Proteus is a complex game played with trivial rules and
equipment. The complexity arises from the way the
rules of the game change as you play.
Opening: The board starts empty.
Players alternate placing one of the 9 tiles, or one of their three
All tiles and pieces are either round, square, or
triangular. When a player piece is combined with
a tile the same shape, a rule associated with that tile is
activated. Moves in the opening phase are constrained by the
rule that exactly one tile of each color must be
Red tiles change
the rule for moving player pieces.
change the rule for swapping tiles.
change the rule for winning the game.
Play: after the pieces have all been placed,
and all three rules selected, players alternate either moving one of
their pieces, or swapping two of the tiles in accordance with the
current rule. Where the new tile/piece combinations
have the same shape, the corresponding rule is activated, and the
previous rule is deactivated. There are a
couple of not-quite-elegant subtleties: If two inactive rules would
both be activated at the end of a turn, then neither is
activated. If both players would be in a winning position
after a move, then neither player wins, and the game
Humans can't cope with change. The robot looks nearly