Rules of the game


Angry hedgehogs are fighting a fierce battle to the death, using their good aim, wits and their very explosive and silly weapons while they laugh fiercely when they send their foes to certain doom.


To wipe out all opposing hedgehogs and survive the fight.


Each player controls a team of 1-8 hedgehogs.

The game is played in turns. Each team has a turn, after one round is over, the first team starts, and so on.


Players may choose to play in a clan. A clan is an alliance of teams. Clans will either lose together or win togehter. To create a clan, just use the same team color for the teams you want to put into a clan.

Start of the game

At the start of the game, a map is chosen or randomly generated. Hedgehogs and random objects like mines and barrels are scattered throughout the landscape.

The first player is either chosen at random or by the team order set by the host. This is set by the game scheme.


The central element of the game is the turn. Each player controls one hedgehog at a time.

Each turn has 4 phases:

  1. Ready phase
  2. Movement phase
  3. Attack
  4. Retreat phase

Ready phase

Before the turn “really” starts, the player has a few seconds to get ready for the actual turn.

Nothing can be done in this phase except observing the scene by moving around the mouse.

The ready phase ends after 5 seconds or if the player pressed any control.

Movement phase

After the ready phase begins the movement phase. This is the most important phase.

In the movement phase, you can walk, jump, aim, use utilities and initiate an attack.
Beware, in this phase the clock is ticking. By Default, this is 45 seconds, but the timer depends on the basic settings.

You can move around and use utilities as long the time permits, but you can only use one weapon per turn (with the exception of mudball), and attacking will lead you to the retreat time.

If you run out of time before you could use a weapon, your turn ends immediately. If your hog takes any form of damage or even dies, your turn also ends immediately.


To attack with your weapon, first you need to choose a weapon. You can either open the ammo menu (rightclick) or use one of the shortcuts (F1-F10). Then choose an angle with up and down, a direction with left or right and then press the attack key.

For “powered” weapons like bazookas and grenades, hold the attack key longer for a stronger throw. Some weapons like the mortar don't need this, they are always shot with the same strength.

Each weapon has its slightly different usage instructions. See the in-game tooltip of the weapon or this wiki to learn how they work.

Some weapons can also be used from a rope, flying saucer or parachute. To do this, first start using the utility, then, the utility is still active, select the weapon you want to use. Then hit the long jump key (enter) to drop the weapon.

After you used the weapon, you'll enter the retreat phase.

Retreat phase

This phase is used to move your hedgehog back to a safe position. In this time, you can only walk or jump until the timer ends. If you used the weapon from an utility, you can continue to use this utility until the timer ends.

The retreat time you get depends on the weapon you used. It is either 5 seconds, 3 seconds or 0 seconds. Most weapons have a retreat time of 3 seconds, mine, sticky mines, air mines and dynamite have a retreat time of 5 seconds.

A special case is an attack from a flying saucer when underwater: In this case, the usual retreat time is multiplied by 4.

After the retreat phase has ended, your turn is over and it's the next player's turn.


A round is over after each team has played once. In each round, all the teams will cycle through their hedgehogs in the original order (in the team editor). The first time it's a team's turn, the first hedgehog is controlled. The second time it's the team's turn, its second hedgehog is controlled, and so on.

Sudden Death

If the game has gone on for a long time, Sudden Death will start, causing the water to rise and reducing the health of all hedgehogs. See Sudden Death for a full explanation.

End of the game

The game ends if only one team or clan (teams of same color) remains which is declared the victor. In the unlikely event that at the end of a turn, all hedgehogs are dead, the game ends in a draw.

At the end, the player rankings, game stats and some snarky comments are shown.

Rule modifications

The rules of Hedgewars can be heavily changed, and it is even encouraged to do so.

Schemes are used to change the basic game rules and weapon settings. For instance, you can change the initial health, initial weapons, enable indestructible land, enable vampirism mode, change the turn time, and much, much more.

Styles are used for even more advanced changes to gameplay, sometimes changing drastically. Make sure to read the mission panel and/or their respective wiki page (see styles) in order to understand these.


  • To review the current game modifiers or mission text, press Esc
  • Online players tend to try out many different rules, so make sure to read the mission panel carefully
  • The mission panel also mentions the timer of mines (unless it's 3 seconds)

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