Page 1 of 7
At the age of six I had mastered Fox & Geese. My geese were invincible and I was far from reluctant to prove it. In sheer desperation my father taught me to play Draughts. It was my entrance to the world of abstract games.
Now I must betray it and explain why a good game has become a bad sport.
I'm sorry to say that this is not, as many would have it, a matter of opinion. For those who would like to dismiss these findings as ridiculous: if by some twist of fate Dameo had been the dominant draughts form for the last century, you would have naturally accepted that as a child. You might even have become a professional player. If someone had come up with 10x10 Draughts as it is played now, you might well have ridiculed - and this time maybe rightly so - the very game you're defending now. So don't kid yourself.
Draughts is so globally recognized that there's hardly any culture that hasn't accommodated it in one form or another. There are dozens of variants. We'll look at the traditionals Checkers, Shaski, Draughts, Turkish Draughts, Armenian Draughts and Spanish Draughts and compare them with two modern games, Hexdame and Dameo. HexDame differs in only one respect from the international game: it is a literal translation of Draughts to the hexgrid. Dameo is a different story altogether.
We'll compare the games' basics because these have a deep impact on their behaviour.