Last modified on 10 April 2013, at 06:00

Learning Arimaa/Playing The Game

The Board and PiecesEdit

Arimaa is played on an 8x8 square board. You can use a chessboard or buy a board yourself. Each player starts with 16 pieces:

  • 1 Elephant
  • 1 Camel
  • 2 Horses
  • 2 Dogs
  • 2 Cats
  • 8 Rabbits

SetupEdit

Gold sets up his pieces however he wants on the first two rows of the board. All 16 million possible positions are legal. Then Silver sets up her pieces however she wants on the two rows on her side of the board. Gold's advantage of moving first is offset by Silver's ability to react to Gold's setup.

37px-Arimaa board.jpg
Arimaa-border.png
Arimaa-border.png
a8 b8 c8 d8 e8 f8 g8 h8
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Arimaa-border.png
Arimaa-border.png
(1) Gold sets up his pieces however he wants on his home rows.
37px-Arimaa board.jpg
Arimaa-border.png
Arimaa-border.png
a8 b8 c8 d8 e8 f8 g8 h8
a7 b7 c7 d7 e7 f7 g7 h7
a6 b6 c6 d6 e6 f6 g6 h6
a5 b5 c5 d5 e5 f5 g5 h5
a4 b4 c4 d4 e4 f4 g4 h4
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a2 b2 c2 d2 e2 f2 g2 h2
a1 b1 c1 d1 e1 f1 g1 h1
Arimaa-border.png
Arimaa-border.png
(2) Then Silver sets up her pieces however she wants on her home rows.

MovementEdit

The players alternate turns with Gold moving first. On each turn a player can take up to four steps.

  • For most pieces, a step can be forwards, backwards, left, or right.
  • Rabbits cannot move backwards. They can only move forwards, left, or right.
  • A player can use four steps for one piece, or one step for four different pieces, or any other combination.
  • The player cannot pass their turn or leave the position unchanged.
  • The player cannot create the same position with the same player to move three times.