"Impasse" is a unique board game that is notable for its accessibility and potential depth. Invented by Louigi Verona in 2023, it is suitable for all ages and walks of life.

Rule #1 A player can move only one piece at a time.

Rule #2 A piece can be moved one square in any direction.

Rule #3 A move cannot be made into a square that's already occupied by another piece, whether it's an opponent's piece or one's own.

Rule #4 If a valid move is not possible, the player has to pass.

Rule #5 The game starts off with all pieces laid out on the board.

Is there an optimal strategy for the first 5 moves?

There are generally two schools of thought here. One maintains that passing would be optimal. The other was about to voice its opinion, but then decided to pass.

Louigi Verona has suggested a casual opening strategy, which looks like this:

  • Pass - Pass
  • Pass - Pass
  • Pass - Pass
  • Make tea, pass - Pass
  • Pass - Pass

What happens if you remove one piece?

It is argued that removing a piece and giving armies space to battle it out is an untenable option. According to this view, the rules of the game don't specify a way to resolve the conflict. In fact, there is no conflict to speak of: the pieces can potentially only move, but there is no taking. Thus, the only reason there is conflict at all is that no moves are possible and no army wants to budge.

"The act of passing is itself a sign of rebellion," says Dr. Stubbornfield, the prominent Impasse commentator. "Passing means you are not resigning. And not resigning is a sign of character!"

Not everyone agrees. Snide Remarkson, author of the book "Why Impasse is a waste of time", falls on the side of the determinists.

"You have to understand that players have no choice in the matter. You can only pass. There is no option to budge and therefore the act of passing carries little meaning," he says.

"I might have no way to resign, but I reject the option even in theory! Passing is my way of showing it!" snaps Dr. Stubbornfield. We are interviewing them together in the same room, you see.

Is there any point to the game at all?

This is one of those yet unresolved philosophical problems. The general answer is yes, but when you demand specifics, many agree that we are currently at a dead-end. Then they wink at you.