Troy - Extra Muros

The story behind the creation of Troy

Raf Peeters, January 2011

The ancient story of Troy is one of deception. This puzzle definitely is misleading too. This is one of the SmartGames with the fewest puzzle pieces and easiest game rules . But finding the solutions can be surprisingly hard. Although I developed most of this puzzle “Troy” last year, Smart waited to bring it to the market until 2011, because they already had 5 new Smart Games for 2010. In the end this was not a bad thing, because it gave the opportunity to fine tune and polish the game, challenges and artwork. 


The object of the game is very simple: place the 4 walls on the game board so that all the blue knights are inside the city and all the red knights are on the outside. Although the object is very simple, solving the challenges is not. Similar to Hide & Seek, you need to find the right place for 4 puzzle pieces, but this time you don’t need to cover an area but you need to find the contour of it. So it has more in common with puzzles on paper where you need to draw a line with a pencil to divide an area into different parts so each contains a specific set of symbols.

But the big difference with that kind of puzzles is that you can’t “draw” lines the way you want. You have to work with a specific set of ‘lines”: the walls. What makes placing the walls even more difficult is that the towers on the walls can prevent you to place them next to each other. Only the corners and ends of the walls without towers fit next to each other on the game board.


In case you might wonder, no there is no trojan horse in this game. We thought about it , but it would not have made much sense. If you had the horse inside the walls, the enemy would already be inside the city. And yes I know, it’s not completely historically correct either. The real city of Troy and the knights probably looked different from the way how they look now. The reason is that most of the game was developed before it was named “Troy”, so that’s why it looks more like a medieval city like Carcassonne.


Maybe it’s also a bit strange to have a Latin tagline on a game with Greeks (instead of Romans). But if you don’t understand Latin, the tagline “extra muros” means “outside the walls”. So it doesn’t mean that you will get an extra wall for free ;-) To avoid any confusing, we translated the tagline for the US version.

Update 2016: In 2016 SmartGames introduced a new, improved version of this game named “Walls & Warriors”.

example of challenge/solution of Troy

Website ©2011 Raf Peeters

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