Flash Checkers

Flash checkers is a perfect option for anyone looking to challenge their brainpower without spending lots of money or wasting storage space on their computer. You won’t have to download anything, and you’ll be playing the game in a matter of seconds. Sure, playing checkers with a person is a great way to socialize, but this online option is a decent substitute when a live partner isn’t available. Besides, who wants to work at their cubicle when there’s a whole world of Internet checkers to explore?

Just in case you’re unfamiliar with Adobe Flash Player, it’s the standard program for running applications, animation, and designs on the Internet without a lot of fuss. You may need to upgrade your version of Flash Player on occasion, but it’s always fast and free to do so. When in doubt, just visit their official site to get details on which version of Flash you’re using and which upgrades are available. Flash Player currently works with the following browsers for your PC and Mac: Internet Explorer, Firefox, Opera, Netscape, Mozilla, OS X Firefox, SeaMonkey, Linux Chrome, and OS X Chrome.

I’ve personally checked out the following Flash checkers sites, and I’ll be delivering a bit of commentary on each. And, as always, make sure you have a good anti-virus program installed before you start roaming around the Internet.

Checkers Flash Game – This simple flash game starts right up with a high-speed Internet connection and allows players to dive into a checkers contest. I only played one game, but I ended up winning with eight remaining pieces and two kings on the board. The plain white background doesn’t distract from the gameplay, and there are no annoying ads or pop-ups to wade through. If you’re looking for a simple and quick game of Flash checkers, this option is a winner on all fronts.

Koala Checkers – This version of Flash checkers has the same plain white background as the previous entry. It took about four seconds to load on my high-speed connection. The visual presentation is different in that the board is viewed from a tilted side angle instead of overhead. Also, the pieces are green and white instead of the usual red and black. Each checker also has a crazy-looking koala’s face on it. The player gets to be green by default, and that allows them to make the first move. Capturing an opposing piece or getting kinged results in some bizarre sound effects, and the little koala face changes slightly when it becomes a king. Winning the game results in some brief musical fanfare, and your remaining pieces will bounce up and down on the board. The only downside: My pop-up blocker informed me that it had served its purpose when I first visited the site (but that was the only time).

Traditional Checkers Flash Game – This Flash checkers  game took about 12 seconds to load. Before you begin, you’ll be presented with two options for gameplay. The first is “official play,” which means that jumps are mandatory and you must move a piece if you touch it. The second option, “Grandpa play,” allows you to change your mind after touching a piece, and all jumps are optional. I chose official play, and the game started right up. Pieces are displayed in red and white, with red making the first move. The game board looks to be made of wood, and it sits atop a virtual table of green marble. My opponent proposed a draw near the end of the game, but I refused and eliminated them in the following move. The intelligence behind the game leaves something to be desired, though, as it passed up a number of wise moves in favor of useless maneuvers. Note to parents: If your child wants to play Flash checkers online, you might pass up this site. There’s a sidebar with other suggested games, and several of them feature women who are nearly naked and titles such as “Sexy Solitaire” and “Undress a Girl.”

Checkers Fun – I was impressed by all the options available to the player. First, you can choose from an overhead view of the board or a first-person perspective. Next, you can choose whether you start as red or black. Finally, you’ll be asked to choose between an easy or hard difficulty setting. When one of your checker pieces reaches the opponent’s back row, there’s a few seconds of music followed by the piece being transformed into a cool-looking crown. The easy level lived up to its name, and I won my game with eight pieces left (and just one king). The number of moves are continuously displayed, and you’ll be given a running score based on how many of the opposing pieces you can capture. And if you’ve got a short attention span, the “last move” button will allow you to see the previous move at any time.

Play Checkers – You’ll be forced to sit through a 30 second commercial while the game loads. Next, you’ll be asked to select your color (red or black) and enter your name. The game offers a unique feature that allows a player to see all legal moves for a piece simply by clicking on it. I won my game in 2 minutes and 41 seconds (with 8 pieces and two kings remaining), but the computer made a number of bonehead plays. Still one can’t expect a free flash version to be as tough as a real-life opponent.

While all games of Flash checkers are essentially the same, each site adds a few wrinkles to keep things fresh. The next time you’re searching for a new method of creative loafing or preparing for an online checkers tournament, be sure to give these versions a try. You might even decide to abandon games like chess and focus entirely on this masterpiece of simplicity.