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This item is a game information page
It belongs to categories: Orthodox chess, 
It was last modified on: 2002-05-01
 By Peter  Aronson. Anti-King Chess. Each player has both a King and an Anti-King to protect; Anti-Kings are in check when not attacked. (8x8, Cells: 64) (Recognized!)[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
George Duke wrote on 2016-11-08 UTCGood ★★★★

Here is a CV with two Kings like Muller's example for negative-value piece.  In Anti-King win is by checkmate of regular King or removing check from other's Anti-King.  Two other CVs with two Kings are Two Kings Chess and Double Chess.

Both Aronson's Berolina Pawn version and Anti-King Chess II have strategy to keep the side's Anti-King in check. In AKC-I with Berolina note that Anti-King is initially attacked by four pieces checking, and it will take a while to get them "safely" out of the way. Anti-King Chess II may benefit from changing Anti-King move to Knight move only as subvariant.

How do these relate to negative values? That pieces may want to be removed, if possible, in end game in order to have no forces nearby to attack opponent Anti-King, but their over-all average value would be positive just taking on negative value at end. Player may just settle for checkmating regular King.

Fergus Duniho's insightful strategy for actual game played 13 years ago: Strategy, where few pieces were captured.

Peter Aronson wrote on 2014-07-11 UTC
No, Anti-Kings neither check nor checkmate Kings.

bob wrote on 2014-07-10 UTC
Can the anti king check mate the king? (For example 2e3e, a to e2)

George Duke wrote on 2007-11-16 UTC
Here is another CV voted into GCT#3 that is surely overrated from couple of standpoints. Firstly, Anti-King is copycat of V.R.Parton's Contramatic from year 1961. In Contramatic one's own move that puts enemy King in check loses. Likewise, by extension, when opponent's King is checked, player must immediately remove the check or lose. The aforementioned is essence of Contrametic. Now Aronson's Anti-King imposes precisely that losing condition on both players initially in the set-up. So, just apply the Contramatic rules logically, and obviously whoever removes that illegal condition first, wins. QED. Near-equivalence of Anti-King (in its particular set-up) and Contramatic, the same games really isomorphic in just tweaking with two King-types for Anti-King(the other one normal check-mating) and differing starting arrays. Contramatic is never cited in Anti-King write-up. Secondly, the counterintuitive nature(King pre-checked) has been commented by others as extreme and unappealing and not popularizable among the majority 99% non-variant-oriented chess players. Unlike new piece moves that can become readily natural, it may be strain to reverse normal checking logic. The intention is to add an older prolificist for analysis, Peter Aronson's body of work(maybe Duniho or Quintanilla later too), having recently Commented on Aronson's Horus, Rococo, and now Anti-King.

Abdul-Rahman Sibahi wrote on 2007-10-22 UTC
After playing my game in the tournament, I must say that I think the structure of Anti-King I is better than Anti-King II . This is mainly because of the block-ability of Standard Pawns. It's easy to block a pawn and leave the Anti-King in its haven while the other pieces play a chess-like game somewhere else on the board. Even if the pawn can be freed, there are always other pawns to block. Berolina Pawns have a larger freedom of movement and should therefore be better to, so to speak, attack the Anti-King.

Jeremy Good wrote on 2007-06-11 UTC
Another way of playing this theme would involve having anti-kings starting out in checkmated positions and the first person to free his or her own king from checkmate wins. With the same proscription, can't capture opposing pieces (or maybe can't capture, period.) [Which is already the idea behind the award-winning Aronson's Prisoner's Escape, as it turns out. - J.G.]

Peter Aronson wrote on 2007-05-15 UTC
I've got a question considering mate. What happens when a player mates the other player in the same move its own anti-king gets unchecked (thus being mate too). Who wins then?
To repeat what David says in different words: you can't do that. It's the equivalent in regular Chess of moving your King into check in order to check the opponent's King.

It would be simpler to state that it is illegal to make a move leaving or placing your Anti-King in 'check', that is, not attacked by opposing pieces.
Well, very likely. I tend to err on the verbose side in my writing.

