HEMA Game Archive


How the game is played/scored. This should be information about WHAT to do, but please save WHY for the "Design" field.

Additional rules could be added because:
- You've decided that the game is better in every way with the new rule.
- You found a *slight* tweak that makes a small difference in a meaningful way. (If it's a big enough change just make a new game and tag it as a variant of this one.)


Why the rules are designed the way they are. What are the core skills targeted, and possible weaknesses.
Descriptions of the design iterations, failed attempts, or changes in thoughts are also helpful to other coaches.


Notes on what coaches have noticed playing this game with their students.


Video or article links

Indirect Attack

Uploaded by Sean Franklin on 2022-03-01
Tags:   durchwechseln | winding | zucken | attack | chain_attacks | disengage | feint | thrust | direct_attack | self_scaling |


The game has a similar setup to the Direct Attack game, whereby both are facing each other firm footed waiting for the attacker to initiate. You can do the Indirect Attack with a cut, however it is designed, and works much better, as a thrusting game.

  • Both the [A] and [Z] are allowed to move their swords as much as they want while their feet don't move.
  • Once [A] moves their feet to instigate their attack [Z] should parry and begin running away.
  • [A] can make as many attack attempts as they want until they reach the stop line, somewhere about 2-3 steps ahead of their starting point. (This is usually somewhere behind where [Z] starts.)

Win conditions:

  • [A] wins if they can land an attack. (Obviously.)
  • [A] wins if [Z] moves their feet while [A] remains planted.
  • [Z] wins if they can parry successfully until they get out of range.

Much like Direct Attack the distance should be increased or decreased to make the game balanced for the skill level of the two fencers.

Design (added 2022-03-01 by Sean Franklin)

The Indirect Attack game works on all the fundamentals of the Direct Attack game, but also brings different aspects to the forefront. The first thing that the defender learns is how to close the line of an incoming thrust by positioning their sword against it. The attacker will also quickly learn how to disengage their sword and manipulate a defender who is chasing their blade.

After the initial attack (provided it didn't hit) the attacker will learn how to keep their blade moving and redirect the thrust. It's not uncommon for a new student to figure out the fundamentals of winding, disengages, and feints while never having instruction in them.

(It's fun to see the first time an attacker realizes that they have unlimited attempts to hit the defenders hands, as if the defender sticks them out the attacker can target them without moving their feet.)

to Wat?
HEMA Game Archive
Developed by Sean Franklin
GD4H project