US 3843131 A
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United States Patent [191 Stubbmann 1 1 BOARD GAME APPARATUS  Inventor: Albert Stubbmann, Franklin Lakes,
'  Assignee: Kohner Bros. Inc., Elmwood Park,
 Filed: Jan. 31, 1974  Appl. No.: 438,485
 US. Cl. 273/134 G, 273/134 D  Int. Cl. A63f 3/00  Field of Search 273/134  References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,215,696 9/1940 Graves 273/134 GA 2,839,303 6/1958 Baker 273/134 G 3,356,369 12/1967 Stubbmann 273/134 GM X 3,617,063 11/1971 Dyer 273/134 AE 3,762,714 10/1973 Wilson 273/134 GA Primary ExaminerDelbert B. Lowe Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Howard J. Newby; Bruno A. Struzzi; C. Garman l-lubbard 451 Oct. 22, 1974 5 7] ABSTRACT Apparatus including a rectangular game board on which movable playing pieces having distinguishing characterizations are slidably mounted and including a die-agitating chance selector integral with the game board and centrally located therewith for determining the moves to be made of the playing pieces, said chance selector being selectively controlled by each player. The game board is provided with four fields, each field adjacent one corner of the board. The slots disposed adjacent each playing field register and communicate with slots on a rotatable ring member for transfer of the playing pieces from each field, rotatable movement thereof about the board playing area,'
and transfer from the rotatable ring back to their respective field slots. Centrally of the game board within the rotating ring member is a stationary disc member having radial slots which also register and communicate with the slots of the rotating ring member for transfer and capture of the playing pieces in accordance with the rules of play. The playing pieces are slidably secured in the slots of the game board apparatus.
5 Claims, 5 Drawing'Figures PATENTEMBI??? mm 7 3.843131.
ulllllllllllllllm- BOARD GAME APPARATUS BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention The present invention generally relates to game board devices with associated chance indicators and playing pieces. More particularly, the invention is directed to a game board device having movable attached playing pieces and a rotatable ring or turntable for movement of the playing pieces about the playing area in accordance with the dictates of a die-agitating random chance selector.
2. Description of the Prior Art Heretofore many games have been provided for play by two or more players which include a game board, playing pieces and a chance selector in which the playing pieces are moved from postion to position about the playing surface of the board toward a goal in response to the call of the chance selector. Applicant, however, is unaware of any prior game board apparatus having movable playing pieces which are slidably secured to the game board apparatus and which travel from their starting positions to their respective goals via a rotatable ring or turntable.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION Accordingly, it is an object of the present invention to provide a novel game apparatus which is chance controlled and which is enjoyable for play by two or more individuals ranging in maturity from children to adults.
It is another object of the invention to provide a safe game apparatus for children which utilize small movable playing piees secured to a game board, thereby preventing loss or accidental swallowing of the playing pieces.
It is yet another object of the invention to provide a game utilizing apparatus which is durable in use, which is relatively few in number of parts and which is suited to mass production techniques and thereby economically saleable at a low cost.
other objects of the invention in part will be apparent and in part will be pointed out hereinafter.
Briefly, according to a preferred embodiment of the invention. the game apparatus is in the form of arectangular game board having an integrated chance selector located centrally of the board playing surface. Proximate each of the four corners of the game board playing surface is a playing field whereat a plurality of movable playing pieces are slidably secured in their respective individual elongated adjacent slots. The playing pieces corresponding to each playing field are distinguished. such as by color, from the playing pieces of the other playing fields. The adjacent slots in each playing field are each oriented on a radial line toward the center of the game board, are closed at their ends distal the center of the game board and each elongated slot has an open end which terminates adjacent the outer peripheral wall of an annulus-shaped rotatable disc or ring having the center of the game board for its axis of rotation. The rotatable ring has a plurality of equally angularly spaced open ended radial slots having the same width as the slots in the playing field which register with the open ends of the slots of the playing fields thereby permitting slidable transfer of the playing pieces from the playing field to the rotatable ring. Centrally of the game board and the annulus-shaped rotatable disc or ring is disposed a stationary disc. The stationary disc has radiating therefrom a plurality of angularly spaced elongated slots equal in number and width to the number and width of the radial slots adjacent the four playing fields and in alignment therewith. The slots in the stationary central disc are closed at their ends di-. rected to the center of the game board and open at their ends which terminate adjacent the inner periphcry of the rotatable annulus-shaped disc or ring. The slots of the centrally disposed disc, therefore, can also be registered with the radial slots of the rotatable ring for transfer of the playing pieces to and from the stationary central disc and the rotatable ring.
