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Xiangqi is the chess played in China and some neighbouring countries.

It is the most played strategy board games in the world even if it is not very well known in the West.

First traces would be from 569 (but controversial) and 800.


Two opponents called Black and Red.

To win you have to checkmate the General of your opponent.


The board is a 9x10 grid but is virtually divided into 2 fields separated by a river. Each field has a palace.

Pieces’ positions are called points defined by line intersections.


for each team:

  • 1 general (king)
  • 2 advisors
  • 2 elephants (= minister for red)
  • 2 cannons
  • 2 chariots (rooks)
  • 2 horses (knights)
  • 5 soldiers (pawns)

We made a western set of pieces for players who might not be familiar with the traditional chinese version. From left to right: General, Advisor, Horse, Elephant, Chariot, Cannon, Soldier. (red and black pieces are different in the traditional set, not in the western set)

Initial setup

Pieces actions and properties

(cheat sheet available below)

  • General: moves and captures 1 point orthogonally and can not leave his palace. Exception: if no pieces between them, the general captures the opponents general if they are on the same line.
  • Advisors: move and capture 1 point diagonally. Can’t leave the palace. This makes only 5 available positions.
  • Elephants: move and capture exactly 2 points diagonally. Can’t jump over pieces. Can’t cross the river. This makes only 7 available positions.
  • Horses: move and capture 1 orthogonally, then one diagonally away from its former position. Can’t jump over pieces.
  • Chariots: move and capture any number of points orthogonally. Can’t jump over pieces.
  • Cannons: move like chariots but not for capture. Can’t jump over pieces. Exception: the cannon can only capture by jumping over one and only one piece on its orthogonal way to its target.
  • Soldiers (pawns): move and capture 1 point forward. Once he has crossed the river, the soldier can also move and capture 1 point horizontally but not backwards. This is the only possible promotion in the game.

You can use our cheat sheet for a start, for more detailed rules and explanations, you can also read the Xiangqi Wikipedia page.

Jocly Xiangqi cheat sheet

Higher resolution is available on our wiki

Available skins

2D skins are available for all, 3D skins need WebGL so please use Chrome or Firefox.

3D Classic

3D Wall

3D Western

3D Western Wall

2D Classic

2D Western


Jocly implementation

  • Development: Michel gutierrez (@_mig_) and Jérôme Choain (@jcfrog)
  • Graphic design: Jérôme Choain (@jcfrog)