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This item is a game information page
It belongs to categories: Orthodox chess, 
It was last modified on: 2008-11-19
 By Charles  Daniel. ZigZag Madness. Featuring the crooked dual path sliders: the ZigZag Bishop and the ZigZag Rook. (10x10, Cells: 100) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Eric V. Greenwood wrote on 2013-07-20 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
Hi all! :) I have been very ill for some years now, and off the net for awhile, but for a little while, i'm feeling better enough to be on for a bit. Thank you all who enjoy my games, and an especially big thank-you to Matthew-right after inventing renn 2, and while playtesting w/ matthew, I was diagnosed as a brittle Diabetic. it has sapped me of much of my vitality, so much so that I had to give up playing the games online. I cannot guarantee, but I will try to be here more often, from this point forward, so I can perhaps comment/help if wanted/needed. I will try and resume playing one game, and see if the stamina is there to become more active. Once again, I am glad people are enjoying my inventions, thank you for playing them! It feels good to know that you've done something in life that was of benefit to others. Eric V. Greenwood

Matthew La Vallee wrote on 2009-07-07 UTC
Jeremy, you are entirely correct. I have regretted this comment for some time now. Clearly, the one filled with 'vitriol' was me. I have tried to delete the sucker, but to no avail. For some reason, comments left beneath a game preset are immune to my attempts to get rid of them. Please accept my apologies, Mr. Duke, if you are reading this... Another issue: my, now, self-deleted preset for Renn II IS the work of Eric Greenwood. It is not an 'homage.' He sent me the rules, it's set-up, and it's new piece- the 'Courier,' during a game of Rennchess between Eric and myself some 1 1/2 to 2 years ago. I was FAR too ambitious in agreeing to create a preset for the game, as I had only just discovered, in '07, the Game Courier and the CVP's. I did manage to cocncoct a set of, in my opinion, pretty good-looking icons for the game. Perhaps you might feel inclined to combine the icons and the preset I did manage to generate into a 'total package...?' Renn II DEFINITELY deserves a place on this site! Here is a link to the preset I made.

Jeremy Good wrote on 2009-06-07 UTC

Wow, Matthew, that was impassioned! Your feelings about this must have been building up for a while. Others have felt the need to lash out at George Duke in similar ways. Perhaps he deserves a bit of it?

George Duke, I think, ought to be tolerated here as a critic and he ought to be allowed to enjoy the privileges of being a critic on this site. Of course, I don't always agree with his criticisms (e.g., I happen to really love Pocket Mutation Chess, he regards it as Poor), but I enjoy reading quite a few of his comments. I appreciate the fact that he has a point of view, a perspective, that he wishes to convey. I appreciate all the effort that goes into that.

Suppose this were a site about movies and people were encouraged to leave comments about various movies. Why shouldn't different people attend screenings in theaters and come back and rate the movies according to their personal taste? The film industry wouldn't survive if all filmmakers banded together and insisted that any movie should not be judged unfavorably by any one else. One can envision such an approach being undertaken by an authoritarian country with regard to its own propaganda.

Why shouldn't George Duke be allowed to give his opinion on any chess variant he wants and make what ever cultural cross-references he wants? If George Duke wants to take the time to go through many of my chess variants and rate them as 'Poor' even if I consider the ones he rates as 'Poor' to be excellent, should I take such huge offense? Of course not. Actually, I'd just be pleased that someone took the time to assess them. As I read George Duke's posts, I don't see them as being 'increasingly vitriolic' - far from it. Let the critic have his say. Of course not everyone is interested in what a critic has to say and not everyone chooses to listen to criticism, let alone take it seriously. I would like to encourage George Duke to continue his survey and thank him for his work.

Certainly George Duke has had to endure a great deal of really superficial criticism of his own chess variants work. Why should you not tolerate his criticisms of others as well? I appreciate the fact that many people are hostile towards George for attempting to introduce copyrights into an area which they would prefer to be 'open source' but I can't begrudge him that. There is some controversy over this and I'm not addressing it here because I don't have the background to do so.

But I consider George Duke to be a talent. It's a sign of how parochial and stingy our contemporary society is that it apparently can't afford to be patron or paying consumer to original chess variants inventors like George Duke. Perhaps we will yet find a way though, to reward great chess variant inventors one day. For their hard work and contributions. I think George's willingness to consider and discuss a multitude of variants on this site is an indication of his generosity of spirit. Maybe I am being too kind here and I will regret these words, but I am not angry, like you.