Centrally disposed of the stationary disc is the chance indicator. Thus, at the dictates of the chance indicator, each of the playing pieces (although each playing piece is secured to the game. board) can be slidably transferred to and from the playing fields and rotatable ring, can be rotated about the game board while slidably secured in a radial slot of the rotatable ring and can be slidably transferred to and from a radial slot in the cen-.
tral stationary disc.
A series of equally spaced detents constructed in the outer depending peripheral wall of the rotatable ring cooperates with a spring biased pawl to releasably restrain rotation of the rotatable ring, to register the slots of the rotatable ring with the slots of the central stationary disc and the slots of the playing fields, and to also audibly indicate the number of positions moved by the rotatable ring. Y
The invention, therefore, consists in the features of construction, combination of elements, and arrangement of parts which will be exemplified in the device hereinafter described in detail and the scope of which will be indicated in the appended claims; it being understood that changes in the precise embodiments of the invention herein disclosed may be made within the scope of what is claimed without departing from the spirit of the invention.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING In the accompanying drawing in which is shown two of the various possible embodiments of the invention:
FIG. I is a partially broken top plan view of a game apparatus as constructed in accordance with this invention.
FIG. 2 is an elevational view in section taken along line 22 of FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 is a top plan view with playing fields, rotatable ring, centrally disposed stationary disc and chance selector successively broken away to show the arrangement of these elements comprising the game apparatus.
FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view in elevation taken along line 44 of FIG. 2.
FIG. 5 is a partial cross-sectional view in elevation taken along line 5-5 of FIG. 3, particularly detailing the structure of a playing piece slidably secured to the game apparatus.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring now in detail to the figures of the drawing, the reference numeral 10 generally denotes a game board apparatus constructed in accordance with the invention. With particular reference to FIG. 1 there are each of the four corners of the rectangular board; four equally angularly spacd elongated slots 27 adjacent each of the four playing fields with each slot oriented on a center line passing through the center of the board; the rotatable ring 46 having equally angularly spaced radial slots 48 which extend the complete width of the ring and are open at both ends and also having alternately disposed equally angularly spaced slots 50 which extend approximately one-half the width of the rotatable ring and are open at the inner periphery of the rotatable ring. Also shown in FIG. 1 is the stationary centrally located disc 28 having a plurality of elongated slots 38 constructed in the outer peripheral portion of the disc which are also equally angularly spaced. Centrally located of the apparatus and disposed within a through bore of the central stationary. disc is a dieagitating chance selector 36 including a die 37.
As shown in FIG. 1 all of the slots are of equal width, and the rotatable ring, capable of releaseable restrained rotation in one direction (clockwise as shown by the arrows) only, afforded by a detent 68 and pawl 62 arrangement to be described hereinafter, is shown at an indexed position with its radial slots in registration with the slots of the playing fields and also with the slots of the central stationary disc. The detent and pawl arrangementprovides similar indexing of the rotatable ring as it is rotated clockwise an angular distance equivalent to the angular spacing between radial slots onetwentieth of a complete rotation or 18. Thus each complete move of the rotatable ring, as dictated by the chance selector, will index the ring with its slot in registration with slots in the playing field and slots in the central stationary disc and permit slidable transfer of the playing pieces 52 to and from the ring, playing fields and central stationary disc.
Preferably, the game includes 16 playing pieces slidably secured to the game apparatus. The 16 playing pieces are divided into four groups (corresponding to the four playing fields) of four playing pieces, each of the playing pieces within a group having the same identifying color characterization which is different-from the colors of the playing pieces within the other three groups. The construction of a playing piece 52 and the method of slidably securing it to the game board are best illustrated in FIG. 5.
Thus. as best shown in FIG. 1 in conjunction with FIG. 5, a playing piece can be slidably transferred from a slot in the playing field to a full radial slot in the rotatable ring provided the full radial slot is indexed to the slot in the playing field containing the playing piece. The playing piece can then be rotated about the game board while retained in the full radial slot in the rotatable ring and returned to its starting position or, alternatively. be transferred (side-tracked) to any one of the slots in the stationary central disc according to the rules of play of the game to be detailed hereinafter.
