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Sirlin's Chess. Alternative presentation of "Chess 2 - The Sequel". (8x8, Cells: 64) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Anthony Viens wrote on 2018-11-29 UTC

H. G. Muller, I share your dislike of the dueling mechanic and agree it does not feel 'chesslike'.
However, it is not chance.  It is very different skill, requiring reading the board, relative importance of keeping the piece vs stones, and your opponent.  You cannot duel randomly and be effective, because this 'prisoner's dilemma' has an end....you run out of stones and your opponent has a huge advantage.

You may not be aware that Chess2 was played very extensively on Steam, which tracks all games.  Quite a few players racked up litarally thousands of hours playing.  Chess2 probably ranks very high on the list of Chess Variants that have actually been played--and not a single decent player approached the dueling as anything other than an important calculation to make.  You could duel randomly, of course, but experience shows that is not the best way.
(Chess2 on Steam is pretty much dead now, no one is ever on and the computer is quite weak.  But it had quite a few players for a while there.)

I do agree that it pushes this variant farther away from chess than usual--much further away than I like.  But dueling doesn't make it a game of chance.


H. G. Muller wrote on 2018-11-21 UTC

I guess the bottom line is that this game really has nothing to do with chess at all. It dispenses with the most basic properties of chess, making it a game of chance (*) rather than a game of meticulous planning. This doesn't mean it has to be a poor game, of course. There are plenty of entertaining games that are not related to chess. But it just isn't a chess variant. You might as well play Bridge.

(*) The claim that there is no chance involved because the players can conscioulsly decide how much stones to wager in duelling is misleading: the optimal strategy for handling such "prisoner's dilemma" type (sub-)games is to pick the number randomly according to some probablility distribution. So although dice are not officially involved, the players will have to make 'mental dice throws' in the course of playing, which essentially amounts to the same thing.


Anthony Viens wrote on 2018-11-19 UTCAverage ★★★

This page contains the rules for this game:

Sirlin's Chess2-the Sequel

I agree that name reeks of hubris.  However, that page has all the discussion about the game on it.  I would be great if this page were linked to it in the main body of text.


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