The Chess Variant Pages




TRUBIX

by David Short

Initial setup


                              +---+
                              |*K*|          10
                      +---+---Z---Z---+---+
                      |*@*|*N*|*Q*|*N*|*@*|   9
                      +---Z---+---+---Z---+
                      |*$*|*$*|*$*|*$*|*$*|   8
                      +---+---+---+---+---+
                      |*@*|:::|*$*|:::|*@*|   7
                      +---X---+---+---X---+
                          |   |:::|   |       6
                          +---+---+---+
                          |:::|   |:::|       5
                          +---+---+---+
                          |   |:::|   |       4
                      +---X---+---+---X---+
                      | @ |:::| $ |:::| @ |   3
                      +---+---+---+---+---+
                      |:$:| $ |:$:| $ |:$:|   2
                      +---Z---+---+---Z---+
                      | @ |:N:| Q |:N:| @ |   1
                      +---+---Z---Z---+---+
                              |:K:|           0
                              +---+
                        a   b   c   d   e


Names of the pieces

K
King
Q
Queen
N
Knight
$
Woozan
@
Fleurbic

Please note that BLACK pieces are surrounded by **asterisks** and dark squares on the board are designated by ":::" Thus, the diagram is similar to those used on Richard's Play By Email Server.

Movement of the pieces

Unless otherwise noted, a piece captures the same way it moves.
KING
Moves like a regular chess king
QUEEN
Moves like a regular chess queen
KNIGHT
Moves like a regular chess knight
WOOZAN
Moves one square, forwards or backwards, and captures one square diagonally forwards or backwards. A WOOZAN in the player's second rank (White's rank 2 or Black's rank 8) and on its initial move of the game may move two squares forwards (but not backwards). White's WOOZAN on c3 and Black's WOOZAN on c7 may not make an initial two-step move.

Also note that a WOOZAN of EITHER color may move from a3 to b4, from b4 to a3, from e3 to d4, from d4 to e3, from b6 to a7, from a7 to b6, from d6 to e7, or from e7 to d6. A WOOZAN on its inital move of the game may move from (in white's case) a2 to b4 or from e2 to d4, or (in black's case) from a8 to b6 or from e8 to d6, but only if the intervening square is unoccupied. A WOOZAN may not move and capture with the same two-step move. To draw attention to this fact those squares are marked by an "X"

For example,

                              +---+
                              |:::|          10
                      +---+---Z---Z---+---+
                      |   |:::|   |:::|   |   9
                      +---Z---+---+---Z---+
                      |:::|   |:::|   |:::|   8
                      +---+---+---+---+---+
                      |   |:::|   |:::|   |   7
                      +---X---+---+---X---+
                          |   |:::|   |       6
                          +---+---+---+
                          |:::|   |:::|       5
                          +---+---+---+
                          |*$*|:::|   |       4
                      +---X---+---+---X---+
                      |   |:::| $ |:::|   |   3
                      +---+---+---+---+---+
                      |:$:|*Q*|:::|*N*|:$:|   2
                      +---Z---+---+---Z---+
                      |   |:::|   |:::|   |   1
                      +---+---Z---Z---+---+
                              |:::|           0
                              +---+
                        a   b   c   d   e
The White WOOZAN on c3 could move to c2 or c4, could capture the Black WOOZAN on b4, capture the Black queen on b2 or capture the Black knight on d2. It could not make a two-step move. The White WOOZAN on e2 could move to e3 or d4 if on its first move. It could also move to e1. The White WOOZAN on a2 could move to a1 or a3, but could not move to b4 nor capture the Black WOOZAN on b4.
                              +---+
                              |:::|          10
                      +---+---Z---Z---+---+
                      |   |:::|   |:::|   |   9
                      +---Z---+---+---Z---+
                      |:::|   |:::|   |:::|   8
                      +---+---+---+---+---+
                      |   |:::|   |:::|   |   7
                      +---X---+---+---X---+
                          |   |:::|   |       6
                          +---+---+---+
                          |:::|   |:::|       5
                          +---+---+---+
                          |   |:::|   |       4
                      +---X---+---+---X---+
                      |   |*$*|   |:::|*@*|   3
                      +---+---+---+---+---+
                      |:$:|   |:$:|   |:$:|   2
                      +---Z---+---+---Z---+
                      |   |*Q*|   |*N*|   |   1
                      +---+---Z---Z---+---+
                              |:::|           0
                              +---+
                        a   b   c   d   e

