The Chess Variant Pages
Custom Search




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

Single Comment

This item is a game information page
It belongs to categories: Orthodox chess, 
It was last modified on: 2016-05-03
 Author: Fergus  Duniho. Chaturanga. The first known variant of chess. (8x8, Cells: 64) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Charles Gilman wrote on 2012-01-08 UTC
'Therefore, if the 8x8 square board comes from China, then the same pieces were used, but they did not work properly until they were fixed in Europe several hundred years later.' Who's saying that the 8x8 board came from China? 'Yes, I agree that it does not make sense to make a game worse, but I don't know who or why someone would switch the same pieces to a slightly different board.' Well what's sauce for the Peking duck is sauce for the Bombay duck, as it were. If the Chinese wouldn't switch the same pieces to a slightly different board, why would the Indians? 'Also, we shouldn't view the prime minister piece as an elephant because the whole concept of the prime minister not being able to cross the river is more about the minister not leaving its own countryside and not about an elephant not being able to cross a river.' Well this site's Xiang Qi page shows the Chinese characters for 'Elephant Game', not 'Minister Game'. Are these not the correct characters? 'Also, I think its highly unlikely that the Chinese could have gotten those pieces from a game that wasn't working right and applied a board that made those pieces fit right. Because, you've got to be a little lucky to do that. It's not impossible, but it's not how a game development process usually works.' Lucky or skilful. They could have seen how well the Ferz and Elephant worked defensively on one side and experimented, switching from squares to intersections (on two half-boards) to get the symmetry that they desired. Perhaps they went through a stage with one aside of more pieces because they wanted to work wit the existing sets, and then decided to make ones specially deisngfed for their own game. 'The goal is to figure out which game likely came first, not to figure out why someone or a civilization would move pieces to a slightly different board so they wouldn't work right. There are a lot of explanations for that, but to me that's a separate issue because I am not trying to figure out how the migration actually happened.' That's a pity, because finding out how might give a clue to who. 'There is no indication of a palace in Chaturanga or a concept of a countryside and the prime minister needing to stay on its own side.' The Chinese could easily give two half-boards purely for ease of storage a game-play significance that it never had in India. That would give the River. The Palace or Fortress might be a later addition, perhaps influenced by the Xs at the corner squares of each 4x4 quarter of teh Chaturanga board but moved to fit Chinese culture. Are any of these features on the Wei Qi board? 'Xiang Qi's Xiang means 'live atmosphere' or 'live pieces'. That is the pieces are alive and can move around as opposed to static pieces in Weiqi. Remember, I said that the xiang comes from the Chinese word Qi Xiang. Elephant is Da Xiang.' I refer the hon. gentleman to my previous point about this site's Xiang Qi page. 'Another thing to point out about the original Chaturanga board. The king/generals do not face each other. They are asymmetric.' They also have Pawns in front of them, so facing would seem an irrelevance.