Checkers & Chess


Wanna explore the wonders of the universe without leaving your home? Break out the chess and checkers!

In checkers you move the round objects about the board’s squares in an effort to capture all of your opponent’s pieces. Everything about the game suggests infinity from the alignment of the pieces to the make-up of the board to the concept of being “kinged.” When a piece is kinged it can move forward AND backward. The universe behaves in a way similar to an infinite checkers game. And then you have Chinese Checkers which gives it all away.

Now Chess is a different beast, it digs a little deeper—just look at how the different pieces move. They move in a myriad of diverse ways against a seemingly rigid plane. What’s more, the white side is considered to have an advantage since it gets the first move. This is kind of like our evolution in an odd way. Those who left the Ring of Fire to settle in cooler climates gained a relative advantage by doing this. Then there’s this possible zugzwang action.

These are a pair of ancient games and variants of them are found all over the world. These games—via the universal equation of (horrible at math, need some help with this) triangle equaling circle with square as the variable or the hint as to how to get the whole engine working—detail EXACTLY how our universe works. They also provide the framework for our “modern” whiz-bang computer games as well. All those flashy graphics are just a fancy way of hiding the truth, videogame programmers deftly use the universal equation to create real-seeming environments that make up the game-board and dynamic characters to represent the game-pieces. Just something to think about the next time you’re trying to save Princess Toadstool.


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