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Shatranj al-Sultan. Normal Chess + Alibaba , with a Sultanic flavour . (10x8, Cells: 80) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Paulowich wrote on Sat, Jan 28 01:04 AM UTC:Good ★★★★

Similar to Courier-Spiel, the game adds modern Bishops and improves the Elephants (called Couriers here). Switching the Bishops and Couriers in the initial setup will improve this game. While the b-file and h-file Pawns are now undefended, they are also no longer threatened by hostile Bishops. Jumping the Courier c1-c3 will help to shield the Pawn on (b2).

Some time before 1992, Paul V. Byway included the Ferz in Modern Courier Chess, placing RNCBFQKFBCNR on a 12x8 board. Ken Franklin also placed Alibabas in Leap Chess on 44 squares.

George Duke wrote on Thu, Oct 2, 2014 11:55 PM UTC:
8x10 is the best solution in preserving Pawn spacing of 1500 years.  Minimalist 80 squares of Capablanca size stay elegantly under Shogi 81 and Xiangqi 90. Solve the board first and then get half a dozen Next Chesses suitable on it -- of course separately plus Gilman's AltOrthHex for hexagonal "something different for a change."

Last message points out Sibahi chooses here Alfil plus Dabbabah compound in lieu of Capablanca RN and BN. One piece-type of Sibahi, versus two piece-types of Capablanca.  The July comment cites too one-piece-type solution of Winther's Mastodon on 8x10.  (RN and BN are from 1610s, and Mastodon originally from 1890s; not sure offhand how long ago someone compounded A + D before Sibahi.)

Orthodox Chess is in trouble for 90 years since Lasker-era draw death and founding of f.i.d.e. in 1920s standardization, shutting out variant speculation.  Still in denial of their Draw death, fundamentalists have now to rationalize also 1997 IBM Computer beating Kasparov.  It's time for a change to another standard on larger board.  Let's add more solutions.  Nahbi above linked can scale back to 8x10 and drop Camel as Next Chess candidate.  
Falcon since it is one of the four fundamental Chess pieces is one obvious simple solution on 8x10 (mentioned the July comment).  There can be 6 or 8 alternatives on 8x10 accepted as requiring proficiency.  Sissa adaptable to 80 was also put forth last time.

Settling on 80, the further bssis is just the question: one piece-type or two? -- Adding another new one, Lemurian Shatranj is serious solution when expanded this time to 80 squares, the Bent Hero and Bent Shaman. Or add plain vanilla paired Shogi Lion as one-piece-type solution since its reach is not all the way across the normal board 64 or 80.  Just give up on little 64 squares and broaden to Cuban World Champion Capablanca's natural 80, still more than 10% smaller than long-time Xiangqi.  Then Computers will lag a decade or two, when they start to catch on or up,  do something else.

George Duke wrote on Tue, Jul 8, 2014 05:27 PM UTC:Excellent ★★★★★
Sibahi's SaS here should not least be related to Parton's Dabbabante, written up by Aronson:, besides all the following.

This is Abdul-Rahman Sibahi's last CV of sixteen produced.  There are a couple 2006, twelve 2007 and two 2008 -- not being facetious, a typical design trajectory over time, just reaching a prolificist over-15. Shatranj al-Sultan adds compound (Alfil + Dabbabah) paired to standard RNBKQP.  As Sibahi's summary points out, there are the four bindings, and positioned naturally in the deliberate 8x10 array the four Alibabas never can meet for strategically interesting set-offs.

It has been common theme what one piece-type to add to the orthodox pairs Rook, Knight and Bishop.  In Capablanca's copying of Carrera, brought forward yet again without pre-positioning by unimaginative Seirawan, the Centaur BN and Champion RN are as one conceptually -- like a left Schizzy and right Schizzy of that named CV are of the same cloth but have individual capability.  

Other choices to add two same pieces have included Janus Chess contrarian disregard of Champion in just having one style of piece-type (BN) out of the Carreran completion.  Others of one type in consideration include Shogi variant Lion, Cetina's 1980s Sissa, even Chess Cafe Harding's Transcendental Prelate, and as well plural-path slider Falcon.  (Some of these get tested on 8x8 but paired to match Rook, Bishop and Knight, they all seem to work best on 8x10, not either Capa's original idea of 10x10.) Actually, Sibahi's Alibaba used this way is much like Winther's Mastodon ( on 8x10, having that one's same reach without versatility.  Several CVs by Fourriere, who enunciated the guiding principle to keep the Orthodox standard as base,,

 also add one new piece-type to vanilla RNBKQP.  
Shatranj al-Sultan is a good jumping-off point and perhaps Sibahi will eventually have follow-ups using Fool or Querquisite from his other CVs.

  Another Sibahi CV from main year 2007, adapts Falcon to hexagonal of Glinski orientation.

Daniil Frolov wrote on Sun, Aug 8, 2010 01:48 PM UTC:
'I would rate this game as Excellent if you allowed a one-time Ferz move for them' - why only one-time? How about allowing courier move as ferz and knight as wazir any time? Of course, it will be different game, but it's also interesting! 'I think, in random variant it's better, if courier stats on different quarters, but not necessary on different colors' - if all pieces starts on one rank, couriers will always be on different colors if starts on different quarters.

Anonymous wrote on Thu, Apr 15, 2010 09:37 AM UTC:
I think, in random variant it's better, if courier stats on different quarters, but not necessary on different colors.

Jeremy Good wrote on Wed, May 20, 2009 04:21 PM UTC:
Alibaba Chess Okay, just for kicks, I lengthened the board by one rank to make opposing alibabas oppose each other symmetrically - which creates an entire rank of asymmetry. I threw in two more alibabas and the orange disc just to make it more approximate to exactly one quarter for both sides (since one fourth of 90 is 22.5) - one extra piece that either side can control. In addition to one's own pieces, one *can* move the orange disc each turn. The disc can capture but must stay on the fifth rank and can only move like a sideways wazir. It's a sort of guardian (of the center rank). After both sides have completed their first ten moves, it disappears.

Pawns can move two steps foward on their first move and that includes center pawns.

Castling: King moves over two squares and rook moves to other side of king.

Anyone want to try this with me? I may want to replace some of the pieces here with other pieces. Any suggestions?

Here's an idea: Alibaba II - Increasing the power of the knight and bishop to keep pace with the larger board.

John Smith wrote on Sat, Jan 3, 2009 12:42 AM UTC:Poor ★
There are two undefended Pawns. The Couriers are also very weak because they are restricted to 1/4 of the board. I would rate this game as Excellent if you allowed a one-time Ferz move for them.

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