About Galactanet
Zoomer Matrix Solitaire

Gauss is a game of pure strategy. If you don't like chess, you won't like Gauss. If you do like chess, you might like Gauss. Simple as that.

The players

Gauss is a two player game. One player plays White, the other plays Black.

The Pieces

The Spark:

Quantity: Each player has 6 sparks.
Movement: A Spark can move any distance vertically or horizontally, but not through or over other pieces. Spark can also move 1 step diagonally.

Killing Enemies: Sparks by themselves can not capture anything. But if two sparks "gate" any number of enemy pieces, those enemy pieces are killed (taken off the board, never to be seen again). Sparks gate enemy pieces by being on each end of a continuous line of them.

Sparks can also create a gated square on the board. Any enemy piece stepping in to that square will die. Enemy pieces can not pass through that gate, though they can move into it and die if they wish.

All gating in Gauss is done simultaneously at the end of movement. So there are cases where the player might feel it's worth it to "suicide" a spark of his in order to kill enemy pieces.

The Surge:

Quantity: Each player has 3 Surges.
Movement: A Surge can move like a Spark. Also, it can conduct through friendly and enemy sparks and surges. It can come off the line at any point adjacent to any of the Sparks and Surges it is connected to. As you can see, if you set up your sparks right, Surges can have incredible mobility.

Killing Enemies: Surges work exactly as sparks when it comes to killing enemies. They gate. They can be mixed and matched with sparks in any combination. Think of them as exactly like a Spark when it comes to taking enemy pieces.

Like Sparks, Surges can be involved in making gated squares on the board.

The Degausser:

Quantity: Each player has 2 Degaussers.
Movement: A Degausser can take 1 step in any direction, but not on to a friendly piece.

Killing Enemies: Degaussers simply take whatever enemy piece they land on (like a chess piece would). They are the most powerful pieces in the game.

The IC:

Quantity: Each player has 1 IC.
Movement: The IC can take 1 step in any direction, but not on to any piece other than the enemy IC.

Killing Enemies: The IC can take the enemy IC by stepping on him, like a Degausser would. Other than that, the IC is completely helpless. It can not take Sparks, Surges, or Degaussers. Its ability to move is primarily for running away from danger. It is the weakest piece on the board, and the one you have to protect.

The Corners

The four corner squares of the board are instant death to any piece that moves in to them. Though all gating is processed as normal before that piece dies.

There are many scenereos where it is worth it to go to the corner. Usually to trade a Spark or Surge for some enemy piece.

Play and Objective

The inital setup of the board is this:

For his turn, a player may make a move with any one piece of his. Then it becomes the other player's turn. White gets the first move.

The winner of the game is the first player to take the other player's IC piece.


There are four scenereos in which the game will be a Draw, with neither player winning.

Draw by Agreenemnt: If both players agree to Draw at any point in the game, the game is a Draw.

Insufficient Material: If the only pieces remaining are the two ICs and only one Spark or Surge, there is insufficient material to force a win, and the game is automatically a Draw.

Repitition Draw: If the exact same board position (all pieces in the same places) is repeated 3 times during the game, the game is automatically a Draw.

Inactivity Draw: If 40 turns go by (each player moves 40 times) and no pieces are taken, the game is automatically a Draw.

Note: Unlike Chess, it is not illegal to move your IC into a position where your opponent can take it. Consequently, there is no "Stalemate" caused by having no moves other than to move your IC in to danger.