Leapfrog Checkers

introducing the leapfrog move

Leapfrog Checkers piece setup
Setup for Leapfrog Checkers on a standard 10x10 board.

Both Frog (Man) and Toad (King) move one step diagonally, and capture diagonally by the short leap, as in English checkers. However, both Frog and Toad may also jump (leapfrog) a distant diagonal piece provided that the latter hasn’t just moved. (Captures don’t count.) A Frog moves and captures in the forward directions. A Toad moves and captures in all directions. It is always allowable to leapfrog during a capture sequence, regardless if the enemy piece has moved or not.

Both Frog and Toad always land immediately behind the captured piece, also during consecutive captures. Captured pieces are immediately removed. However, a Toad may not reverse capture direction.

Capture is mandatory, and one must continue capturing as long as possible. In the main variant (board 10x10), it is mandatory to select the longest capturing line. The goal is to capture all the opponent’s pieces. A Frog promotes to Toad at the last rank. Two Toads are sufficient for a win against a lone Toad. The sounds in this program are authentic sounds from frogs and toads. Since play develops fast, it is suitable also for large boards. Several board sizes are provided, from 8x8 to 14x14.

Leapfrog Checkers exampleA piece can leapfrog to the square behind an enemy piece, provided that the latter hasn’t just moved.

Although it is much less strategical than both English and International draughts, it is an amusing game that works well. How to get children interested in checkers games? Let them play with long-jumping Frogs and Toads on an 8x8 board, where the squares represent water-lily leaves. At least on the bigger boards, it is clearly a challenging game, although it develops faster than traditional checkers variants. Checkers, also called ‘draughts’, has been played since medieval times. It was derived from a much older Arab game, ‘Alquerque’ (here).

See also:

Winther, M. (2015). ‘International/Polish Checkers Variants’. (here)

  -------    (2017). ‘Spanish Checkers Variants’. (here)

  -------    (2017). ‘Gothic Checkers Variants’. (here)

  -------    (2017). ‘Draughts with Deferred Backwards Capture’. (here)

  -------    (2017). ‘Swedish Draughts’. (here)

☛  You can download my free Leapfrog Checkers program here (updated 2020-10-22), but you must own the software Zillions of Games to be able to run it. (I recommend the download version.)

© Mats Winther (May 2017).