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      05.09.2008 14:06
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      Pick it up and have a few games.

      Introduction -

      English draughts (or checkers) is usually played by two people on opposite sides of a playing board, one has black pieces and the other has white or red. Players take it in turns to move their pieces diagonally; opponent's pieces are captured by jumping over them with one of your own.

      The Board -

      The game is played on an 8×8 grid, with alternating black and red squares, called a checkerboard. The playable area consists of the 32 dark squares, the reason for this is that for each player, the left and right corners encourage different strategies. This 8x8 grid is shared with chess; most commercial chess sets include draughts as a secondary game.

      Pieces -

      The pieces are usually made of a hard wood and, they are flat and cylindrical and usually split into one darker and one lighter colour. Traditionally, they are coloured red and white, but red and black ones are common. The light- and dark-stained wood pieces are supplied with more expensive sets, although I personally don't own one of these. There are two classes of pieces, these being 'Men' and 'Kings'. The Kings are usually differentiated by attaching two pieces of the same colour together, stacked one on top of the other. On some occasions however the pieces are engraved or painted on the reverse side so the player simply has to turn the piece over.

      Each player starts off with 12 separate pieces, with one piece on each dark space for the three rows closest to their own side. The row closest to each player is called the 'Kings row' with the black player moving first.

      Moving Pieces -

      There are two ways of moving a piece, the easiest of which involves sliding a piece one space diagonally forwards to an adjacent unoccupied dark square. A jump is a move from a square diagonally adjacent to one of the opponent's pieces to an empty square on the directly opposite side of their piece, thus you have 'Jumped' over the square containing the opponent's piece. A regular piece can only jump diagonally forwards, but a king can also move diagonally backwards. A piece that is jumped is classed as captured and is removed from the board, multiple-jump moves are possible if, when the jumping piece lands there is another enemy piece that can be jumped. If a jumping move is available, it is compulsory that the move is made, even if other moves are available. The jumping sequence chosen does not have to be the one that involves the most captures; however, the player must make all available captures in the chosen sequence.

      Kings -

      If a player's piece moves into the king's row on the opposing player's side of the board, that piece is 'Crowned'. That piece then becomes a 'King' and with it gains the ability to move both forwards and backwards on the board. If a player's piece jumps into the king's row, the current move terminates; the piece cannot continue until the next move.

      Winning the game -

      A player wins by capturing all of their opponent's pieces, or by leaving the opposing player with no 'Legal' moves as explained above.

      My Opinions -

      The Game is actually very easy to learn and play, but don't let this fool you, it is great fun, it is quite fulfilling when you perform a combination of jumps. The look on your opponents face when you eliminate 25% of his pieces is priceless, although it could happen to you so don't boast too much.

      Unlike games such as Monopoly the board can be very small and you only need a little spare space for a game, this makes it ideal for travelling. Some boards are magnetic meaning the pieces won't slip off the board if the car goes over a big bump, although the pieces included in these travel versions are often incredibly small and easy to lose, so take care. They should also be kept away from young children; the pieces are small but have tiny magnets in them, which I'm sure wouldn't be good for their digestive systems.

      Although I prefer chess over Draughts, simply because there is far more skill involved, the game can still be quite challenging and tactical. In some cases you can move one of your pieces into a position to be taken, forcing the opponent to make the move. This could conclude however with their pieces being positioned so you can do a multiple take, therefore having the ability to see a few moves ahead is the key, just like in chess.

      Each game is likely to last around 10-15 minutes depending on how long each player takes to make their move; some of my games have lasted around 30 minutes, simply because it started getting so competitive. After a game you simply need to place your
      Pieces on their starting positions, thus you can be playing another game within a minute, rather than having to shuffle and organise your playing cards for example.

      A typical game can be purchased from most supermarkets, toy shops or online game sites such as Amazon or Play, they will cost you usually less than £10, although some of the more expensive ones could cost you around £30-£35. I personally like the look of an expensive set opened on a glass coffee table, although a chess set looks better.

      Overall the game is great fun and has an easy learning curve, you can play it almost anywhere and it break your bank.

