Download our free blank times tables square, and use it to play battleships. A great way to practice times tables.
What is the Battleships game?
Battleships is a strategy-type guessing game for two players. Use the Kippson blank times tables square as the ocean grid on which each player's fleet of warships are marked.
Each player has two grids: “My Ships” (on which they mark their own ships and record shots by the enemy) and “Enemy Ships” (on which they mark the squares they have attacked when trying to destroy enemy ships).
The locations of the fleets are concealed from the other player. Players alternate turns calling "shots" at the other player's ships, and the objective of the game is to destroy the opposing player's fleet.
Here we are using a 12x12 grid, and the individual squares in the grid are identified by their numbers. The square (7, 5) means go ALONG the horizontal x axis to the number 7, and then DOWN the vertical y axis to the number 5.
[NB it is important that you always name the x axis number and THEN the y axis number so that players get used to the format in which co-ordinates (including those on a maths graph) are given.]
[Variation – you can choose to only play on part of the grid if you want to focus on certain times tables]
How do I set it up?
Before play begins, each player secretly draws their ships on their “My Ships” grid. Each ship occupies a number of consecutive squares on the grid, arranged either horizontally or vertically. The number of squares for each ship is determined by the type of ship. The ships cannot overlap (i.e., only one ship can occupy any given square in the grid). Each player has the same number and types of ships. The ships should be hidden from the other player. The game is one of discovery - players need to discover their opponent's ship positions.
We would suggest that each player draws the following ships on the grid by marking the squares with a pen:
1 Carrier (5 squares long)
2 Battleships (4 squares long)
3 Destroyers (3 squares long)
4 Submarines (3 squares long)
5 Patrol boats (2 squares long)
How to play
After the ships have been positioned, each player takes it in turns to announce which square in the opponent's grid they would like to attack. The attacking player can choose which square to target, or roll two dice in order to identify the target square.
Eg “I am going to shoot at 4 x 5 (which makes 20)” (along 4 and down 5) (remember to give the times tables answer!)
If the times table is correct, the opponent announces whether or not the attack was successful.
If a player hits a square containing part of their opponent’s ship, they can continue playing until they have a ‘miss’. Once all the parts of the ship in a joint horizontal or vertical line have been hit the player can shout ‘You sank my battleship!’ Keep playing until one of the players has no battleships left.
Download the blank times tables square here
Remember to change your printer settings if you want to print in black and white, and set the paper orientation to "landscape".