Chess, and its Variants

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serleran
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Chess, and its Variants

Post by serleran »

Please discuss your favorite version of chess, and, if possible, provide links. Gary Gygax' variants are acceptable to discuss. I'm just looking for new, and interesting, ways to play this ancient game... and possibly, to include as a "game-within-a-game" element in a module.

Anyway, I really like Hnefatafl, or Viking Chess, because it is very different than what I've seen before. One side starts off with, what seems, a severe advantage, having more pieces, but limited movement... and the other starts with less, but more flexibility. Its a highly strategic game of attack, retreat, and defense. I recommend giving it a try if you've never played it before.

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miller6
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Post by miller6 »

If you wanna try an interesting way to play chess...play the really old way (king starts in his corner, queen starts in her corner and both rooks start in the middle). If I recall correctly, that's the way the game used to be played in the middle ages before they decided to change the starting positions.

Or try the 8 queens puzzle, if you haven't already. Clear the chess board, then take 8 pawns of the same color and pretend they're all queens. See if you can fit all 8 on the chess board without any of them being in line to capture another. It's difficult, but possible none the less. If you need a hint, just reply to this message and I'll post a clue on the board.

Brian Miller
Promoting C&C at Gary Con and LGGC since 2005.

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miller6
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Post by miller6 »

As for using chess as a game within an RPG game...here's a nasty little chess board artifact I put in a dungeon. I call it the soul swapping chess board.

A character sits down to play a game of chess with the ghost of the last loser (who's soul is bound to the chess board, waiting for someone to lose).

During the game, each pawn captured costs the opponent 1 hit point and the capturing player gains that 1 hit point.

1st knight captured=1 dexterity point, 2nd knight = 1 charisma point

1st bishop captured=1 intelligence point, 2nd bishop= 1 wisdom point

1st rook captured= 1 strength point, 2nd rook=1 constitution point

Capturing the opponent's queen steals a level from the opponent

Capturing their king ends the game.

The loser's soul is trapped in the board until they beat somone else in a game. All hit points, attribute and level losses are gained by the player that makes the capture and are PERMANENT as are all losses. You can only win once, but the loser can keep playing different opponents until they finally win and escape from the board. When the loser of the first game wins the next or later game, their soul goes into the loser of that game's body (which is probably short a few hit points, attribute points, and a level), rather than going back to their own.

It may sound monty-haulish at first, but most often, the trade off of pieces captured versus pieces lost keeps the character's gains to a minimal. Most players end up wishing they hadn't played.

If you use it in a killer dungeon, I wouldn't run that dungeon too often.

Also, I have a copy of an article I wrote that was published in polyhedron magazine for Living City called "Marbol Chessings Chess Shop". If you want a copy let me know.

Brian Miller
Promoting C&C at Gary Con and LGGC since 2005.

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Rhuvein
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Post by Rhuvein »

Never played any variants, but I do recall the PC game Battle Chess which was animated chess pieces fighting it out. It was hilarious, but very taxing to my computer (at that time).

I played chess years and ago and then recently when my daughter took an interest. We ran Chessmaster 7000 for a while. Good game. 8)
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Count Rhuveinus - Lejendary Keeper of Castle Franqueforte

"Enjoy a 'world' where the fantastic is fact and magic really works!" ~ Gary Gygax

"By the pricking of my thumbs, Something wicked this way comes:" - Macbeth
Count Rhuveinus - Lejendary Keeper of Castle Franqueforte

"Enjoy a 'world' where the fantastic is fact and magic really works!" ~ Gary Gygax

"By the pricking of my thumbs, Something wicked this way comes:" - Macbeth

cleaverthepit
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Post by cleaverthepit »

damn you robert. i have never seen nor heard of that version of chess - where can i buy it and/or should I just make my own.

davis

serleran
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Post by serleran »

Purchase here

Or you can find a copy of Dragon Magazine #128 or The Best of Dragon Games (the box set) released in 1990.

But, for you, Davis, I suggest getting it from ASS (Altenburger und Stralsunder Spielkarten-Fabriken).

Heheh.

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Traveller
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Post by Traveller »

For virtually any version of Chess you can think of, try http://www.chessvariants.org.

Perhaps one of the variants I like the most is Christian Freeling's Grand Chess.

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