Amazons Information

Topic Editor: Richard Lorentz

Contributions are welcome and the ICGA will, with permission, list contributor's names and email addresses on its Contributor's page.


Amazons is a fairly new game, invented in 1988 by Walter Zamkauskas of Argentina and is a trademark of Ediciones de Mente. In the early stages of a game there are hundreds of legal moves from which to choose. Also, since the game is quite new, there is no collection of literature and experience to help guide the player (and the programmer) in choosing good moves. There are no opening books. There are no well-understood middle game strategies. Even the endgame, though seemingly simpler than the other phases of the game, still poses its share of difficulties. These are some of the reasons Amazons is an exciting game to play and a difficult game to program.

Rules of the Game

Amazons can be played on boards of arbitrary size, however, it is usually played on a 10 x 10 board. The two players, white and black are each given four amazons in predefined locations.

  • On a 10 x 10 board, the white player starts with amazons on locations a4, d1, g1, and j4, while the black player begins with amazons on a7, d10, g10, and j7.
  • The white player makes the first move. Each move contains two mandatory parts: The player's amazon moves like a chess queen - any number of squares in a horizontal, vertical or diagonal line. Once it gets to its final position, the amazon throws an arrow that also moves like a chess queen. The arrow permanently blocks the board square it lands in.
  • Both the amazon and the arrow it throws must move along a line that is not obstructed by another amazon or an arrow.
  • The last player able to complete a move wins the game

Coming Events

Recent Events

Services and Sources of Information

Game-playing Servers

Programs and Programmers

  • Amazong - Jens Lieberum (University of Basel, Switzerland)

  • Amsbot - Michael Buro (University of Alberta, Canada)

  • Anky - Patrick Hensgens (University of Maastricht, The Netherlands)

  • Antiope - Theodore Tegos (University of Alberta, Canada) -- currently unavailable

  • Arrow - Martin Müller (University of Alberta, Canada)

  • Gamazons - Ron Yorgason, et. al.

  • Invader - Richard Lorentz (California State University, Northridge)

  • Tanazon - Yasushi Tanase (currently visiting University of Alberta, Canada)

  • Yamazon - Hiroshi Yamashita


Chronological list of known papers concerning Amazons

  • E. R. Berlekamp.  Sums of 2 X N Amazons. In F. Thomas Bruss and Lucien le Cam, eds. "GameTheory, Optimal Stopping, Probability and Statistics: Papers in honor of Thomas S. Ferguson". Institute of Mathematical Statistics Lecture Notes--Monograph Series, vol.35. Beechwood, Ohio: Institute of Mathematical Statistics, 2000.
  • M. Buro.  Simple Amazons Endgames and Their Connection to Hamilton Circuits in Cubic Subgrid Graphs. In T. Marsland and I. Frank, editors, Proceedings of the Second International Conference on Computers and Games, CG00, volume 2063 of Lecture Notes in Computer Science, pages 250-261, Springer-Verlag New York, Inc., 2001.
  • M. Müller and T. Tegos. Experiments in Computer Amazons. To appear in R. Nowakowski, editor, More Games of No Chance, Cambridge University Press, 2001.
  • H. Avetisyan and R. Lorentz.  Selective Search in an Amazons Program.  To appear in Proceedings of the Third International Conference on Computers and Games, CG02, Springer-Verlag New York, Inc., 2002.
  • R. Lorentz.  Finding Territory in Amazons. Seventh Computer Olympiad Computer-Games Workshop, Maastricht, The Netherlands, July, 2002.

Some Pictures

(Click on picture for full version)

Olympiad Medal Winners Lorentz, Lieberum and De Koning Lieberum, Tegos, De Koning, Kajihara and Tanase(sitting) at the Olympiad De Koning, Lorentz, Kajihara and Tanase at the Olympiad