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Checkers Rules – Learn How to Play Checkers

Checkers Rules

If you want to play a strategy board game that is being played since 3000BC, Checkers is a perfect choice for you. Yes, checkers is one of the oldest strategic games played on planet earth. Let’s find out all essential information about this game, including Checkers rules and instructions.

What is Checkers Game?
Also known as Draughts, checkers is a strategic game that involves a player pre-emptying the other player’s moves to win the game. The game has been around for thousands of years, but the rules haven’t been changed prominently, which is quite a remarkable feat. The checkers rules are pretty simple as this game comes into its own with different tactics and strategies that you can use. These tactics and techniques help a player to win the game by defeating his opponent.


How to Play Checkers

Checkers game is played on an 8 x 8 board with dark squares. Green and buff with dark squares are the two most commonly used colors. The colors for pieces must be of color contrast. Commonly used color in tournament play includes white for the light pieces and red for the dark pieces.

Checkers Requirements

A game board featuring 8 x 8 squares
24 checker pieces (12 white pieces and 12 black pieces)
Number of players- Two
Difficulty- easy
Play length- Depending on your strategies, a game may last for an hour. However, beginners can finish their games in half an hour.
Similar games- Chess, Backgammon, Mastermind, and Crockinole

Checkers Main objective

The main objective of the checkers game is to get maximum pieces from your opponent while following the rules.


Rules of Checkers

The purpose of the checkers game is straightforward. All you need is to remove the opponent’s pieces off the board. Occasionally, the game will come to the point where both players can’t make a single move, and this is considered a draw. You have to jump over the opponent’s pieces to remove them with your pieces. Here are Checkers rules you need to follow to remove the pieces from the board.

Rules to move around the checkers board
Before starting a campaign against your opponent, it is essential to know which ways you can move your pieces according to the rules of checkers.
1. You can only move pieces diagonally to open squares.
2. All moves should be made across the dark squares.
3. Each piece can move only a Single Square at a time.
4. If the piece can make it to the farthest row from its initial place, it is considered “Kinged”, and another piece is placed on top of it.
5. The king piece can also move only one square at a time. However, as per checkers rules, a player can move backward to prevent capture.

Removing pieces from the board
You can remove the pieces of your opponent by capturing them by jumping over the piece from a dark square to another one. There are a few rules of checkers about how you can remove pieces from the board.
1. To capture the piece of your opponent, you have to diagonally jumper over them using your pieces that are adjacent to it into an empty square behind the enemy piece.
2. You can jump multiple pieces when there is a square-in-between the piece of your opponent.
3. A regular piece is allowed to jump a king and remove it from the board.
4. There are two styles of checkers game play when it comes to jumping. The first one allows capturing a piece if you can, and the second one allows deciding whether you want to move or capture the piece of your opponent. Make sure to come to a consensus with an enemy as to which type you want to play.


A player wins the checkers game when the opponent can’t make a single move. It may be because all the pieces of the player are captured, or they are blocked, and there are no squares available for a move.

If the same positions appear for the third time with the same player’s move, the game is considered to be drawn by threefold repetition.

If both players make twenty-five consecutive king moves without capturing, the game is drawn.

When a player has only a king left, whereas the other player has three pieces with at least one king (two kings and a man, three kings or two men and one king), the game is also considered as a draw after both players have made sixteen moves.

When a player has only a king left whereas another player has 2 pieces or less, including one king (two kings, one king, or one king and a man), the game is also drawn when both players have made five moves.

Moves and captures
According to the rules of checkers, the white player starts the game, after which turn alternate.

Men or ordinary pieces move one square diagonally forwards towards an unoccupied square.

You can capture the opponent’s piece by jumping over it, either two squares backward or forwards, to the square behind it.

Capturing is always forced, which means if a player can capture, he must do it.

If your piece can capture again from the landing square, it must continue capturing. This is the best way to make multiple successive jumps and capture multiple enemy pieces in a single turn. Remember, you can’t jump over the same piece more than a single time.

If there are multiple paths available, it is forced to play the most extended capture sequence. It is essential to note that the opponent’s pieces can be removed only when the whole sequence is completed.

The King
When the piece ends its turn at the other edge of the board, it is crowned as the king. However, this is possible at the end of the turn. In simple words, nothing happens when your piece reaches the edge during a long capture sequence, but it has to jump backward again.
The king has the benefit that it is allowed to move as many squares as it wants, including both forwards and backward. It can land as many squares as it wants, which creates a lot of additional possibilities.


Frequently Asked Questions

What moves are allowed in checkers?
A piece should always move diagonally and can be moved in the following ways in checkers. Diagonally in a forward direction to the next dark square If there is an opponent’s piece next to your piece along with an empty square on the other side, it is allowed to jump the piece of the opponent and remove it.

How many squares a king can move in checkers?
A king is allowed to move only one space. The king may never move into danger, and it may not be removed from the board.

Can I get a triple king in checkers?
Yes, you can get the triple king in checkers game. When your piece crosses the board to become a king and then crosses back to the original side, it becomes a triple king.


Final words

The rules of checkers are really instinctive, which makes this strategic game joyous for people of all types to experiment with. You can also find a magnetic checkers board to make your traveling time fun during summer vacations.