The Chess Variant Pages

Dai-Ryu Shogi

By Jared McComb

 

Introduction

Dai-Ryu Shogi is a large Shogi variant played on the board shown at right. The board is 9 spaces wide, 16 spaces long, and has a total of 144 spaces which are divided into four zones.

Each player starts with an army of 30 pieces, including their King.

 

Setup

Here is the initial setup. Pieces will be described below.

 

Pieces

Here is the initial setup. In the first row, there are nine Pawns. The second row contains a Reverse Warrior flanked by two Knights. The third row contains, from left to right: Lance, Bishop, Rook, Left Warrior, Center Warrior, Right Warrior, Bishop, Rook, Lance. The last row contains, from left to right: Copper General, Silver General, Gold General, Platinum General, King, Platinum General, Gold General, Silver General, Copper General.

 

Here is a diagram showing all the possible promoted pieces. In the first row, there are nine Tokins. In the second row, there are two Leaping Dragons flanking a Reverse Dragon. The third row contains, from left to right: Spiked Dragon, Dragon Horse, Dragon King, Left Dragon, Center Dragon, Right Dragon, Dragon Horse, Dragon King, Spiked Dragon. The final row contains a pair each of Copper Dragons, Silver Dragons, Gold Dragons, and Platinum Dragons.

 

Rules

All rules regarding board zones, promotion, and drops are the same as in Ryu Shogi.

 

Piece Movements

Kings may move one space in any direction in all zones and do not promote.

In the first zone, Pawns may move one space directly forward. In the second zone, they gain the additional power to move one space diagonally forward as well. The third zone grants them movement powers of a first-zone Gold General. Pawns promote to Tokins.

Knights have the first-zone move of their Shogi counterparts. In the second zone they gain the ability to perform the same moves in the reverse direction. In the third zone they may move as a FIDE Knight. Knights promote to Leaping Dragons.

Lances also have the first-zone move of their Shogi counterparts. In the second zone they gain the ability to move any distance diagonally forward, and in the third zone they gain the ability to move one space in any other direction. Lances promote to Spiked Dragons.

Bishops may move one space diagonally in the first zone and any distance diagonally in the second zone. In the third zone they may also move one space orthogonally. Bishops promote to Dragon Horses.

Rooks may move one space orthogonally in the first zone and any distance orthogonally in the second zone. In the third zone they may also move one space diagonally. Rooks promote to Dragon Kings.

Left Warriors may move one space directly forward or backward, one space to the left, or one space diagonally to the right while in the first zone. In the second zone they gain the ability to move any distance in these five directions, and in the third zone they gain the ability to move one space in any other direction. Left Warriors promote to Left Dragons.

Right Warriors may move one space directly forward or backward, one space to the right, or one space diagonally to the left while in the first zone. In the second zone they gain the ability to move any distance in these five directions, and in the third zone they gain the ability to move one space in any other direction. Right Warriors promote to Right Dragons.

Center Warriors may move one space diagonally forward or one space directly sideways or backwards while in the first zone. In the second zone they gain the ability to move any distance in these five directions, and in the third zone they may also move one space in any other direction. Center Warriors promote to Center Dragons.

Reverse Warriors may move one space directly forward or sideways or one space diagonally backwards while in the first zone. In the second zone they gain the ability to move any distance in these five directions, and in the third zone they may also move one space in any other direction. Reverse Warriors promote to Reverse Dragons.

Copper Generals may move one space directly forwards or backwards, or one space diagonally forwards, while in the first zone. In the second zone they may move any distance in these four directions, and in the third zone they may also move one space directly sideways or diagonally backwards. Copper Generals promote to Copper Dragons.

Silver Generals have the first-zone move of their Shogi counterparts, may move any distance in those five directions in the second zone, and may also move one space orthogonally sideways or backwards while in the third zone. Silver Generals promote to Silver Dragons.

Gold Generals also have the first-zone move of their Shogi counterparts, may move any distance in those six directions in the second zone, and may also move one space diagonally backwards in the third zone. Gold Generals promote to Gold Dragons.

Platinum Generals may move one space orthogonally forwards or sideways, or one space diagonally, while in the first zone. In the second zone they may move any distance in these seven directions, and in the third zone they may also move one space directly backward. Platinum Generals promote to Platinum Dragons.

 

Acknowledgments

This game was designed to be a follow-up to my 84-spaces contest entry, Ryu Shogi. I had always thought that Ryu Shogi had too crowded of an initial setup, and I had never been able to fit the Knights or Lances from Shogi in it, which was something I had wanted to do. Besides them, the only other pieces added were the Reverse Warriors (which have moves identical to a backwards Center Warrior, hence the name) and the Platinum Generals (which were what I viewed as a logical extension to the Copper, Silver, Gold moveset progression, and thus needed a more "valuable" name, although admittedly their first-zone movement is not original on my part).

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