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This page is written by the game's inventor, Patrik Hedman.

Chaotic Chess

Pawns are mainly used for creating obstacles and chaos for the opponent, or for defensive purposes. They lack attacking power.


Starting position:
K	N	A	R	M			
N	A	R	M	R			
			R	M	R	A	N
			M	R	A	N	K

Kings are in opposite corners. Pawns are on ranks 3 and 6. Squares a1, a2, b1, b2, c1, c2 are unoccupied - and the squares diametrically opposite to those are also unoccupied.


A=Archbishop (knight + bishop compound)

M=Merchant     M=Merchant    Merchants move one step in any of the four directions a rook could have moved in or one step in any of the four directions a bishop could have moved in. They don’t capture by displacement. Merchants can be taken out by enemy pieces that aren’t immobilized. 

Merchants immobilize most enemy agents (but not pawns) located orthogonally adjacent to them. However, they don’t immobilize other merchants or friendly agents. Any piece that is immobilized by a merchant can no longer give check or mate. 

It is allowed for an enemy agent (including the king) to move directly onto an immobilization square, either by taking a piece, pawn or merchant, or by just moving there.

Merchants take out enemy agents by custodian capture, but only when they step into an orthogonal configuration with the victim. They do not perform custodian capture with the help of any other piece than another friendly merchant. Merchants will win the game if they are on opposite sides immediately next to the enemy King either horizontally or vertically. Merchants will win the game in such a position by “backstabbing” the enemy King. Giving check before custodian capture of the king is not necessary. Merchants can take out enemy merchants by custodian capture (even though they can’t immobilize them).

Agents that are next to both an enemy merchant and a friendly merchant
(orthogonally adjacent) will be able to move. That also goes if it is
orthogonally adjacent to two enemy merchants but only one friendly
merchant. Two merchants moving into backstabbing position next to an enemy
agent will be able to backstab it even if the victim is next to a friendly


Change of rules from orthodox chess:
¤ Pawns always move as rooks, and everything they “bump” (friend or enemy) from any distance beyond adjacent squares becomes pushed back as far as possible – until end of rank/file or until square adjacent to another agent. Pawns stop at the “bump” square (the one right before the bumped piece or pawn), and do not follow the course of the bumped agent. Pieces that are immobilized by merchants can’t be pushed, and merchants themselves can’t be pushed, either. Agents that are orthogonally adjacent to a friendly merchant can not be bumped by any pawns. Pawns are allowed to move as rooks without bumping any single agent. No agent can be pushed out of the board, but will stay or stop at the outer rim.
¤ Pawns can't capture any agent.
¤ There is no castling move.
¤ There are no promotions.
¤ Pawns can only be taken by enemy knights, archbishops, and king. Pawns can only be taken by enemy archbishops when the archbishops move as knights, and not when they’re moving as bishops.
¤ There are three ways to win. Either by mating the enemy king, custodian capture (“backstabbing” the king with two merchants), or by taking out all enemy agents except for any remaining pawns and the king.

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By Patrik Hedman.
Web page created: 2014-03-17. Web page last updated: 2014-03-17