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Checkers (from Russian. Small steps - "small steps") is a board game for two participants, played on a chessboard-like board (most often 8x8) with black and white pieces (checkers), which move according to certain rules.
As in all games belonging to the checker-type category (go, ko-wai, latrunculi, senet, backgammon, renju, etc.), equivalent pieces are used in checkers, while in chess-type games (chess, chaturanga , xiangqi, etc.), the game is played by unequal figures. There are also games of the chess-checkers type - this category includes, for example, checkers, which combine the features of both chess and checkers.
Many myths and legends have been created about how and by whom checkers were invented. One of them, recorded by Plato, tells that the god Hermes invented this game. Having played checkers with the goddess of the moon Selena, he won a victory and, as agreed before the start of the game, received 5 days from her, which he added to 360, which had been a year before that time.
According to another Greek legend, checkers were invented by an ordinary warrior Palamed in order to pass the time during the game during the siege of Troy, which lasted 10 years. In the myths of Ancient Egypt checkers are also mentioned as one of the most ancient games of the Gods, which later fell to mere mortals.
Be that as it may, it was in Egypt that a game of this kind was extremely popular since ancient times, as evidenced by drawings depicting people at a game reminiscent of modern checkers, and checkerboard 30-square boards removed from the tomb of Tutankhamun, dated to about 1400-1390 BC. g. BC. They are now kept in the Louvre.
Historians and archaeologists also disagree as to where exactly checkers were first invented. Some researchers believe that checkers appeared in Ancient Egypt, from there they got to Greece, and later - to Ancient Rome, where they were called "latrunculi" (from the Roman "latro" - warrior) and were very popular both among the military and among civilians. population.
However, most scientists think that this version is the most consistent with reality: checker-type games were invented many times by different peoples, and the varieties of such games known today are stages in the evolution of checkers.
Books about drafts appeared in the XIV-XV centuries, first in Spain (the work "Juego de damas" by an unknown author, the works of Torquemada (1547), Montero (1590)), then - in France ("Le jeu de dames "- this book, containing about 450 game combinations, was published by the engineer-mathematician Madele in 1668). The best work on Polish drafts is considered "Lo Damier" by Baledent, containing about 10,000 diagrams and all publications about this type of game, published up to 1886 inclusive.
In Russia, the article "New checkers game" appeared in the "Bulletin of Europe" in 1803, and in 1872 the first manual on this game in Russian was compiled (by A.D. Petrov).
However, there were times when checkers were condemned as a vicious game, equated to drunkenness and gambling. In Russia, for example, the game of checkers was prohibited by law on the initiative of Metropolitan Daniel from 1551 until Patriarch Nikon lifted the above ban in 1649.
Types of checkers:
• Russian checkers - the game is played on an 8 × 8 board, each player at the beginning of the party has 12 checkers located on the first three rows. The movement is carried out along the black squares, diagonally, it is allowed to beat both forward and backward, and the move can continue as long as it is possible to beat the opponent's checker from the new position of the piece. The transformation of a checker into a king occurs at the moment of reaching the queen square (i.e. any last one along the horizontal), or if the chip beats through this square. After that, the chip moves according to the rules of the king - it can move diagonally to any number of cells in all directions. If there are several options for a move, the player has the right to choose any of them. It is forbidden to skip moves. The goal of the game is to remove all the opponent's pieces from the board, or to completely block them. There are 2 variants of Russian drafts competitions: classical and tournaments with a random draw. In the second case, players can choose the first 2-3 moves only from the officially approved list. In addition, there are so-called "flying checkers", assuming at the beginning of the game a certain position of one of the checkers for each of the players.
