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This item is a game information page
It belongs to categories: Two dimensional, Large board
It was last modified on: 2002-11-18
 By Timothy R. Newton. Outback Chess. New pieces on plus-shaped board. (10x10, Cells: 84) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
George Duke wrote on 2008-05-03 UTC
The topic is pieces using the Betza atoms compounded. Of course King anywhere is usually Ferz + Wazir. Outback has Kangaroo as Knight + Alfil.

Jeremy Good wrote on 2007-07-13 UTC
That accords with my impression from reading the rules. Thanks.

Peter Aronson wrote on 2007-07-13 UTC
When I implemented this for zillions I used this definition:

The Echidna is a royal piece -- if it is captured, you lose the game. It moves and captures one step diagonally, it can move (but not) capture one step up, down, left or right, and it can capture (but not move without capturing or jump) two steps up, down, left or right.

As far as I can recall, the author's family had a copy of Zillions and seemed to think the implementation was correct.

Jeremy Good wrote on 2007-07-13 UTC
Echidna moves without capturing like wazir (one space orthogonally) and captures but cannot otherwise move like lame dabbaba (two spaces orthogonally, if unblocked). What about the ferz (one space diagonal) aspect of the Echidna? We are told: 'The Echidna moves like a King in European Chess' and 'The Echidna captures on the diagonal' -- which makes me think that the Echidna can make either a non-capturing or capturing ferz move. It would be helpful if in the diagram there were a third entry (Y maybe) symbolizing both capture + movement in addition to movement without capturing (m) or capturing without otherwise moving (x).

Timothy R. Newton wrote on 2005-07-03 UTC
It would be an honor to have my Kangaroo listed in the Piececlopedia! Please do include a link. Thank you very much!

Charles Gilman wrote on 2005-06-25 UTC
I am now an editor and have posted a Piececlopedia entry for your Kangaroo, as it seemed a useful clarification given that its name duplicated that of an existing piece used in fairy problems but not variants. Would you like me to edit your page to put in a link to it?

Charles Gilman wrote on 2004-01-15 UTCGood ★★★★
If you ever invent a larger version of this with extra piece types, one combination of name and move might be a WALLABY with Wazir and Alibaba moves (i.e. like a Champion in the 104-square Omega Chess). The name would fit both the component moves and the similarity to the Kangaroo move.

Timothy R. Newton wrote on 2003-07-28 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
Thank you for the kind comment. I am pleasantly surprised to hear that I won the contest! I can't believe that I won with so many people entered in the contest with their cool games. I am glad to know that the judges liked my game as much as you do. :)

Michael Nelson wrote on 2003-07-28 UTC

Congratulations on a well deserved win. There were so many fine games that
any number of them might have been chosen, but the judges certainly made a
very reasonable choice.  Outback gets gets better and better as you have
more exposure to it.  You know it will be a fun game by reading the
rules--play a few times and you will know it is also a very fine game. You
have created a real gem.

Roberto Lavieri wrote on 2003-07-07 UTCGood ★★★★
Yesterday night I have made some tests, And I must admit Michael Nelson is
right, if the forward Platypus movement is reduced to one with exception
of movement from first rank, the game slows too much. Perhaps if the range
is equal for the horizontal and vertical, say range two except from first
rank, the result is better, but the game has its own idiosincracy as is,
and now I accept that, but first I have to try for being convinced.
Platypus is a clever piece in the game, it can promote to a piece more
powerful that any other piece in the game, but the promotion is not a
necessary win for the team of the promoted Platypus, it depends on
position. I like this 'Australian' game, but the duck faced Platypus
made me take some minutes of atemption

Michael Nelson wrote on 2003-07-07 UTC
Three steps to promote on an empty board is about right for the Platypus--it nearly as hard to promote in this game as a pawn in FIDE Chess (which is five steps on an empty board), and the promotion to Rook by a piece worth considerably more than a Pawn is less significant than promoting a Pawn to Queen. I believe that changing the Platypus' move would detract from the balnce of the game, rather than improve it.

Roberto Lavieri wrote on 2003-07-06 UTCGood ★★★★
I like this game, I have playtested it, and it is interesting enough for make a comment. About Platypus movement, I should prefer limit the three forward only to its first movement, or perhaps only from the first rank. It is a promoting piece, and it can promote to a powerful piece in this game, but it can reach the last rank in three steps. The argument that it is not easy is partially valid, but not at all, it depends on the instance of game you are playing. No more details, it is a very good game.

Michael Nelson wrote on 2003-04-18 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
I have playtested this game extensively in the course of judging Group A. The rules make it sound like a cute game and it is--but it has surprising depth. I will be giving more detail after the judging is complete, but I really wanted to recommend this fine game.

Timothy R. Newton wrote on 2002-12-05 UTC
Thanks for rating my game good! In answer to your question, the Spearsman must kill when making the two forward move, but killing is optional if he only moves one forward.

Peter Aronson wrote on 2002-12-05 UTCGood ★★★★
I have a question about the Spearman, too. Can the Spearman move two forward <strong>without</strong> capturing any enemy piece? Or does the two square forward move require an opposing piece to kill on one of the two diagonally forward squares?

Timothy R. Newton wrote on 2002-11-19 UTC
In answering your questions,
1) The Spearsman is never forced to kill.  Killing is always optional.
2) In a fork, the Spearsman must choose which piece to kill.  He may not
kill both.

Anonymous wrote on 2002-11-19 UTC
Oops -- I meant Spearsman in my previous question.


Anonymous wrote on 2002-11-19 UTC
I have two Bushman questions:

1) If a Bushman advances one space and there is an
opponents' piece which it can capture, is capturing that
piece required or optional?

2) If a Bushman has a fork (i. e. it can capture two
pieces), does it choose one for capture or are both 
pieces captured?


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