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Dragonslayer, a leathergame,  for Knights and Knaves! 

Dragonslayer is a fast paced, tactical dice game, made with a gaming surface out of real leather for two to three players, where everybody can chose to be a dragon for a round of combat and fights against his competitors about his Dragonhoard of gold. The other players are his opponents and try as knights to slay the dragon and conquer his treasure.

First the dragonplayer takes his dragonteeth (made out of tin) and puts it on his playermarkings on the middleornament. The playing stones of every playercolor and the dice are laid out on the starting positions of every player.

In our example the player "Blue" starts as the dragon.

Game Setup:

Game Setup

For combat the players can chose different kind of dices. The dices are as following: a four-sider, a six-sider, an eight-sider, a ten-sider, a twelve-sider and a twenty-sider dice. As you need to know, every player can only ever use each dice only once in the combat. So the tactical element consists mainly to know when and where you chose which dice to fight with. But be aware, even when it is quite never ever to be happen, a twenty-sider can also show a result as a number of 1. So a bit of luck is also included as it is in every dicegame available.

The dice:

The Dice

A fight with a dragon consists on single combat rounds, where each and every opponent deals blow for blow and tries to stay alive! Every player choses in every combat round one die. As soon as all dices were used the fighting ends here.

The Dragon starts every combat round as the first player, as it is his hometurf where the fierce fighting takes place. He throws the die and advances with his playing stone in his color on the counterscala, which is drawn on his body. The Knights also throw their chosen die and have as a result to be at least on his height and stay never behind, otherwise they count as slain, eaten or burned (take your free imagination to paint some grizzly ending for your brave, but obviously not so succesfull heroes). 

After the die throw every player places their used die in a special way on the diagram, so every player knows, which die he has already used and what he still has left in his arsenal. In our example the dragon scores a five. 

Dragon Player scores a Five!

Dragon Player scores a Five!Dice Management

As described before, it is now the turn of the knights to deal a blow to the dragon. Each of them choses a die, after the dragon scored, scores and advance on the counterscala (the body of the dragon). They have to score at least even with the dragon, otherwise they loose their live at once for this combat. As the knights have the mission to withstand the dragon until the very end (last die thrown), the dragon on the other hand, has to make them suffer before and grant them a heroic death.
In our example the Green Knight scores a 7 and the Red Knight an 8, so they are right now ahead of the dragon and therefore save. 

Green Knight scores a 7Red Knight an 8

End of combat round one: The Knights are ahead  and are still alive!

End of combat round one

Second Round: Fight! The Dragon starts again, he doesn´t need to hurry at the beginning, as he is not supposed to die before the very end, as it takes more than one wound to kill the dragon. This means he can afford at this time to stay behind and be last on the scoretable. But of course at the end, he must be on top, otherwise he will lose his head. Anyway, in this second combat round the dragon scores that much, that only the Red Knight can resist his fury wrath and the unlucky Green Knight is a victim of the claws of the dragon.

The Fall of the Green Knight!

The Fall of the Green Knight!

After some more rounds the fighting is close to an end and the distance in score between dragon and knight shortens more and more. A failure like a thrown 1 or 2 and the last Knight is dead and his remains will be part of the treasure of the dragonhoard.

For Fame and Honor!

For Fame, Honor and Glory!

The fight stops immediately with a victory for the dragon, if he defeats the knights before all dices are thrown. A knight, who is withstanding until the end, after all dices were used and scores even or better than the dragon, is the  the declared winner of the fight. The victorious player gains a victory point, which will be counted outside on the dragonclaws. Otherwise the dragonplayer receives the victorypoint. The dragonteeth (made out of tin) changes to the next player, all playing stones and dices are back to their starting positions, and a new game can start at once.

As a Dragonfight only needs a couple of minutes to play, and the players are changing vice-versa between dragon and knights positions, you always gain your chance to score a victorypoint. Who ever scores three victorypoints reaches the head of the dragontableau and wins the game. It is also possible to reach in one fight with 50 points score in dice the head (if it happens, that you belong to the very few famous dicers of the world). In this case you are at once overall winner of the game. In the case of failure with a dice throw exists also a special rule. Whenever you have at least one victorypoint, you are allowed to ante this point to get a reroll with your dice. You have to accept the outcome and the victory point is lost, but you may hinder your death and the gaining of a victory point from one of your competitors.

The rules of Dragonslayer are quite simple and in two minutes time explained. This game is meant to be taken everywhere and for short amusement in a bar, medieval pageant, your next roleplaying evening thematically as a tavern game or for whatever you like. The gaming surface is made out of leather, where all gaming utensilies are wrapped inside. Folded together, it forms a small leather pouch, which you can put literally everywhere. A description, how to folded is included, just look at the next picture.
How to fold the skin of the dragon!

How to fold the skin of the Dragon

Dragonslayer was designed for 2 to 3 players. With 2 players the Knight has the support of his knave with the free color. In this way all the advantages and disadvantages are still fair.

Our game Dragonslayer consists mainly of throwing the die and only a die, but as the dices have different ratings (4,6,8,10,12,20) and only ever can be used once, it is much more delicate as you think, to chose which dice you take when. And as the dragon always starts the combat round, it gives the Knights a real heartbeat. Start with a low die to risk and put the higher dies away for later use or going for the fast kill and take them out with the highest at the very beginning? It would be all to logic to use always ever the highest die, but hundreds of gaming rounds and groups have testified, that these guys have won only the less games of all.
Dragonslayer challenges bravery and risk at the same time in your character, as you have to wage your advance against your competitors and hold back your highest die for times of need. In this case if you cope better with your ressources than the other players, you might have a good chance to win the game and be the real "Dragonslayer"!