Looking forward to playing your Renn 2 with you, though I happen to know that Eric Greenwood had a Renn 2 of his own (which I think I can send to you; it was my own negligence in posting it that caused the snafu - he and I couldn't agree on what piece icons to use in representing a preset for it, as I recall). Hopefully he will appreciate your efforts and see them as homage, but if not, I suppose it's your right. Perhaps you've spoken with him about this already, more recently than I have. I miss talking with him. Perhaps shall try to see if the last number he gave me still works. Hopefully he'll be back on site soon.


Matthew La Vallee wrote on 2009-06-07 UTC
I must say that I, for one, have become awfully weary of your increasingly vitriolic AND increasingly incoherent postings, Mr. Duke. I have been reading your postings for several years now, and I have held my tongue until now. I can do so no longer. It is conventional wisdom that opinions which are meant to be constructive, be they positive, or even quite negative, are one thing- they are important, and, ultimately, positive in intent. Conversely, your mean-spirited, belligerent words may, to you, sound like 'constructive criticism,' but I feel that your words are meant to serve another purpose: they are more like a punch in the face. You are clearly not a kind man. You may even be a cruel man. To me, you, and your unrelenting postings, are a sort of 'thorn in the side' of this well-intentioned website. I know that I am not alone in this opinion. Maybe I have been too harsh, here, and I will regret these words, but I am angry. Perhaps, Mr. Duke, you should re-focus your attentions on Falcon Chess, its patented piece, and the 'Odes' you have written about them, and let the rest of us continue to play, and create our, in your estimation, thoroughly terrible and utterly unplayable games- in peace. If this site has become so bad, perhaps you should simply leave it.

By the way, the 'South American the wild and creative' to whom I think you are referring is actually from Mexico...


Charles Daniel wrote on 2008-12-01 UTC
Claudio, there is no limit to what I can or will consider in applying the template to other pieces. In fact, I would suggest you continue by applying it to other pieces as you see fit. I have no problem with that.

I reuse much of my original ideas discarding only what I see as completely unworkable. For example initially interested in Gryphon/Aanca I felt that they may be a bit too powerful on the board and so limited its power. The Hippogriff was too limited so I developed the Stealth Gryphon/Anti-gryphon for Stealth Ninja Chess.
However, these pieces could be powered up more by providing dual paths as the Duke/cavalier but with the same minimum square restrictions. Thus the minimum distance – the Zebra move for the zigzag bishop and the Camel move for the zigzag rook can be considered the atom as you call it. This configuration seems far more interesting especially since they are more susceptible to the knights despite their power.

The basic units have been used in many ways: compounding a single path stealth Gryphon/Anti-Gryphon to make the Octopus. Combining Knight and Zebra move with 2 paths as the Sorcerer Snake (See Octopus Chess). OR combining the Rook with the 2-path sliding camel move – the Snake Rook and similarly for the Snake Bishop. (Asylum Redux)

I reused the Flying Bomber that I developed as a compound of different “atoms” that already existed while introducing the checkers/draughts motif to a chess piece. The latest re-incarnation is the Flying Guillotine that you see in Wreckage.

Also see my Zillions file for Pick the Piece Big Chess that has many different ideas contained in a whopping 34 games.

So new piece movement that contributes to the aesthetic beauty of a new chess interests me, and this must be accomplished by experimentation, innovation, as well as reworking and improving existing ideas by others.

I will not have time to continue this work in the immediate future but you (or anyone else) are welcome to expand on my ideas.


Claudio Martins Jaguaribe wrote on 2008-11-29 UTC
Sorry Charles... I’ve been very busy. What I've meant was that whe are all coming to a stage where you, my point of view, are a leader. Because we just develop templates, not a single new move, after all, there are only 8 directions to move a piece. Charles Gilman got the taxonomy of most of the pieces, and is the fountain where I drink from (him and Derek Nalls). But, to me, you are a 'ranger' (sorry about the RPG quote) that got new paths. To me, you are template master, the one who I work to got to the formula, and I work hard! In the concept of atoms, we got only 8 directions to move a piece (the knight is considered an atom, but I don’t think this way). So, to me, the Silver and Gold Generals are atoms, as most pieces of Shogi (in moving one square), a look in All The Kings Men will clarify this idea. The “Z” family, look the piececlopedia, is the most unusual piece movement combo (1 diagonal, plus 1 orthogonal), so using then as short range pieces are atoms too. My question is the usual, how often do you consider apply your templates in a Queens or a General? And, if I may add, combine them in the “move as, capture as”? In a nutshell: Do you have any limit that you have when develops a piece? (What you consider, discard, etc). Mostly when I posted the comment, the ideas that I got is to diversify using the templates in other pieces (atoms). Or variations as the “move/capture”. Do you discard those or keep it in mind to another variant? In a final note: keep working!

