The site has moved to a new server, and there are now some issues to fix. Please report anything needing fixing with a comment to the homepage.

The Chess Variant Pages

[ Help | Earliest Comments | Latest Comments ]
[ List All Subjects of Discussion | Create New Subject of Discussion ]
[ List Latest Comments Only For Pages | Games | Rated Pages | Rated Games | Subjects of Discussion ]

Comments by Edwin Wilhelm

Later Reverse Order EarlierEarliest
Tori Shogi. Tori Shogi, or Bird Shogi. A variant of Japanese Chess on a 7 by 7 board. (7x7, Cells: 49) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Ed wrote on 2019-12-03 UTCExcellent ★★★★★

I see that a new study of historical sources on Tori Shogi has been published:禽将棋についての研究-禽将棋の背景と系統的位置づけ-MyISBN-デザインエッグ社-松本尚也/dp/4815014205/ref=sr_1_1?__mk_ja_JP=カタカナ&keywords=禽将棋&qid=1575339500&sr=8-1

I wonder if any Japanese have read the book and can comment on what new discoveries this book reveals.

Chu Shogi. Historic Japanese favorite, featuring a multi-capturing Lion. (12x12, Cells: 144) (Recognized!)[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Ed wrote on 2015-10-10 UTC
Well, that is very clear, so thank you much. I was imagining if such a thing existed that it would have drops and only selected pieces from the chu shogi array would be used. Your cautions, however, are well received and convine me that such a game is a fool's errand.

Ed wrote on 2015-10-10 UTC
I have seen modern variants of chu shogi, but does there exist on this site a yonin chu shogi?

Burmese Traditional Chess. An article that discusses chess as it was played in Burma. (8x8, Cells: 64) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Ed wrote on 2014-08-17 UTC
I have noticed another online site for Myanmar (Burmese) Traditional,
Chess:, and that it has an English-language
interface.  Does anyone have experience playing the computer or online
opponents there?

Chu Shogi. Historic Japanese favorite, featuring a multi-capturing Lion. (12x12, Cells: 144) (Recognized!)[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Ed wrote on 2014-07-27 UTC
@H. G. Muller: I don't see that Mr. King has responded yet to your question. I wonder if perhaps Dr Banaschak may have the information you desire if not even a likely source for Mr. King's information.

Tori Shogi. Tori Shogi, or Bird Shogi. A variant of Japanese Chess on a 7 by 7 board. (7x7, Cells: 49) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Ed wrote on 2014-05-21 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
@H. G. Muller: Thank you for the update and the addition of kanji. I may be one of the masochists you mentioned, but I have always played this game with kanji, and so a long-time custom makes this a better choice for me. In all seriousness, though, I am very grateful for your chu shogi and tori shogi offerings. I hope others here get great satisfaction from them, too.

Ed wrote on 2014-05-06 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
@H.G. Muller: Bravo! Thank you for this generous gift for tori shogi players!

BishopsA game information page
. Commercial four-player game.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Edwin Wilhelm wrote on 2014-03-11 UTC

Edwin Wilhelm wrote on 2014-03-10 UTC
Well I dont have a design for meeting times but it should be not too hard 
to figure one out.
For example the first player to join a game could set a start time maybe 3 days 
into the future at 8 pm MST his/her local time. This would give enough time for 3 
challengers to join the game at their own specific times. For example one player 
may be in China and his/her local time would be 10 am. 

This site gives a good over view of time zones and there are others.

The program ( game) could include an automatic time insert for each open game 
that has been started or invited.

I have a "Bishops notation" system invented too but I cannot read it on the small
pink board image here (and I dont remember it) and I wont be at my house until mid-

May to review my files. The notation uses the same Chess notation and also adds 

more similar for the extra 64 squares and 4 corner squares.

Edwin Wilhelm wrote on 2014-03-10 UTC
It seems it would require a pretty invasive change, though, because such GUIs are of course based on the idea there are two players.

>>>>>yes it would be the 164 squares and the 4 corner squares only.

It also seems you don't just want a GUI for local play, but really an internet client that connects to a remote site (e.g. embedded in an internet browser), so that people could play against each other over the internet. This begs the question whether you would want to support 'live' (i.e. real-time with running Chess clocks) or turn-based games (i.e. like correspondence Chess).

>>>>>yes "live" and in real time. People would have to know that other opponents would be ready to play for example at 8 pm their local time. or world-wide would have to arrange specific times etc etc.  Unless enough interest and then when 4 players join the game begins automatic , live 24 hours a day. Also to start, a site that has no "bots" or ability to have "bots" as I would prefer more "humans" playing and some "humans" may like it that there is no "bots", only "humans'.

