The Chess Variant Pages

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Greg Strong wrote on 2020-04-26 UTC

If you measure the physical length, a diagonal move is longer by sqrt(2).  Ralph Betza speculated that this increased length was one of the reasons a ferz was worth more than a wazir.  (The other being that it had two forward-facing attacks.)  The longer length could be considered to come into play in some situations.  Moving from a1 to c3, for example, is two moves for a ferz but four for a wazir.  But that could also just be considered a quirk of the geometry.  The knight has a longer move still and it also requires four moves to go from a1 to c3.

Does the rotating of the knight-wazir into a wizard make it more powerful because the moves are longer?  Possibly.  It becomes colorbound, but the camel move is good for reaching behind pawn lines.  Opulent Chess features both the knight-wazir and the wizard and I consider them to be of equal value, at least under typical circumstances. (Actually, looking at that page now, I see that I had ranked the wizard to be worth a quarter pawn less, but I no longer believe that is true.)

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