Dama or Turkish draughts is mainly played in Turkey and other countries in the Middle East. Uncrowned pieces are called pioni and crowned pieces are called dama.

Dama moves
Figure 2: Dama moves
Dama board
Figure 1: Dama board


Dama is played on 8 x 8 uncheckered board. Each player has 16 pieces usually black and red or white which are placed on the second and third ranks (Figure 1). The goal is to capture all your opponent’s pieces or prevent him moving.

The players decide who will start by some suitable means and then the players take turns with white starting first. A piece can only move orthogonally one square at a time forward or to the side (Figure 2A).

Dama capture
Figure 3: Dama capture


A piece captures by jumping orthogonally either forwards or to the side over a single opponent’s piece onto a vacant square immediately beyond it (Figure 3A). Multiple captures are allowed and each captured piece is removed from the board before the capturing piece continues jumping. If a player is able to capture an opponent’s piece he must do so.

Any piece that reaches the opponent’s back rank becomes a Queen (Dama). A Queen can move orthogonally any number of vacant squares like a Rook in Chess (Figure 2B). To capture a Queen jumps orthogonally forwards or backwards over a single opponent’s piece to land on any vacant square beyond the captured piece (Figure 3B). A piece can capture a Queen and vice-versa.

The first player to capture all his opponent’s pieces or block all his opponent’s pieces so that he cannot move wins. If the same position is encountered three times the game results in a draw.