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This page is written by the game's inventor, Eric Richardson.

Eric's 40-square Fiasco!

In January 2000, Eric Richardson sent an email that included the following text:
My name is Eric Richardson and this is my entry for the 40-square chess variant contest. I have played it a lot and it is very fun. My fourth grade class has really enjoyed playing it, too. I hope you like it!
Below, you find his rules.

Eric's 40-square Fiasco!


To checkmate the enemy king as in regular chess.

Piece Movement

All pieces move as in regular chess. No castling. Pawns may promote as usual. Pawns may move two squares on first move as usual.


A 5x8 board is used.

Board set-up

Black in `Bank': Q, R, N

White in `Bank': Q, R, N


As stated, the pieces move as in normal chess, and the goal is the same. The main differences are board size and the "bank" of three extra pieces (Q, N, and R per side).

Using the "bank"

During the game, a player may choose to add a piece from the "bank" to the board--this is the players move. Once the piece is added, his turn is over. A player may add a piece from his "bank" by following these conditions:
  1. The added piece must be added to that player's back rank onto a vacant square. Vacant meaning absence of a piece--enemy or friendly. In other words, a piece may not be added to the back rank to capture an enemy piece on that square.
  2. The added piece can only be added once. Once a piece from the "bank" is played, it can be captured as any piece. Once a piece is captured (any piece), it is permanently removed from play.
  3. An added piece may give check, give checkmate, defend against check, or simply be added into play as additional forces.
Note! The "bank" pieces can be added in any order. Additionally, they need not be added at all during play--it is optional. Also, promoted pieces are not drawn from the "bank".
Written by Eric Richardson. HTML-conversion by Hans Bodlaender.
This is an entry in the contest to design a chess variant on a board with 40 squares.
WWW page created: January 17, 2000.