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Checkers Around the World

Frisian Checkers Game of the
Netherlands (Holland; Nederland)

A Uniquely Different Form of Checkers

Frisian Checkers board Frisian Flag

Frisian Draughts is a unique form of Checkers that is still played in Holland today. Originally, this strategic board game was created in Friesland, a northern province in the Netherlands. This game is similar to International Draughts Checkers, though with a slight variance in a couple of the rules. Before the 18th century, Frieslanders developed the strategic board game, now called Frisian Draughts/Checkers. In early days, this popular game was organized into matches by innkeepers in an attempt to entice customers to come into their inn. However, by the 18th century, Frisian Draughts had spread beyond the Netherlands into France and was a notable game in Paris for quite some time. Some sources also mention that this game of checkers was played in other countries such as Armenia and Thailand. In the 1930’s, the Frisian Draughts Association (DFS ~ Dambond Fries Spel) was founded and became the organization that coordinated Frisian draughts matches. Each year personal and club championships are organized and the champion will play a match against the strong computer program, Lusoris. There are currently eleven clubs with a membership of 300 players within the DFS. One club, the Vriendenclub, or ‘Circle of Friends’, is intended to draw the interest of checkers players outside of Friesland so these new players can be introduced to this unique aspect of Frisian culture.

Frisian Checkers Game, Rules of Play:

~ The Frisian Game Board ~

Frisian checkers is played on a 10 x 10 checkerboard (100 squares).

  • The double corner on the checkerboard is to the right of each player.

  • 20 light and 20 dark checkers or draughts are used by the opponents.

  • The checkers are positioned from the ‘baseline’ dark squares closest to the player and four rows up so that there are only two empty rows of squares left on the board.

~ Object of the Checkers Game ~

  • In Frisian checkers, each player’s objective is to employ game strategy and capture all the opponent’s men, which are called ‘draughts’ (checkers or checker men) or ‘wolves’(kings).

~ Starting Position ~

  • As in most checkers games, the opponent with the lighter checkers starts the game and then the opponents take turns after the first move is made.

~ Frisian Checkers Game Moves & Captures ~

  • Moves are made only one at a time by each opponent.

  • Each player may move his/her draught checker) diagonally, horizontally and vertically, which means that there are eight possibilities within a move.

  • A move is made by sliding the checker forward onto an adjacent empty square or by jumping the opponent’s piece and thus capturing it.

  • Capturing is mandatory and the player must continue to jump as many checkers as are in his/her path during the move on the checkerboard.

  • Frisian checker pieces capture in all directions on squares that are the same color.

  • Neither opponent may jump over his/her own checker piece.

  • Captured checkers may not be removed until the play is complete and the player’s hand has been removed from the game board.

~ Crowned to become King ~

  • When a player’s draught (checker) reaches the opponent’s back or king row, it becomes a ‘wolf’ or king.

  • The opponent must crown the new king by placing another checker of the same color on top.

  • Another move may not be made until the opponent’s checker is crowned.

~ ‘Wolf’ or King Moves ~

  • Wolves (kings) are able to move forwards or backwards on the diagonals.

  • Wolves (kings) capture an opponent’s checkers in all directions, landing anywhere behind the captured checker piece.

  • A wolf may only move three successive times and must then be set ‘free’ by capture, or by the move of one of the player’s other men; however, this rule is not in force if the player only has wolves (kings) left.

  • If a wolf (king) can make the same capture as a regular checker piece, then the king must make the capture; otherwise, the checker that can capture the most pieces must do so.

  • When a checker reaches the opponent’s king row and can continue jumping, then it must do so; it will not be crowned because it must continue the jump.

  • wolves (kings) can move any number of squares.

  • If a player has two kings and the opponent has only one, the former has seven moves to make to finish the game.

  • If the player does not win the game in seven moves, then the game is a draw.

~ Special Traits of Frisian Draughts ~

  • The checker opponents are closer to each other than one tends to realize.

  • There are many possible checker moves because the players can cover the game board diagonally, vertically and horizontally.

  • The challenge is inherent in the draughts (checkers) game because there are so many more combinations available.

  • The chance of the game ending in a draw are very slim.

  • Two kings against one usually means winning the checkers game.

  • With the possibility of so many new combinations, there are more ways to win the Frisian checkers game.

International Checkers
Brazilian Checkers
or Draughts
English Draughts
(Great Britain)
Danish Draughts
Frisian Checkers Canadian Checkers Russian Checkers
Italian Checkers Polish Checkers Spanish Pool Checkers
French Checkers German Checkers African Checkers
Turkish Checkers Lasca Checkers Alquerque Checkers
Thai Checkers Czech Checkers Sri-Lanka Checkers
Tiers Checkers Spanish Checkers Checkers Federations

DeerLake Online Store Items

Wonder Mugs Play checkers online, and enjoy drinking from this cool wonder mug.
When adding hot liquid, the colors of the mug will change, checkers cool.

Checkers is a two-player game, where one player is assigned white-chip checkers and the other red. The aim is to play checkers online, capture all of the other player's checkers or make them impossible to move.

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