Malefiz board and starting setup, using coloured marbles as pawns, white marbles as barricades
|Years active||1960 to present|
|Players||2 or 4|
|Age range||6 and up|
|Setup time||1+ minute|
|Random chance||Medium (dice rolling)|
|Skill(s) required||Strategy, tactics, counting|
Malefiz (also known as Barricade) is a strategy board game, invented by Werner Schöppner and published by Ravensburger since 1960. It is a descendant of the board game Pachisi, but it lacks the former game's circular gameplay, and makes use of extra pieces to build blockades.
- 5 coloured pawns for each of the four teams
- 11 barricades
- one die
Two to four players begin the game with five pawns each, arranged at the bottom of the board. The goal is to reach the very top of the board. A roll of a die determines how many steps each pawn may move. Players can block their opponents by moving "barricade" pieces to obstruct their path.
Each player's pawns are placed in their respective houses at the bottom of the board, and the barricades on the 11 coloured squares of the board.
All the players start from the first square in front of their house (starting square). Pawns move forward, backward or sideways, but they have to maintain the same direction during a single move (i.e., a pawn may not move on the same square twice in a single move). Pawns must move according to the exact number thrown. A pawn may pass other pawns, but only one pawn may occupy each square. In case a square is occupied by another player's pawn, the latter is sent back to its house. A player may only pass his turn if none of his pawns can be moved the exact number thrown.
Barricades are obstacles that may not be passed. A pawn must land on a barricade in order to remove it. The player then places the barricade back on another unoccupied square, anywhere on the board except on the row of 17 squares at the bottom of the board.
The winner is the first player to reach the goal square with one of his or her pawns.