The Chess Variant Pages



Chessball

This game, mentioned in Pritchards' Encyclopedia of Chess Variants, was invented in 1957 by U. N. Kamzolov. The game represents a football match between two teams.

Rules

The game is played on a checkered board of 5 by 8 squares, with the lower-left corner for white a black square.

Each player has seven pieces: three attackers, three defenders, and a goalkeeper. Also, there is a ball in the game.

The opening setup is as follows:

White:
Goalkeeper c1; Defenders b2, c2, d2; Attackers b3, c3, d3.

Black:
Goalkeeper c8; Defenders b7, c7, d7; Attackers b6, c6, d6. Ball on c4.

The first and last rank of the board may only be used by the goalkeepers. The goalkeepers only move horizontally, i.e., they cannot leave their own rows and cannot kick the ball. (The main object of the goalkeepers is to block the ball, see below.)

Attackers and defenders move in the same way, but can kick the ball in different directions. When they do not play the ball, an attacker or defender moves like a queen (but cannot take other pieces). When an attacker or defender wants to kick the ball, he must be a kings-move away from the ball, and then move to square containing the ball. In the same turn, the ball must be kicked: defenders kick the ball diagonally (like a bishop), but only in forward directions, and attackers kick the ball horizontally or vertically (like a rook). The ball must be kicked to an empty square, and can also only pass over empty squares.

Turnwise, players move one of their pieces, possibly also kicking the ball with that piece, as described above. A player wins the game by kicking the ball to an empty square on the opponents last row.

Comment

Ralf Gering noted that this game has an easy drawing strategy: move a defender to a3, and a defender to e3, and then keep on moving the goalkeeper on the last row.
WWW page made by Hans Bodlaender.
WWW page created: June 27, 1996. This variant was described for the WWW to celebrate the occasion of the European Soccer Championships. Last modified: March 20, 2001.