As an interesting variation of the structure of the game apparatus, the rotatable ring can be'constructed with all of its radial slots as full radial slots 48 open at both ends as shown in partial cutaway in FIG. 3. Having all of the slots in the rotatable ring as full slots provides for relatively many more possible moves for each playing piece.
Considering the structure of the game apparatus in detail, it is seen (FIG. 2) that the external shell of the game board constitutes a shallow casing 12 having an open bottom. The top panel 14 of the casing is generally planar, with certain exceptions to be noted hereinafter, and is bounded at its periphery by a short downwardly extending flange 16 which terminates in a ledge 18. The plan configuration of the casing is rectangular and here is illustrated in the form of a square (FIGS. 1 and 3). The casing is manufactured from a sturdy plastic material which can be subjected to abuse without fear of breakage. For example, a suitable material is a high impact (butadiene-modified) polystyrene. Satisfactory results are obtained when the other working parts of the game board apparatus are made of similar synthetic plastic materials except for the metal spring of the chance indicator and the decorative cardboard disc both hereinafter described.
Centrally disposed of the top panel of the casing is a circular well defined by a sidewall 20 and a bottom circular panel 22. A circular portion 24 of the top panel of the casing overhangs and projects inwardly over a portion of the outer periphery of the well in cantilever fashion. The cantilevered portion of the top panel of the casing is molded with slots 27 oriented in four groups uniformly spaced about the panel of the casing and located in the proximity of the corners of the panel. Each grouping of slots. consists of four uniformly angularly spaced individual slots 27 each of which has one end closed and which terminates at the sidewall of the circular well and the opposed end open and terminating at the inner peripheral edge of the cantilevered portion of the casing top panel.
A stationary disc member 28 is centrally disposed in the well of the casing and rests upon the bottom circular panel as shown in FIGS. 2 and 4. The outer peripheral surface 30 of the stationary disc member is level with the top panel 14 of the casing and the circumference of the disc is less than that of the inwardly projecting circular cantilevered portion 24 of the casing top panel, thereby providing an annular opening in the well between the casing top panel and the central stationary disc. The stationary disc is provided with a depending circular wall 29 which is press fit over a circular shallow boss 42 formed centrally in the bottom circular panel to retain the stationary disc in spaced relationship to the cantilevered edge of the casing.
The central portion of the top surface of the stationary disc is beveled upward 32 to a fiat central surface which defines a center opening for containing the chance indicator 36 to be discribed hereinafter. The outer peripheral flat surface portion 30 of the stationary disc is constructed with a plurality of slots equal in number and angular spacing as the slots in the playing fields (FIGS. 1 and 3). The slots in the central stationary disc are closed at their inward ends and open at the peripheral edge of the disc, thus, the slots in the disc correspond in number and are aligned with the slots in the casing face but are spatially apart therefrom.
A decorative cardboard annulus 40 overlays a portion of the bottom circular panel 22. The outer peripheral edge of the cardboard annulus abuts the circular wall defining the well of the casing (FIG. 2) and the inner peripheral edge abuts the circular shallow boss 42 formed in the bottom circular panel 22 beneath the chance indicator. Each of two diametrically opposed notches formed at the inner peripheral edge of the cardboard annulus mates with one of two forwardly projecting lugs 44 disposed at the edge of the shallow circular boss in the back circular panel to restrain the cardboard annulus from rotary movement.
Within the well of the casing in the annulus-shaped opening between the outer periphery of the central stationary disc 30 and the inner edge of the cantilevered circular portion of the top panel of the casing 24 is interposed a rotatable ring member 46 having the center of the game board for its axis of rotation.
The top panel of the rotatable ring is constructed with a plruality of equally angularly spaced slots. The angular spacing of the slots in the top panel of the rotating ring is identical to the angular spacing between the slots in a group of slots in the playing field or between the slots in a group of slots in the stationary disc. In one preferred embodiment alternate radial slots in the top panel of the rotatable ring, as previously mentioned, are full radial slots 48 open at both ends whereas the remaining slots extend only from the midpoint of the top panel of the rotatable ring to the inner peripheral edge of the ring; these slots are identified with numeral 50 (cf FIG. 1).
