Hexkit Strategy Game System

Hexkit is short for “hexagon game construction kit” – a construction kit for turn-based strategy games played on maps that are divided into squares or hexagons. Hexkit is © 2000–2015 by Christoph Nahr but available for free download under the MIT license.

The graphics tiles in the standard package are © 2000 by DeBray Bailey (used by permission). The original BMP files are available for download at Lost Dragon’s Den.


Hexkit is a complete framework to design and play turn-based strategy games on hexagon maps. Starting with version 3.5.0, maps of squares are supported as well. While many commercial games come with scenario editors, Hexkit offers far greater flexibility because scenario designers may customize not only the map layout and the participating factions and units, but also the map graphics and even the actual game rules.

Moreover, programmers may be interested in Hexkit because the MIT license allows for commercial and non-commercial code reuse. But even if your own project will not share any code with Hexkit, you might appreciate it as a testing framework for new game mechanics. Please refer to the downloadable Hexkit User’s Guide for a detailed feature list and other information.

Project Status

Hexkit is no longer under active development. The current version is reasonably solid and complete, so feel free to check it out anyway. Section 1.4 of the Hexkit User’s Guide explains in greater detail why I felt that putting further effort into this project is no longer worthwhile. You might wish to consider the Myriarch Combat Simulator for an alternative and more specialized approach to historical tactical warfare.

System Requirements

Hexkit requires a Microsoft Windows system capable of running the Microsoft .NET Framework 4 Client Profile or any newer .NET 4.x release. This includes Windows XP SP3, Windows Vista SP1 or later, Windows Server 2003 SP2, and Windows Server 2008 or later.

Further Information

  • The ReadMe file contains usage information and the copyright notice.
  • The WhatsNew file contains the annotated version history of the project.

Copies are included with both download packages. Moreover, the Hexkit Images page shows a few sample screenshots of Hexkit Game and Hexkit Editor.

Download Files

  • Binary & Source Package, Class Reference: version 4.3.3, released on 30 September 2015
  • Hexkit User’s Guide: version 2.8, released on 24 October 2010
  • Hexkit Scenario Guide: version 2.0, released on 27 September 2009

Binary PackageHexkitSetup.exe (2.38 MB)

Self-installing archive created with Inno Setup. Simply execute when the download is finished and select an empty installation directory, or the directory of a previous Hexkit version. You should first uninstall Hexkit if your current version is older than 3.6.1a, so as to avoid orphaned files.

If you chose not to create any shortcuts during installation, double-click on Hexkit.Game.exe in the installation directory to start the game, and double-click on Hexkit.Editor.exe to start the scenario editor. Otherwise, just use the provided Start Menu and/or desktop shortcuts.

User’s Guide & Scenario Guide (PDF)

HexkitGuide.pdf (1.82 MB) describes fundamental concepts, gameplay procedures, scenario design issues, computer player algorithms, and other implementation details. CrecyGuide.pdf (534 KB) describes the “Battle of Crécy” and “Battle of Poitiers” demo scenarios.

Source PackageHexkitSource.zip (3.26 MB, ZIP archive)

You need either Microsoft Visual Studio (2010 or later) or the free Microsoft Windows SDK 7.1 for Windows 7 and .NET 4 to rebuild Hexkit from source. Windows SDK 7.1 has the same system requirements as the .NET Framework 4 itself but also requires that you first install the full .NET Framework 4 – not just the Client Profile.

The current version of Hexkit includes version 5.6.6 of my Tektosyne library. Tektosyne is also available as a separate download, but this is not required to run or compile Hexkit.

Class ReferenceHexkitClasses.7z (3.66 MB)

Created from XML source code comments using the free Sandcastle Help File Builder. The class reference is a 7-Zip package of loose HTML pages.