Weapons and Wrestling…

They go together like peanut butter and chocolate, students and cell phones, or The Rock and Blockbuster movies. We are 3 units into the content and the Wrestling Match as Exam Assessment has been more “over” (popular) with the students than Roman Reigns in 2022 (he’s a Super Duper Megastar)!

The problem now is finding new and engaging wrestling themed ways to assess!

Enter “The Hardcore” match.Alternative Titles could be “Extreme Rules”, “No DQ”, “Backstage Brawl” but I grew up with wrestling in the 90s and they called this a Hardcore Match. There was a title and everything. This type of match lets wrestlers incorporate weapons into the fighting. Tables, Ladders, and Chairs are staples but you might also see baseball bats, trash cans, kendo sticks, sledgehammers, stop signs, and bags of thumb tacks. Flaming Tables are not out of the ordinary!

Of course, I can’t have kids running around with real weapons but a Twitter chat a few weeks ago led to some inspiration. This match could be a Dungeon! In the #TGEChat (Tuesdays at 8:00est) the moderators Amanda Gray (@heymsgray) and Kyle Manuel (@TeachManuel) how you might use the tile laying mechanic. The hardcore match is my answer.

Since I have a 3D Printer in my room I went to Thingiverse.com to see if there were any tile pieces that might easily be used for a game. I found these Pocket Dungeon:

I also then mashed the tiles with some 3D Models of various weapons (bats, chairs, tables, signs, sledgehammer, and ladder) using tinkercad to create “Weapon Tiles”.

Once I had the game pieces I created a game board. This was done by finding a Hex-Grid transparency (thanks Google) and laying overtop of a JPeg. The picture isn’t great but is looks a bit like a outside area of a stadium. The hardest part was to get the hexgons on the gameboard to be the same size as the game pieces. Here is the final result if you want a copy.


  1. Collaborative Victories are important
    • In this case eliminating the other wrestlers.
  2. An individual assessment
    • I will use Plickers to collect the individual data before any game mechanics.
  3. Be Active. Give them something to do beyond answering questions
    • Throwing paper balls and/or rolling dice
  4. Mix it up
    • This is a 90 minute class they will need to have some curveballs thrown in around the 30-40 minute mark.
  5. Games are not fun without obstacles
    • The Boss has to fight back
  6. Losing is OK
    • Even the best wrestlers drop their championship belts. Playing a game without the ability to fail is BORING!


Students will lay tiles to travel the board to collect points that will decrease their opponent’s Hit Point counter. They will also need to avoid the opponent’s attacks or they will be knocked out!


To defeat their opponent, student groups must get their opponent’s Hit Points to zero before all of the assessment questions have been asked. They must be careful as the opponent can attack them and delay their ability to move around the board.


Using the Plickers students will be asked questions. If half of the students in the group get the question correct they will be able to pull 1 tile from a bag of 60 tiles. There are about 55 questions on each assessment. Of the 60 tiles, 56 of the tiles have a pathway and 4 are “an attack” card.


Students pull one tile at a time after answering a question correctly. They must play the tile that they take from the bag when it is taken. Once played it cannot be moved to another location. The path must connect to another piece of a path.

The black hexagons are intended to represent vertical walls and as such tiles cannot be played on or cross a blacked out area..


There are 4 Attack Tiles in the bag. These represent the opponent’s attack on the students. If a student group collects ALL 4 attack tiles before defeating their opponent. The will be knocked out. They will not be able to collect tiles until they recover.


To return to the game the student group must “recover”. The student group must have half or more of the students answer a question correctly. When this is accomplished the group can attempt to throw a ball into a basket. If they do then they can return one of the attack tiles back into the bag and return to collecting tiles on the next question.


The match begins at the red spot on the map. The first tile starts in the hexagons touching red area.


Throughout the board are areas with numbers. When a tile lands on the numbered hexagon that amount will be deducted from the opponent’s Hit Points. There are also Die Locations surrounding the board. When student groups hit these areas they will roll the die and reduce the opponent’s Hit Points by that amount.


Weapon tiles are similar to the Attack Point hexagons. The standard weapons will have a number representing a polyhedral die (for example, D6 or D20). The group will roll the die and subtract that number from opponent’s Hit Points.


Throughout the Unit students will play review games that can earn them “special weapons”. These weapons will be white tiles rather than black and can be placed anywhere on the board before the match starts. This will allow the students more strategy opportunities.


Determining a fair starting Hit Point amount for the opponent is a bit difficult as this is my first attempt at this game. Looking at the board I think the students could reasonably get about 50 points during a 50 question test. In this match each table group is fighting:

Each table will have a laminated copy of this card. As they gather points they will fill in the hit point counter. When it is full they win! The hexagons are where they will place the opponent attacks. When those are full they will have to “recover” before they can place anymore tiles or add to the hit point counter.


Thanks for… stopping… by.