This is the square variant of Sytran.

sytran square base-15 board Sytran is a territory-connection hybrid that takes its placement protocol from Nick Bentley's game Strands and its goal and score system from my own game Symple.

Strands' semi-arbitrary cell-numbering - "semi" because the distribution keeps lower numbers in or near the centre and higher numbers towards or on the edges - has been replaced by a simple centre to edge distribution of double 'rings' with darkening shades of grey representing the numbers.

The game can be played on a base-11, base-15 or base-19 board.

If we consider the centre-cell a 'ring' by definition, then the base-15 board is build of four sets of double rings, each in its own shade of grey, going outwards from light to dark. To these shades the numbers 1 to 4 are assigned, going from the centre to the edge. In these rules the word "ring" will refer to a double ring in a single shade of grey.

The rules are for the base-15 board. The rules for base-11 and base-19 boards are identical but for references to the third or fifth ring.

A 'group' is a maximal set of orthogonally connected stones of the same colour, meaning that part of a group is not a group. A single stone is a group by definition.

  • Each player has a sufficient number of stones of their own colour and places only their own stones.
  • The game starts on an empty board, White plays first, Black is entitled to a swap.
  • Multi-placements require no particular order, but the number of stones that must be placed on a turn, must be equal to the number of the innermost ring on which one or more of these stones are placed.
  • If a stone is placed on the inner ring, it marks the end of the turn. If an innermost stone is placed on the second ring, then 2 stones must be placed, if an innermost stone is placed on the third ring, then it's three stones, if an innermost stone is placed on the fourth ring, then it's four stones.
  • Placement of the required number of stones is mandatory. If less than the required number of cells is vacant, then a player must place a stone on all of them.
  • The game ends when the board is full. Each player scores a point for every stone of their colour, minus P points for every separate group. The penalty 'P' is variable, but its number must be agreed upon before any given game. Highest score wins.

How I invented ... Sytran

Play Sytran Square interactively

Sytran Square © MindSports