Nine Men’s Morris is one of the oldest board games in the world. Examples have been found in Egyptian temples, Bronze Age burial sites, Viking funeral ships and at Troy. The playing of the game appears frequently in the medieval writings of France, Germany and Britain. A game is played in William Shakespeare’s play A Midsummer Night’s Dream. In Germany and France the game is called the Game of Mill, or simply Mill. This refers to one of the objects of the game, which is to place three playing pieces in a row. This is called a mill.
Each player has nine pieces, or “men”, which move among the board’s twenty-four intersections. The object of the game is to leave the opposing player with fewer than three pieces or, as in checkers, no legal moves.
Placing the Pieces
The game begins with an empty board. Players take turns placing their pieces on empty intersections. If a player is able to form a row of three pieces along one of the board’s lines, he has a “mill” and may remove one of his opponent’s pieces from the board; removed pieces may not be placed again. Players must remove any other pieces first before removing a piece from a formed mill. Once all eighteen pieces have been placed, players take turns moving.
Moving the Pieces
To move, a player slides one of his pieces along a board line to an empty adjacent intersection. If he cannot do so, he has lost the game. As in the placement stage, a player who aligns three of his pieces on a board line has a mill and may remove one of his opponent’s pieces, avoiding the removal of pieces in mills if at all possible. Any player reduced to two pieces is unable to remove any more opposing pieces and thus loses the game.
Each player takes turns to place their 9 men on any available spot of the board.
Players then take turns to move their men around the board, on to any connected empty spots. When a player creates a line or Mill or 3 Men, they can remove one of their opponent’s men from the board. But they can not remove a men thast is part of a Mill.
The winner is the player who reduce their opponent to just 2 men or blocks all of their men from moving.