Official rules for the game Othello


Official rules



The object of the game is to have the majority of discs facing up on the board showing one's own colour at the end of the game.


Each player takes 32 discs and chooses one colour to use throughout the game. Black places two black discs and White places two white discs as shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1: The game always begins with this setup.

A move consists of "outflanking" your opponent's disc(s), then flipping the outflanked disc(s)to your colour. 
To outflank means to place a disc on the board so that your opponent's row (or rows) of disc(s) is bordered at each
end by a disc of your colour. (A "row" may be made up of one or more discs).

Here's one example:

White disc A was already in place on the board. The placement of white disc B outflanks the row of three black discs.
White flips the outflanked discs and now the row looks like this:


1. Black always moves first.

2. If on your turn you cannot outflank and flip at least one opposing disc, your turn is forfeited and your opponent moves
again. However, if a move is available to you, you may not forfeit your turn. 

Figure 2: Disc placed

Figure 3: These discs flipped

4. Players may not skip over their own colour disc(s) to outflank an opposing disc. (See Figure 4).

Figure 4: This disc outflanks and flips White disc 1 ONLY.

5. Disc(s) may only be outflanked as a direct result of a move and must fall in the direct line of the disc placed down.
(See Figures 5 and 6).

Figure 5: Disc placed here

Figure 6: These 2 discs flipped. Discs 1 and 2 are not flipped (even though they appear to be outflanked)..

6. All discs outflanked in any one move must be flipped, even if it is to the player's advantage not to flip them at all. 

7. Once a disc is placed on a square, it can never be moved to another square later in the game. 

8. When it is no longer possible for either player to move, the game is over. Discs are counted and the player with the majority of their colour showing is the winner.

Note: It is possible for a game to end before all 64 squares are filled.



Black always moves first. A black disc can be placed on square C4, D3, E6 or F5 to outflank a white disc. Black decides to place a disc on square C4.
(See figure 7).

Figure 7

The outflanked white disc between the two black discs is flipped over.
(See Figure 8).

Figure 8

It is now White’s turn. A white disc can be placed on square C3; E3 or C5 to outflank a black disc. White decides to place a disc on C3. (See Figure 9).

Figure 9

The outflanked black disc between the two white discs is flipped over. (See Figure 10)

Figure 10

The game continues in this way until neither player can move. The player with the most discs at this point is the winner.