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Have You Got It?

Can you explain the strategy for winning this game with any target?


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.


A new card game for two players.

One, Three, Five, Seven

Age 11 to 16
Challenge Level

This is a game for two players. You will need 16 objects, like matchsticks or counters.

Set the objects out in a row of 7, a row of 5, a row of 3 and a row of just 1.

game board

Players take turns in a choosing a row then removing any number of objects from that row.

The player left with the last object is the loser.

Try playing it with a different number of objects.
Try playing it with a different number of rows.
Can you find any winning strategies?
Does it matter who goes first?

(Thanks to Chris from Active Training Education who is champion at this game!)

Printable NRICH Roadshow resource.