Byte is played on a checkers board. Players move pieces, forming stacks. When a stack of eight is formed, the player who owns the top piece scores a point. 24 pieces make three stacks: the player with two points wins the game. You can move pieces between stacks, if you can move your own piece (and everything on top of it) to an adjacent stack so that the piece you are moving moves higher and stack stays below nine pieces.
I though Byte was a bit dry and boring. I guess I’d like it better played face-to-face, and I do confess I hadn’t understood the rules completely. Still, it wasn’t too much fun. It would take more effort to figure out the game so I would enjoy it, and it doesn’t feel worth the effort.
Still, for fans of dry abstract games, Byte is worth checking out. Go see the Byte homepage, which has rules and FAQs. At least the designer doesn’t lack ambition, let me quote from the FAQ:
Byte fills a huge void. Before Byte there was a vast oversupply of Checkers sets. And a total absence of high quality games to play on them. Byte has unbridled ambition. I believe it will surpass Reversi in popularity within ten years.
Let me say I’ll doubt that, but hey, more power for Mark Steere if that really happens.