About your statement that the game ends as Chess: what if the two surviving parties were neighbors? I suppose their Pawns would move at right angles then. That doesn't seem much like a normal Chess game to me...

>>>>>The rules state when a player is checkmated, whatever player that colour is then removed. Play continues with three players until another colour is removed. Then for example if Black and Pink remain,,,Pink must move to the seat at its left. If Black and Grey remain,,,Grey moves to its right. (This part of the rules may be re-written someday to more properly explain it.) If White and Black remain they remain in their respective seats.

It is basically a GUI I want and the ability to allow the legal moves of Chess pieces while playing Bishops and then allow legal moves of Chess when all the remaining pieces of the 2 final players reach the 64 square chess playing board. (Also one problem scenario would be if one of the final 2 players had 2 Bishops on one colour of the diagonal squares , which could theoretically happen, then one Bishop would need to enter the Chess area on a different colour square. ) (Also other problem scenarios may occur with pawn movement but precise writing of the rules would fix these scenarios)

One thing I do not know, since not enough actual Bishops Games have been played out to completion, and would like to know is how the average piece count would fair when the game continues "as Chess". If the 2 remaining players skill level at Bishops is more or less evenly matched , then the remaining pieces should be of similar strength. The ability to "survive" until the game becomes "Chess" is an added feature that "Chess" itself does not have. In Chess you either win or lose or draw. With Bishops you must first "survive" to reach the final stage which is then played as "Chess". Position and strength of the 2 remaining players will most likely not be similar to an "average" Chess game. With Bishops, if a player cannot learn how to "survive" then he will never be able to finish the game "as Chess". This feature and others is why I think Bishops, The Game could be someday.....viable.

Edwin Wilhelm wrote on 2014-03-09 UTC
Correction, adding an option to have a random backline is not a rule change , only an option that any game can use. Including Chess itself as I think proposed once by Bobby Fisher.

Edwin Wilhelm wrote on 2014-03-09 UTC
Thanks for the comments.
Bishops is a four player game yes, but it ends as "Chess".

Since I am not a programmer I might ask silly questions at times.

What I am looking for is just a good visual game and only "smart" to the point
that legal moves are recognised.

To develop a "smart" bot to play Bishops would not be needed at this time.

As Bishops has to be played offensively to the left and defensively to the right, it adds
a more challenging effect. Skill and possibly a factor of luck is needed. Still luck
cannot be used in order to win consistently.

When the final 2 players are reached and are on the Chess playing area, then it is a Chess game to determine the winner. What pieces they have remaining depends on their overall Bishops playing ability.

The game was invented to allow four players to play a "Chess like" game. Which I think it does.

I do have a Java online version at another location and may have it online in May-June hopefully. However it will need bug fixes.

Looking for  programmers who may be able to get another version up and running
for play on Google Chrome etc etc...

Yes losing a Knight for a Rook would affect only 2 players, but there is how many combinations of 2 players ? WB...WP ...uh....16 combinations I think.....

Also as an upgrade to the rules will be the "option" to have the "Backline" placed at random starting points. Therefore a King could be placed beside its "safe" corner,,,then immediately the Bishops obtain the power of a Queen.

Any Chess variant is not meant to replace Chess and never will. Some variants can be fun to play and viable if given a chance and Bishops is one maybe. As it ends "as Chess" , not many other variants I have seen do this.....??

Edwin Wilhelm wrote on 2014-03-09 UTC
Not too much worried about developing robots or computer play.

Could Bishops, The Game be added to an existing chess engine with the extra 64 squares plus the four (4) corner squares?

Legal move detection is needed for a basic game.

Looking for programmers.

Programmer Wanted[Subject Thread] [Add Response]
Edwin Wilhelm wrote on 2014-03-07 UTC
Is there any members on here who can program an online game for me?
on a 40-60 share basis for 3 years?
or even if you know somebody else or where to advertise to find someone.

Bishops, The Game

BishopsA game information page
. Commercial four-player game.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Edwin Wilhelm wrote on 2014-03-03 UTC
Information for crowdfunding of "Bishops, The Game" can be viewed here....

Edwin Wilhelm wrote on 2014-02-04 UTC If anyone interested can direct traffic or comments to this preview link it would be appreciated.

Edwin Wilhelm wrote on 2014-02-03 UTC If anyone wants to add comments at this project site please do.

Edwin Wilhelm wrote on 2014-01-24 UTC
OK thanks that is a good point.

Another question:

Does anyone know of a site or "Chess site" whereby the "Chessmen" actually "fight" as in a video game type scenario? (using hand held controller compatible with computer website game)

This would be a variant obviously of Chess, but I am considering such a game scenario using "Bishops". This format would continue until the game was played "as Chess" , 2 players, as Chess is Chess.

