Need a great game to take on holiday that won’t take up too much space in the bag? Maybe a game to keep kids amused at a restaurant that won’t make you feel like you’ve packed the whole toy box? Perhaps, you just need a nice rainy day game to play at home without filling your house with even more toys? We’ve got a brilliant classic for you! Our free, printable draughts board game is ready for you to download, print and play. You may also know the game as checkers. If you need a reminder of the rules we have sorted that for you too.
Aim of the Game
To capture all of the opponent’s pieces. This is done by hopping over the opposing pieces diagonally.
How to set up
Draughts is fantastic as it’s so quick and easy to set up. No counting out monopoly money!
- Download our free printable draughts board and pieces HERE.
- Print in colour or black and white, if you don’t have a printer at home your local library might offer printing services.
- Cut out the draughts pieces.
- Choose which player will use the dark pieces and which will use the light pieces.
- Each player sets up their side of the board by placing all their blank pieces on the black squares. The crown pieces are saved for later in the game.
The rules of draughts are nice and simple for little ones to pick up so you will be playing in no time.
- Players take it in turns to move.
- Only the black squares on the board are used.
- The pieces can only move diagonally into an adjacent black square.
- The blank pieces can only move diagonally forwards.
- If a piece makes it to the other side of the board they are ‘crowned’ and become kings. This means the blank playing piece will be swapped for a piece with a crown.
- Kings are able to move diagonally backwards and forwards.
How to ‘take’ an opponent’s piece
Having a piece taken can be a bit tough for little ones at first as many find it hard to deal with ‘losing’. However, this is an essential experience to help develop empathy and resilience. The great thing about draughts is that instead of losing the whole game they only lose one piece and get to experience winning on the very next turn when they take one of your pieces.
- A piece can be taken by jumping over it diagonally. There must be an empty space behind the opponent’s piece to jump into.
- Multiple pieces can be ‘taken’ in one turn if they can be jumped one after the other. The jumps must be diagonal but do not have to be in a straight diagonal line, they can zigzag.
- Remember, blank pieces can only jump diagonally forwards, towards the opponent’s side.
- Kings may jump diagonally backwards, toward their original side.
How to Win
The player who takes all of the opponent’s pieces first is the winner!
Play again and again
Before cutting out your pieces, glue them and the draughts board onto card. This will toughen them up and make sure that they last for lots of fun games!
Brilliant Colour or Ink Saving?
Our game of draughts is available to download in colour to create a bright and eye-catching board, and black and white to save ink.
Did you and your family love our free printable draughts game?