Grid Squid is a simple game of territorial control where you play cards in order to place cubes on the corresponding symbols. Anyone can create rows of cubes to score some points, but you need both luck and skill to create a Squid!

At a glance:

2-4 players

15 minutes

Complexity: Low

Components used:

12 cubes pr player

5 tiles of each symbol, include one more symbol than the number of players

All cards of the corresponding symbols

Setup ready for 3 players


Create a rectangular board with the available tiles (5×3 with 2 players, 5×4 with 3 and 5×5 with 4 players).

Give each player 12 cubes in their selected colour.

Shuffle the cards and deal 5 to each player.

Select starting player randomly.


Taking turns, each player plays one card from hand to place one cube on a tile with the same symbol as the card played. If you want to place cubes on a tile already occupied by another player, you must place one more cube than the opponent has in that space. Your opponent will get her cube(s) back to be reused.

When all players have played their 5 cards, everyone scores points:

  • 1 point for 3 of your cubes in a row (straight line)
  • 2 points for 4 in a row
  • 3 points for 5 in a row
  • 2 extra points for a “Squid”, that means two rows crossing each other. You get points for both rows as normal. So one row of 3 crossing a row of 4 means 1+2+2=5 points

Now return any exess cubes to their owner, so that there is only one cube in any single tile.

Deal 5 new cards to each player (shuffle when needed), and start over, shifting the starting player to the right.

First scoring: Each player only scores 1 point, but yellow needs only to close the gap in the top row to complete a squid, which would have scored 1+2+2 points. Red can achieve the same by capturing the center space currently occupied by yellow.


After 3 complete rounds (total 15 cards played) the game ends and the player with the highest total score is the winner.

“Advanced” rule:

For more tactics and less pure chance, deal two extra cards to each player. Still only play 5 cards in each round, the extra cards are there just to increase the players’ options.