The Chess Variant Pages

This page is written by the game's inventor, Peter Hatch.

The Evil Horde

The Evil Horde is big. The pieces don't cooperate well though. The Goblins and Orcs have trouble protecting each other, and the Balrog would be more powerful if it started in any other army.

Starting Setup

The starting setup for black is the mirror image of that for white.

  3 | G | G | G | G | G | G | G | G | G | G |
  2 | O | O | O | O | O | O | O | O | O | O |
  1 | Wa| Og| We| B | K | M | A | We| Og| Wa|
      a   b   c   d   e   f   g   h   i   j

The Pieces

Each piece is listed with its abbreviation in parentheses after its name, followed by the notation for its move in Ralph Betza's notation in brackets, if its move can be expressed in that notation.

Goblin (G) [fW]

The Goblin moves one square forward. It may move two squares forward without capturing on its first move. When it reaches the eighth, ninth, or tenth rank it may promote to a Wolf Rider.

Orc (O) [fF]

The Orc moves one square diagonally forward. It may also move two squares diagonally forward without capturing on its first move. After a move to the eighth, ninth, or tenth rank you may remove the Orc and any of your opponents non-royal pieces. If your opponent has no other pieces, it may take a royal piece.

Warlock (Wa) [zF9]

The Warlock moves like a Crooked Bishop. (It moves any number of squares with the direction of movement switching between two perpendicular diagonal directions after each step.)

Ogre (Og) [R4]

The Ogre moves up to four squares orthogonally.

Werewolf (We) [fhN]

The Werewolf moves forward like a Knight. When it reaches the ninth or tenth rank, it may promote to a Wolf Rider.

Assassin (A) [mQcK]

The Assassin moves without capturing like a Queen, and captures like a King.

Balrog (B) [RzR]

The Balrog has the combined moves of a Rook and a Crooked Rook. (It moves orthogonally one square at a time, either in a straight line or alternating between two perpendicular orthogonal directions.)

Minotaur (M) [NL]

The Minotaur has the combined moves of a Knight and a Camel. (It jumps to a square that can be reached by moving one square diagonally then one or two squares orthogonally away from its starting square.)

Dark Lord (K) [K]

The Dark Lord is identical to a King in standard Chess, except that it can not castle.

Wolf Rider (Wo) [NFW]

The Wolf Rider has the combined moves of a King and a Knight. It only comes into the game as a result of a Goblin or Werewolf promoting.

Written by Peter Hatch.
WWW page created: November 26, 2000.