Section 1 - the games that have applets at mindsports
You can't have a high summit without a broad base. As far as the work of Christian Freeling goes these are games that came with the territory. Collateral damage so to speak. At the same time I'm sure most of them will please at least some players.
These are the ones that you can actually play here.
Chess variants
Shakti belongs to the 'Atlantis Triplets', three miniature chess variants based on a shrinking playing field.
Caïssa, the second one of the Triplets introduces the novel 'capture by exchange', which is in fact no capture at all.
The chess pawn moves different from the way it captures. In Loonybird all pieces except the king move different from the way they capture.
Games of elimination
This hexvariant of Sid Sackson's game Focus replaces the artificial 'ceiling' of 5 for the height of a stack, by one equal to the number of adjacent cells, which makes aiming large stacks at 'low capacity' cells very profitable, and the main focuspoint in terms of tactics and strategy.
This flawed masterpiece is definitely somewhat 'over the top' tactically - that's in fact the very source of its flaw. In turnbased play white definitely has an advantage. Not so in over the board play though, because the advantage relies on trial and error.
A pure abstract in disguise: every year on Walpurgis Night the dead at Tinkertown Cemetery rise from their graves to engage in their annual "Kill the Undead Dead" celebration.
Territory and connection games
Contrary to appearances, Dominions is a Go variant. The set of pieces it is played with is provided by the China Labyrinth.
Because of the absence of diagonal cutting points, the hexversion of Sygo puts less emphasis on cutting tactics than the main game. It's appearence is even more 'organic' than the square game and life may be somewhat harder to come by.
Here it's the same: the absence of diagonal cutting points makes for less emphasis on cutting tactics. It makes for a deeply strategic game with increased tension towards the end (in balanced games).
Translating Othello to the hexgrid wasn't all that difficult. The game 'carves' its own grid. Diagonal capture has been omitted for clarity, reducing the number of directions in which captures can be made to even less than the average in the square game.
Mu levis is a multi-player territory game. It has a wild two-player relative that you can find in the Arena.
The goal of Multiplicity is to have a higher score than the opponent. The score is the product of the sizes of all a player's groups. The game uses the Symple move protocol.
'Group penalty' was long considered a connection theme, and Superstar is structured around that premiss. Eventually Symple, the quintessential group penalty game, turned out to be a territorial game of sorts.
A simple territory game with the "one bound - one free" opening protocol that is also featured in Argon and Inertia. It has Othello-like capture.
A simpler implementation of the 'group penalty' theme of Superstar, in cooperation with David J Bush, a world class Twixt player. Simplification is always good, but we failed to do it rigorously enough. Symple later turned out to be the quintessential game on that theme.
Other themes
A capricious race game, in which the 'far wall' is the main obstacle for both players.
A combinatorial quickie, related to Konane. On small boards the second player wins 7 out of 10, and the Axiom program playing against itself suggests that this behaviour casts a long shadow. However, on a 6x6 board humans would have a hard time applying this knowledge.
This is Havannah's support act, a configuration game with three different winning configurations of six stones each - line, triangle and hexagon - and Pente-like capture of adjacent pairs. Highly tactical and very dramatic.
Jump Sturdy is a simple game of breakthrough and race, with a very unusual twist. It has great tactical scope and a profound strategical depth.
A fast accumulative configuration game using the same target forms as Hexade, with multiple options for growth every turn.
You can play this game against an invincible program. You can trick the program by instructing it to occasionally or always play random moves.


You can also play a number of interesting games that are either traditional or the work of fellow inventors.
Chess variants
Invented by Demian Freeling a couple of weeks before his eights birthday, this exotic Xiangqi variant of sorts is razorsharp in the endgame and great fun throughout.
This notorious chess variant by Robert James Fischer bears testimony to the fact that great players do not necessarily make great inventors.
Xiangqi is the traditional Chinese variant of Chess. It somehow froze into its archaic form but yet has a large following. In China.
Games of elimination
Bashni results from introducing a different form of capture in a known framework. In Bashni's case the framework is that of Shashki, the russian 8x8 draughts variant.
Without the late Ljuban Dediç's game Croda, a brilliant attempt to save Draughts from from fading into insignificance by a renown Draughts master, Dameo would not have existed. So in a sense Ljuban succeeded in his mission.
