Skip to Content

Hand-to-Hand Wombat Board Game: Rules and Instructions

Hand-to-Hand Wombat Board Game: Rules and Instructions

Objective of Hand-to-Hand Wombat

The objective of Hand-to-Hand Wombat is to work with your teammates to build towers while thwarting the Wicked Wombat(s).

Setup for Hand-to-Hand Wombat

  • Assemble the three spindles. Make sure they are secure and won’t fall apart while playing the game.
  • Each player takes a Reference Card.
  • Find a timer that you can use in the game. The timer needs to play a loud enough noise that the players will hear it as they won’t be able to look at it during the game. You should set the timer to 90 seconds.
  • Place the box lid (Boundary) on the table where all of the players can reach it.
  • Set the Score Card to the side of the Boundary. Place a Point Tracker on each start circle on the Score Card.
  • Place the Spindles inside the Boundary. Randomly place all of the Bricks inside the Boundary.
Setup for Hand-to-Hand Wombat
  • Before you start playing the game for the first time, the players should practice assembling the towers. Cover your eyes with one hand and use your other hand to pick up blocks. Each tower should have six blocks in it with the largest blocks on the bottom.
  • Grab a number of Wombat Cards equal to the number of players. One of the cards should be a Wicked Wombat, and the rest should be Basic Wombats. The rest of the Wombat cards won’t be used in the game so you can set them aside.
Setup for Hand-to-Hand Wombat
In this five player game there will be four Basic Wombats and one Wicked Wombat. Each player will draw one of these cards at random.
  • Shuffle the Wombat Cards and deal one face down to each player. You can look at your own card. You can tell the other players what card you have, but you can’t show them your card. Players can lie about what is on their card.
  • If you want to make the game easier for your first game, you can place the largest block on the bottom of each Spindle before the start of each round.

Playing Hand-to-Hand Wombat

To start each round set the timer to 90 seconds. Each player closes their eyes and covers them with one of their hands. When everyone is ready, start the timer. This starts the round.

Once the round has started all of the players use their free hand to try and assemble the three towers. Each tower should start with a block that has six bumps around each edge. You will then place a block with five bumps. This continues until you have placed six blocks in a tower and each layer is smaller than the previous layer. All of the players will work together to complete all three towers in time.

Placing a piece on the tower
One of the players have successfully placed the largest block on the bottom of the tower.
Completing a tower in Hand-to-Hand Wombat
The players have successfully placed all six blocks in the correct order on one of the towers. They have completed this tower.

When building the tower you should follow these rules:

  • You can never open your eyes or use more than one of your hands.
  • All Bricks and Spindles must remain inside the Boundary. You cannot remove the base from the Spindles.
  • Players can communicate and work together on the same tower.
  • You can place your hand on the top of a tower to prevent another player from putting blocks on it.
  • You can hold onto Bricks in your hand.
  • If a Brick was placed incorrectly (or you are trying to sabotage), you can take the brick off the Spindle.

Sabotaging Building

While this is going on, all of the players on the “Bad Team” are trying to sabotage the building of the towers. They want to do so in subtle ways so the other players don’t know who is sabotaging the tower.

Here is a list of a number of things that you can do as part of the Bad Team to mess with the Good Team.

  • You can remove Bricks from the Spindles.
  • Place Bricks in the wrong order on the Spindles to force the other players to waste time or create an incorrect tower.
  • When players ask you for Bricks, you can hand them the wrong Bricks.
  • You can ask other players for Bricks that you don’t need.
  • You can hold onto Bricks in your hand so other players can’t find them.
  • Bad Team members can spin the Boundary to mess up the other players.
  • You can pretend to be a role that you aren’t.
  • “Bad Players” can talk loud and otherwise disrupt other players communication.

As a member of the Bad Team you can pretty much do whatever you want to mess with the other players. You can’t break any of the building rules though. To be successful in your role though, you want to be subtle so the other players don’t notice what you are trying to do.

Scoring in Hand-to-Hand Wombat

A round ends when the timer runs out. All of the players immediately stop what they are doing. Each player opens their eyes. Scoring is then conducted.

Points are scored based on the number of Towers that were assembled correctly. A Tower was assembled correctly if the tower is six layers tall, and each layer is smaller than the previous layer.

If all three Towers were assembled correctly, the Good Team scores two points.

Completing all of the towers in Hand-to-Hand Wombat
The players have successfully completed all three towers. The Good Team scores two points this round.

Should the players complete two of the Towers, the Good Team scores one point.

Successfully completing two of the towers.
The players successfully completed the two towers on the left. The tower on the right is incorrect. The Good Team will score one point this round.

If two Towers are wrong/incomplete, the Bad Team scores one point.

Should all three Towers be wrong/incomplete, the Bad Team scores two points.

Failing to complete any of the towers
None of these towers were assembled correctly. The towers on the left and right have blocks in the wrong order. The tower in the middle is missing the top block. In this round the Bad Team scores two points.

Only one team can score points at the end of each round. Move the Point Tracker forward on the Score Card the number of spaces equal to the points scored by the team that won the current round.