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        04.01.2008 22:21
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        an old game but still enjoyable to play

        I bought my son a tin of 15 games for christmas, which cost around £9 from Smyths toys, they are mostly all the older games and among the games is Draughts (Checkers), a game I have`nt played in years and to my surprise my 9 year old son already knew how to play it.
        The game is for 2 players and suits children aged 6 years to adult.

        Setting up
        The board is black and white and there are 24 checkers, 12 are black and 12 are brown, each player puts their checkers on the black squares at each end of the board.

        Playing
        The player with the black checkers moves first, each player moves diagonally as a single checker on to the nearest diagonal black square, when a black square is empty behind your oponents checker, you may jump it, only by moving forward. When you have got to the first line of your opponents side of the board, you are then crowned (your checker is doubled with another checker of the same colour. This means that you can move both forwards (diagonally) and backwards.

        Winning
        The first player to capture his or her opponents checkers or to stop their opponent from moving any remaining checkers wins.

        Conclusion
        Well I liked this game as a child and I still do, surprised to find that my son also likes it, however it does get a bit boring when your always losing (my son always wins) but we do have fun playing it. It`s a good family game and I would recommend it !!!

        Thanks for reading
        I have done this review on ciao

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          29.08.2006 13:49
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          game suitable for all

          One of the most classic games ever played;

          it involves skill and clever thinking but can be played at different levels of skill. I first started playing this game when I was about 7 and always used to think I was so great, that I could beat my mum. It was only later that I realised she let me win!

          The aim is to wipe out all the opponent's pieces from the board by jumping over them. In order to jump over them, there needs to be an empty space. Double, triple and quadruple (and so on) jumps can be made if you can jump more than 1 piece during the same go. Singular pieces can only move diagonally but can jump an opponent piece to remove it from the board. When a piece gets to the other side it becomes crowned so it can be moved in any direction and jump over opponent's pieces. .

          The winner is the one with pieces still left at the end of the game

          I recommend this!

          A great family game!

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            11.01.2004 03:23
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            -~0~- Draughts -~0~- ~0~ A Little History Lesson ~0~ Draughts ( in its original format ) , is believed to have been invented in Egypt , during the reign of King RaMeses , by Shamoon the Magician - approx 4000 years BC. Inscriptions in the ancient temple of Thebes portray King RaMeses playing the game with a family member . Monumental inscriptions show that the game was familiar to Egyptians as early as 200 BC From Egypt , it arrived in India , where is known as Ashta Pada , and by the 13th century AD it was known in mainland Europe ( although the time scale to when the game was introduced is unkown ). The first known written words describing the game 'Draughts' date back to Spain 1547 , and the first written manual dates back to Spain 1549 . This said , there are recorded details of the Spanish 13th century game Alquerque , whose rules / descriptions are very similar to that of draughts . ~0~ Formats ~0~ Today , the game of Draughts is played on an 8 * 8 checkered board . Early versions also played on 9 * 9 , 10 * 10 and 12 * 12 boards ( the latter is still played with in India , as the main board is used for several games ) . ~0~ Other known names ~0~ As the game has progressed , various counties have used different names for the game . 'Morris' is an English game akin to druaghts ; the French called it 'Merelles' , the Spanish 'Marro' ; Italians 'Marella' ; central Europe often called it 'Dam' or 'Dame' as at the time it considered to be Womens Chess . In America it is known as 'Checkers' , and is played slightly different to European draughts . It was introduced into America as 'Morris' by the English settlers . ~0~ Did you know ? ~0~ America is the only English speaking country not to call it Draughts . Before boards were used the game made use of cloth as a board . Early
            counters were made of Ivory or Marble . Later counters used wood. The first boards were coloured black and red , but the norm would become black and white . America tends to use red and white counters . Chess is the direct assendant of draughts . Both are also related to Backgammon , Chinese Checkers and Solitaire . ~0~ The Equipment ~0~ 1 x Board on which is an 8 * 8 grid , usually black and white . 2 x sets of 8 counter , one set white , one black ( excepting America ! ) - often once side of each counter is inscribed with a mark ( see Kings later ) . ~0~ Set Up and game objectives / rules ~0~ Each of the two players play opposit each other , and at the start the counters are place on alternating squares occupying the lower to rows . Counters can only move in a diagonal forwards direction and one square at a time , providing the relevant square is free , unless when capturing an opponents piece / s . To capture an opponents counter , you have to be able to jump over it and into a free square . Should further captures be available by said moved counter then the move continues . The objective is to be last only player with counters remaining . By reaching the opposit end of the board , you are entitled to Crown you counter to make it a King . This then has the ability to move both forwards and backwards in a diagonal direction . The game is easy to learn , although stratergy does play a part when playing seriously . A game can last between ten and sixty minutes . ~0~ Variations ~0~ In the original game capture was not mandatory ( ie. it may not be in your best interest ) . However there are variations where when capture is available it must be taken , either a single capture or all possible capture. ~0~ Availability ~0~ The game through its variations / names can be found both on computer format and more traditional forma
            t , in any decent high street store or web retailer . Type in 'Checkers' or 'Draughts' into your web search engine for other options . At the time of writing our local Tesco store is selling a traditional wooden board version for just £3.49 . Thanks for the read - hope I have enightened you a little.

