Copyright (c) 2001 W. D. Troyka

Ugly Duck is played on a 5x5 board with the following setup:

DUCK - A duck moves one cell orthogonal and diagonal forward
Ducks capture diagonal forward. Captures are not mandatory.
A duck reaching last row is promoted to a swan.
SWAN - A swan moves one cell orthogonal and diagonal backward
Swans capture diagonal backward. Captures are not mandatory.
GOAL - Wins the player who first moves a swan into his first row.

Some playing tips are given by the author: Attack with three or four ducks and leave the remaining one or two behind to defend. When a forward duck promotes to a swan, use the rear ducks to divert the opponent to one side and create a path for the swan. Because the pieces must keep moving forward, the game develops quickly and draws are impossible.

There is a ZRF to play Ugly Duck with Zillions

An example

If Black moves one of his ducks to cell [1] he already has a major positional advantage. Duck at d2 must capture it (or else, Black can to a Swan without any opposition. Then Black recaptures the cell and gets the way to promotion.