Scoring in Hand-to-Hand Wombat
The Good Team scored one point this round. They move their marker one space forward on the Score Card.

If neither team has scored three points, a voting round is conducted.


After scoring is completed, a countdown from three is conducted. All of the players that are still in the game will point to the player that they think is on the Bad Team. If you don’t think anyone is on the Bad Team or you don’t want to vote for anyone, point upward.

The players can then discuss their suspicions. This can take as long as players want.

Once everyone is ready, another round of voting in conducted. After a countdown of three, all of the players point to the person they want to vote out of the game. If you don’t want to vote out anyone, point in the air.

Check to see if any of the players has received more than half of the votes. If anyone received more than half of the votes, they are eliminated from the game. They can no longer build or vote. They can still talk, but shouldn’t say anything that will ruin the game. The eliminated player should not reveal their identity to the other players.

If no one received the majority of the votes or there is a tie, no one is eliminated in the round.

Reset the timer and remove all of the Bricks from the Spindles. You should mix up the Bricks. You will then play another round.

Even if all of the players on the Bad Team are eliminated, you will keep playing the game. The Good Team can still fail to assemble the towers leading to the Bad Team scoring points. The Bad Team can still win the game even if all of their members are eliminated.

Winning Hand-to-Hand Wombat

The game ends when one of the two teams score a total of three or more points.

All of the players reveal their roles to the other players. All members of the team with three or more points win the game.

Winning Hand-to-Hand Wombat
The Good Team has scored three points. They have won the game.

Advanced Hand-to-Hand Wombat Rules

If you want to play the advanced version of Hand-to-Hand Wombat, you can choose to use the different Wombat Roles. Each of these roles have an impact on how you play the game. See the corresponding section below to see what each role does.

You can only use the advanced rules if there are four or more players.

During setup you will create a deck of five Good Team cards consisting of two Basic Wombats, one Confident Wombat, one Needy Wombat, and one Generous Wombat. Depending on the number of players you will create the deck for the game. You will randomly draw cards from the Good Team deck corresponding to the chart below.

Setup for advanced game
PlayersWicked WombatsConfused WombatsGood Team Cards

After you have assembled the deck, shuffle the cards and deal one face down to each player. Each player looks at their own card, but can’t show them to the other players. Players can say whatever they want about their own role which includes lying about it.

Hand-to-Hand Wombat Roles

Basic Wombat card

Basic Wombat

The Basic Wombat has no special rules. You will try to complete as many towers as you can in order to score points.

Part of the Good Team.

Confident Wombat card

Confident Wombat

The Confident Wombat cannot remove Bricks from Spindles. They can place Bricks on Spindles, but they can never remove Bricks. If they notice that a Brick was placed incorrectly, they can tell another player to remove it.

Part of the Good Team.

Generous Wombat card

Generous Wombat

The Generous Wombat can never place a Brick on a Spindle. Therefore they need to focus on finding Bricks and giving them to other players. Generous Wombats can take Bricks from the Spindles, other player’s hands, or the Boundary.

Part of the Good Team.

Needy Wombat card

Needy Wombat

Needy Wombats can never pick up Bricks from the Boundary. They can only take Bricks from other players, or from Spindles. They may ask other players to give them Bricks that they need. Needy Wombats can place Bricks on Spindles, in other players’ hands, or on the Boundary.

Part of the Good Team.

Confused Wombat card

Confused Wombat

The Confused Wombat has no restrictions on where they can take and place Bricks.

To start the game the Confused Wombat is on the Good Team. Once the Good Team has scored a total of exactly two points, they will switch to being a member of the Bad Team.

The Confused Wombat wins or loses based on what team they are part of when the game ends.

Wicked Wombat card

Wicked Wombat

The Wicked Wombat has no rules regarding picking up or placing Bricks.

The Wicked Wombat is on the Bad Team so they want to try and prevent the other players from completing towers.

Hand-to-Hand Wombat FAQ

If you have any questions about how to play Hand-to-Hand Wombat, leave a comment below on this post. I will try to answer any questions asked as best and as quickly as possible.

Components for the board game Hand-to-Hand Wombat


  • 3 Towers (Spindle and Base)
  • 18 Bricks (three of each size)
  • 10 Wombat Cards
    • 5 Basic Wombat
    • 1 Confident Wombat
    • 1 Needy Wombat
    • 1 Generous Wombat
    • 1 Confused Wombat
    • 1 Wicked Wombat
  • 6 Reference Cards
  • Score Card
  • 2 Point Trackers
  • Comic Book
  • Instructions

Year: 2022 | Publisher: Exploding Kittens | Designer: Matthew Inman, Elan Lee, Cory O’Brien | Artist: Matthew Inman

Genres: Cooperative, Party

Ages: 7+ | Number of Players: 3-6 | Length of Game: 20 minutes

Difficulty: Light | Strategy: Light-Moderate | Luck: Moderate

Where to Purchase: Amazon, eBay Any purchases made through these links (including other products) help keep Geeky Hobbies running. Thank you for your support.

For more board and card game how to plays/rules and reviews, check out our complete alphabetical list of board game posts.