In the next diagram above, the White WOOZAN on c2 could move to c1, c3 or c4 (only to c4 if it was its initial move of the game), or could capture the Black WOOZAN on b3, capture the Black queen on b1 or capture the Black knight on d1. The White WOOZAN on a2 could move to a3 or to b4 if on its first move. It could also move to a1, or capture the Black WOOZAN on b3 or the Black queen on b1. The White WOOZAN on e2 could move to e1, but could not move forwards because its way is blocked by the Black FLUERBIC on e3. It could also capture the Black knight on d1.

WOOZAN PROMOTION: A White WOOZAN, upon reaching rank #9, may promote to a knight or FLEURBIC. Only by reaching the square c10 may it promote to a queen. However, a White WOOZAN may enter c10 from b9 or d9 (as well as c9). A Black WOOZAN, upon reaching rank #1, may promote to a knight or FLEURBIC. Only by reaching the square c0 may it promote to a queen. However, a Black WOOZAN may enter c0 from b1 or d1 (as well as c1). Also, a White WOOZAN on a8 may move to b9, or on e8 may move to d9. Likewise, a Black WOOZAN on a2 may move to b1, or on e2 may move to d1. To draw attention to this fact, these squares are marked by a "Z". These special rules relating to the movement of WOOZANs makes it possible for them to move back towards the inside of the board if they are on the outside of the board. Only White WOOZANs make use of the special moves on Black's side of the board on the "Z" squares, and only Black WOOZANs on White's side of the board make use of the special moves on the "Z" squares. WOOZANS of EITHER color may make use of the special moves on the "X" squares.

There is no restriction on what a piece may legally promote to regardless of how many other pieces one still has on the board. You cannot promote to a king or any other type of chess piece not used in this game. A WOOZAN moves exactly like a regular chess pawn, except that it may also move and capture backwards as well as forwards. It may only make a two-step initial move forwards, not backwards.

Please note that a White WOOZAN on the 9th rank (or a Black WOOZAN on the 1st rank) may remain un-promoted and remain a WOOZAN, so that it might be able to promote to a queen upon reaching c10 (or c0 in Black's case). An unpromoted WOOZAN in the 9th/1st rank may not be promoted to a knight or FLEURBIC simply by remaining in that rank and promoting before the turn. If the player leaves it unpromoted and then later changes his mind and wishes to promote it in the 9th/1st rank, it would have to move backwards and then forwards again.

FLEURBIC
A FLEURBIC moves ONE or TWO squares in ANY direction (horizontally, vertically or diagonally) and may also JUMP over pieces of either color when moving two squares. When making a jump, it must either land on an empty square or capture an enemy piece. The jumped piece is unaffected. The easiest way to remember how a FLEURBIC moves is that it moves exactly like a CHAMPION in OMEGA CHESS, except that a FLEURBIC MAY move exactly one square diagonally, whereas a CHAMPION may not.

Object of the game

The object of the game is to checkmate the opponent's king. Stalemate is a draw. There is no castling in the game, nor en passant. There is nothing special about c0 or c10. Any piece which can legally enter those squares may do so.

Three-fold repetition of position and 50 consecutive moves without a capture also result in a draw. If all material is captured by both sides and it gets down to lone king vs. lone king, that is also a draw.

General comments

Because 28 of the 41 squares are initially occupied, things are likely to be a little crowded at first until some material is captured. The knight is probably the weakest piece on the board, and is probably best used for defensive purposes rather than attack. The FLEURBIC is probably stronger than a WOOZAN. The queen becomes an extremely powerful piece here, but is also very vulnerable to attack by weaker pieces. The king is not likely to be used as an attacking piece, unless an endgame is reached with only kings and WOOZANS left on the board. Clearly some pieces are going to be limitted in their mobility early in the game because of the congestion. As more pieces are traded off and the pieces gain more mobility, things should begin to get more interesting.

ZRF-file

Here is a Zillions of Games implementation of Trubix: trubix.zip. This ZRF-file has been made by Peter Aronson.
Written by David B. Schmidt.
WWW page created: October 31, 2000. Last modified: November 3, 2000.