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The Game

       Tabų - the game of Aztecs - is a boardgame with a politically incorrect subject because the purpose of the game is to take a young Virgin on an Aztec altar where she will be sacrificed. This game is for 4 players. Globally, it is a variant of Chess in which there would be only queens and different obstacles. Each player has to combine movements of his own forces made of soldiers and priests to eliminate adversary forces and lead the virgin to the altar. The soldiers and priests act as a queen in a chess game, except that the movement length is limited (5 for the soldiers, 7 for the priests). Besides, only the virgin goes straight ahead to the altar. The priests and soldiers are obliged to pass by stairs laying in zones controlled by the opponents.

The illustration

   The illustration reflects well the provocative aspect of the subject. It is beautiful but not signed.

Opening of the box

   The box contains the board (5 pieces jigsaw puzzle), 4 counter sheets, the rulebook and a slightly too big tray: it is not possible to put the board elements near the tray in the game box. So it's not possible to close it correctly.

The board

   Each of 4 players begins in a corner. To climb the pyramid, the soldiers and the priests have to pass through the stairs of their colour (but not the virgin). For every player, it is not possible to pass through a square of an adversary colour: these squares are Tabų :-) . The virgin thus moves in diagonal and stops on the zones of her colour. But a priest have to be in the arrival coloured area before the virgin can move. Most of the case, the last level becomes overcrowded in the end of the game.

The counters

   Every virgin is different.

The Rules

   The box contains: a board representing the pyramid of sacrifices, with taboo areas on the corners and stairs along the sides; 36 pieces of four different colours (one per player) with the symbols of the Virgins, the Priests and the Foot-soldiers printed on them. A square network is printed on the map, in order to calculate movements.

   Players have to lead their Virgins pieces to the central square of the pyramid, where the sacrificial altar is. The first player reaching the altar is the winner.

   Each player owns one piece of the Virgin, 3 pieces of the Priests and 5 pieces of the Foot-soldiers. These pieces are all different from one another, both for their way of moving and for their functions. Let us examine them one by one:
- Virgins: they have to be lead to the sacrificial altar. They move by one or two squares on a straight line, horizontally, vertically or diagonally. They cannot eat other pieces; if one of them is eaten, the player owning her would be eliminated. They climb the pyramid starting directly from the taboo areas of their same colour.
- Priests: their task is to help the Virgins to climb the pyramid, by occupying taboo areas the Virgins will have to cross. They can move up to 7 squares on a straight line, horizontally, vertically or diagonally; they can eat or be eaten by other pieces. The only means they have got to climb the pyramid are the stairs of their same colour.
- Foot-soldiers: they have no particular functions. They can move up to 5 squares on a straight line, horizontally, vertically or diagonally; like the Priests, they can eat or be eaten by other pieces. Also for them, the only means for climbing the pyramid are the stairs of their same colour.

   Players turns of movement are assigned by agreement or by lot. Then, the players place their pieces on the farther taboo areas, on the corresponding square,. After this, the real game starts. At each turn, the player must move only one piece; he can neither make it go over nor place it on other pieces of his. As already seen, apart from Virgins pieces, all the pieces are allowed to climb the pyramid only through the stairs of their same colour, with no limitations in movement. Taboo areas can be gone over only by pieces of the same colour; consequently, a piece placed on one of such areas cannot be eaten by other pieces. The action of eating a piece is carried out as in the game of chess, leading one's piece to the square occupied by the opponent, one wants to eliminate. Eating other pieces is never compulsory. The altar square can never be gone over.

   As already seen, for reaching the altar, Virgins must not use the stairs, but they climb the pyramid directly from the corners where taboo areas are. However, they can enter a taboo area only if at least one Priest of their same colour is occupying it; after the Virgin gets into the taboo area, the Priest may even leave it. As for the highest taboo area, formed by only one square, the Virgin will be superimposed on the Priest occupying it.

TABU overview

Reference: G-203

A game for 4 players from 13 years on

Time of game: 2 hours

Date: 1979


Tabų on boardgamegeek (classified in category religious ?!?)
Tabų on Tana dei Goblin (Italian)
Tabu on Jeuxsoc
Tabų on trictrac

Some price (2004-2006):

N° EBAY Price EBAY Country Date Remarks
5940890388 EUR 85 France 12 dec 2004  
5193440173 EUR 103,50 Germany 10 may 2005 unpunched
5207185293 $ 42 USA 20 June 2005  
5216509031 $ 67 Italy 16 July 2005  
8732152762 $ 26 USA 12 dec 2005 unpunched
8745552115 EUR 27,11 Germany 8 jan 2006  
8787973105 EUR 75 Italy 6 apr 2006  

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