Hidden Conflict Clarification


Hidden Conflict.
Hidden Conflict is a tile-based combat game in which players generally attack random, face-down tiles, then resolve combat.

I had questions about the rules and received responses from the creator herself.

Hi Vitas,

> I just bought the game, Hidden Conflict, went through the rules, tried playing
> it, and found a lot of things that needed clarification.

Sorry to hear that.

> 1) I start the game placing a stack of five face-up troops, yet throughout the
> manual it states that my stack may never have more than four troops.  How is
> this possible?

The stack limitation is after your first movement phase.  Since set-up
requires a stack of five tiles, the limitation would apply after that.

> 2)  Movement must always occur adjacent to tiles.  That means I can never turn
> corners?  Can I move diagonally?  The rules seem to imply orthogonal
> adjacency.)

Movement can occur in spaces not adjacent, it just can't end there.  You may
not move diagonally.

> 3a)  If your tile was an "opponent" that lost a battle before your first turn,
> it must be discarded because it can't go to the the bottom of the only face-up
> stack?  It already has five tiles which is more than the strictly four troop
> tile limit.

This is unclear in the rules.  Since the limitation occurs when you move for
the first time, the stack can increase to over five until then.

> 3b) That is, I'm assuming a defeated opponent goes to the furthest away face-up
> stack.  Does it?  Or does it go to the furthest away face-down stack?  Or to
> any stack at all?  (As long as there's no more than four troops in that stack
> after placing the tile?)

A defeated opponent is removed from play.  A surviving opponent will go to
the furthest face-up stack that can legally accept it.  Part of the strategy
is arrangement of your tiles so that they aren't left vulnerable but can
still accept a tile if need be.

> 4) I assume that I can move any and all face-up tiles, even the ones under the
> top tile in a stack.  Correct?

Correct, and they can be arranged in any order.

> 5a) When I set up my army, I assume the leader doesn't count as one of the
> troops in "the number of troops from each level should be within
> one of all other levels."  Correct?


> 5b)  That means the greatest number of troops at a level must never be more
> than one away from the least number of troops at any level, and vice versa. ie:
> 1 or 2 troops of each level, or 2 or 3 troops of each level, etc. Correct?


> 6) If I choose two or three fighters to fight, should they all be from the same
> face-up stack, or can they be from different stacks?

They should all be from the same face-up stack.

Let me know if you have any questions.  I will make up a FAQ later today
with a couple other questions I think will come up for some people.

Take Care,



> Here are some more questions about the Hidden Conflict rules after playing
> another game.
> 1) Do you have to move a stack according to the lowest level fighter in the
> stack or to the fighter on top of the stack?

All fighters can be moved according to their level.  A stack does not have
to move together.

> 1a) Can I separate fighters out of a stack during movement?

Yes, absolutely.

> 1b) Can I combine stacks during movement?

Yes, absolutely.

> 2) If my own fighter is in an opposing face-down stack, does it join my stack
> or does it go to the furthest away face-up stack?

Joins your current combat stack.

> 3) Does the four soldier limit apply immediately after combat or to the
> end-of-turn?

After your movement phase.

> 4) Do I have to attack on my turn?


> 4a)  Here's something that came up that we weren't comfortable with: If my
> leader is adjacent to another leader in a thre player game with no other of
> our stacks face-up, do we have to fight letting the third person win?

Yes, you do.  That's why you should not get in that position.

> 5) Does Aid really only work to aid another Aid fighter?


> Thanks for any help.

No problem.  Let me know if you have any further questions.

Take Care,



Hi Vitas,

> I played Hidden Conflict again and have a few more questions:
> 1) In a previous email, you said the stacking limit applies at the end of the
> active player's turn.  Is this true only for his own tiles?  When does the
> stacking limit kick in for a surviving opponent's tiles?  Immediately? End of
> active player's turn?  End of that opponent's turn?

The stacking limit is immediate for all players except the active player.

> 1a) What about for the Hide ability?

They can go to a stack that has less than four tiles.  If there is no stack
available, then they can't use the ability.

> 2) At the end of the game, we ended up with several islands which made me
> think it could have led to a stalemate if players somehow cleverly ended up
> adjacent to their own stacks, and refused to move next to an opponent's stack.
>  Is this supposed to be possible?

According to the rules under #2 "Choose the location for combat", "If a
player starts their turn disengaged from combat (none of their stacks are
adjacent to an opponent or a face-down stack), they must use their turn
moving their stacks to at least one is adjacent to either a face-down stack
or an opponent's face-up stack."  A stalemate can never happen.

> 3) For an event like Daybreak, does that apply to only the tiles in combat?

All events only apply to the ones involved in combat.

> 4) If a soldier with an item dies, does the item get discarded or returned to
> the player?

It's discarded.

> 5) Can items be transferred from one soldier to another?

Nope.  Under "Items" "Items may not be moved once attached to a fighter."

> 6) The Scout ability kicks in only when tiles have been lined up and the scout
> has no opposing soldier to face.  Correct?


> 7) An opposing stack has one tile, so I could still choose two or three
> soldiers to attack it to take advantage of Aid and Scout.  Correct?

No.  You only use a number of fighters equal to the number of tiles you are
flipping over.

Take Care,


Hi Vitas,

> One more question.  (I know you can't get enough :-)
> 1) For a soldier with Scout, do they get to scout when they're the opposing
> player's scout and unopposed (because of something like Flashfire?)

Only the active player's fighters get to use their abilities.  Scout is only
ever used when the active player's scout is chosen for combat and does not

I hope that helps.

Take Care,
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Contents by Vitas Povilaitis
email to vitas@GracefulBoot.com