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The Chess Variant Pages

The Piececlopedia is intended as a scholarly reference concerning the history and naming conventions of pieces used in Chess variants. But it is not a set of standards concerning what you must call pieces in newly invented games.

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Fergus Duniho wrote on 2021-02-24 UTC

It occurred to me last night that the movement pattern of this piece resembles a double helix, though it is not exactly that. This led me to think of pieces whose movement pattern actually does form a double helix. The diagonal form would go one space diagonally, then if it continued, turn 90 degrees and move up to two spaces in that direction, and if it continued, it would turn back to the other direction and move up to two spaces in that direction, and so on, alternating between the two diagonal directions that move it away from its origin along a particular orthogonal axis. Each movement path would be a single helix that keeps going back and forth across the same axis, and since a piece would normally have two helical paths around the same axis, this would be a double helix, as in the structure of DNA. Because it would need room on each side of its axis to complete its move, it would be weaker than the Crooked Bishop on the sides of the board. Has this already been invented? If not, Helical Bishop would be a fitting name.

There would also be a Helical Rook. This would move in an orthogonal direction, and if it continues, turn 90 degrees and move up to two spaces, then if it continues, turn back to the other direction and move up to two spaces, and so on, always criss-crossing the same diagonal axis in a helical manner. Like the Helical Bishop it would need room on each side to complete its move and so would be weaker on the sides than the Crooked Rook.

The Helical Queen, of course, would be a compound of these two pieces.

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