Important Spy Rules in Stratego Board Game

Spread the word

Stratego is a strategy board game between two players featuring a 10 × 10 square board. Each player starts with 40 pieces. The pieces in Stratego represent individual officers and soldiers in an army. The overall aim of the game is to find and capture the opponent’s Flag. Stratego is a game that requires a clear strategy, skillful planning, clever deception, and good memory work to defeat your opponent.

Each army piece in Stratego has a unique rank, and some have unique skills. As the game begins, both players place their 40 playing pieces in any desired starting formation while remaining initially concealed from one another. Each player has two options during their turns: to move a piece or attack one of their opponent’s pieces. If a piece is placed on a square occupied by an enemy piece, their identities are disclosed, the stronger piece is relocated into the weaker piece’s former position, and the weaker piece is eliminated from the board. A player wins when he/she captures his/her opponent’s flag or all their movable pieces.

Each team also has one Spy, which is the only piece in Stratego that does not have any numerical rank. Here, in this blog, we shall delve deeply into everything you need to know about the Spy.

Spy rules you must know

Spy Rules are the essence of the Stratego board game, and without knowing them, the game would surely be incomplete. Hence, here are some crucial rules you must know:

  1. The Spy in Stratego can move only one place in one turn. The piece must be moved to its adjacent tile, either vertically or horizontally. This piece, just like the scout cannot move diagonally. 
  1. Any other piece can defeat the spy, even the scout, which is considered to be the weakest element in the game. 
  1. With all the pieces having a unique rank, the spies become the only piece that does not have a numeric rank. These are removed from the board if any piece attacks it. 
  1. The Spy can be protected by high-ranking pieces like the General, but sometimes the Colonel works too. You can also use multiple high-ranking pieces to defend your Spy.
  1. Spies have a special attack privilege which they can use to outrank and eliminate a Marshal from the board. This is applicable only when the spy attacks the Marshal first. 

What kills a spy in the game?

While the Spy might not be a very powerful piece in the game of Stratego, yet, it is the only piece in the game that can defeat the Marshal. Nonetheless, all pieces can defeat it, with the exception of the Flag. Because of this, it is crucial to defend your Spy with other powerful pieces like the General so that, in the event that they are vanquished by your opponent’s Marshal, their Marshal can also be defeated.

Furthermore, these particular pieces can move like any normal piece in the game. However, they can move only to one adjacent tile, either horizontally or vertically. Spies, just like scouts can move forward, backward, or sideways, but they cannot move diagonally. Spies also cannot jump over other pieces. 

Talking about if the Spy can capture any piece in the game, you must also know that the Spy is the only piece in the Stratego board game that can remove the Marshal from the board. It also has the ability to capture the opponent’s flag.


For a very long time, there has been a fascination with and growing excitement for board games. Indoor, educational, and entertaining board games continue to draw players of all ages. Board games may bind together friends and families across decades. Statistics show that 78% of US people love playing board games in their spare time. 

Stratego has amassed a following among all the traditional board games we have available. Keeping the luck factor aside, the game assesses players’ cleverness, courage, quick thinking, and the ramifications of their strategies. Although many new players may find the rules of this game confusing at first, you will get accustomed to it once you start playing the game. It won’t be very long into the game when you will realize that all you need to win in Stratego are diplomatically crafted strategies that are devised keeping the possible moves of the opponent in mind.

Spread the word

Leave a Comment