Checkers Game Instructions

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Checkers is one of the oldest and simplest of board games. Known as draughts in Britain, the game's history goes back approximately 3,000 years. An early version was discovered in an archeological dig in the city of Ur, in what is now Iraq, but it was much later, in the 12th century, that the game was played on a chess board with 12 pieces per player.

Rules

  • The game is played on a square board divided into 64 smaller squares, colored alternately in two colors. Traditionally the colors are red and black, but any combination of light and dark will do. The pieces are also often red and black, but can be any two colors. They're designated "black and white" in instruction books in any case, so the players sometimes arbitrarily assign light and dark values to the colors at hand. The pieces are placed on the dark squares at both ends of the board. As in chess, the "white" player goes first. A single checker can only move forward one square diagonally and only into an empty space. A piece that has been "kinged" can move backward, also one square diagonally.

    To "king" a piece, that piece must land on one of the four dark squares at the far end of the board. Then a spare or captured checker is placed on top of the kinged piece and it can move in any direction on the board.

    To capture your opponent's piece, you jump it. The jumped piece must be diagonally adjacent to your piece and there must be an open space on the other side. You jump to the open space, and remove the captured piece from the board. You can make multiple jumps if landing in the open space places you in position to jump another piece. If you can jump, you must.

    The player who captures all of his opponent's pieces wins the game.

Strategy

  • Think ahead. Set up jumping moves, even if it means sacrificing one of your own pieces.

    Block your king's row as long as you can.

    Don't let your pieces get bunched up in the center of the board.

    Near the end of the game, keep your kings in the center of the board. Pieces in the center have more movement options.

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