As best seen in FIG. 1, the spacing of the slots in the top panel of the rotatable ring is such that when the ring is rotated and indexed to a position.where a full radial slot in the rotatable ring is aligned with a slot in one of the four playing fields, all of the slots in the central stationary disc are in alignment with slots in the ring as are all of the slots in the four playing fields. However, since only one-half the slots in the ring are open to the field playing area, only one-half of the field slots are in communication with the full radial slots in the rotatable rmg.
The top panel of the annulus-shaped rotatable ring is supported by an inner peripheraldepending wall 54 and an outer peripheral depending wall 56. Each depending wall of the ring rests upon and is secured to spaced-apart concentric bands 58, 60. Each band has a smooth flat lower surface which rests upon the cardboard disc in rotary slidable contact.
The outer depending peripheral wall 56 of the rotatable ring is constructed with a series of equally spaced openings 68 (FIGS. 1 and 5) which act as detents and cooperate with a leaf spring cam-type pawl 62 (FIG. 1) to rcleasably index the rotatable ring with its radial slots in alignment with the slots in the playing fields and the central stationary disc. In addition to so indexing the rotatble ring, the pawl and detent arrangement restricts counterclockwise rotation of the rotatable ring, releaseably restrains motion of the rotatable ring in a clockwise direction, and audibly indicates each successive indexed position of the rotatable ring as it is urged in a clockwise direction each successive indexed position one-twentieth ofa complete rotation or 18) corresponding to one of the moves of the number of moves dictated by the chance selector. As shown in FIG. 1 the pawl 62 is pivotally secured 64 to the under surface of the top panel of the casing and biased toward the spaced openings 68 in the outer depending peripheral wall of the rotatable ring by the leaf spring section 66 of the pawl member, the free end of the leaf spring section being in contact with and restrained by the downwardly extending flange of the casing 16.
As previously mentioned, in one preferred embodiment of the invention, the game board apparatus is provided with 16 slidably secured playing pieces, the number of playing pieces corresponding to the number of slots adjacent the four playing fields. As shown in FIG.
5, each playing piece 52 is constructed with a circumferential groove which is substantially the same width and preferably slightly wider than the thickness of the panels of the casing, rotatable ring and stationary disc and has a depth which assures securing the playing piece within the slots of the apparatus for slidable movement only.
Mounted at the center of the game board and partially enclosed within the through bore at the center of the stationary disc is located a preferred embodiment of a chance selector 36, as shown, particularly, in FIGS. 1 and 2. The preferred chance selector, the construction of which is disclosed in detail in US. Pat. No. 3,356,369, constitutes a die throwing device which includes a pellucid cage 70 within which a die 37 is captively located and through which the throw of the die is observable by the games players. The pellucid cage has an open bottom end which is closed by a movable platform in the form of a broad resiliently bendable leaf spring 72 having a snap acting portion, i.e., a cricket spring. The pellucid cage is carried by, i.e., rests upon, the cricket spring, and the cage and spring are maintained in said relationship by a base which is the shallow circular boss 42 centrally located in the back circular panel 22.
When a downward thrust is applied to the cage, as by the hand of a player, the cricket spring is depressed; when the spring is released and returns to its idle position, the return snap forcefully throws the die upwardly clear of the spring whereby the die is shaken and tumbled. When the die again lands on the spring, its upwardly turned face displays a value indicating the number of moves to be made on the game board by the player who actuated the chance indicator.
TYPICAL PROCEDURE FOR PLAYING A GAME In the suggested preferred mode of the play of the I game all of the playing pieces are initially positioned in their respective designated (as by color) slots in the top panel of the game board adjacent the corners of the board. Thus, in the embodiment of the invention described hereinabove each of the four different colored groups of 4 playing pieces of like color are positioned to occupy their respective Start slots.
Each player selects a group of 4 playing pieces of the same color for his playing team and each player then activates the chance selector by depressing (and releasing) the cage of the unit. The player with the highest number as indicated by the die (after coming to rest) starts the play and the other players follow, in turn, in clockwise rotation.
