Check out Glinski's Hexagonal Chess, our featured variant for May, 2024.

Mayhem Chess

By Christina Ziolkowski



This chess variant was developed for use with members of the Notre Dame School Chess Club in Kitchener, Ontario. (Paul DeWitte is the moderator and co-author of this page. - Ed.)


The game uses the standard 8X8, 64-cell board.


The opening array is as follows:

White begins with Janus pawns at a2, b3, c1, d3, e3, f1, g3, and h2, rooks at c2 and f2, paladins at a1 and h1, knights at b1 and g1, a restricted queen at d1, and a royal king at e1.

Black begins with Janus pawns   at a7, b6, c8, d6, e6, f8, g6, and h7, rooks at c7 and f7, paladins at a8 and h8, knights at b8 and g8, a restricted queen at d8, and a royal king at e8.


The rooks, knights, and queens move as they do in standard chess. 

The “restricted queen” moves as a regular queen does, but may not move more than four squares orthogonally or diagonally. 

The “paladin”, according to the Piececlopedia, has knight + bishop moves. 

The “Janus pawn” advances as a regular pawn does, but may capture on the diagonal either forward or backward.


A player wins by mating his opponent’s king.

Pawns promote.

Castling is not permitted. En passant captures are not legal.


Standard chess equipment is used.