Variants of Russian checkers:
• Samoyeds - players have the opportunity to shoot down both other people's and their own checkers. Therefore, the main task is to arrange the chips so that they cannot be beaten;
• Simple checkers - in this game, simple checkers do not turn into kings, therefore the players do not make efforts to reach the ladies' square, but concentrate entirely on the strategy and tactics of the game;
• Two-way checkers - the first (single) move is made by White, then each of the players makes 2 moves in a row;
• Cylindrical checkers - checkers can move from the right side of the board to the left (from the A to H file or in the opposite direction);
• Northern checkers - the knocked down king is not removed from the board, but continues the game as a simple checker;
• Artamonov's checkers - play with one-color checkers located on black cells in a certain order, in which there is a free space of 8 black cells in the center of the board. The player has the right to move with any checker, with the exception of a piece that the opponent made the previous move with. Simple checkers move only forward, kings move in all directions. A player is awarded a victory if his opponent cannot make a single move. In the case when there are less than 5 chips left on the board, the winner is the one who knocked down more checkers per game;
• Column checkers (towers, pillars, multi-storey checkers) - has long been a popular type of checkers game in Russia. The main distinguishing feature is that the beaten checkers are not removed from the board, but are placed under the chip that beat them, forming a so-called "tower", which continues to move along the playing field as a simple checker or as a king (after reaching the ladies square). A kind of pillar checkers are quark checkers - by agreement, only a certain number of checkers of the pillar ("quark-part") take part in the game, for example, 4 and royal checkers, conducted according to the rules of the checkers game, with one difference - the chips that fell under the battle are placed under the beaten their opponent's checker;
• Stavropol checkers - the main feature of this game is the ability to make a move instead of the enemy. Moreover, you can move the opponent's player's chips only in your direction and beat them exclusively with your own checkers;
• Diagonal checkers - they differ from ordinary Russian checkers only in the initial position of the pieces - on black squares on both sides of the central diagonal, which remains free.
• Giveaway (reverse checkers) - play on a field of 8 × 8 cells (according to the rules of Russian checkers) or 10 × 10 cells (according to the rules of international checkers). The goal of the game is to remove or block all your checkers from the board;
• 80-square checkers - the idea of creation belongs to Nikolai Petrovich Spantsireti. The game is played on a board of 8 × 10 cells, each of the players has 15 checkers. One of the peculiarities of this type of game - 3 kings always successfully fight against one, regardless of its position on the board;
• Checkers of Dureis (stands) - the game takes place on a board of 8 × 8 cells, each of the participants owns 24 chips, which are placed on the black cells of the first three rows in the following order - on the first field - 3 checkers on each cell, on the second field - 2, on the third - one. The game is played according to the rules of Russian checkers, the destruction of double and triple chips occurs gradually (double - in 2 moves, triple - in three), as in columnar checkers. In addition, double (triple) checkers, reaching the ladies square, turn into double (triple) kings, and, falling under the battle, change their status - from triple kings they become double, from double - to ordinary kings. The goal of the game is to beat or lock all the opponent's checkers.
• International (100-cell) checkers - the most popular in Europe, played on a 10 × 10 board. In the starting position, each player places 20 checkers on the first 4 rows from his side of the field. A simple checker can beat back and forth, it turns into a king only when it ends its move on the queen square. Moreover, if the checker remaining on the transformation square can only beat as a king, it remains in place and can use the king's capabilities only from the next move. With several variants of the move, the player must choose the one that makes it possible to remove the largest number of opponent's checkers from the board. The aim of the game is the same as in Russian checkers. There is a kind of international checkers - German (Frisian) checkers, which are most widespread in Holland;
• Altai checkers - differ in that the player has chips of any color located on his side. He has the right to beat checkers of any color. The goal of the game is not to leave a single piece on your side of the board;
