There are many different versions of this classic game. See the author's website for details. Below are the postal rules used in Variable Pig, which are closest to the Gibson Games version.
Hare and Tortoise is a race game in which you move round a track by spending carrots wisely. You can always move as far as you like if you have enough carrots to pay for it. The trouble is the further you move the more you pay.
Each player starts with 65 carrots and 3 lettuces. To cross the finishing line
you must have:
1. Got rid of all the lettuces
2. Not got too many carrots left. The first player to cross the line may only have 10, the second 20, the third 30, etc.
Movement is sequential, with the first player to move in any given turn also moving last (e.g. if players A,B,C,D,E and F are playing with turns in that sequence, moves will be ABCDEFA in the first turn, BCDEFAB in the second, and so on. Players need to make orders conditional on the moves of others. By default, players move forward to the next available square.
You may move your runner forward to any unoccupied square except a tortoise. It can be any distance ahead so long as you have enough carrots for the move. Moving one square costs 1 carrot; two squares costs 1+2=3; three squares costs 1+2+3=6 etc. If you are ahead of a tortoise square you may move backwards to it.
Nothing happens immediately when you land on a number sqaure. When your turn comes round again, if the number you're on corresponds to your position in the race, you gain extra carrots equal to 10 times your position. Squares with numbers 1,5 and 6 count for all three positions.
Nothing happens immediately when you land on a carrot square. When your turn comes round again you may, if you wish, stay where you are instead of moving off. This entitles you to lose or gain 10 carrots (default is gain). You may stay on the carrot square for as many turns as you like.
You cannot land on a lettuce square if you have no lettuces left. As soon as you land on a lettuce square, you must use your next go to exchange a lettuce for a number of carrots equal to 10 times your position in the race. On the next go you must leave the lettuce space.
Moving backwards to a tortoise square costs you nothing. Instead, you immediately gain 10 carrots for each step it took to reach the tortoise square. You may only move back to the nearest tortoise square behind you, and only if it is unoccupied. You may move back from one tortoise square to another.
When you land on a hare sqaure, 1d6 is added to your position in the race. The table in the board image is then consulted.
If you cannot make a legal move you go back to the start with 65 carrots. You stay on the same number of lettuces.
This image can be printed full size in A4 Landscapehttps://variablepig.org