Few games are as dramatic and capricious as Martin Medema's game Explocus, a lucky merger of Focus and and obscure seventies game called Explosion.
Sid Sackson's game, once marketed brilliantly as 'the never get board game', is in fact slightly overrated. The absence of 'advantageous sub-goals to be achieved as calculable signposts along the way' makes it at most an interesting tactical game.
This is International Draughts with a 'specially demoted' king. The net result is that two kings win against one, but the rule cannot avoid the smell of a band aid.
Like its pedecessor Bashni, Lasca results from introducing a different form of capture in a known framework. In Lasca's case the framework is that of Anglo-American Checkers. The game was invented by the then worldchampion Chess, Emanuel Lasker.
Stapeldammen is a Dutch column checkers variant based on International Draughts, but without promotion. Pieces reaching the back rank are stuck, yet in constant danger of getting drawn back into the game because of forced backwards capture.
Territory and connection games
The Game of the Amazons was invented in 1988 by Walter Zamkauskas of Argentina. In the game the 'amazons' move to wall off territory to keep room to move. Eventually one of the players will fail.
Gonnect, sometimes described as 'a love child of Go and Hex', was invented by João Pedro Neto in 2000. It basically links the rules of Go to a different object: to estabish an orthogonal connection between opposite sides of the board, left-right or bottom-up as the case may be.
In Catchup, as long as they differ in size, players' territories consists of their largest groups. If these are the same size, then players' territory consists of their largest group plus their 'next in size', and so on till an unequal territory count results.
Lines of Action (LOA) is a connection game, albeit non-typical. Claude Soucie invented it around 1960. Sid Sackson described it in his first edition of 'A Gamut of Games' (1969).
Some century ago a game called 'Reversi' appeared in England. There's a dispute about its origin: a mr. Lewis Waterman claimed to be the inventor, while a John W. Mollet Esq. claimed it to be merely an adaption of his game 'Annexation'. Will the truth ever emerge?
This game is based on Hex in that it has the same object. However, it replaces the normal move protocol and the pie rule by the Symple move protocol and its embedded balancing rule.
Xodd and Yodd are 'dynamic goal' connection games invented by Luis Bolaños Mures in 2011. They may be considered quintessential non-parity games. Both players control both colors and inverting the goal of the game results in essentially the same game.
Yodd and Xodd are 'dynamic goal' connection games invented by Luis Bolaños Mures in 2011. They may be considered quintessential non-parity games. Both players control both colors and inverting the goal of the game results in essentially the same game.
Other themes
Pente, invented by Gary Gabrel in the seventies, became very popular in the USA in the first half of eighties. The game adds an interesting twist to the general five-in-a-row idea: straight or diagonally adjacent pairs of opponent's stones can be captured in the 'custodian' fashion.



Section 2 - the games that don't have applets, at least not yet
These games by Christian Freeling have no applet, so at least for the moment they're ornamental.
Chess variants
Cyclix, the third one, recycles captured pieces via the king, effectively keeping them 'in play' all the time.
Chakra is an ordinary chess variant with one extraordinary piece: the Transmitter. Consisting of two parts, it is a portal through which pieces can warp.
Games of elimination
Medea introduces the "Transmitter" featured in Chakra to the realm of Draughts, more in particular to Croda, a game by Ljuban Dedić.
Territory and connection games
Argon is a 'dynamic connection' game with two phases, and the "one bound - one free" opening protocol that is also featured in Inertia and Triccs. Though white starts the first phase, the game is balanced by the fact that gameplay decides who starts the second.
Based on the 'custodian' method of capture and the 'symple mechanism', Charybdis adds several new twists to the 'othelloanian' realm of territory games. The hexgrid provides the main game, with the square one as a sidekick.
Of course the sidekick has the advantage of requiring only a chess or draughts board.
Medusa is a Go variant without any ambiguity in its rules, and with the option to actually move groups. Its branch density is staggering, without making the game anymore difficult to 'read' for humans. Making a program for it may not be very tempting for some time to come.
This is Medusa's support act, a simple Go variant with a small body of rules resembling a Swiss watch.
A multi-player territory game that requires over the board agreements and disagreements, treaties and treason, in short, the kind of ad hoc collusionary diplomacy that tends to disagree with turnbased play. The two-player version uses a regular base-10 hexhexboard.