• Samara (diagonal-vertical) checkers - the game is played on a 10x10 squares board according to the rules of international checkers, however, the pieces can move and hit in all 8 directions;
• Brazilian checkers - the game is played according to the rules of international checkers on an 8 × 8 board, each player has 12 chips;
• Canadian checkers - the game is played by the rules of international checkers on a 12 × 12 board, each player controls 24 chips;
• English checkers (American checkers) - are played on an 8 × 8 board, each player has 12 chips in the starting position, located on the black squares of the first three rows on each side. Black starts the game. Simple checkers move diagonally one square and only forward, while the king has the right to move diagonally forward and backward, as well as shoot through one square in any direction;
• Pool (Pool Checkers) - the most popular in the United States (especially in the Western and Southwestern states). The game is played on an 8 × 8 board, each player has 12 chips. The rules are similar to international ones, but the maximum possible number of checkers is not required to be hit;
• Italian checkers - the game is played on a standard 8 × 8 chessboard, which is rotated 90º against the usual position. The players' pieces occupy white squares on the first three rows on each side, respectively, moves are made along the white squares. The game is played according to the rules, which are generally similar to the rules of American checkers, but there are exceptions. For example, simple checkers only move forward and cannot beat the king; the player must beat the maximum possible number of opponent's checkers, or (if the options for moves are equal) the largest number of kings;
• Spanish (Algerian) checkers - the game is played on a standard board, the location of which, as well as the position of the chips, correspond to the position of the inventory in Italian checkers (the board is rotated 90º, checkers - on white squares). The rules of Spanish checkers coincide with the rules of Brazilian ones in almost everything, except for one thing - simple checkers can only hit forward;
• Portuguese checkers - the most widespread in Portugal, Brazil, as well as in African countries. The game is played on a 64-square board according to the rules of Spanish checkers, differing only in that if there is a choice between beating a simple chip or a king, the player must beat with a king;
• Turkish checkers - the game is played on a standard board of 8 × 8 cells, each of the players has 16 pieces, which are located on all cells of rows 2 and 3 on each side (the first row remains free). Checkers make moves not diagonally, but horizontally and vertically, and a simple checker can move and hit only forward and to the sides, while the king has the right to move in any direction. A simple checker becomes a king only after reaching the 8th rank, and starts acting as a king only after the end of the move. Also in this type of checkers "gentleman's rules" apply, which means that the player warns the opponent about the consequences of one or another of his moves, as a result of which the opponent's checkers may be under attack. You should also notify your opponent that this or that checker has reached 7 ("soon the king!") Or 8 ("king!") Squares;
• Armenian checkers - the game is played according to the rules of Turkish checkers, however, the board is rotated 90 °, as in Italian checkers and a piece that reaches the 8th rank in the course of a move immediately begins to act as a king;
• Senegalese checkers - the game is played on a board of 5 × 6 cells, each player has 14 chips, which are located on all cells of the first two rows and on 4 cells of the third row so that 2 cells remain free in the middle of the board. The chips move vertically and horizontally forward and sideways, diagonal and backward movement is prohibited. If the checker reaches the last rank, it is removed from the board. The goal of the game is to shoot down the maximum number of opponent's checkers. The game ends when all the pieces of one of the players move forward and are thus blocked.
Chess and checkers games:
• Chessmata (English cheskers) is a board game that was invented in 1948 by S. Glomb (USA). It is conducted on a standard chessboard, each player has 12 pieces (8 pawns, 2 kings, an elephant and a camel - this piece is successfully replaced by a chess knight moving 2 squares further than usual). In the initial position, the pieces are located on 3 lines of black cells, they move and hit also only diagonally; a pawn acts like a simple checker, a bishop - like an ordinary rook in chess; the king can move one square in any direction. Moreover, if a player can make a move with a pawn or a king, he is obliged to hit, and if with a bishop or a camel, he is free to avoid using these pieces. A pawn that reaches the last rank can turn into an elephant or a camel. The goal of the game is to remove the opponent's kings from the board (checkmate) or block his pieces (stalemate).
