# Recently in board games Category

## On Onwards And Downwards

When last they met, the Baron challenged Sir R----- to evade capture whilst moving rooks across and down a chessboard. Beginning with a single rook upon the first file and last rank, the Baron should have advanced it to the second file and thence downwards in rank in response to which Sir R----- should have progressed a rook from beneath the board by as many squares and if by doing so had taken the Baron's would have won the game. If not, Sir R----- could then have chosen either rook, barring one that sits upon the first rank, to move to the next file in the same manner with the Baron responding likewise. With the game continuing in this fashion and ending if either of them were to take a rook moved by the other or if every file had been played upon, the Baron should have had a coin from Sir R----- if he took a piece and Sir R----- one of the Baron's otherwise.

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Recall that the Baron's game is comprised of taking turns to place dominoes on a six by six grid of squares with each domino covering a pair of squares. At no turn was a player allowed to place a domino such that it created an oddly-numbered region of empty squares and Sir R----- was to be victorious if, at the end of play, the lines running between the ranks and files of the board were each and every one straddled by at least one domino.

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## On Turnabout Is Fair Play

Last time they met, the Baron challenged Sir R----- to turn a square of twenty five coins, all but one of which the Baron had placed heads up, to tails by flipping vertically or horizontally adjacent pairs of heads.
As I explained to the Baron, although I'm not at all sure that he was following me, this is essentially the mutilated chess board puzzle and can be solved by exactly the same argument. Specifically, we need simply imagine that the game were played upon a five by five checker board...

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## On Turning Sixteen

In his last wager, the Baron challenged Sir R----- to put a four by four square of tiles, numbered from one to sixteen, into sequential order from top-left to bottom-right by rotating two by two squares of adjacent tiles. That Sir R----- should have had a prize of three coins if he had succeeded and the Baron should have had one of two coins if he had not suggests that the key to reckoning whether Sir R----- should have taken this wager is to figure whether or not every arrangement of the tiles might be arrived at through such manipulations.

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## On Onwards And Upwards

In the Baron's latest game, Sir R----- was to place a queen upon the first rank or file of a chessboard and the Baron was to then move it horizontally, vertically or diagonally in its regular manner to a square of higher rank and/or file. Sir R----- was then to do the same in his turn and, alternating thereafter, he who moved the queen to the top-rightmost square was to be declared the winner.

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## On Endarkenment

The first thing to note about the Baron's game is that since four tiles must be turned over at each turn it is impossible to turn out an odd number of lamps. If one of the four was lit at the start of the turn, then three would be at its end yielding a net change of two. Considering the change made when from zero to four tiles were lit at the outset makes it clear that a game with an odd parity of lit lamps cannot be won.
If presented with such a board Sir R----- should most certainly have declined the Baron's wager.

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### Gallimaufry

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