Noughts and crosses is boring. But there is a way to pimp up the game to make it much more interesting. Introducing…Ultimate Noughts and Crosses.

Draw a big 3 x 3 grid, and within each square of the grid, draw another 3 x 3 grid. You now have 9 noughts and crosses grids. On your turn, place your symbol (a nought or a cross) within one of the small squares on one of the nine grids. When you have a line of three within one of the grids, you claim that grid, writing your symbol across the whole grid.

However, the location that you place your symbol in within a small grid determines the grid that your opponent must place her symbol in. For example, if I play a cross in the bottom right square of the centre grid, my opponent must now place a nought somewhere within the bottom right grid. When the grid that I ‘send’ my opponent to has already been won, my opponent has a free choice of which grid to play in. 

Have a try and let me know how you get on in the comments below. You can also try the online version with a friend.

Or maybe you’d like to try 3D noughts and crosses – a 3 x 3 cube in which your line of 3 can go in any plane. There are 49 possible winning lines.

When we were 17, my friend Shona took 3D Noughts and Crosses a step further. She started playing 4D Noughts and Crosses – a game in which you have three 3x3x3 cubes in three different points in time. You could therefore win by achieving any of the 49 winning lines in any of the three cubes, but also by completing lines that stretch across time. She claimed to have played a mental version of this with no paper, and while she does have a remarkably good memory, I suspect the truth of how successful this game was was probably embellished just a little.

If you missed it, you may also be interested in the Salvo version of Battleships.