Lily

I thought of a new game tonight. I’ve only been able to play against myself so far, but it seems pretty good from that. I encourage people to try it with their friends and give me feedback.

You need a checkerboard, two white and two black pawns, and a set of poker chips (checkers pieces will do if you have enough of them). Set up the board like this (where red & blue are poker chips, and black & white are pawns):

The game consists of alternating turns. A turn consists of either freely placing one red or blue chip (so long as it’s not on top of another one) or moving one of your pieces. Pieces can move an arbitrary number of squares in one turn, as long as they stay on the same color chip. Diagonal moves are not allowed. Each time a piece leaves a chip, the chip is removed. So, once a path is traversed, it must be re-placed before it can be traversed again.

In order to win, you must get to the opposite side of the board; i.e. black to the top, white to the bottom in the diagram. Either that, or you must surround both of the opponent’s pieces with the opposite color, such that, given an infinite number of consecutive moves, they would never be able to get to the opposite side.

So, both of the following boards are black wins:

The left because the black piece got to the top, the right because both white pieces were surrounded (since diagonal moves aren’t allowed, pieces don’t need to be surrounded diagonally: just like Go).