Hive is a bug-themed tabletop game, designed by John Yianni and published in 2001 by Gen42 Games. The object of Hive is to capture the opponent's queen bee by completely surrounding it, while avoiding the capture of one's own queen. Hive is an abstract strategy game.
Hive shares elements of both tile-based games and board games. It differs from other tile-based games in that the tiles, once placed, can then be moved to other positions according to various rules, much like chess pieces. Thus, the game has mechanics comparable to an abstract strategy board game and is marketed in that genre. It does not fit the classical definition, however, as there is no gameboard involved; the pieces are simply placed on some relatively flat surface.
In 2007 a promotional expansion was released that consisted of a new "Mosquito" piece for each player. This game piece can be added to each player's supply before the game begins. The Mosquito acts as a sort of "wild card" piece; once played, the Mosquito takes on the characteristics of any other piece it touches at the time, so that its movement and abilities change during the course of the game. For instance, if a mosquito is located adjacent to a Grasshopper and an Ant, it can either jump over a line of pieces as the Grasshopper moves, or move around the circumference of the hive as an Ant. That move may place it adjacent to a Beetle, Spider and the Queen Bee; if it moves again it can do so as any of those three. The only exception to this rule is that if it is moved on top of the hive (as a Beetle moves), it retains the abilities of a Beetle until it moves down off of the hive again.
In 2010, a forthcoming Ladybug expansion was announced. It was presented at Essen 2010. The Ladybug moves three spaces; two on top of the Hive, then one down. It must move exactly two on top of the Hive and then move one down on its last move. It may not move around the outside of the Hive and may not end its movement on top of the Hive. This expansion was released in early 2011, first on electronic versions of the game for iPhone and on the Hive website, then as part of the Hive Carbon edition, and finally as an expansion set for the 3rd edition Bakelite set.
Hive has also been ported to various electronic forms. The iOS version for the iPhone and iPod Touch implements both the original game and some variations. There is a java applet version on Boardspace.net and an upcoming version has been announced for Xbox 360 which is currently in alpha testing.
Since the summer of 2007, the web site www.BoardSpace.net has held an annual online championship. The following is a list of champions, using their BoardSpace user names:
2007 - woswoasi
2008 - ahchong (first tournament using the 'Mosquito' expansion piece)
2009 - EddyMarlo
2010 - EddyMarlo
2011 - ringersoll (first tournament using the 'Ladybug' expansion piece)
2012 - Fumanchu