The Chess Variant Pages



This page is written by the game's inventor, Charles Daniel.

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Charles Daniel wrote on 2008-10-13 UTC
Larry, 
The problem with the regular pawns starting on the 3rd rank leaving the 2nd rank vacant (or filled with Ninja Pawns), is that this allows a double row of pawns which tends to clog the game  a bit I think. 
See Herculean and Hadean Chess in which the pawns are one row advanced with ninja pawns behind - its not too bad, but I was not too happy with that configuration in the end.
Many 10x10 variants do have start configurations with more than 2 rows but they normally use more powerful pieces not extra pawns. 
I think allowing extra pieces and pawns via gating/dropping allows more flexibility in the setup and keeps the original configuration more harmonious. 
Because the Ninja Pawns have to be dropped in the 2nd rank, the player is forced to move the regular Pawns first, thus favoring more aggressive type openings and advanced pawn chains. 
As it stands, the Ninja Pawns reinforces the pawn structure that can extend right towards the middle or even into enemy territory.

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