Realizing The Connection Between Halma And Chinese Checkers

Halma is a British game with a touch of Victorian influence. However, it was Bruce Whitehill who proved that the game was more American than British in the early part of the 21st century. Halma was invented in 1833 and 1834 by George Howard Monks, a thoracic surgeon at Harvard Medical School. His brother Robert was the discoverer of another British game called Hoppity where George derived some idea for Halma.

At that time, mathematician and preacher Thomas Hill was developing his own game which he called Halma derived from the Greek word "jump." The rights to Halma was challenged by Milton Bradley who ended up losing the court battle and instead introduced his own variant to the game which he called "Eckha".

The aim of Halma is to advance all your pieces from your end to the opponent's end. In an alternating fashion, each player moves their pieces to the nearest square or by hopping over an adjacent piece into the nearest hole where it can jump over another if the possibility presents itself. The game becomes appealing when several pieces are bunched up in the middle of the board and one piece makes several hops over multiple pieces and advancing quite far.

The popular board game chinese checkers was derived from Halma. It received its first patent from Ravensburger, the popular German games firm, bearing the name Stern-Halma in 1892, a few years after the appearance of Halma. There were failed were variants that existed over the next ten years in the United States, Germany, and England. In 1928, Bill & Jack Pressman released the game and it became popular. There were legal questions to the game since it had some similarities with Halma.

Chinese checkers is a game that can be played by 2 to 6 people with each player represented by unique colored pieces in one end of the star-shaped board. Each player aims to become the first player to advance their pieces towards the other end. The pieces advances one point or jumps over other pieces to be able to advance in the soonest possible time.

The middle stages of the game are the more challenging one because the option for jumping may differ as the game progresses. The players who can best create such situation and maximize hopping opportunities will most likely win. The game is complicated as well as easy to learn and play. This is an ideal first game to be taught to very young children.