2 or 4 Ranchers and Farmers Fight for Ground

Author: Dirk Henn
Translator: Dirk Henn
Transcription and minor edits: Ken Tidwell


Object of the game

Object of the game is to get the greatest coherent areas.


With 2 (4) players every player gets 5 (3) moving cards and 4 (2) judge markers. Every player lays down his moving cards open on the table, best in the same orientation as the compass on the plan, the rest of the cards is put face-down besides the plan.

Keep the farm/ranch-marker ready and put the officer in the middle of the plan. With 2 players you decide who wants to play the farms and who the ranches. With 4 players the opposite players play together..

Course of the game

The player on turn has three possibilities:

1. Play a moving card and move the officer on a free space.

2. Take a new moving card.

3. See the judge (discard one judge marker) and move the officer to a space occupied by the opponent.

Case 1. The moving card determines direction and distance of the officer's move. He has to move to a free space. The drawing player puts down a farm/ranch marker on the space where the officer arrives with his symbol up. The drawing card is put on a discard pile and is not replaced.

Case 2. You can use this possibility only when you have less than the maximum number of cards (5 cards with 2 players and 3 cards with 4). The new card is put down (eventually with the remaing ones) face up. When the last card is drawn from the pile, the discard pile is shuffled and put face down as the new pile.

Case 3. The judge gives right to the officer to move on a space occupied by the opponent. He moves as usual with a moving card, the drawing player has to discard one judge marker. The marker on the space is flipped around and the officer is positioned on the space.

You are forced to use your turn, i.e. if it is possible, you have to carry out one of the three possibilities. If this is not possible the player has to miss the turn.

End of the Game:

The game ends when all players cannot carry out any possibility, or when there are no markers left.


An area means all markers connected at least by one marker's side (not corner).


(Rancher): has two coherent areas, one with four squares and one with one square.

(Farmer): has two areas, too, one with two - and one with eight squares.

For every area a player gets as many points as the number of the squares multiplied by itself.

Example: The rancher gets 4x4=16 points for his 4-square area plus 1x1=1 point for his single-square area. The farmer gets 2x2=4 and 8x8=64 points for his two areas.

Winner is the player with most points for his areas.

Tip for counting the points: If both opponents own equally big areas, you should not calculate, but remove them both. Then there are much less areas left to calculate really.

Game with four players:

For the players sitting opposite to each other are playing together, the team's turns alternate automatically. Players are not allowed to communicate about their moves.

Some points for the respective areas:
10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20
100 121 144 169 196 225 256 289 324 361 400

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The Game Cabinet - editor@gamecabinet.com - Ken Tidwell