Please reply with info or comments.

Edwin Wilhelm wrote on 2014-01-22 UTC
This is the inventor of Bishops, The Game.

I would like to ask a question to the audience and get some opinions:

If and when an "online version" of Bishops. The Game is introduced someday in the future , should it allow "robots" or computer players ? ie the program would also supply a robot if requested. 

Or would it be better to only allow "REAL people" who are logged in to play?

Please add comments and say "Yes" to have computers and robot play or "No" to only have REAL people log in and play.

As the Inventor/Owner I am leaning toward "No" myself, but am undecided as yet.

A future online site may be resdy and "live" sometime in July-August 2014.

Hiashatar Photos. Photos of some hiashatar sets from Mongolia.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Ed wrote on 2014-01-21 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
Well, I prefer the painted pieces to the stained, and, while there are
certainly aesthetic and historical reasons for the monochromatic board, I
think it makes seeing the moves along the diagonal more difficult -- at
least for me.

The hia is an interesting piece: I like the move suggested by a number of
commentators here, i.e., that the hia's zone affects only opponents.  I
know the material of Mr. Kisliouk says that K+Hia is a draw against bare K
because of the Hia's inability to deliver checkmate.  I wonder if the
power is like the N in shatar, the curious ability to check but not
checkmate, or if, because completely unable to threaten the opponent's K,
the Hia has two "predators" on the board the K and N.

Since these are modern, I wonder if this game is moribund in Mongolia and
if these sets are meant only for export as curios.

Minishogi. On a 5 by 5 board. (5x5, Cells: 25) (Recognized!)[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Ed wrote on 2013-12-14 UTC
Pardon, please. I only prove my dimness. I think I should have written alien.ini of Nebiyu.

Ed wrote on 2013-12-14 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
Dear Dr. Muller,

Thank you for preparing these Winboard shogi modules.  I wonder, do you
think that it is possible to add tori shogi to one of them?  I have been
trying to figure out how to modify the alien.ini of Nubati engine on the
hopes of trying this game via WinBoard, but, as with my attempt to do the
same thing with hiashatar, my very dim knowledge is a great obstacle.

I have very much enjoyed HaChu, I should write, too.

Best wishes!

Shatar. Mongolian chess. (8x8, Cells: 64) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Ed wrote on 2013-07-18 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
Rinčen and Montagu after him mention the old fashioned Mongolian custom of
asking whether the opponent was playing his bers bold or cautious (maybe
this was the question that the old lama actually was asking S. Cammann
before their game?) to signify the choice of the more and less powerful
moves for this piece (queen or dragon king).  I wonder if any of the
readers here have played this game with the shortened camel move (Kisliuk
describes it as 1-3 squares).  I have the quite unsubstantiated impression
that the "bold" camel is slightly more valuable or desirable to retain
than our bishop when the bers is played "cautious."  I have not tried the
shortened camel move against an opponent yet.  Thoughts, anyone?

I truly would like to know more about the ancient treatise that Montagu
mentions is to be found in the Ulaanbaatar National Library.  My attempts
to discover information elsewhere about it and what it may reveal about the
history of this game have been fruitless to date.

Burmese Traditional Chess. An article that discusses chess as it was played in Burma. (8x8, Cells: 64) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Ed wrote on 2013-04-15 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
I noticed that there is an online site for Myanmar (Burmese) Traditional, 
Chess: , and that it has an English-language
interface.  The only drawback is that one must be a Facebook user to logon
to play; since I lack a Facebook account, I cannot say anything about
whether this is a good site to find opponents or not.  As I debate getting
access, I wonder if anyone else has experience of this site, the rule
set(s) used, and the numbers of opponents (or best times) one is likely to

Shatar. Mongolian chess. (8x8, Cells: 64) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Ed wrote on 2013-03-31 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
Thank you, Mr. Müller, for your advice!  I must tip my hat to the man of
greater ability; I am too dim to script a ZRF for shatar, it seems.

I have wondered if any who read these pages who are Mongolian or Tuvinian,
or who play shatar with Mongolians or Tuvinians, whether the modification
to the horse pieces (wind horses?) in this picture
signifies the enhanced horse (i.e., with Amazon power after the first move)
that Assia Popova describes.  It would be curious to see how a piece so
powerful, yet incapable of delivering checkamte, interacts with the other
pieces.  At least, it seems easier to avoid the draws that obtain under
shatar's special rules for checkmate.

25 comments displayed

Later Reverse Order EarlierEarliest

Permalink to the exact comments currently displayed.