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The Chess Variant Pages

This page is written by the game's inventor, Michael Nelson.

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Greg Strong wrote on 2018-11-30 UTC

It is a great game.

To the extent it has a "problem" (which is debatable), the problem isn't knightrider's the ability to reach the back row and promote.  It is the ability of black to immediately pocket a knightrider and immediately threaten white with multiple back-row forks.  The opening array is well protected in normal chess because chess doesn't have knightriders, but it is very vulnerable to them.  White can protect himself but must do so immediately and correctly, which is annoying.  That said, I think immediately pocketing a knightrider is a bad move.  If white does play it correctly, he's in a stronger position.  And a knightrider is worth at least a tiny bit less than a rook whereas the other class 3 piece, the super bishop, is slight stronger than a rook.  If you're pocketing a rook into a knightrider in the opening you are basically gambling that your opponent messes up and preparing to take advantage of it.  But you are putting yourself at a disadvantage in terms of development if he doesn't.

The only thing I find strange about the game is the fact that castling is disallowed.  That just feels odd.

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