Suicide Checkers – An Alternative Checkers Variation to Lose the Game
Anyone who has ever enjoyed a game of checkers knows that it really is quite a simple game, especially when compared to the game of chess. However, what many people do not realize particularly beginning players is that the game has a number of unique and oftentimes interesting variations. While the way that the game is played does not differ all that much, at least to the casual player, the slight differences in checker rules and strategies that apply are enough to ensure that you will never get bored playing it.
While many checker game variants differ from the standard English or American checkers that is commonly played by virtually all checkers players simply by changing a few of the rules for example: such as changing the role of the kings or the number of squares that is played in. One of the more interesting variations of the game has a quite a surprising twist to it. This variation of the game of checkers is called suicide checkers and the name stems from the fact that the players actually strive to lose as many of their pieces as possible at the soonest time.
How Suicide Checkers is Played
This is actually a reversal of the standard form of the game where players try to protect their checkers pieces at all costs, and the player that still has some checkers pieces left when his or her opponent has lost theirs wins the game. Just as the outcome of the standard form of the game of checkers is determined by the player who manages to block any of his or her opponent’s further legal moves, the suicide checkers player who does not have any possible legal moves left in the game also wins.
Suicide Checkers’ Origins
A Swiss physicist named Martin Fierz, who is the author of the popular free checkers interface called Checkerboard, and of Cake, which is one of the world's most popular checkers engines, developed a suicide checkers program in early 2005. Called Suicidal Cake, the game was never published, although it has performed remarkably well against human players in several tests. Among some of the famous suicide checkers players who pitted wits against the program were George Miller and Michael Taktikos. Surprisingly enough, Suicidal Cake won every single game that was ever played against these two world class players. As a result of its already impressive performance, Martin Fierz has since ceased any further development to the program.