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AmazonsA game information page
. Amazons and a computer version.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
John Lawson wrote on Mon, Apr 23, 2018 06:52 PM UTC:


As Ben said, the CVP tends to be inclusive  as far as what is considered a chess variant.  There have been several discussions over the years, and it is always too hard to draw a precise line.  Ultima was questioned because it didn't have replacement capture. There was a discussion around Nemoroth because the victory ondition was stalemate and the piece interactions were unique.  All in all, any game inspired by chess that might interest a variantist would be included.

Ben Reiniger wrote on Sun, Apr 22, 2018 03:47 PM UTC:

While we do fairly frequently bring up the question of what exactly qualifies something as a "chess variant," we acknowledge that there are different definitions.  For this reason I think we try to be inclusive rather than exclusive in allowed items.  (At least, that is my justification, and I suspect that may have been the case historically as well.  Also, it is helpful that this is a website and not a book: if I were writing another Encyclopedia of CV's, I would be more inclined to be exclusive for space considerations.)

Specifically here, we have a game played with a chess board and chess pieces (well, pieces with chess movement plus arrow-firing), but the goal and some mechanics have been completely changed.  (Somewhere, I can't find it now, this group of games is described.  Joust is another example, and maybe even puzzles like the 8 Queens and similar things qualify.)

I've generally thought of Crossovers differently: they are specifically a blending of Chess with some other established game.  E.g., I wouldn't consider this game or Joust crossovers.  Cheskers is a crossover with checkers, and For the Crown is a crossover with deck-building games.

Cheskers actually does seem to meet the royalty condition, though in a different way than standard chess (starting with more than one, and allowing the addition of new ones).

David Cannon wrote on Sun, Apr 22, 2018 01:46 PM UTC:

I like the game, but I question whether it belongs on this website. To me, a chess variant must meet the following criteria : 

1. Played on a board with multiple cells.

2. Diversity of pieces. In other words, pieces of different types that move and/or capture differently. That is why go and draughts/chequers don't qualify, and I don't think Amazons does, either. 

3. Royalty — there must be a piece (or pieces) whose survival is indispensable. Again, go, chequers, and Amazons don't qualify. Arimaa perhaps does — just : if you lose all eight rabbits, you lose the game. But to have eight royal pieces seems a stretch, so that's why I've said "perhaps". 

I'm aware that this website has a "crossovers" section, which allows for games that have borrowed ideas from chess. Cheskers is a good example. It fails the royalty provision, but meets the diversity provision and therefore qualifies as a crossover. But Amazons fails on both counts, in my opinion. 

Filip Rachunek wrote on Sun, Jun 5, 2005 09:20 AM UTC:Excellent ★★★★★
You can play this interesting game on <a href=></a> :-)

Roberto Lavieri wrote on Tue, Sep 21, 2004 09:13 PM UTC:Excellent ★★★★★
Amazons is a great game. I can´t say it is a Chess Variant, the game is of
territorial nature, and it is perhaps more close to Go. This game is
moderately popular, perhaps more in South America than in other lands, I
have seen it passionately played by a few universitary students, but it is
not still a very diffused game, though. It is not easy implement a good
program which plays Amazons well, but I have seen a couple of free
decently strong programs for this game. You can try YAMAZON (v0.48), by
Hiroshi Yamashita (, a very good
contendor and a real challenge for intermediate players, and the
reasonable strong program INVADER (v 2.1), by Richard Lorentz, which plays
 Amazon in a board of NxM 
If you try these programs you are going to be greatly surprised, unless
you are a very high-level player.

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