Reversi (also marketed by Pressman under the trade name Othello) is a board game involving abstract strategy and played by two players on a board with 8 rows and 8 columns and a set of distinct pieces for each side. Pieces typically are disks with a light and a dark face, each side belonging to one player. The player’s goal is to have a majority of their colored pieces showing at the end of the game, turning over as many of their opponent’s pieces as possible.
Othello was invented by Japanese game enthusiast, Goro Hasegawa in 1971. He chose James R. Becker, to help him develop and market the game. Inspired by the ancient Chinese strategy game ‘Go‘, Hasegawa sought to create a game that was rich in strategy, but still approachable by the casual player. Becker simplified the game play, coined the tagline, ‘A Minute to Learn…A Lifetime to Master’ and named this new game after Shakespeare’s classic play, because of the black and white disks. Othello was first introduced in Japan in 1973, by Tsukuda Original Co., who at Becker’s suggestion organized the Japanese Othello Association.
Info gleaned from Wikipedia