• Belarusian chess - this game is played according to chess and checkers rules on a standard chessboard. Each player has 11 checkers located on black squares of 3 rows, as well as 13 chess pieces (rook, bishop, knight, king, queen, 8 pawns) located on white squares of the same rows (with the exception of the king occupying the central black cell of the first row). Checkers can beat both checkers and the opponent's pieces, check and checkmate can be put by a king or king. There is also an opportunity for a triple (or more) check and a closed mate (no check) to the opponent's king;
• Belarusian checkers - on an 8x8 board, a game is played with checkers (12 pieces for each player, located on the black cells of the first three rows) and pawns (13 each, located on the white cells of the same rows). Checkers move and shoot in accordance with the rules of the game of checkers, pawns - in accordance with the rules of the chess game. The piece that reaches the last diagonal turns either into a king (if it is a checker) or into any chess piece (if it is a pawn). Regardless of what transformations took place on the board as a result of reaching the queen square with one or another piece (checker), the goal of the game does not change - you need to lock or beat all the opponent's pieces;
• Shabel - a game (creator - L. Samutin) on a standard 64-square board, each player has a full set of chess pieces, but instead of pawns, 2 and 3 rows are occupied by checkers. Checkers (for checkers) and chess (for pieces) rules are kept. In addition, some features (checkmate with the king, triple check, etc.) correspond to the rules of Belarusian chess. The goal of the game is to checkmate the opponent's king;
• Estonian chess - a game the idea of which belongs to V. Lillipuu is played on a board of 10 × 10 cells. To the set of standard chess pieces on the first line (2 rooks, 2 knights, 2 bishops, queen and king), a new one has been added - a dragon (Dp), located between the rook and the knight.She moves and beats like a chess knight, and at the same time can turn into a king (D) at any time, however, getting on a lady's square, she again becomes a dragon. In addition to pawns, each player also has 10 checkers at their disposal, located on each cell of the third row, in front of the pawns. The object of the game is to checkmate the opponent's king.
The World Drafts Federation (FR. Federation Mondiale du Jeu de Dames, FMJD) was founded by the federations of France, Belgium, Switzerland and the Netherlands in 1947. Today, she is a full member of the General Association of International Sport Federations (GAISF) and is responsible for holding tournaments in international, Russian, Brazilian and English drafts and their varieties.
Italian Drafts Championships are held by the Italian Drafts Federation (Federazione Italiana Dama, FID), and Canadian Drafts competitions are held by the Association québécoise des joueurs de dames (AQJD). The title of International Drafts Grandmaster was established in 1947.
The world championships in this sport (namely, in international drafts) have been held since 1948. Since 1965, the European Drafts Confederation (EDK) has been holding the European Championships (at first the European Cup) the Confederation Cup, the Champions Cup among men-drafts players.
The drafts team championships have been held since 1967, the junior competitions since 1971. Women have been competing since 1973, girls since 1989.
Nowadays, not only face-to-face drafts competitions are held, but also correspondence tournaments (by phone, by correspondence, by e-mail and online), as well as competitions between a person and a computer, as well as between computer programs (since 2008).
The homeland of checkers is Ancient Egypt. Nowadays, there is no single version of the origin of this game, with which all scientists would agree. Some researchers really believe that checkers appeared in Ancient Egypt, while others defend the Aryan-Norman version, arguing that checkers (in Russia - Velei or Tavlei, from Latin tabule - "board") - an invention of northern peoples. Checkers carved from stone, amber or horn were found in the territory of Kievan Rus, Denmark, Iceland, Sweden, Norway, which allows us to assert that they were invented during the Viking era, which, obviously, contributed to the spread of checkers throughout the world. In European countries, this game, thanks to which you can acquire the skills of strategy and tactics of a duel, must have been trained by knights. By the way, in many European languages the word "lady" can be traced in the name of the game of checkers (Spanish juego de damas, French jeu de dames, English dams, German dame, Italian dama), indicating that at times, when the game was hugely popular, women enjoyed attention and respect. This game is mentioned in such famous works as "The Decameron" by G. Boccaccio and "Don Quixote" by M. Cervantes. There is also a version about the Slavic, or rather, the Scythian origin of the checkers, based on the results of excavations and discoveries of recent years.
Checkers appeared in Russia during the time of Vladimir Monomakh (1053 - 1125). Indeed, most often the appearance of this game is associated with the name of the above-mentioned Kiev prince. However, as evidenced by the data of archaeological research, a similar game appeared among the Russians in the 3rd - 4th centuries A.D. (and according to some scientists even earlier - in the VI century BC). In addition, many epics and legends tell that it is this kind of game that is one of the favorite pastimes of Russian heroes.
