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The Chess Variant Pages

This page is written by the game's inventor, Jörg Knappen.

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Chris Chradle wrote on 2016-12-01 UTCGood ★★★★

Hi Joerg,


inventing chessvariants is silver (computer-aided) playtesting is gold ;) If I don‘t err the Essential Knight Rider is your creation and the problem, that occurs for this army is as old as the piece itself => already in the starting position, it has impact on the enemy‘s camp. When I discovered the chessvariants-site in 2002 your article Nachmahr was my favorite entry for a long time. I never played that game, but I examined it, because it offers a nice overview of several Knight Riders. In those days I saw already the problem that the Essential Knight Rider on g1 can take the Narrow Diagonal Crooked Knight on c8, the pawns on the third rank don‘t prevent that.


It‘s funny that this kind of crooked Knight Rider was invented last, it actually is the most logic Knight Rider. It is a strong piece, but not too strong, so you can combine it with pieces like the Rook or – like in this game – with the bishop. I‘m currently working on a chessvariant with crooked pieces and I plan to use combination of Boyscout an Essential Knight Rider as promoting piece. The funny thing is that the second Essential Knight Rider move and the third Boyscout move „overlap“.


There is another chessvariant that has to deal with a powerful Knight Rider, it‘s Ubi Ubi Chess. The solution Bodlaender found, was to shift the opponents f-pawn and the d-pawn one square ahead. You can probably introduce that special rule to save your brilliant idea.


The idea is really beautiful, the theme of this army is in my point of view, that the minor pieces are weakened. I like the introduction of the Knave, which was a topical piece in those days. The choice of the rook could be a bit more creative. You actually can weaken the rook and put an amazon on d1.


You pointed out, that the player has to make the decision, if he should develop the Knave or the Diamond on the natural knight development squares. One possibility to solve that problem could be, to place the Diamonds on one Wing and the Knaves on the other. I prefer the Knaves on the kings wing, because they can attack the opponents pawns in an e4-game. Otherwise the Knaves will almost always placed on c3 and f3 and the Diamonds have to evade to d2 and e2. On those squares they can‘t attack the opponents pawn, but they can at least protect the own pawns.


Greetings Chris ;D

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