The Chess Variant Pages




Fantasy Grand Chess

This version of Fantasy Grand Chess participated in a contest to design a large chess variant. The author has made later an new, updated version of the game.

Fantasy Grand Chess is a mix of Christian Freeling's Grand Chess and Ralph Betza's Chess with Different Armies, with a fantasy theme.

The Rules

All rules are as in Grand Chess, except that each player chooses a different army.
Armies choice is determined as in Chess with Different Armies. Secret/simultaneous choice may be considered the "official" method of selection.
The Druid army is more complex than most, and should only be used if both players agree to allow it.

Army Descriptions

The beginning of the army description is a diagram showing the starting position. The bottom row of the diagram is the last row, and it only shows as many others as needed. Black is a mirror image of white.
When describing a piece's move, saying it moves a certain way implies that it captures that way also, unless a capture only move is also listed.
The abbreviation of the piece is in parentheses after its name. The stuff in brackets is the pieces move in Ralph Betza's notation.

Pawns

A Pawn is any piece noted as such in the piece description, not just pieces named "Pawn". Pawns are the only piece that can capture en passant.

The Armies

Humans

The humans are the same as the normal army from Grand Chess.

Elves

    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+
    | W | W | W | W | W | W | W | W | W | W |
    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+
    |   | S |   | L | K | E | M |   | S |   |
    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+
    |   |   |   |   | R | R |   |   |   |   |
    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+

Warrior (W) [mFcfW]

The Warrior is a pawn that move one square Rookwise and capture diagonally forward.

King (K) [K]

The King is the same as the Human King.

Seeress (S) [W2F2]

The Seeress moves and captures one or two squares Rookwise or diagonally.

Ranger (R) [NN]

The Ranger moves and captures as a Knightrider.

Mage (M)

The Mage moves as a Griffion from Grande Acedrex. (One square diagonal, then zero or more squares Rookwise.)

Loremaster (L)

The Loremaster moves either as a Mage or as a Rook.

Elder (E) [RBN]

The Elder moves as an Amazon.

Dwarves

    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+
    | S | S | S | S | S | S | S | S | S | S |
    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+
    |   | P | G | W | K | Ge| W | G | P |   |
    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+
    | C |   |   |   |   |   |   |   |   | C |
    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+

Soldier (S) [fWfcF]

The Soldier is a pawn that moves and captures one square forward, and captures diagonally forward. It promotes at the same time as a Human Pawn would, and can promote to any of your pieces that have been captured except a War Machine or Cannon.

King (K) [K]

The King is the same as the Human King.

Cannon (C) [mRcpR]

The Cannon moves as a Cannon from Xiangqi.

Priest (P) [F2zF2]

The Priest moves one square diagonally once or twice, and is free to change directions. It cannot move back to its starting position.

Guard (G) [FW]

The Guard moves as a King.

War Machine (W) [RcpRfF]

The War Machine moves as a Rook or Cannon, or one square diagonally forward.

General (Ge) [W2F2nN]

The General can move up to two squares Rookwise or diagonally, or as a non-jumping Knight, moving Rookwise then diagonally.

The Evil Horde

    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+
    | G | G | G | G | G | G | G | G | G | G |
    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+
    | O | O | O | O | O | O | O | O | O | O |
    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+
    | Wa| Og| We| B | K | M | A | We| Og| Wa|
    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+

Goblin (G) [fW]

The Goblin is a pawn that moves one square forward. It may move (but not capture) two squares forward the first time it moves, and may be captured en passant when it does so. It promotes at the same time as a Human Pawn, and promotes to a Wolf Rider.

Orc (O) [fF]

The Orc is a pawn that moves one square diagonally forward. It may move (but not capture) two squares diagonally forward the first time it moves, and may be captured en passant when it does so. Any time a Human Pawn could promote, you may remove the Orc and any of your opponents non-Pawn, non-Royal pieces. If your opponent has no other pieces, a Orc ready to move into the promotion zone puts the king in check.

Dark Lord (K) [K]

The Dark Lord is the same as the Human King.