David Paulowich wrote on 2007-05-15 UTC

'The rules of Anti-King Chess I are identical to those of FIDE Chess, except for the addition of an Anti-King for each side, the movement of the Pawns, the King's special move, and the initial setup.'

'The Anti-King is a King that is in check whenever it is not attacked by opposing pieces. If a player ends their turn with their Anti-King not attacked, they are checkmated and lose.'

It would be simpler to state that it is illegal to make a move leaving or placing your Anti-King in 'check', that is, not attacked by opposing pieces.

Armin Liebhart wrote on 2007-05-15 UTC
I've got a question considering mate.
What happens when a player mates the other player in the same move its own anti-king gets unchecked (thus being mate too).
Who wins then?

Peter Aronson wrote on 2005-01-13 UTC
<blockquote><i> I guess the large bold-face type and spacing convey emotion...or power? </i></blockquote> <p> Or in this case, an odd interaction between the forum HTML and the posting HTML. All the text was the same size when I previewed it. Hmm.

George Duke wrote on 2005-01-13 UTC
I guess the large bold-face type and spacing convey emotion...or power? Seriously, the 2x2 matrix of alternatives is logical and useful, Peter. Here is even simpler more chess-like logic: in 1961 Parton's Contramatic Chess invents the contrary-win condition, that if the player who has just moved gives check, he loses. Anti-King Chess sets up initial arrays in which both players have that very losing condition imposed at the start. So, inevitable logic (without adding new element beyond the specified array) is that the one who removes that condition for himself, wins. That is how Anti-King derives from and is special or extreme form of Contramatic Chess. Nothing wrong with that: for ex., en passant added to FIDE-like rules is special case or possible logical extension. Four-fold table of most interesting instances for win in this obscure chess byway is absolutely worthwhile.

Peter Aronson wrote on 2005-01-13 UTC
Well, I'm afraid I don't see the Contramatic King and the Anti-King as being the same thing at all. The Contramtic King is really the <em>opposite</em> of the Anti-King, if anything. Actually, it looks to me that you have the combination of two conditions here: <ul> <p><li><u>Condition 1:</u> Is the checked piece owned by player being checked or their opponent? <p><li><u>Condition 2:</u> Is the piece checked when attacked or when not attacked? </ul><p> Thus we have the following combinations for when a player is in check or equivalent: <font size=-1> <table cellpadding=4 border> <tr> <td><i>King is</i></td><td><b>Attacked?</b></td><td><b>Not Attacked?</b></td> </tr><tr> <td><b>Owned by Self?</b></td><td>Orthochess King</td><td>Anti-King</td> </tr><tr> <td><b>Owned by Opponent?</b></td><td>Contramatic King</td><td>Anticheckmate King</td> </tr> </table> </font> <p> (The Anticheckmate King is from Anticheckmate chess, which Ralph Betza discussed in the comment system, and shows up as the Prisoner in <b>Prisoner's Escape</b>.)

George Duke wrote on 2005-01-12 UTC
Though V.R.Parton is mentioned in 2002-2004 comments and the write-up,
Anti-King is extreme form of his CONTRAMATIC Chess 1961, not yet cited:
(Summarized from p.70 Pritchard's ECV)
(1)One's own move, that puts or leaves enemy King in check, loses.
(2)If opponent's King is in check, a player must move to remove that
check. Of course Aronson's version has King too and required continual
checks for A-K etc., but it looks like special case with new array from 
among Parton's Contramatic games.

RandomPrecision wrote on 2004-12-21 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
Actually, when I play, the anti-King isn't always the one that gets
checkmated.  I think initiative plays a large role - if you can force the
anti-King to move around, you can move your pieces in for a checkmate
without obstruction, or at the very least, severely impede your
opponent's development.  I alternate fairly equally between which enemy
king I checkmate at the end.

