel mit Läufern)

Schematic representation: Teams-Circle with Runners

This game is a circle of dishonor with three teams fighting each other. The teams should be about equal in strength. To make things more interesseting add some runners who belong to no team.
The last surviving team wins. Whether the runners survive or not does not matter.
The runners win if the last team is smaller than the remaining runners.

What is trained:
tactic movement with regard to the other groups (like in the triangle), having a rearguard


  • 4 or 5 equal groups
  • no runners

Fighters: 27-150

(Formationszirkel mit festen Bündnissen)

Schematic representation: Teams-Circle with Allies
Basically this is a circle of dishonor, only instead of single fighters you got teams fighting each other. First, divide into six groups of equal strength and form a circle. Your group and the one directly across are allied. At the start of the game, try to get your team together without loosing fighters.
In the end, the remaining team wins.


  • divide into 8 or 10 groups, so you get 4 or 5 teams respectively
  • try 9 or 12 groups, with 3 groups beeing in one team
  • add runners

What is trained:
Staying together, coordination, moving the whole groupe at once
keeping track of the enemy teams
integration of groups into one team
maneuvering a big group

Fighters: 36-200

  • en/theoretisches/uebungen_spiele.txt
  • Zuletzt geändert: 2021-02-01 17:55
  • von Falke