Copyright (c) 2000 Jeff Roy

The original game presented by Jeff Roy is played on a 3x3 or 4x4 board (he implemented it on  Zillions), he also presented 3 types of game (see below). I present a variant played on a 8x8 board. Each player begins with 8 stones as follows. 

MOVING - Each stone may move N cells on any direction or combination of directions
E.g., if a stone can move 4 cells, it may move 1 cell up, 2 cells left and then 1 cell down.
At the beginning, each stone may move 1 cell.
CAPTURING - Stones may capture opponent stones. If a piece makes a capture before it has used all of the movement available to it that move, it may continue to make additional captures until it has moved its limit.
After a stone is captured, all opponent's stones increase they movement range by 1 unit.
So,  capturing makes the opponent's army stronger.
GOAL - Wins who captures all opponent's stones, or if he reduces his opponent to one stone without losing any of his own stones.
VARIANTS - Jeff propose two other setups:
Drop Setup - The board starts empty. Each player alternate and drops all of his stones into the board on any empty cells. After that, the game continues as usual.
Free Setup - Players do not have any restriction when to drop or move.

An example

Black has only 5 stones, so each one has a move range of 3 cells. Black may move d3:e4:d5:e6, capturing 3 White stones. After that, each White stone has a 4 move range, but that is not enough to capture all Black stones.

A good playing tactic is when the mutual capturing starts, each player must try to spread his stones as much as possible, to avoid multiple captures, and thus leading to a quick endgame. Don't forget that an opponent with just one stone, can move and capture on 8 adjacent cells! 

Jeff told me the following: I haven't really tried playing the game on boards as large as 8x8, but my fear is that on a large board the best strategy would be not to capture any of your opponent's pieces, so the game would always be a draw. [...] 4x4 free seems to be the best version, although the setup versions are a good introduction to the game.

If Jeff is right, then the larger versions of Huntsmen should be changed if people want to play them. Some options would be (a) capture is mandatory, (b) pieces cannot move backwards (and then would stay useless on the last rank)...

Check a more recent and related game by the same author, Annuvin.