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              23.11.2000 21:43
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              "Oh, lovely, lovely draughts, where have you been all my life?" Have you ever found yourself running naked through the streets shouting this familiar phrase? I know I have. Yes, crazy but true, I have only very recently discovered the outrageous board game known as draughts. (Also known as checkers.) Don't get me wrong, I vaguely remember playing the game as a small boy but foolishly dismissed it as mere childish folly. Well, I was wrong, oh, so wrong. To cut a short story even shorter, myself and a friend had recently been squabbling over a woman. Our constant bickering was getting us nowhere so we eventually decided to have a duel to decide once and for all who should be the one to wed the lovely lady in question. We then had to discuss the form the duel should take. I suggested naked Pictionary, my friend suggested semi-naked draughts. After much discussion we plumped for the latter. The day of the duel arrived and we both eyed each other nervously across the draughts board. I was wearing my lucky denim vest and sensible white briefs. My friend had selected his favourite fishnet Y-fronts, no vest- this guy was serious. This was the first time I had played draughts since I was a nipper so the rules were unfamiliar and my playing technique was a little rusty to say the least. I soon realised, however, that I was a natural. Draughts is a little like chess in that it's played on the same board. Unlike chess though, it's much simpler and more straight forward to play so you don't get bogged down in rules and are free to concentrate on tactics. Anyway, to cut a short story even shorter than the last time I cut it short, after just a few minutes my friend whipped my proverbial ass and I had to concede defeat, but by this time it didn't matter to me one bit because I was totally hooked on draughts and I realised that it was my destiny to become the King of Draughts and take over the worl
              d with my draught playing skills. I did what any man in my position would do- I ripped of my lucky vest and filthy pants and ran outside screaming and shouting, proclaiming my love for draughts. People came out of their houses to cheer me as I ran. I heard later that the local 'Toys R Us' sold out of draught sets soon after. Since that fateful day I have given up my job to concentrate on my draught playing on a full time basis. I play once, sometimes twice a day and have been close to winning a game on more than one occasion! I'm sure thousands of you will have similar draught stories to tell. Please get in touch- together we can rule the Universe! Oh, and as for the lady we were fighting over? It turned out that my friend and I had just imagined her, she had never actually existed at all. Who'd have thought it?

