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Alfred O. Myers wrote on Mon, Oct 4, 2004 07:39 PM UTC:
The observation that my suggested inital array of the Grand Chess pieces, NBCQKMBN, means that the 'h' pawns are initially undefended by a piece took me by surprise, but it is of course quite correct. It is also true that Christian Freeling's lineup provides for an initial defense of each pawn. However, I suggest that the undefended 'h' pawns can be considered an acceptable quirk in this variant, provided that it does not give an undue advantage to the White pieces. In fact, I believe that the ultimate acceptance of Grand Chess or any of its variants depends on its having a success rate for Black which is at least equal to or hopefully better than that of conventional chess. It would be great if Grand Chess could be tested by established chess stars. For instance, consider the recent exhibition match in Kansas between Karpov & Susan Polgar in which two games of conventional chess were played at rapid speed and two at blitz speed, followed by two games of 'Fischer random' chess at rapid speed (white won both of the latter games). Instead of 'Fischer random', which I consider to be a dead end for chess, why not Grand Chess or one or another of its variants? In that manner a meaningful experience base could be built up and the game would receive a wide introduction to the chess-playing community at large.

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