An interesting case that can occur in Anti-King chess is a sort of
checkmate of both the king and anti-king.  In a game I played with the
Java program, a pawn was checking the anti-king, but I moved it forward to
check the king.  The pawn wasn't protected, so the king could take the
pawn, but that would leave the anti-king without check.  Inversely, the
anti-king could have moved into check, but the king would still remain
checked as well.  This, of course, demonstrates that a single pawn can
force mate.

Quite an interesting game.

Antoine Fourrière wrote on 2004-09-20 UTC
Thanks, Mark. It's corrected.

Mark Thompson wrote on 2004-09-19 UTC
There's a problem with the graphic for Anti-King Chess II: the Black piece at b8 is a King, but it should be a Knight.

Antoine Fourrière wrote on 2003-11-13 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
The problem, if any, would be that it is always the Anti-King which gets
checkmated, and that the King is here only to prevent the players from
discarding all their pieces or to lose by double check. So, if you want to
checkmate the King nearly as often as the Anti-King, it's no use
weakening the Anti-King by allowing the enemy pieces to jump it.
Stronger armies, say with a Cardinal and a Marshal on a 10x8 board - not
10x10 which also weakens the Anti-King, unless you post the Pawns on the
third line as in Grand Chess -, make the King more vulnerable, but the
setups of Capablanca Chess or Gothic Chess make it also more difficult for
the Anti-King to avoid mate, because the Cardinal and Marshal have less
difficulty in escaping the zone of the Anti-King than Rooks, Bishops or
Knights, and it might be better to report them on the outer files.

Peter Aronson wrote on 2003-11-12 UTC
That's an interesting suggestion, Andreas. Although I'd be somewhat concerned that it might make anti-check easier, by making it harder for the Antiking to trap an attacking piece. It might make an interesting variant.

Andreas Kaufmann wrote on 2003-11-11 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
The game Anti-King II is very interesting, still it seems to be that Anti-King prevents development of pieces too much. Wouldn't it improve the game by having a 'transparent' Anti-King? All pieces and pawns would be allowed to move throw the position occupied by 'transparent' Anti-King, as if it would be empty.

Fergus Duniho wrote on 2003-09-23 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
I recently finished a game of Anti-King Chess II with Andreas Kaufmann. This game can be found on the Game Courier logs page. I like Anti-King Chess II a lot. It seems to be a very positional game. At the end of our game, only a Pawn on each side had been captured. From the first move, I followed the strategy of moving away any pieces that were attacking the Anti-King. Instead of focusing on material advantage, I was counting up tempos, making sure that I remained several tempos ahead. A tempo advantage meant that in a race to eliminate attacks on each other's Anti-King, I would get done first. As it happened, moving pieces away from the Anti-King also served the goal of piece development. Toward the end of the game, I was positioning pieces in a manner that I hoped would let me win with a move that checked the King and simultaneously removed the last attack on the Anti-King. But Andreas resigned before this could happen.

Roberto Lavieri wrote on 2003-09-23 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
Anti-King Chess II is a very good game. It is nice, deep, interesting and the anti-king adds a new dimension to the game. As almost everybody, I prefer Anti-King II over the other variant, I suggest change the name of Anti-King Chess II to Anti-King Chess, and let the other as the variant II

Andreas Kaufmann wrote on 2003-09-14 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
Thank you, Tony! Your PBM preset is very nice! I like especially Anti-King Chess II, if anybody wants to play it, please invite me to the game!

Peter Aronson wrote on 2003-09-13 UTC
Tony, thanks for the presets! Yes, the locations listed for Antiking Chess II are those for Antiking Chess I instead of what they should be. Your preset is correct.

Tony Quintanilla wrote on 2003-09-13 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
Andreas, I have posted a PBM preset for Anti-King I and II. See the related links in 'See also'. <p>Peter, take a look at the Anti-King II setup diagram and description on your page; I think there are errors. Is my interpretation for the preset right?

Andreas Kaufmann wrote on 2003-09-11 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
Great game! Any plans to make PBM-preset for it?

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