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This item is a game information page
It belongs to categories: Orthodox chess, 
It was last modified on: 1999-03-13
 Author: Hans L. Bodlaender. Inventor: Jean-Louis  Cazaux. Shako. Cannons and elephants are added in variant on 10 by 10 board. (10x10, Cells: 100) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Aurelian Florea wrote on 2018-04-18 UTC

Thanks Fergus :)!


Fergus Duniho wrote on 2018-04-18 UTC

I fixed the two-step move of the Black Pawns in Shako. The p function, which is used only for potential moves, had "checkatwostep #0 #1 0 1 0 1" in it instead of "checkatwostep #0 #1 0 -1 0 -1". The negative values were needed because Black Pawns move down from higher rank numbers to lower rank numbers. So I changed this in the include file for the game.


Aurelian Florea wrote on 2018-04-18 UTC

The initial pawn double move in this game's preset works fine but the message box stating that the move is marked as ilegal still apears. Maybe someone could check it out :)!


Kevin Pacey wrote on 2018-03-01 UTCExcellent ★★★★★

A lovely use of cannons and modern elephants, on a 10x10 board. I'd note that since defending each side's edge pawns can be an issue at times (as can be the development of either elephant), that alone seems to slightly inhibit the players from emulating many standard chess openings beyond a certain depth, but this is apparently very common for chess variants.

I'd tentatively estimate the piece values (on this game's 10x10 board) as follows: P=1; E=2.75; C=2.75(but 3.5 before endgame); N=3; B=3.5; R=5.5; Q=10; K's fighting value=2.5.


Fergus Duniho wrote on 2015-08-26 UTC
Not including links to a website you are referring to is like not including citations to a book you are quoting. Including a link is not only allowed; it is what you should be doing.

Andrew Wong wrote on 2015-08-04 UTC
I'm writing an article on this game but I'm not sure if links to it would be allowed. I'll post a few extracts: "... The elephant gained the power to move one square diagonally, allowing it to reach any square of the same colour it starts on, whereas the original elephant from Chaturanga could only reach a few squares on the entire 8 by 8 board. The pieces have been carefully guarded so that the cannon is not able to take a piece after just a few moves without it being captured back. Personally I haven’t had the chance to try this game out thoroughly yet, so I’m not sure how well it plays out, but just for the sake of the “East meets West” ideology, I think it is worth playing. I would possibly also add the silver from Japanese chess as the piece appears in Thai chess, Burmese chess as well, thus making it more “East”, since the only “Eastern-ness” of the game is only from the cannon, whereas the addition of the elephant piece represented a majority of the old chess forms, such as Kurierspiel (where the elephant still existed), Chaturanga and Shatranj."

Samson Marriner wrote on 2014-10-16 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
when people get bored of how repetitive and figured-out FIDE Chess is (like Bobby Fischer did) this along with a few others has a possibility of replacing it. Elephants and Cannons both bring new strategy elements such as a sort of no extra development necessary, and Cannons add a new edge to attacks. Cannons can also artificially pin Kings. Cannons and Kings cannot checkmate bare Kings, but a Cannon, King and Knight can. Elephants are a third minor piece (though Bishops are stronger than before), which I prefer since minor piece feels like a more useful term and minor pieces feel more like a currency than a coincidence. Also, Elephants (and Cannons) developing naturally doesn't interfere with any other piece development, and developing Elephants attacks pawns while being weaker than Knights. I could probably go on to talk about some openings which are playable and some which aren't but this is getting long.

Yu Ren Dong wrote on 2009-08-23 UTC
If Kings in large chess variants were limited to move within 8*8 squares and not allowed to step into outside, the play time would be not too long and get more excited.

Antoine Fourrière wrote on 2006-08-20 UTC
It's corrected.

carlos carlos wrote on 2006-08-20 UTC
bug in the preset? i can't castle... thanks in advance.

