OWL games

OWLs as you may know are very busy most of the time. There is always something to be done around the Library. So what, you may ask, do OWL Agents do for fun? Well, they play OWL Games of course. It is a little know fact that OWLs simply love board games and play them whenever they can. OWLs, by the way, never use dice. Instead, when it is their turn in a game, they will simply think up a random number between one and six (thinking, of course, is half the fun of the game). They would never, ever consider cheating and anyway, all the other OWL players would know immediately if they did.

Hello, I'm Wagtail and it is my job to organize OWL Games. You may think that would be an easy job, but it is a fact that all OWL games must be played strictly according to the OWL Game Compendium and Rule Book (47th ed, abridged). Currently, there are no less than fourteen volumes of rules for OWL Games and it is my job to see that all the rules are properly catalogued. OWLs, of course have photographic memories and never, ever need to refer to the rule book, which is a bit of a pity really.

Anyway, here you will find some of our favourite OWL games.

1. Branches and Holes

Branches and Holes is the OWL equivalent of your Snakes and Ladders game. OWLs, as you may know, detest snakes and have no use at all for ladders: So we invented our own version of the game. The rules* have been greatly simplified here: Everyone starts at the start and takes it in turn rolling the dice. You move along the rows the number of squares rolled on the dice, in the direction of the arrows. When you reach the end of a row, follow the arrows and continue along the next row up in the opposite direction. If you land on an owl hole you may climb up inside the tree trunk to the next owl hole above. If you land on the end of an arrow you have to slide down the slippery branch to the square indicated by the point of the arrow. The first one to land on the finish square wins.

*Note: The rules have also been adapted for people: No need to calculate random numbers or to screech when sliding down a branch, etc.


The Branches and Holes game is available for download in Adobe PDF format. Simply right-click on the image, select "Save Target As..." and choose a download folder.

Of course you will need some game tokens to play this and other OWL board games.

These OWL Game Tokens are available for download in Adobe PDF format. Simply right-click on the image, select "Save Target As..." and choose a download folder.

Print the pages on a colour printer if you can. Then glue the pages to some thin cardboard or just laminate it in a laminating machine. Carefully use scissors to cut the tokens out.

Please ask permission first and get help with the printer, scissors and the laminating machine.

OWL Agent Wagtail
Games Coordinator