Andrew Moskalik, Detroit

The inspiration for this game came from a challenge: What happens when one aspect of a game is subtly altered? In checkers, for example, everyone knows that captured pieces must be removed from the board.  But what if captured pieces were not removed, but remained on the board?  How would or could the rules be altered to account for the captured pieces? In BOUNCE, the captured pieces are hidden beneath the capturing piece, leading to stacks of ever-increasing height as the game progresses; the rules are altered to treat stacks of different height differently.

Moreover, there is an interplay between the rules and the visual look of the game.  In BOUNCE, the stack of captured pieces could grow quite high.  A towering stack of checker disks is unstable, but a stacked set of cups is not.  In addition, the strong contrasting colors of the interwoven stack of cups naturally suggest a game in which the entire board and pieces all consist of strong colors.


To begin the game, players place eight pieces on the board, four eachin the first two rows of each side.  Players alternate moving pieces diagonally forward one space, with purple moving first.  Like checkers, players may "capture" another piece by jumping it.  Unlike checkers, a) players are limited to capturing one piece per move, b) players may capture their own pieces, and c) rather than being removed from the board, captured pieces are covered by the capturing piece.

Once a piece has captured another piece, the possible moves of that piece change.  The piece may move multiple spaces, up to the number of pieces in its stack.  For example, a piece that has captured two others, resulting in a stack of three, may move one, two, or three spaces in any direction.  If this piece captures another piece with a stack of three, it will increase its own stack to six, and then is able to move one to six spaces in any turn.  However, the restriction on capturing only one other piece per turn still holds.

Finally, as the name of the game suggests, pieces are able to "bounce" off the walls edging the game board, continuing their diagonal motion much like a pool ball bounces off the table rail.  Players may capture another piece on a bounce, so unlike checkers, pieces on the edges of the gameboard are not immune to capture.

The winner of the game is player who captures all of the other player's pieces.

Alternate forms of the game include:
a) Ten-man BOUNCE: beginning with ten pieces per side (the extra two in the center of the third row).
b) Accelerating BOUNCE: allowing multiple captures per move.
c) Chess BOUNCE: the four pieces in the rear rank begin with a stack of two (and thus can move up to two spaces at the start).

Andrew Moskalik is a research engineer.  Simplicity, geometry, and visual minimalism appeal to him, as well as the ability to interact with artworks.  His left-brained proclivities have been tempered by the right-brained instincts of his wife, a professional artist.

Moskalik with his wife Teresa Petersen