About: I'm a 36 year old DIY enthusiast from Vienna Austria with a strong background in mechatronics/automation. My DIY field is mainly video/audio/motion control. If you want to see what i do between posting it as…

This instructable is about constructing and building a bigger version of the classic hexmap game "Chinese Checkers"

As base i used a wooden drawer, the distance from hole to hole is 17mm, as this is the distance per LED on an adafruit RGB LED stripe.

You never know :)

Step 1: Constructing a HexMap

A hex map, as the name implies, is a map where every segment connects to six different other segments.

That means, if you play on a hexmap, instead for example a chess field, you can go to one of six nearby fields instead of four. (or eight if you use the diagonals on a chess field.)

I attached a screenshot of one of the, if not THE best game for the ipad. It's a round based strategy game called GreatBigWarGame. The map in the attached screenshot is 21 by 21 fields.

Constructing a hexmap is pretty easy once you figure out that it's a combination of equilateral triangles.

You start by drawing a line(red) near the edge of one side, with the preferred distance to the edge.

I started 1cm parallel to the longest side.

Then you decide on a ball to ball distance.

It strongly depends on you balls diameter, i took 17mm distance(red circle), as i have additional plans with this and adafruit RGB LEDs. And i chose 12mm diameter for the holes.

So you take a compass and draw the first circle (red).

Next, where the circle intersects with the horizontal line, you stick the compass in again and draw another circle(blue) with the same diameter as the first one.

Go on till you hit the right frame border.

To get the right line spacing, you take the intersection of two nearby circles and shift the first horizontal line in parallel to the intersection(green).

I made the whole construction with the compass, no ruler.

First, after figuring out the line spacing, i made all the horizontal lines, and used the compass to get the spacing.

Watch the photos on the first step to get the idea.

Step 2: Construction of the Map on Wood

After i temporarely glued a paper in the drawer with doublesided duct tape, i constructed the whole map using a compass.

Step 3: Drilling

I drilled the holes in three steps, using two different drills.

First, i drilled all 536 holes with 3mm drills.

After that i used a 10mm blade drill and predrilled all holes from the backside.

After that i used the same 10mm drill and drilled all holes from the front.

Step 4: Designing the Map // Possible Extensions

I chose not to design a specific map, but rather just connected all holes in a classic hexmap style.

On the photos you can see possible maps, and a possible extension, by putting an RGB LED under each hole, and assuming that the whole board is made of white/milky plexiglass.

Step 5: Possible Rules

We started experimenting with red balls as barriers that you can't jump over nor land on them.

Think of them like if they where water or lava etc.

I tried to lay it out symmetrical and make it pretty open but so that the players can easily block their own and the opponents army.

The rest of the rules is like in classic chinese checkers, meaning, that you have to enter the opponents base and vice versa.

After a few days we decided on rules that worked ok:

Same basic-rules as mentioned above plus:

  • The player that lands on one of the four center fields first gets an additional ball, THE FLAG.
    • The player that gets the flag can place it on any of the three remaining center fields.
  • The flag can move like any other ball in a chinese checkers game.
  • If the opponent jumps over the flag, the flag is lost and goes back to center.
    • If there are already balls placed, the player that has most balls at the center field gets the flag.
    • If all center fields are blocked with balls, the player that gets the flag has to make room for the flag at the center field by moving a ball of the home army away from the center field.
      • In this case, when the player that gets the flag moved the ball away in the next round, the flag can still move once in the same round.
  • The player that can move the flag in the opponents base, won.