The first player activates the chance selector and moves either of two of his four playing pieces from Start into an open slot on the moveable track [as shown, particularly in FIG. 1, only two slots on the rotatable ring at any indexed position of the ring will be open to receive (or discharge) playing pieces from the Start slots of each of the four playing fields]. The player then rotates the rotatable ring in clockwise rotation the exact number of indexed intervals indicated by the chance selector die.
The number of indexed intervals moved will be indicated by an audible clicking sound of the pawl-detent arrangement for each interval the rotatable ring is rotated.
Each player, in turn, has the choice of moving any one of his four playing pieces, i.e., he may move a playing piece from start position onto the ring, move a playing piece off the ring or just rotate the ring the iridicated number of angular spaces. Although the player is permitted to move either a playing piece or the rotatable ring first he is not permitted to interpose a movement of the playingpiece either off or onto the ring during the movement of the ring the indicated number of angular spaces.
A player, during his turn of play, is permitted to move one of his playing pieces into a slot on the rotatable ring already occupied by a playing piece of one of his opponents, thus bumping his opponents playing piece into an empty slot on the central stationary disc.
The player who first is able to return all of his playing pieces to the starting slots after each has progressed completely (at least once) about the game board on the rotatable ring is the winner of the game. Understandably, many variations in the above described playing mode are possible leading to further enjoyable use of the inventive apparatus.
lt will be apparent to those skilled in the field of game boards that the particular number and arrangement of slots and playing pieces associated with the game board as well as the ratio of full to half slots on the top panel of the rotatable ring can be varied without departing from the crux of the invention.
It thus will be seen that there is provided a game board apparatus which achieves the various objectives of the invention and which is well adapted to meet the conditions of practical use.
As various possible embodiments might be made of the above invention, and as various changes might be made in the embodiments set forth, it is to be understood that all matter herein described or shown in the accompanying drawing is to be interpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.
1. A game board device with slidably attached playing pieces comprising:
a. a casing having a substantially planar top panel, said top panel provided with a centrally disposed circular aperture and a plurality of slot-shaped apertures communicating with said circular aperture and radially extending outwardly therefrom, said slot-shaped openings being of equal length and closed at their ends distal the central opening,
b. a centrally disposed circular wall projecting downwardly from the bottom surface of the top panel, said wall having an internal diameter equal to the distance between the closed ends of any two diametrically opposed radially extending slot-shaped apertures in said top panel,
c. a circular bottom planar panel parallel to the top panel and affixed to the edge of the circular wall distal the top panel, said circular wall, bottom panel and central opening providing a centrally disposed well in the casing,
d. a stationary disc member having a diameter less than that of the centrally disposed circular aperture in the top panel of the casing and disposed within the casing well and affixed to the'bottom panel, said disc member having a central bore therethrough and a substantially planar outer peripheral surface level with the casing top panel, said outer peripheral surface provided with a plurality of slotshaped apertures oriented radially therethrough, said slot-shaped apertures closed at their ends proximate the central bore and open at the peripheral edge of the disc,
e. a manually rotatable ring secured within the central well of the casing and encircling the stationary disc and slidably supported by the bottom panel, said rotatable ring having a top planar panel flush with the casing top panel and the stationary disc outer peripheral surface, said rotatable ring top panel provided with a plurality of equiangularly spaced radial slots, whereby said radial slots are aligned with and communicate with slots in the stationary disc and slots in the casing top panel when the rotatable ring is rotated to indexed positions, a plurality of playing pieces slidably secured to the game board device and capable of being slidably transferred to and from said casing top panel and rotatable ring and to and from said rotatable ring and stationary disc when the rotatable ring is indexed, and
a chance selector mounted centrally of the stationary disc member.
2. The game board device of claim 1 wherein said rotatable ring top panel is provided with radial slots which extend the complete width thereof and with radial slots open only at one peripheral edge of said rotatable ring top panel.
3. The game board device of claim 1 including means for indexing the rotatable ring, said means comprising a spring biased pawl cooperating with detents in the outer depending wall of the rotatable ring whereby the rotatable ring is releasably restrained of movement from positions whereat the radial slots in said ring are aligned with slots in the central disc and top panel of the casing.
4. The game board device of claim 1 wherein the chance selector is a die-agitating chance selector constructed integral with the game board device.
5. The game board device of claim 1 further including a decorative annulus-shaped panel overlaying the circular bottom panel.