The Chess Variant Pages

REX Hexagonal Chess




REX is an adaptation of the traditional chess game to a board of rectangular format, constituted of 85 hexagons (of preference), circle or  rectangle, filled in white  (27), black (27) and grey (31) colors.


The adaptation consisted in: to increase more 1 Bishop and 7 Pawns for each player, to define the position of each piece in the beginning of the game (see figure below) and the movement of the pieces so that it is compatible with the board (see Movement of the pieces). The rules are similar to the ones of the traditional chess.



Movement of the pieces


There are two basic moves that all pieces do.

Orthogonal move: a move wherein a piece moves in straight line that crosses hexagons from orthogonal sides. Orthogonal moves are always in different color. (blue arrows)

Diagonal move: a move wherein a piece moves in straight line that crosses hexagons from corners. Diagonal moves are always in same color. (red arrows)

One or two pieces beside the diagonal line can't stop the move. Pieces crowding the line are simply passed over.


Rook: Can be moved along the orthogonal. (see figure below)

Bishop: Can be moved along the diagonal. (see figure below)

King: Can be moved 1 hexagon along the orthogonal. (see figure below)

Pawn: Can be moved forward 1 hexagon along the orthogonal. (see figure below)

           Except for the 5 Pawns of the first row, they can move two hexagons in straight line, in the first move, as long as those are not occupied by other piece of the game

Knight: Can be moved forward 1 hexagon along diagonal follow 1 hexagon along orthogonal. (see figure below)



Queen: Can be moved along the diagonal, as Bishop, or along the orthogonal, as Rook. (see figure below)




    REX has 6 directions (3 diagonal and 3 orthogonal), two more than traditional chess (compare the figures above).




1- Objective of the game is to give Checkmate.

2- All the pieces capture the same way they move;

3- "En passant" captures are allowed.;

4- Pawns promote when they arrive on last row;

5- There is no castling.



The notation is very similar to traditional chess. The Cartesian coordinates are formed by the numeration of the ranks and ordering of letters of the “files” (vertical diagonal direction). For examples, in the two REX board figures above, the pieces are located in: j5(queen), g2(King), e8(Rook), n6(knight), q3(Bishop), f5(pawn) and b5(Pawn).



The strategies of REX are still not very well-known. At first, the strategies used in  the traditional chess  should be  adapted for this game.

The player should adopt the following strategies:


1- Domain of the center;

2- Control of the space;

3- Development of the pieces;

4- King in safety;

5- Structure of Pawns;

6- Mobility of the pieces.



You can make your own hexagonal board.

You can make download of the board.




Historical matches (see matches)

Arnaldo D'Almeida (Whites) X Wellington Campos (Blacks) Rio de Janeiro, October 05, 1998.

Wellington Campos (Whites)  X Arnaldo R. D'Almeida (Blacks) Rio de Janeiro, October 05, 1998.

Arnaldo D'Almeida (Whites)  X Mário Villas Boas (Blacks) Rio de Janeiro, November 11, 1998.


Matches by e-mail

You can play REX by e-mail with other player! Consult player's list (see matches). Put your e-mail in the list, send e-mail for webmaster (see Contact below).




The White ones play and they win in up to 3 moves.



More problems, see problems





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There are 2 possibilities:


1- p4-i6          m7-n6

2- n2-i4  or  n2-r4  checkmate!


1- p4-i6          m7-j7

2- n2-o5         j7-h7

3- r6-h9 checkmate!

Written by Arnaldo Rodrigues D'Almeida.
WWW page created: August 19, 2002.