John Smith wrote on 2008-11-25 UTC
Charles, you should remember to delete the extra spaces when deleting profanity from your posts. ;)

George Duke wrote on 2008-11-25 UTC
I suppose between Larry Smith and Charles Daniel, a cynic could say, ''Keep up the good work, CVP.'' But not deterred, my favourite website is TCVP for the wonder years 1995-2005, still available for continued ongoing review. And the occasional diamond in the rough still published with decreasing percentage of regularity. Let's thankfully and seriously move on. Fortunately these months there is on my part all the time in the world. One thing newer participants may not be aware is that great CVPage originated in Europe, Holland, by Hans Bodlaender. To refer to ''out of the country'' or to stress overseas contributors as aberration are peculiar because I always think of TCVP as European chiefly -- which is many countries, international, cosmopolitan. ''USA'' would then be ''overseas,'' the odd man out. The ''old world'' contributions add the needed depth and context, just as the South Americans the wild and creative, departing more than North Americans from set forms slightly altered. Such or similar terms confusingly were used in recent related postings not by the immediate talkers. Also used once is ''unfortunate parts of the world'' some months ago. Well, FIDE has motto ''gens una sumus.''

Charles Daniel wrote on 2008-11-25 UTC
Sorry George, But no one cares about your patent. And the only piece you invented is far less original than the very many I have invented or derived from other pieces. What I do know from playtesting Asylum Redux, Octopus Chess and Zigzag madness is that the gameplay is far more satisfying than your clunky falcon game. Still your comments are quite amusing esp your reference to yourself as 'we' . Keep up the good work.

George Duke wrote on 2008-11-25 UTCPoor ★
Bison/Falcon is irrelevant. Repeatedly explained is that Bison is patented USP5690334. Once CVP kept its artists to higher standard and, not yet mentioned for this particular mediocre CV and all unoriginal Daniel's other works, better succinct writing skills within the text. These pieces are Renaissance Cavalier and Duke. It is the cost paid for anyone's having the right to comment, as the site becomes popular, and for the post-your-own system itself. When Editors had time to review each entry, now understandably impossible, the lowering of quality was avoided. We proceed over the holiday weeks to review, re-organize, and make retrospectives. This is one insignificant CV of only interest for the ''zigzag'' derivations discussed by the other Smith and Knappen. We need to diverge for the current tremendous occurrence of quality proliferation in John Smith's unexpected work, a counter-trend to the one prevailing. If we find the time.

Charles Daniel wrote on 2008-11-25 UTC

George Duke, thank you for your comment, but there are many inaccuracies in them that I shall address.

Firstly, there never is and never shall be any need for an inventor to " acknowledge" every instance of "similar" piece that ever existed. In a few instances as in your persistent bringing up of this flawed “airplane” piece, there is absolutely no connection. I have always stated that the Flying Bomber owes its existence to Checkers / Draughts (and which probably the airplane piece too is derived from)

Secondly, since my ZigZag Bishop/Rook differs from the Duke/Cavalier in as much degree as your Falcon does from the Bison, there is no reason why I must bend over backwards and chastise myself for simply using the word “new”. I certainly haven’t patented the piece – and I suspect I could if I wanted to.

Thirdly, I never suggested nor agreed to have delayed evaluations - that suggestion was made by another poster.

Perhaps, the question that should be raised – Am I aware of the dual path Cavalier/Duke and was my idea derived from them? The answer is yes. Earlier I had used the pieces: the Stealth Gryphon and Stealth Anti-Gryphon which are limited versions of the Gryphon and Aanca. Some logical steps for new pieces: Compound the Stealth Pieces to give the Octopus. Or make them 2 path go give the ZigZag piece set. I also played Renn Chess so I was aware of their existence. I was simply NOT particularly inspired by Renn Chess or its two pieces which itself are derived from Gryphon/Aanca.

You are free to mention what you think are similar pieces, but ultimately it is up to the inventor to state his/her inspiration regardless of whether you think he/she is being truthful or not.

As for Proliferation – this can only be a good thing in the long run. Unfortunately, I am ending my run at proliferation. My variants were created to fill what I saw as a void in chess variants whose gameplay most resembled orthodox chess. And I do believe the dropping mechanism of Ninja Pawns fulfills this more on a 10x10 board than pushing the armies closer as in Grand Chess or by using a 10x8 board.
And I just don't buy the claim that the quality was so much higher in the first decade. This is a myth. What was invented earlier can be and has being improved upon.

I sincerely hope that others will continue where I left off – which is mainly adding one or two pieces to 10x10 board and strive for balanced gameplay.