The game of checkers assumes in the starting position an equal number of pieces and the same goal of the game for both players. Indeed, in almost all types of checkers, such a rule applies. However, the game "Wolf and Dogs", played on a 64-square board with checkers, assumes an unequal number of chips for the players: white checkers ("dogs") on board 4, and black ("wolf") only one. White checkers are located on black (or white) cells of the first line and move diagonally one cell forward only, black - on one of the black (white) cells of line 8 and can move one cell both forward and backward. The goal of the game is different for the players: the task of the "dogs" is to block the "wolf", the "wolf" aspires to be in the rear of the "dogs". The game "Wolf and Sheep" is based on the same principle: one player has 4 white simple checkers ("sheep"), the other has one black king ("wolf"), which can move and beat in all directions.
Checkers is played on boards of the same size. Yes, basically an 8 × 8 board is used for this game, however, for international checkers, a 10x10 square is needed, and for Canadian - 12 × 12. there is also a board for 80-square checkers - 8 × 10 squares. To play Tamerlane's Checkers you need a 36-square board, and for Senegalese checkers you need a 30-square board.
For the game of checkers, the board is either set as standard, or rotated 90 °. Yes, most of the time this is true. However, there are some types of checkers, for which the board is turned at an angle to the player. For example, the so-called "Corners" ("Galma") - 10 chips are placed on the corner squares of a standard 64-square board (both black and white). Players can walk in any direction, on squares of any color, jumping over one (or more) of their own checkers or opponent's pieces. The goal of the game is to take the opponent's corner with your checkers. By the same principle (in the corners of the board), chips are placed when playing Neva checkers, and the players take places opposite each of the corners of the board.
Checkers is a game for two. This statement is true, but there are exceptions. For example, Chinese checkers can be played by 2 to 6 people. For 4 players, a variant of the game "Corners" ("Galma"), called "Galma-bis" or Neva checkers, is suitable, for 3 - Novgorod checkers.
The checkers game is played on a board divided into black and white squares. Most of the checkers-type games are actually played on a two-color board, however, for example, a board with squares of the same color is suitable for playing Armenian, Neva or Chinese checkers.
The game of checkers is played on a quadrangular board using pieces (and in some cases, pieces) of black and white. This is true - most types of checkers are played on a 64-square, 80-square, 100-square square or rectangular board. However, there are exceptions. For example, to play Chinese checkers (called "halma") you need a 6-sided board and 6-color chips ("stones") (blue, yellow, red, green, white (light blue) and purple (black)). The game can be played simultaneously from 2 to 6 people, the goal is to move your pieces to the corner of the enemy. A hexagonal board (for 3 players) and pieces of black, white and red colors are also needed to play Pskov and Novgorod checkers. For a game of Neva checkers, you will have to acquire a board with one-color squares (however, a standard chessboard will do, if you don't pay attention to the difference in the colors of neighboring squares) and chips of 4 colors, symbolizing different times of the day: black ("night"), white ("morning "), red (" day "), green (" evening "). And those who play "Tamerlane's Checkers", in addition to a non-standard 6x6 board and black and white chips, will also need dice, by throwing which the players determine who will become the owner of the white checkers and coordinate their further actions. And, finally, a very special inventory (piles or glasses and alcoholic drinks of different colors, for example, white and red wine) will be needed to play "drunk" checkers. In this game, half-filled glasses (and when the "chip" reaches the lady's field - filled to the brim) with a light or dark drink are placed on a 64-square board. When the "checker" falls under the battle, the player who made the coup drinks its contents. All the glasses remaining on the board at the end of the game must be emptied by the loser.
