The Chess Variant Pages

Mark Hedden wrote to us in January 2000,

Well, It's time for something more calm then my other games, so here's...


One of my favorite non-Chess games has always been International Draughts. However, I have always believed that it is far too limited of a game, and involves far too little strategy, and too much tactics. These are severe faults, and must be corrected. I have seen many attempts at this, most of them being the wonderful games of Christian Freeling's at However, I propose a simpler way of doing this, a simple combination of Chess and Draughts, a game of Chaughts.


r n b q k b n r   8
p * p * p * p *   7
* p * p * p * p   6
* * * * * * * *   5
* * * * * * * *   4
* P * P * P * P   3
P * P * P * P *   2
R N B Q K B N R   1

a b c d e f g h


The pieces in chaughts are mostly the same as those in regular chess, except that pieces capture differently. They all move the same ways, except for the pawn, but they capture differently.

PAWN: The Pawn in this game is simply a super-draughtsman. He moves by moving one square straight forward, or diagonally forward. However, to capture the pawn JUMPS OVER a piece that is one square diagonally in front of it, and captures it. If there is another piece on the place the pawn would land, then the pawn can not capture that piece. Also, pawns can make multiple captures, in the same way that a Draughts piece could.

ROOK: The rook moves the same as the rook in regular chess. However, to capture, it jumps over a piece that is horizontally or vertically next to it, and then captures that piece. The same capturing restrictions that apply to the pawn apply to it, and it can also make multiple captures. In fact, that last sentence applies to ALL of the pieces, so just remember that so that I don't have to keep on retyping it.

BISHOP: The bishop moves the same as a bishop as in regular chess. But to capture, it jumps over a piece that is diagonally next to it.

KNIGHT: The knight moves like a knight in regular chess, but to capture, it captures a piece that is a knights' move away from it by jumping to a place that is one square vertically or horizontally away from both the piece and the knight, and can make multiple captures by jumping horizontally or vertically to make the second and later captures. For example, in the following diagram, the knight on e3 can capture the bishop on d5 by jumping over it to either d6 or c5, and if it jumps to d6, then it can take the d7 knight by jumping over it to d7.

* * * * * * * * 8
* * * n * * * * 7
* * * * * * * * 6
* * * b * * * * 5
* * * * * * * * 4
* * * * N * * * 3
* * * * * * * * 2
* * * * * * * * 1

a b c d e f g h

QUEEN: The queen moves and captures as either a Chaughts bishop or a Chaughts rook.

KING: The king moves as a regular Chess King, but it CAPTURES as either a Chaughts bishop or a Chaugts rook.


Castling is the same as it is in regular chess. Pawns on the 2nd rank CAN make a two-square move on their first move, but pawns that start on the 3rd can't. As in Draughts, capture is obligatory. If you can capture, you have to, unless it would put your King in check, or if it would allow your King to stay in check. You may be wondering "What if the King gets in the corner? Then nothing could capture it!" Well, to solve that problem, I have made Stalemate a win for the side who stalemates the other side. So, in other words, eventually that King is going to have to move, and then it can be captured. Also, if one side has a multiple capture that ends in the opponent's King getting captured, then it is considered check. It's difficult to calculate these things on the fly, unfortunately.


This game is more tactical then regular Chess, especially because of the multiple-capture rule. Also, its easy to forget that none of the pieces have any long-range capturing moves, so you've got to try to get pieces close in. And remember, pawns are more powerful in this game then in regular Chess. Plus, knights are more powerful in this game than in regular chess, because they can capture pieces further away from them then any other piece in the game.


Thank you for reading this. Maybe, hopefully, you will like this game. Please? If you want to tell me anything, about this game or anything else, please e-mail me at (email removed contact us for address)

Written by Mark Hedden.
WWW page created: February 2, 2000. HTML conversion by David Howe.