George Duke wrote on 2008-11-25 UTC
In other Daniel CVs he ignores similarity of pieces used to Wayne Schmittberger's Airplane almost 30 years old. What detracts from this CV as write-up is not acknowledging that the key ''novelty'' is Renaissance Cavalier and Duke, both two-way multi-path. The normal response should be''thanks for pointing that out,'' to 'JKn'. Instead there is mock indignation and fatuous suggestion to delay evaluations 7 days. 'JKn's first couple comments are constructively to the point. Special two-path Bishop here is Duke. Special two-path Rook is Cavalier. Both minus their initial stop at Knight square. So they are not new pieces. The ensuing new combination of elements, from reemployment of Duke & Cavalier, is adequate enough probably, with Ninja Pawn and so forth. The result is one of millions that can be hewed from our growing elemental and otherwise established pieces and mutators. Yet hope for any organization of material rests in acceptance of priorities, as was the custom for CVP during its first decade, when quality ran high.

Larry Smith wrote on 2008-11-25 UTC
For those who don't speak German, here is a translation from the previous anonymous post: 'The discussion over the Etymologie of ' Zickzack' in German is merry. A break makes only a serrating (/\), for a zigzag needs it many breaks (/\/\/\/\/\).' [Babel Fish] Zacken is the verb for Zacke, which means 'jag'. So Zacken means 'jags' or 'to jag'. And 'einen Zacken' means 'jags together(or as one)'. Although zack, Zacke and Zacken appear similar, they do slightly diverge in meaning. So that statement is both incorrect and misleading in its attempt to both confuse and hide its meaning. Another meaning for Zacke is 'tooth'. So that Zacken means 'to tooth' and 'einen Zacken' means 'to tooth together(or as one)'. So Zacke (/\) is not the same as Zacken (/\/\/\/\/\). 'Zack, zack' is the same as saying 'Chop, chop'. Or 'look sharp'. Or 'move, move'. BTW, 'zickig' also can mean touchy or bitchy. ;-)

Anonymous wrote on 2008-11-25 UTC
Fine, now here are some clarifications included, at least. Out of the proposals in the discussion, I immediately love the terms 'dog leg bishop' and 'dog leg rook': Nice unique names for the pieces. Maybe 'dog leg cavalier' and 'dog leg duke' are even better because of their relation to RennChess. What unprotected pawns is concerned: This one of the major points in the discussion of Capablanca chess (invented by a chess world champion, but never caught on). --JKn P.S. Die Diskussion über die Etymologie von 'Zickzack' im Deutschen ist lustig. Ein Knick macht nur einen Zacken (/\), für ein Zickzack braucht es viele Knicke (/\/\/\/\/\).

Charles Daniel wrote on 2008-11-22 UTC
Hey Claudio, Thanks for the rating but I am afraid I do not follow you. Your previously mention: 'But, looks to me that is a template, as the snake. A template that can be applied to the various atoms and generals.' I guess you are right, this template or formula can be applied to other types of pieces. Of course I used this idea in Asylum Redux and Octopus Chess as well. I did not realize you were asking me a question. Would you care to elaborate on this a bit more?

Claudio Martins Jaguaribe wrote on 2008-11-22 UTC
Charles: I'm really hurt! After all you've engaged in endless debates about the name zigzag, even answered a anonymous poster, but, didn't got time to answer the only comment about the pieces... What can I say? I'm really hurt and speechless, after all, in all the comments, mine was the only one to look the pieces by theirs moves as they are. I've looked to the math, not name, not value, just the formula you used to develop it. And, I've got no answer. Why? Here, is a space where I avoid any kind of discussion or self glorification. But I'm human too! And see a anonymous poster got answer, where the ONLY GOOD rating you got was mine... Just take a look. The only one who got you a good rating you've ignored. Think about it! Hugs!

Charles Daniel wrote on 2008-11-21 UTC
Larry, thanks for your comments, they were most helpful in dealing with the confusion. I think the problem is the poster's unshakable belief that only the Boyscout can be a zigzag bishop (even though I and some others may not find the term 'Bishop' as referred to the boyscout intuitive) I don't think the comments need to be reviewed or delayed as long as they are not overly obscene. As the site gets more popular, the quality of comments may very well decrease as in YouTube, but this is the price to pay so that anyone can voice their opinion.

Larry Smith wrote on 2008-11-21 UTC
I am sorry that your submission had to be subjected to this stream of nonsense. I hope that I was not overly verbose in my attempt to correct the misconceptions voiced. This is exactly the behavior that I detest. I would hope that members would show more constraint when reviewing a submission. Rather than responding with a 'knee-jerk' reaction, they should carefully analyze the submission before making a 'snap' judgment. It always surprises me how many negative responses occur within 24 hours of a submission's posting. This obviously reflects little analysis on the part of the commenting member. Maybe there should be a grace period before allowing the posting of comments to a new submission. Giving members time to carefully consider their eventual commentary. I would suggest seven days.

