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Wide Nightrider Chess

Introduction

My original conception of this variant was to have it on a shorter board, and to include all the 6 chess piece types, plus nightriders and champions (the latter piece type being from Omega Chess), together with the fast castling rules I used for my earlier (12x8) Wide Chess variant. I soon realized 12x10 would be a better board size for a possible setup I had in mind, given the great scope of the nightrider piece type. Aurelian Florea suggested using ferz-knight compound pieces rather than knights, and I liked that on an empty board this compound piece has complimentary legal move possibilities to those of the champion. That's aside from IMHO making the game's 3 less valuable pieces at least slightly closer in value than if knights were used on this 12x10 chess variant game's board. Finally, I was able to choose a setup that pleased me, where all the pawns are protected.

A Game Courier preset for play is available.

Setup

Pieces

In this game there are 8 piece types, including 5 types from standard chess (i.e. Pawns, Bishops, Rooks, Queens and Kings). The other 3 piece types are as follows:

Nightrider: can make a move like a Knight, but then can continue to move in the same direction. Thus, it can make one or more successive Knight-leaps, all in the same direction: the spaces visited by all but the last jump must be empty.

Champion: can move a single square in any orthogonal direction, or else it can move (leap) exactly two squares in any orthogonal or diagonal direction, regardless of intervening pieces, always capturing like it is moved.

Ferz-Knight: can move like a ferz (single square in any diagonal direction), or else it can move (leap) like a knight, always capturing like it is moved.

Rules

Pawns can promote to any piece type in the setup, except for a king. They can initially advance 2 or 3 steps, rather than just 1 step, if unobstructed. Capturing en passant, is allowed, even if the pawn took a triple step. The capturing pawn would land on the square that is diagonally in front of it on the same file as the enemy pawn that just moved. Here's a link to Omega Chess, which has very similar rules governing legal pawn moves; note the examples of en passant captures: Omega Chess

The castling rules for Wide Nightrider Chess are as follows: A king that has never moved, and is not in check, can 'leap' once a game, along the first rank, to any unattacked empty square between it and an unmoved rook, followed by said rook 'leaping' to the king's initial square so as to complete castling in one single move. It does not matter if any squares in between are occupied or under attack.

Threefold repetition of position is a draw as in standard chess, and the 50 move rule is also in effect in Wide Nightrider Chess (i.e. game drawn if no captures or pawn moves have been made before 50 consecutive moves by both sides).

Notes

I'd tentatively estimate the piece values for Wide Nightrider Chess as: P=1; CH=3.48(or 3.5 approx.); B=3.75; FN=4.4(or 4.5 approx.); R=5.5; NN=Nx2(on this very large board size)=5.66(or 5.75 approx.); Q=R+B+P=10.25; K's fighting value=2.1 approx.

Dr. H.G. Muller has noted (from computer endgame tables) that on a 12x10 board, such as for this game, a CH and K can always force mate against a lone K, in at most 47 moves (i.e. in the worst case) with best play.

Here's a link to another wide board variant of mine, namely 12x8 Wide Chess:

Wide Chess



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By Kevin Pacey.
Web page created: 2018-04-05. Web page last updated: 2018-04-05