Conkers is an old, traditional game that used to be played by schoolchildren (and sometimes adults), but is not so much nowadays. A ‘conker’ is the seed of the horse chestnut tree, so autumn is the time to be looking for them on the ground. They have green or brown prickly cases.

Cheating has always been part of playing conkers, primarily with the aim of toughening up your conkers for the battles ahead. Methods used include soaking them in vinegar and/or baking them in the oven. The object of the game is to smash up your opponent’s conker so that it falls off the string, so the firmer your conker is, the better.

All the official rules can be found on the World Conker Championship website, but some players use different rules for turn-taking.

(Top image: MrsEds at / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

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