Java Othello

No Java, no Othello.


Choose which colours you want to play and which you want the computer to play. Then simply follow the rules of Othello laid out below. If you want to be shown which squares are playable then tick the box. You can also get the computer to suggest one of these moves to you. Press ‘Reset board’ to start the next game.

Rules of Othello

The game of Othello is played on an eight by eight board using sixty-four double sided pieces, white on one side and black on the other.

  1. The players decide who is to be white and who is to be black. The same colours are kept throughout the game.
  2. The initial board configuration is as shown in Figure 1.

    Figure 1
    Figure 1

  3. Black makes the first move.
  4. On every move a disc must be placed next to an opponent’s disc, either sideways, lengthways or diagonally. The disc placed must trap an opponent’s disc (or discs) between the one placed and one already on the board in any direction. In Figure 1, A, B, C and D, represent the moves available to black. If black decides to place his disc in position A, he has captured the white disc E shown in Figure 2 and turns it over so that it is black side up.

    Figure 2
    Figure 2

  5. Now it is white’s turn to move. Figure 3 shows the moves now available.

    Figure 3
    Figure 3

  6. Players now continue to take turns.
    • The number of discs trapped is not limited to one.
    • A disc or discs can only be captured as a direct result of a move.
    • If it is impossible to capture one of your opponent’s pieces when it is your move then you miss that turn.
  7. For example, black placing a piece at position A in Figure 4 results in pieces being captured in all 8 directions, however, the piece at position B is not captured.

    Figure 4
    Figure 4

  8. Play continues until one of the following occurs.
    • The board is filled.
    • One player has no pieces of his colour left on the board.
    • No further moves are possible for either player.
  9. At this time the discs are counted and the player with the most pieces of his colour on the board is declared the winner.