Paper and Pencil Space Combat Game for 2 Players

I played this with my classmates in Grade 6, circa 1982-83. Presumably it was inspired by arcade games such as Space War and Asteroids! I have no idea who originally invented it.

I have attempted to formalize the rules as I remember them, in an attempt to find out if other people have played this game — and to inspire a new generation of players!

Basic Rules

Materials

Setup Sequence

  1. Each player takes one pencil and sits on opposite sides of the paper, facing a short edge
  2. The 1" band on each end of the paper (closest to each player) is the player' "hangar"
  3. Each player draws his/her "hangar wall" - a line 1" from the his/her edge of the paper, from edge to edge
  4. Each player adds a 1" gap to his/her hangar wall at any position along its length - this is the "hangar door". Note that this can either be a strategic decision, or can be mutually agreed upon (e.g. centered)
  5. Each player draws three ships within their hangar. Ships should be isosceles triangles with a 1/8" base and are 1/4" long. Any non-overlapping location within the hangar is acceptable. Note that this can either be a strategic decision, or can be mutually agreed upon (e.g. clustered to the left).
  6. The players draw zero or more "asteroids" in the "space" between the hangars. The asteroids can be any size, and at any location (but can't intersect each other or the hangar wall). Note that this can either be a strategic decision and handled according to custom rules, or can be mutually agreed upon.
  7. A random mechanism (e.g. coin flip) should be used to determine which player goes first.
Sample Initial Setup

Play Sequence

Moves

During move evaluation (for two different moves) After move evaluation (trace residue visible)
During move evaluation
(for two different moves)
After move evaluation
(trace residue visible)

Shots

During shot evaluation (for three different shots) After shot evaluation (trace residue visible)
During shot evaluation
(for three different shots)
After shot evaluation
(trace residue visible)

Notes

Variants

None, some, or all of the following rule variations (and, of course, any of your own divising) may be used. To avoid the hazard of pencils being used as short-range puncture weapons off the play field, it is advisable to agree on the rules before the first turn of the game.

Skips

Tears

Passing

Stalemate

Space Topology

Blast Radius

Sharing

More Players

Turrets

Use of Hands as Stopper

Multiple Pencils