Can you work out how to win this game of Nim? Does it matter if you go first or second?
A game for 2 or more people, based on the traditional card game
Rummy. Players aim to make two `tricks', where each trick has to
consist of a picture of a shape, a name that describes that shape,
and. . . .
A game for 2 players that can be played online. Players take it in turns to select a word from the 9 words given. The aim is to select all the occurrences of the same letter.
Here is a solitaire type environment for you to experiment with. Which targets can you reach?
Can you explain the strategy for winning this game with any target?
A game for two people, or play online. Given a target number, say 23, and a range of numbers to choose from, say 1-4, players take it in turns to add to the running total to hit their target.
Can you discover whether this is a fair game?
An article for teachers and pupils that encourages you to look at the mathematical properties of similar games.
To avoid losing think of another very well known game where the
patterns of play are similar.
A game for 2 players. Set out 16 counters in rows of 1,3,5 and 7. Players take turns to remove any number of counters from a row. The player left with the last counter looses.
Start with any number of counters in any number of piles. 2 players
take it in turns to remove any number of counters from a single
pile. The winner is the player to take the last counter.
A game for 2 players with similaritlies to NIM. Place one counter on each spot on the games board. Players take it is turns to remove 1 or 2 adjacent counters. The winner picks up the last counter.
Start with any number of counters in any number of piles. 2 players take it in turns to remove any number of counters from a single pile. The loser is the player who takes the last counter.
Interactive game. Set your own level of challenge, practise your table skills and beat your previous best score.
A collection of games on the NIM theme
Take turns to place a decimal number on the spiral. Can you get three consecutive numbers?
This article for teachers describes several games, found on the
site, all of which have a related structure that can be used to
develop the skills of strategic planning.
A game for 2 players. Can be played online. One player has 1 red
counter, the other has 4 blue. The red counter needs to reach the
other side, and the blue needs to trap the red.
A game for 2 people. Take turns placing a counter on the star. You win when you have completed a line of 3 in your colour.
Slide the pieces to move Khun Phaen past all the guards into the position on the right from which he can escape to freedom.
First Connect Three game for an adult and child. Use the dice numbers and either addition or subtraction to get three numbers in a straight line.
A game for 2 players
The aim of the game is to slide the green square from the top right
hand corner to the bottom left hand corner in the least number of
The game of go has a simple mechanism. This discussion of the principle of two eyes in go has shown that the game does not depend on equally clear-cut concepts.
A game for 2 players. Given an arrangement of matchsticks, players
take it is turns to remove a matchstick, along with all of the
matchsticks that touch it.
This article explains the use of the idea of connectedness in networks, in two different ways, to bring into focus the basics of the game of Go, namely capture and territory.
Follow-up to the February Game Rules of FEMTO.
A simple game for 2 players invented by John Conway. It is played
on a 3x3 square board with 9 counters that are black on one side
and white on the other.
This is a game for two players. You will need some small-square
grid paper, a die and two felt-tip pens or highlighters. Players
take turns to roll the die, then move that number of squares in. . . .
A simple game of patience which often comes out. Can you explain
A Sudoku with clues as ratios.
Collect as many diamonds as you can by drawing three straight lines.
A game for 2 players. Take turns to place a counter so that it occupies one of the lowest possible positions in the grid. The first player to complete a line of 4 wins.
Can you spot the similarities between this game and other games you know? The aim is to choose 3 numbers that total 15.
Two sudokus in one. Challenge yourself to make the necessary
Four numbers on an intersection that need to be placed in the
surrounding cells. That is all you need to know to solve this
Who said that adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing
couldn't be fun?
A game that tests your understanding of remainders.
An ordinary set of dominoes can be laid out as a 7 by 4 magic rectangle in which all the spots in all the columns add to 24, while those in the rows add to 42. Try it! Now try the magic square...
Use the tangram pieces to make our pictures, or to design some of
There are nasty versions of this dice game but we'll start with the nice ones...
Basic strategy games are particularly suitable as starting points
for investigations. Players instinctively try to discover a winning
strategy, and usually the best way to do this is to analyse. . . .
A Sudoku with a twist.
Match pairs of cards so that they have equivalent ratios.
A game to make and play based on the number line.
Practise your diamond mining skills and your x,y coordination in this homage to Pacman.
This pair of linked Sudokus matches letters with numbers and hides a seasonal greeting. Can you find it?
Players take it in turns to choose a dot on the grid. The winner is the first to have four dots that can be joined to form a square.
Some puzzles requiring no knowledge of knot theory, just a careful
inspection of the patterns. A glimpse of the classification of
knots and a little about prime knots, crossing numbers and. . . .