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                03.11.2000 00:22

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                The well known game of Checkers, as our American cousins call it, is in reality good old English Draughts played on a chess board. However the draught board and the draughtsmen can also be used for a number of other games. There's Cat and Mouse, sometime known as Fox and Goose, for a start and also Chinese Checkers. Two players seek to outwit each other in an attempt to get one piece from one side of the board to the other. The Cat has four pieces, usually black and representing the four paws of the animal, are placed on the black squares at one end of the board. The Mouse represented by a white piece is placed on any of the four black squares at the other end of the board. The Cat is only able to move forward whilst the little Mouse can go forwards or backwards. All pieces can only move diagonally. The Mouse makes the first move and the cat responds by moving one of it's paws. During the game the Mouse cannot move onto a square adjacent to the Cat as the Cat will get him. Likewise if the Cat's paw occupies a square adjacent to the Mouse, the Mouse must move away or be killed. The game ends when the mouse is either killed, gets past the Cat or the Cat traps it into a corner so that it's only move is to occupy a square next to a paw. Doesn't take all that long. At first glance it may seem like the odds are stacked in the Cat's favour but this is not the case as a clever Mouse can tease the Cat into leaving an opening for the Mouse to scamper through. Once you tire of that you could try Chinese Checkers. Each player lines up their pieces in three rows of four filling up the right hand corner of their side. Like this -- B is for Black, W is for White and 0 is for empty square. BBBB0000 BBBB0000 BBBB0000 00000000 00000000 0000WWWW 0000WWWW 0000WWWW The pieces can move forwards, sideways and backwards but not diago
                nally. A player can either move one of his pieces one square at a time or jump over his own and the other player's pieces if there is an empty square to jump in to. Multiple jumps are permitted and can be the key to winning. Pieces are not lost when jumped over and the first person to get their pieces in the opposition's corner is the winner. At first glance this may look like an easy, peasy game to play but strategy plays a big part where setting up a long path to jump might gain you some moves. It might not if your opponent spots what you're trying to do and moves a vital piece or blocks you path. Also making sure you don't get your corner piece trapped is something to look out for. Chinese Chequers makes a pleasant change from the standard draughts and could just be the answer to the, "Mum I'm bored" shout from the kids.

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                27.09.2000 01:25
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                Checkers, or as we call it here in UK - Draughts, is a great game for 2 people. Basically, you must move your pieces to the other side to make them become kings. Sounds easy, right. Wrong. You must dodge your opponents pieces or otherwise your opponent's pieces can take over yours and you lose them. Forever. This is a game that needs to be played with skill and techniques. It is suitable for most ages and is a fun and entertaining game. You will probably come across it on the internet where you can play against otehr online members. A great game.

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                25.08.2000 03:09
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                The game of draughts originated as a game called "Alquerque" in Ancient Egypt. It was not until 1100, after the First Crusade, that someone in the South of France first played Draughts on a chess board - before that the game was played only on a special Alquerque board. And when the game is combined with the board, we can see the origins of the modern game of draughts itself. The game is simple enough - there are 2 sides, black and white, and each player's pieces can move only on the black squares [unlike chess, where they move on squares of both colours]. If you can move one of your pieces to the far side of the board then it is "crowned". This is a simple game, certainly not as complex as chess, but more competitive and skill-based than "Snakes & Ladders", for example.

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                  05.08.2000 03:00
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                  Checkers is a game everyone must have at least played it once in their life time or at least heard of it. The game is simple and does not need one to read a twenty page rule book and can be mastered by everyone of all ages. So an adult can play it with a kid and yet not necessary the adult will win although he has played it for years. The game is also cheap and can basically also be played on a chess board. For those who are really desperate, a simple paper with enough squares on it will do fine. The game can also be enjoyed by both sexes where else some games tend to be played and enjoyed more by one sex. You will also gurantee not to get bored with the game as the game hardly takes ten minutes to finish where else some games will take you through the whole night with mugs of coffee and yet still not produced a real definite winner. This game is sure a classic....simple, fun and exciting!

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                  07.07.2000 22:37

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                  A classic and as old as chess (well maybe). Based on a similar board, the pieces are coined shaped. There concept is simple, you can ‘eat’ your opponent’s piece if you jump over them. You can move in a diagonal fashion only. Once you reach the other side of the board you can gain the ability to move backwards as well as forwards. While you can only move forward to begin with. There is more strategy than simply jumping over each other’s pieces. Play against someone kind who may let you win a few times so that you get the hang of the game. Like most traditional games, I’d recommend it on a rainy day if you have nothing to do and there is a powercut!

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