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This item is a game information page
It belongs to categories: Orthodox chess, 
It was last modified on: 2015-03-19
 Author: H. G.  Muller. Dai Dai Shogi. Historical large Shogi variant. (17x17, Cells: 289) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Eric Silverman wrote on 2021-03-07 UTC

For what it's worth, one of my older friends, who had lived in Japan for 5 years, was laughing his head off at the bath scene back then (a scene which also confirms this is the right show, I guess), along with another friend being doubled over, too. I didn't find the scene necessarily too odd, but rather I thought it was largely irrelevant to the shogi variant game being played - I suppose there has to be some sort of breakaway scene(s) at times from a game, though.

Yeah I also lived in Japan for a few years, and that onsen moment is really funny. The onsen is where you go to have a deep soak, de-stress and forget your troubles -- so seeing both the players in there really underlines how exhausted they were by playing this monstrous game. They're opponents in the game, but united by just being knackered by the whole thing.

The players' comments at the end of the game sum up their feelings pretty well -- the winner says 'I don't want to do that again', and the losing player says 'I have no regrets about losing', with a clear sense that he's just glad it's over!


Kevin Pacey wrote on 2021-02-17 UTC

That's very informative - evidently my recall of the show was rather off. This CVP website also has a number of pages devoted to that 36x36 shogi variant.

For what it's worth, one of my older friends, who had lived in Japan for 5 years, was laughing his head off at the bath scene back then (a scene which also confirms this is the right show, I guess), along with another friend being doubled over, too. I didn't find the scene necessarily too odd, but rather I thought it was largely irrelevant to the shogi variant game being played - I suppose there has to be some sort of breakaway scene(s) at times from a game, though.


Eric Silverman wrote on 2021-02-16 UTC

Fwiw, I once was at the Ottawa home of a player of games such as Go and >Shogi, and watched a documentary from Japan, where for an exhibition a huge >board was made for a unique one-time Shogi variant between two players, with >a few thousand pieces per side used. The game lasted something like 4 days, >and the players naturally took breaks, including a whirlpool break together >(more than the viewer needed to see or know, IMHO).

That match was part of a documentary segment for a variety show. The game in question wasn't a unique one-time Shogi variant, it was Taikyoku Shogi, played on a 36x36 board with 402 pieces per player. The winner in that match achieved checkmate after 3,805 moves and more than 32 hours of play.

Side note: the players took a break to soak in an onsen, a heated bath. People in Japan often go to onsen and bathe communally with strangers, it's very commonplace and no intimacy is implied, so it's nothing to be alarmed about.

There's a clip of the segment here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_c0Y26iTPSM


Kevin Pacey wrote on 2016-01-25 UTC
H.G. wrote:
"...Note that size is not the exclusive determining factor. The large Shogi variants are all designed to have a few 'boss pieces' in them, which are capable of massacring weaker pieces at high rate. Even when the latter flock together in dense crowd where they mutually protect each other. Because pieces like Lions and their ilk have rifle-capture modes that thwart protection. And often there are rules that prevent them from being traded out of the game. Without such features the games would quickly degenerate into a tedious and boringly slow shuffling of all the weak pieces, with large probability for a stand-off. Tenjiku Shogi (2x78 pieces) did enjoy quite some popularity amongst western players a decade or so ago. But this is unique amongst the historic Shogi variants for having ultra-powerful Fire Demons (2 per side) which can capture up to 8 pieces in one turn, and greatly shorten the duration of the game (even compared to the much smaller Chu Shogi, where a typical game lasts 200-300 moves)."

Thanks for your reply H.G. I've played standard Shogi many times, and I've tried Chu Shogi once (though my opponent and I had to abandon the game in the opening phase due to time constraints, as we were not using a clock, plus we were unsure of some rules, or at least my opponent was unsure how to react to my moving my Lion many turns in a row, I seem to vaguely recall).

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...

Fwiw, I once was at the Ottawa home of a player of games such as Go and Shogi, and watched a documentary from Japan, where for an exhibition a huge board was made for a unique one-time Shogi variant between two players, with a few thousand pieces per side used. The game lasted something like 4 days, and the players naturally took breaks, including a whirlpool break together (more than the viewer needed to see or know, IMHO).

H. G. Muller wrote on 2016-01-24 UTC
I don't think it played by any significant amount in recent times. (This is even controversial for the era of its invention.) There is a ShogiVar program by Steve Evans (of which I made a Linux port) that can play all historic large Shogi variants except Taikyoku through a simple, non-searching heuristic, and some people might play Dai Dai Shogi against that. I am not aware of any sites where you could play it on line. <p> I do know there are some efforts to revive Maka Dai Dai Shogi, which has the same number of pieces. I never played either of those, but my impression is that Maka Dai Dai Shogi is the more playable game of the two. <p> Note that size is not the exclusive determining factor. The large Shogi variants are all designed to have a few 'boss pieces' in them, which are capable of massacring weaker pieces at high rate. Even when the latter flock together in dense crowd where they mutually protect each other. Because pieces like Lions and their ilk have rifle-capture modes that thwart protection. And often there are rules that prevent them from being traded out of the game. Without such features the games would quickly degenerate into a tedious and boringly slow shuffling of all the weak pieces, with large probability for a stand-off. Tenjiku Shogi (2x78 pieces) did enjoy quite some popularity amongst western players a decade or so ago. But this is unique amongst the historic Shogi variants for having ultra-powerful Fire Demons (2 per side) which can capture up to 8 pieces in one turn, and greatly shorten the duration of the game (even compared to the much smaller Chu Shogi, where a typical game lasts 200-300 moves).

Kevin Pacey wrote on 2016-01-24 UTC
Hi H.G.

Do you know if this Shogi variant was ever played that much? I am curious since I've invented a number of 4D chess variants with many pieces per side, the largest of them being a 5x5x5x5 variant (5*4DChess) with 140 pieces (i.e. 70 per side). That is less than this Shogi variant has, and it has fewer piece types (14) than it, though my 5x5x5x5 variant has more board cells (625) than this old Shogi variant. It could increase my faint hopes that my largest 4D variant might be played even a little (if at all) at some point if this Shogi variant was ever remotely popular.

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