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Mölkky is the iconic throwing game from Finland that requires skill, tactics and throwing sticks. Any throwing technique is allowed and the number of players is unlimited.
A group of people watch intently as a throwing stick lands. Shouts of recognition, discussion, laughter. When a log flies through the air in a Berlin park, the group is playing either the better-known throwing game Kubb – also known as Viking chess – or Mölkky.
Both throwing games are now among the most popular outdoor throwing games in Germany and that’s because of a few unbeatable advantages: you can easily build Kubb and Mölkky yourself, you don’t need to lug a lot of playing material to the park and best of all: simple and clear rules paired with freedom for throwing technique, strategy and tactics.
To put it simply, while in Kubb you play against each other in teams and knock down the other team’s sticks, in Mölkky each player competes individually and tries to hit the best matching sticks in a strategically clever way. Because to win, the player has to throw exactly 50 points – and in the last exciting throw, you can quickly collect 25 points again and suddenly find yourself in last place! The rules of the game and everything you need to play Kubb can also be found at Abenteuer Freundschaft.
Everything revolves around wood in the throwing game Mölkky :-). All you need is a cylindrical throwing stick about 25 cm long and 55 cm thick and twelve shorter cylindrical sticks of the same thickness. The matchsticks should be about 15 cm long and bevelled on the top. Each stick must be labelled with a number from 1 to 12.
Mölkky play sets can be bought cheaply, usually with a practical carrying bag – for example at amazon under one of these affiliate links below. If you buy the Mölkky game through one of these links, you support Abenteuer Freundschaft and don’t pay a cent more.
With a little time, you can also easily build a Mölkky game yourself. Simply order roundwood in the desired thickness and length from a DIY store or online and saw it to size at home: the throwing wood with vertical cuts, the game woods are each sawn off at an angle on one side.
Sand the roundwood blocks nice and smooth by hand or with a hand sander so that you don’t pull any wood splinters. Now write the numbers 1 to 12 on the bevelled side of the 12 wooden blocks using a brush and acrylic paint. Or you can do what I did and use a branding iron to burn in the numbers in your own handwriting, and you can also embellish and decorate the wooden pieces. I designed each toy wood and gave it to a very good friend for his birthday. At the end, you should varnish your Mölkky woods with environmentally friendly wood sealant to protect them from dirt and moisture and you can store them in a practical jute bag.
Mölkky can be played with an unlimited number of players. A group of 3 to 6 players is ideal – so there are no long waiting times.
Before the game starts, the bevelled sticks are placed in the shape of an obtuse triangle. The triangle points to the throwing line and the sticks must touch each other with the slanted side facing in this direction. In the Mölkky game, the numbered sticks are always placed in the same position (see illustration):
Then spray the throwing line with chalk spray at a distance of 3-4m from the frontmost sticks (1 and 2) – the further away you stand, the harder the throws will be.
Now each player throws in turn. After each throw, add up the numbers of the free sticks that have been knocked over (hit points) and write them down next to the player’s name.
Before it is the next player’s turn, set up the fallen sticks at the exact place where they are lying. To do this, first tip them onto the standing side and then align the slanted side facing the throwing line. Then the next player throws.
Each round you add the sum of the new throw to the points of the respective player. If a player reaches exactly 50 points, he wins the Mölkky game and it is over. If his score exceeds the 50 points – for example, if he had 48 points and knocks down the 3 – he drops back to 25 points and it’s the next player’s turn.
*Affiliate links: If you order products through them, we receive a small commission. The price remains the same.
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