In the very first entry on the adjective "obscure" in my dictionary, it is defined as, literally, meaning "covered over".
Well, I have one for everyone that is "covered over" by a lot of time and non-use. Now I won't risk any bodily appendages, but I will wager a cut-to-the-quick fingernail clipping that not one in 100 of you could say you know this one, or have even heard about it.
What I am talking about is not the Scout move and strike argument. The 1961 box rules clearly state under RULES FOR MOVEMENT. Rule #8...The Scout MAY NOT MOVE & STRIKE in the same turn.
This rule is pretty clear in the original American game, and it's an old hat argument at this point. For some reason the old rule was dropped in favor of the current move and strike for the Scout, which I am okay with, though I don't know when it changed or why.
No, the obscure rule I am starting this topic about is one that I NEVER played, even though it was there plainly in the box lid rules for my old game board version. I restate Rules #5 and #6 verbatim here, just as they appear under RULES FOR "STRIKE" OR ATTACK in the game box lid.
HAS ANYONE EVER HEARD OF THE FOLLOWING RULE?
Rule #5. To strike (or attack), the player, whose turn it is, takes up his piece and lightly "strikes" the opponent's piece while at the same time declaring his piece's rank. The opponent answers by naming the rank of his piece.
---so far, so good, but wait---
Rule #6. The piece with the lower rank is lost and removed from the board. The winning higher ranking piece is then MOVED IMMEDIATELY INTO THE EMPTY SQUARE FORMERLY OCCUPIED BY THE LOSING PIECE.
[Emphasis in the original.]
Did you get that? If a lower ranking piece strikes you, you win, but you also have to be moved into the lower piece's square. Then you can take your turn.
Am I right? Do less than 1 in 100 know this rule?
I find it fascinating that this rule could be right there and completely ignored. I myself never played it this way, nor knew of anyone who did. If this is not the most un-heard-of rule in Stratego, I don't know what is. How it could change the game if implemented, I can only guess. "Obscure" is a valid descriptor for it, to be sure.
Now, I am a kind of guy that generally likes and respects authority. I come from the 1961 American Stratego version and will always be tied to it. Should all the rules in it be made gospel is an ongoing question, however.