Warlock (Wa) [zF9]

The Warlock moves as a Crooked Bishop.

Ogre (Og) [R4]

The Ogre moves up to four squares as a Rook.

Werewolf (We) [fhN]

The Werewolf moves as a Knight, but only forward. When it reaches one of the last two rows of the board, it promotes to a Wolf Rider.

Assassin (A) [mQcK]

The Assassin moves as a Queen and captures as a King.

Balrog (B) [RzR]

The Balrog moves as a Rook or a Crooked Rook.

Minotaur (M) [NL]

The Minotaur moves as a Knight or does (1, 3) jump.

Wolf Rider (Wo) [NFW]

The Wolf Rider moves as a King or a Knight.

Giants

    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+
    |   |   |   |   | G | G |   |   |   |   |
    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+
    |   | Cy| M | Co| G | G | Co| M | Cy|   |
    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+
    |   |   |   | B | K | T | 2 |   |   |   |
    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+

Giant (G) [DA]

The Giant is a pawn that jumps two squares Rookwise or diagonally.

King (K) [K]

The King is the same as the Human King.

Cyclops (Cy)

The Cyclops moves as a Rook, but cannot make a one square move.

Mammoth Rider (M)

The Mammoth Rider moves one square Rookwise up to two times, changing directions freely. It may not move back to its starting position.

Colossus (Co) [DAN]

The Colossus moves as a Giant or a Knight.

Two-Headed Cyclops (2)

The Two-Headed Cyclops moves as a Mage, but cannot make a one square move.

Behemoth Rider (B)

The Behemoth Rider moves one square Rookwise up to three times, changing directions freely. It may not move back to its starting position.

Titan (T) [HGLJ]

The Titan jumps to any square that is exactly three squares away.

Druid

    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+
    | F | J | Co| L | Pu| Ch| T | W | Pa| D |
    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+
    | B | H | Ea| R | K | U | Pe| F | S |   |
    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+
    |   |   |   |   |   |   |   |   |   | El|
    +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+

Fox (F) [F]

The Fox is a pawn that moves one square diagonally.

Jaguar (J) [mAcW]

The Jaguar is a pawn that moves by jumping two squares diagonally, and captures one square Rookwise.

Coyote (Co) [mFcW]

The Coyote is a pawn that moves one square diagonally, and captures one square Rookwise.

Lion (L) [mFcD]

The Lion is a pawn that moves one square diagonally, and captures by jumping two squares Rookwise.

Puma (Pu) [mDcA]

The Puma is a pawn that moves by jumping two squares diagonally, and captures by jumping two squares diagonally.

Cheetah (Ch) [mAcD]

The Cheetah is a pawn that moves by jumping two squares diagonally, and captures by jumping two squares Rookwise.

Tiger (T) [mWcA]

The Tiger is a pawn that moves one square Rookwise, and captures by jumping two squares diagonally.

Wolf (W) [mWcF]

The Wolf is a pawn that moves one square Rookwise, and captures one square diagonally.

Panther (Pa) [mDcF]

The Panther is a pawn that moves by jumping two squares Rookwise, and captures one square diagonally.

Dog (D) [W]

The Dog is a pawn that moves one square Rookwise.

Druid (K) [K]

The Druid is the same as the Human King.

Bear (B) [R4F]

The Bear moves up to four squares as a Rook, or one square diagonally.

Elephant (El) [R]

The Elephant moves as a Rook.

Horse (H) [N]

The Horse moves as a Knight.

Stag (S) [WH]

The Stag moves one square Rookwise, or jumps three squares Rookwise.

Eagle (Ea)

The Eagle moves as a Bishop, but cannot make a one square move; or jumps two squares Rookwise.

Falcon (F) [B]

The Falcon moves as a Bishop.

Pegasus (Pe)

The Pegasus moves as an Eagle or as a Horse.

Roc (R) [Q]

The Roc moves as a Queen.

Unicorn (U) [R4FN]

The Unicorn moves as a Bear or as a Knight.

This variant is an entry in the 1999 Large Variant contest.


Written by Peter S. Hatch.
WWW page created: April 30, 1999.