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Fergus Duniho wrote on 2008-10-30 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
Among my own variants, this is one of my favorites. It has a very good balance between dynamism and clarity. Compared to Chess, it is more dynamic but less clear. The difference in clarity is due to (1) pieces being more powerful in general, (2) the greater difficulty in visualizing Nightrider moves, (3) the greater complexity of the Cannon over the Rook, including its ability to pin two pieces in a row, and (4) the blockability of Cavaliers and their resulting ability to pin pieces. The game is made more dynamic by (1) the ability of Cannons and Nightriders to reach beyond enemy blockades from a distance, (2) the greater freedom of movement the pieces have in general, and (3) the ability of Cavaliers to go backwards. In terms of gameplay, this game strikes me as a better blend of Chess and Chinese Chess than my own Eurasian Chess. The freedom it gives to the Cannons is more comparable to Chinese Chess. The Cavaliers, which replace the Pawns, are taken directly from Chinese Chess, and their inability to create Pawn structures leaves the playing field more open, as in Chinese Chess. Using a larger board with each side having fewer Cavaliers than total files also helps. Overall, the gameplay is faster and more tactical than Chess, more similar to Chinese Chess. But it also has its Chess-like elements, such as more powerful pieces, a roaming royal piece, and the race to promote.

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