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The Rules of the Game

Checkers has many variations that differ in their rules. The most popular and prestigious tournament version of checkers is international 100-square checkers. It follows the so-called international rules of the game.

FMJD Annexes

The detailed rules of the game of checkers are defined in a document called the Annexes. You can find it on the website of the World Draughts Federation:

I. 100-Square International Checkers

The game of 100-square international checkers is played between two opponents. Each of them starts the game with twenty pieces (checkers) of different colors. For simplicity, the pieces of the light color are called white, and the pieces of the dark color are called black.

II.Summary of the Game Rules

  • When setting up the checkerboard, remember the dark square in the lower left corner of the player,
  • Each player starts with 20 pieces placed in the first four rows of the checkerboard,
  • The game begins with the white pieces,
  • Moves are made by moving a piece forward diagonally one square to an empty square on the checkerboard,
  • After making a move, the turn passes to the opponent,
  • When one player’s piece lands on an adjacent square occupied by the opponent’s piece, with an empty square behind it, the player can jump over the opponent’s piece to the empty square directly behind it. This move is called a capture (jump). Captured (jumped) pieces are removed from the board at the end of the move,
  • Capturing in checkers is mandatory,
  • You can capture forwards and backwards,
  • In a single move, you can capture more than one piece. All captured pieces are removed from the board only after the capture sequence is completed,
  • The majority capture rule applies – if a player has multiple capture options, he must make the move that captures the most pieces,
  • A piece that reaches the last row (the opponent’s first row) becomes a king. A king is indicated by placing a second piece of the same color on top of it (crowning the piece),
  • Placing a king (through a move or capture to a king’s row) ends the turn,
  • A king can move and capture any number of squares diagonally along the diagonals it is on,
  • A king can capture a larger number of pieces along one or more diagonals,
  • A king cannot capture the same piece twice during a single move,
  • A piece that captures onto a king’s row and can continue capturing as a regular piece does not become a king,
  • The game is won by the player who captures or blocks all of the opponent’s pieces. The objective of the game is to leave the opponent with no legal moves,
  • The game ends in a draw when each player has made 25 king moves without any captures or regular piece moves.

Expand Your Skills

If you want to enhance your skills in the game of 100-square checkers, you have several options. Play with friends or join a local checkers club, where you can meet other enthusiasts of this wonderful game. There are also numerous educational materials, guides, and online resources available to help you expand your knowledge and strategy. Below, you’ll find a link to my courses, which will provide a deeper understanding of the game and assist you in improving your skills. Utilize valuable tips, strategies, and practical examples to become a better player.