Charles Daniel wrote on 2008-11-21 UTC
To anonymous poster: I don't care too much for jargon and neither should anyone who is interested in playing this chess variant. If you had really wanted to contribute terminology, you could have just done it, I have no problem with that. Instead you resort to attacking the variant while hiding as an anonymous poster. My chess variants are geared more for the mainstream, which is why I try to avoid using jargon when simple words can do. Its a 2 path bent rider but only people in chess variants understand the term bent rider. 2 path bent rider=crooked dual path slider. The word crooked is more readable for the general audience. The word Zig Zag is already proven to be corrrect in the sense, so this topic is now moot. There is nothing counterintuitive about the array - the unprotected pawn is easily defended by the wazir knight in one move. If you look at the opening example you will also understand the starting positions of the ZigZag pieces Many chess variants have one or more unprotected pawns - why not criticize them as well?

Larry Smith wrote on 2008-11-21 UTC
Dutch is actually a Franco derivation of German, and didn't appear until four or five hundred A.D. German is a little bit older. And jigsaw has a whole other etymology. ''vertical reciprocating saw,' 1873, Amer.Eng., from jig with its notion of 'rapid up-and-down motion.' Jigsaw puzzle first recorded 1909; originally one with pieces cut by a jigsaw.' Although 'jig' is of Irish and Scottish origin, it might originate in the French 'gigue' or dance(in a sense, 'to shake a leg'). And 'saw' comes from the German 'Säge'. So they had a term for a repetitive 'zickzack'. ;-) And everyone knows 'The South'. At least those from the United States. But I've found that even people outside the country know the reference.

Anonymous wrote on 2008-11-21 UTC
Larry Smith: | In the South, they refer to a pattern which continued one angle | past a simple zigzag step as a 'dog leg'. Interesting how they | also incorporated two three-letter words which ended in 'g'. :-) Well, so call them 'dog-leg pieces', and you would hear no objection from me. :-) Which 'South' are you talking about? Zigzag is actually a Dutch word. It is related to 'zaag', (Dutch for 'saw'), and describes the saw-tooth shape of its cutting edge. The English equivalent would be 'jigsaw'.

Anonymous wrote on 2008-11-21 UTC
What terminology is concerned: Your pieces are called bent riders (there is a very good essay on Bent Riders by Ralph Betza on this server). Crooked or zigzag describes the moves of boyscout and girlscout respectively (with many turn instead of exactly one turn). I refrain from throwing in another rating but I see more problems with ZigZag Madness: The opening array is counterintuitive and hard to memorize (which augmented knight is on which flank? And which of the twopath bent riders goes to either flank?) and it suffers from an unprotected pawn. So my advice is: Read what is already here (especially the essays of Ralph Betza) and quote the sources of your inspiration, giving credit whom credit is due. --JKn

Charles Daniel wrote on 2008-11-21 UTC
Handicapping them close range does make them less powerful and more on par with the other pieces. However, there were other reasons: as I mentioned their minimum distance a camel or zebra move away, make their movement more unique on this board. THe two new knights already have a Ferz or wazir in addition to knight movement. The Zigzag Bishop/Rook are thus more susceptible to the knights and pawns. The piece values from the Zillions file (which will be up soon): Wazir Knight - 13860 Ferz Knight - 13287 ZigZag Biship - 13914 to 11590 Zigzag Rook - 22078 to 17733 Rook - 17292 Bishop 11613 pawn - 3620 Ninja Pawn - 5915

John Smith wrote on 2008-11-21 UTC
As I said before: Is this supposed to make them on par with their non-zigzag counterparts?

Charles Daniel wrote on 2008-11-21 UTC
Note that the minimum distance a ZigZag Bishop moves is a Zebra's move away: One orthogonal and TWO diagonally outwards. Think of it as a zig then a zag followed by 1 or more spaces along the diagonal as a bishop. Or it slides 1 or more like a biship first and then zags 1 more in same direction and then zigs. ZigZag Rook's minimum distance is a camel's move away Two orthogonal and one diagonally outwards. So its 1 or more spaces as a Rook followed by a zig in same direction and then a zag. Or a Zag diagonally then a zig and then moves 1 space or more like a rook in same direction. So not only they cannot move to adjacent squares, they cannot move to squares a knight's move away. (This is unlike the duke and cavalier that can move a knight's move away.)

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