During the game of checkers, the opponent's chips are either removed from the board, or placed under the checker that beat them. Much depends on what the purpose of the game is. In some cases, the opponents do not try to beat the opponent's checkers (and in some cases, the pieces), but to arrange the chips in one way or another. This state of affairs takes place in the game "Corners", "Halma", "Wolf and Dogs", etc., and in the game "Salta", conducted on a 100-square board, chips (each player has 15 of them) symbols. The goal of the game is to place your checkers with this or that symbol ("star", "moon", "sun") in the same place where the opponent's pieces were, marked with the same signs. In the game "Millstones" (creator - VA Millstones), the checkers hit by the battle change color and are displayed on the board as the checkers of the player who beat them.
A simple checker turns into a king only after reaching the queen square. This is true, and in different versions of the game, it can either immediately begin to act like a king, or come into its own from the next move. However, in the game "Safonovka", named after the legendary pilot, on the board there are initially 8 kings ("planes") and 4 ordinary checkers ("pilots") for each player. The game is played according to the rules of Russian checkers, the difference is that the king that fell under the battle turns into a simple checker. And in Senegalese checkers, when the last diagonal is reached, the checker does not turn into a king, but is removed from the board.
World Drafts Championships have been held since 1948. Indeed, these competitions received official status in 948, but the world champions in this sport were determined back in the 19th century. For example, the world championships in drafts have been held since 1894, and championships in Russian drafts have been held since 1896. And in 2008, the first world championship in Russian drafts among computer programs was held.
A checker move is the action of one of the players. No, during the recording of the official game, checkers are considered a move, and two half moves (white and black) are recorded under one number.
All games played by checkers on a board similar to a chessboard are related to checkers and are played in one round. Yes it is. However, one of the board games, named "Chapaev" ("Chapaevtsy") in honor of the legendary Vasily Ivanovich Chapaev, the hero of the Civil War, is closer to billiards (especially to such varieties as croquinol, carr and novus). The game is played on a standard 64-square board, each player at the beginning of the game has 8 chips, which are placed in 2 rows opposite each other, or they form certain figures that represent various types of troops ("infantry", "tanks", "cavalry", etc.). Then the player hits his checker with a snap of his fingers so that the other's checker is outside the playing field, and his chip remains on the board. After one of the participants of the party knocks out all the opponent's checkers, he puts his chips one line forward, while the loser retreats to the line back. The game can last 7 or more rounds, the winner is the one who knocks out the opponent's pieces from the last line of the playing field.
You can play pole checkers with plastic chips. For this type of checkers, it is best to use chips made of wood (produced before 1975, large flat checkers carved from birch were considered the best), allowing you to make "towers" of almost any height and move them around the playing field. But the "pillar" composed of ordinary checkers is extremely unstable. However, resourceful players overcome this obstacle quite successfully - they use cloth gluing. Having provided ordinary checkers with such a "bottom" (for the first time this method was proposed by VM Pakhomov), there is no need to fear for the integrity of the "pillar".
"Flying Checkers" are better than classic Russian checkers. This is not entirely true. The reason for the appearance of "flying checkers" was the disappointing statistics of games in Russian checkers, published in 1983. According to the findings of the researchers, 4 out of 5 games ended in a draw, and only one of the checkers won in 1. To change the current situation for the better, it was proposed to draw for openings, and several variants of the initial moves were introduced, and at the beginning the schemes were not particularly successful, as they sometimes strengthened the position of one of the tournament participants. Since 1995, players have been asked to choose a version of the game - either classic Russian checkers or "flying". Most of the players preferred tossing lots and the required moves, as they believe there are many opportunities for creativity - after all, the resulting variations of positions (most often unexplored) introduce an element of novelty into the game. However, supporters of classical checkers argue that, firstly, the mathematics of the game is violated, secondly, the work of famous classics loses its significance, and, thirdly, the number of new variants of positions formed as a result of the drawing of lots can also of course be calculated. This means that innovation is only a temporary measure, which will exhaust itself over time.
It is impossible to win at the computer at checkers, because all the moves and positions have already been calculated and entered into the database. Only the checkers have been fully calculated - one of the simplest variants of checkers. And if the time limit is applied, the drawing of lots and "flying checkers" - a win-win algorithm completely loses its significance.