The Chess Variant Pages

Check out Wildebeest Chess, our featured variant for May, 2023.

Since Java is no longer supported in most browsers, our Java applets probably will not run unless you install an extension that will run them. We recommend installing the CheerpJ Applet Runner extension on Edge, Chrome, or another Chromium browser. If your browser still does support Java, and you're not using this extension, make sure this site is listed in your Java exceptions list. You should find this in the Security tab of your Java control panel.

Vanishing Squares Chess

If you had a Java-capable browser, you could play Vanishing Squares Chess here.
No save/back keys for this applet yet.

Pekka Karjalainen invented this variant. A random square is marked after each half-move. If this is the first time it has been marked, it turns darker gray. If this is the second time, it turns black. You must move a unit off a black square at the first opportunity or it will disappear. Units cannot move to black squares. Line movers, pawns on the second rank, and castling king may still move across black squares. Line moves give check across black squares.

Thanks to Andrew Maxson for help with the debugging (January 2007).

Chess Variants

These are simple illustrations rather than strong opponents.

Bug reports? -- Thank you! Keep them coming!

Written by Ed Friedlander

WWW Page Added: Sunday, January 16, 2005