A pickup game, very popular among boys.

“Knives” is a popular pickup game. Some prototype of modern computer strategies.

To play you need at least two boys.


On the ground that is not too hard and not too soft, you draw a circle of 1-1.5 meters in diameter. As for the spot for the game, perfectly suited are earth covered paths in the shade.

The circle was then divided into equal sectors by the number of participants. If there were many participants, they were divided into armies of allies.

To play the game you need a folding or a regular knife. Sometimes the boys were forbidden to play with knives – then they could use, for example, a file or another tool that can be stuck into the ground or in the sand.

The boys had to share a knife or everyone brought their own.

The Game

The boys counted to determine who will be the first to throw a knife.

The first boy stood on the ground in his sector (stepping on other people’s sector and the line between them was forbidden). And he threw the knife into the sector of one of the opponents. You could not lean forward when you threw a knife. So, the boys had to throw a knife in such a way that it made a turn in the air: so they held it by the blade carefully.

If the knife did not land in the sector of the enemy, the turn was passed on to another player. If it stuck, then by the direction of the knife’s blade or by the slope of a file the boy had to, without leaving his sector, draw a new border – a line separating off the sector of his opponent. And the old border between yours and the sector of the opponent got erased.

You could attach to your sector only that portion of the land of the opponent that was smaller. If this did not work or a player could not complete the new border, the attempt did not count, and the turn passed on to the next player.

If a player had not space left to stand in his sector, he was eliminated from the game.

The game continued until only one player was the owner of all the land, so he became a winner and received the right to throw the first knife in the next game.


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