Anonymous wrote on 2006-08-15 UTC
In XiangQi, a cannon in a 'bare endgame' (only two king and one cannon) is less strong than a pawn!

Roberto Lavieri wrote on 2006-08-14 UTCGood ★★★★
I think this games is (perhaps more than FIDE-Chess) very sensitive to openings. You can be quickly in clear disadvantage after some weak opening moves. Some care is needed...

David Paulowich wrote on 2006-08-12 UTC

Unicorn=10, Queen=10, Chancellor=9, Rook=5.5, Lion=4.5(?)

Bishop=3.5, Knight=3, Elephant=2.5, Pawn=1

are endgame piece values (for Shako and Unicorn Great Chess) which preserve some formulas I firmly believe in, namely Q+P = R+R and Q = R+B+P and R+P = B+N. The Cannon should be worth 4 Pawns at the start of the game, but decline to half the value of a Rook in the endgame (2.75 Pawns). I consider short range pieces to have more value than Antoine Fourrière gives them in his Comment. Even the lowly Ferz should be worth 1.5 Pawns on a 10x10 board. EDIT [March 2007] I decided to bump the Lion up to 5 full points. The Ferz still looks good to me.


carlos carlos wrote on 2006-08-11 UTC
thanks, antoine! that's interesting stuff.

Antoine Fourrière wrote on 2006-08-11 UTC
Chess according to Zillions: Q=7.6 R=4.6 B=3.2 N=2.7 P=1 Shako according to Zillions: Q=8.9 R=5.6 B=3.6 N=3.0 P=1 C=5.5 E=2.9 Xiang Qi according to Zillions: R=5.4 C=5.35 Chess : Q=9 R=5 B=3.3 N=3 P=1 XiangQi : R=12 C=6 H=5 E=3 F=2 P= 1 or 2 (before or after crossing the River) -- so Zillions is very wrong about R=C. Cylindrical Chess: R=B (two eight-square files) -- colourboundness doesn't matter. Zillions should be right about N=E (eight squares) for Shako. I would add something for the Cannon and substract something for the Queen because a Cannon is as dangerous as a Knight to a Queen (and an Elephant isn't, by the way). So, Q=10 R=5.5 C=4 B=4 N=3 E=2.8 P=1 in the opening. Q=10 R=6 B=4 C=3 N=3 E=2.8 P=1 in the midgame. Q=10 R=6.5 B=4 N=2.5 E=2.5 C=2 P=1 in the endgame (if the Pawn isn't particularly strong, of course).

carlos carlos wrote on 2006-08-11 UTC
anyone know/care to estimate piece values for this game?

Nasmichael Farris wrote on 2006-07-26 UTCGood ★★★★
This game looks to be well thought out. I am pleased to see the re-unification of the game as it is perceived through both eastern and western eyes. Each stands to gain something from the other. I am glad it was submitted to the 3rd Courier tournament. Thanks also to Hans B. for the translation from the French.

Gary Gifford wrote on 2006-07-08 UTCExcellent ★★★★★

This is essentially chess with cannons and elephants added. It appears to play rather well. I like it a lot.

However; in my in-progress game my opponent has 2 light-squared Bishops and no Dark-Squared Bishop. I have one of each. The reason is that when the game begins Black has a Bishop on h9 and a Knight on g9. By the rules this is wrong.

The pre-set needs to be corrected so that the initial setup has a Bishop on g9 and a Knight on h9. Of course, players can manually fix this when they begin a game, but like me, many may assume a correct setup is present and not notice the error for the first few moves.


David Paulowich wrote on 2005-12-05 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
Jean-Louis Cazaux has created a most interesting game with cannons and (modern) Elephants. I am presently working on an 8x8 variant which also has cannons in the four corners.

Anonymous wrote on 2005-02-02 UTC
Shako is also a term of Hungarian origin meaning a tall, usually plumed, cylindrical cap. As this is part of some historic army uniforms it is an appropriately military name for such a game.

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