There are several connection games using the 'alquerque' board. This one's distinguishing feature is the choice a player has to either place one stone on a connectivity-8 point, or two stones on two connectivity-4 points.
A connection game of circular reasoning.
A territory game based on a configuration theme of completing squares. Simple, fast and requiring no more than a chess board, a checkers set and a number of markers.
Other themes
It isn't easy to create an abstract game with the flow of an actual game of soccer. Hanniball, a joint effort with Arty Sandler of iGGameCenter, came the other way around: because it displayed the flow of an actual game of soccer, the game was presented as such.
A combinatorial quickie on a 7x7 board, in which one player makes an initial position using 4 white and 3 red men, with no two men occupying a same row or column and red to move. The other next decides whether he will play white or red.
You need a domino set, five different colored pawns, five correspondingly colored dice, a one minute sandtimer and as many beer infested bèta-nerds as the room will accommodate.
Monkey Trap, a miniature relative of Amazons, is a fast fun game for the younger ones that can even be played as a pencil and paper game, with pennies for monkeys.
Pylyx is a simple stacking game in which you must stack up all your pieces to one piece. It's opening protocol is similar to Swish and Squeeze.
Swish and Squeeze are twin bead capture games, but no mancalas. With simple material and without an excessive need to make a meal of it, they are very sharp, well balanced, finite and drawless.
Traxion is a race game featuring the Shogi pawn, the Chess pawn and a 'forward knight' that holds the middle between the Shogi knight and the Chess knight, bringing East and West together.
Christian Freeling's first game is a backgammon type game for two to four, on an each on his own basis. More or less the only dice game in his oeuvre, or one would have to classify Mephisto as such.


These are interesting but as yet ornamental games that are either traditional or the work of fellow inventors.
Games of elimination
A most respectable variant and still a great game. However, Checkers is a proven draw and players must compete in the shadow of perfect play.
A game that relates to Turkish Draughts like Frisian to International. It introduces diagonal movement in an otherwise 'straight' game. A definite step towards modern games like Croda and Dameo.
Fanorona is the national game of Madagascar and the 9x5 'Fanoron-Tsivy', the widest-known variant, is the one we present here. Is the mother of all forms of contact checkers (which to our knowledge amounts to precisely one other game, namely Bushka).
A game that relates to International Draughts like Armenian to Turkish. It introduces square capture in an otherwise 'diagonal' game in a topologically rather curious way going 'back to straight' using half the board, which is no doubt due to the diagonal 'mothergame'.
Here the diagonally opposed forces move orthogonally, in a singlegrid manner. Strategy revolves around promotion, of which there's a lot, due to the special promotion squares.
Hexoust is the hexversion of Mark Steere's game Oust. Preference may well be a matter of taste.
Pilare is a board game designed by Basque game author Jorge Gómez Arrausi. It won a proxime accessit award in the games creation contest of Tona, 2005. It's mechanics bear a strong similarity to mancala games.
Pommel is a hexagonal checkers variant invented by Michael Howe of Connecticut, USA in 2010. It has an interesting feature found in no other checkers variant, namely linear capture by leaping.
Shashki has no precedence of majority capture and consequently no 'sticker' based combinations, but ... it has a 'flying king' that may emerge in the process of capture and proceed as such in the same turn. Hardly enough to 'save' the game as more than recreational.
Where the European branch evolved on a diagonal sub-grid, turkish evolved on a straight grid. Although there's much to say for the latter, Turkish never got to the status that International Draughts once had as an international sport.
Territory and connection games
Slither is a two-player abstract board game invented by Corey Clark in 2010. It emerges from the combination of a clever condition and a clever move protocol. The result is a very dynamic game full of surprising tactics.
Other themes
Dan Troyka's race game of the same name as Christian Freeling's one, was invented in 2000. It has great simplicity and great strategical depth as its hallmarks.
A traditional combinatorial game played in Hawai, based on draughtslike capture. Every move must be a capture. Last to move wins. Columnified, the game became Grabber.
Ordo is a very 'organic' race game with an original way of movement and capture, invented by Dieter Stein in 2009. The inventor proceeded with a faster but not necessarily better version called Ordo-X.