What’s in the Box? Checkers Equipment for Beginners

When you’re new to the world of checkers, understanding the equipment involved is your first step towards enjoying the game. This guide is aimed at beginners, and we’ll take an in-depth look at the pieces and boards used in checkers and how to choose the right set for your gaming needs.

Understanding Checkers Equipment

Checkers, known as draughts in some parts of the world, is a classic two-player strategy board game. The game’s equipment is simple, but the choice of pieces and boards can greatly affect your gaming experience.

Let’s break down the essential components of checkers equipment:

1. The Game Board:

The standard checkers board is an 8×8 grid, resulting in 64 alternating dark and light squares. You’ll find boards in various materials, sizes, and designs. Here are some key considerations for choosing a checkers board:

  • Material: Checkers boards are made from various materials, including wood, plastic, and cardboard. Wooden boards are sturdy and offer a classic look. Plastic boards are more affordable and portable. Cardboard boards are often found in travel sets.
  • Size: Standard boards have 2.25-inch (5.7 cm) squares, but you can find smaller or larger boards depending on your preference. Larger boards may be suitable for players with visual impairments.
  • Design: Some boards feature decorative patterns or themes, while others are plain and functional. Choose a design that suits your aesthetic taste.

2. The Game Pieces:

Checkers is played with 24 identical pieces, divided into two sets: dark and light. These pieces are often called “men.” When selecting checkers pieces, consider the following:

  • Material: Checkers pieces are typically made of wood or plastic. Wooden pieces provide a traditional feel, while plastic pieces are more affordable and durable.
  • Size: Standard checkers pieces have a diameter of 1 inch (2.54 cm). Ensure that the size is comfortable for your hands and suits the board you choose.
  • King Pieces: In official checkers rules, king pieces are double-stacked men, usually with a crown symbol. Some sets come with these king pieces, while others do not. Decide if you want king pieces in your set.

Choosing the Right Set

Now that you’re familiar with the components of checkers equipment, let’s explore how to choose the right set as a beginner:

  1. Consider Your Budget: Checkers sets are available at various price points. Determine your budget and explore sets within that range. Keep in mind that cost can vary based on materials and craftsmanship.
  2. Think About Material: Decide whether you prefer the traditional charm of wooden equipment or the practicality of plastic. Wooden sets are often seen as more luxurious, while plastic sets are more affordable and durable.
  3. Size Matters: The size of the board and pieces is a crucial factor. Smaller boards are portable and may be ideal for travel, while larger boards provide a more substantial and comfortable playing experience.
  4. Check for King Pieces: If you want to play by official rules, ensure that the set you choose includes king pieces. This adds an extra layer of strategy to the game.
  5. Aesthetics: Personal preference matters. Some people prefer plain, functional sets, while others enjoy decorative boards and pieces. Choose a set that appeals to your taste.
  6. Storage: Checkers sets come with a variety of storage options. Some boards have built-in storage for the pieces, while others include a separate box. Consider how you plan to store your set when it’s not in use.
  7. Quality and Durability: Read reviews and check the quality of the set you’re interested in. Sturdy construction and durability are essential for a lasting gaming experience.
  8. Extras: Some sets come with additional features, such as timers or scorekeeping. Consider whether these extras are important to you.


Now that you’re well-versed in the equipment required for checkers, you can make an informed decision when choosing a set. Whether you opt for a classic wooden board with elegant pieces or a practical plastic set for family fun, your choice will enhance your checkers experience. As a beginner, focus on the basics of equipment, enjoy the game, and, most importantly, have fun competing in this timeless board game.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *