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Ladies and Generals

Introduction

Okisaki Shogi is a game based on Shogi but on a 10x10 board and with Queens and Knights. Knights replace Helms. Queens go between the King and one of the Goldgenerals, although whether Kings share one file and Queens another or each Queen shares a file with the enemy King I have yet to confirm. My suspicion is that each player has the King on their right and Queen on their left, to balance the Rook on their right and Bishop on their left established from standard Shogi, and I have modelled this 3d version on that assumption. If anyone knows the Okisaki array I would be grateful if they post an Okisaki page on the site. Another Okisaki innovation is to make the corner piece a Rook restricted to moves taking it to any other rank, not just those ahead of it. This is termed a Reverse Chariot in Shogi variants, or a Rookranker in Man and Beast terminology.

For my expansion to a cubic board I decided to retain a face-to-face orientation to keep the meaning of "forward", so important in Shogi, simple. What I noticed first was that on such a board the Rookranker is joined by a Bishoranker - a Bishop restricted to moves that change rank. In 3d the Queenranker, known in Shogi variants as Flying Ox, is the Rookranker's compound specifically with the Bishoranker rather than the full Bishop. These pieces were pioneered in Quadlevel, a 3d Chess intended to emulate how some FIDE pieces can change rank and others cannot. The linepiece whose full symmetric move must change rank in 3d in the way that the Bishop's must in 2d is the Unicorn.

This inspired me to make the Unicorn's directions or nonstandard diagonals (NDs) the analogue of 2d diagonals and have three strands of analogues to 2d orthogonals. These would be the actual orthogonals, the Bishop's directions or standard diagonals (SDs), and both combined. This neatly led to three strands of Shogi-piece analogues, and numbers of piece types suiting three styles (described for convenience as sizes) of Shogi set. As however some Goldgeneral analogues are more worth promoting than some Queenwise pieces, a physical Shogi piece does not necessarily represent its analogue - especially as I assume non-Okisaki physical sets.

The Bishop has only the one analogue, of course, and I also "topped and tailed" with just Queenwise analogues. Oblique directions I dispensed with altogether. For these reasons, although each file has the same piece density as non-Okisaki 2d Shogi - 4 times as many pieces and cells - I suggest using 5 Shogi sets, 1 of the largest and 2 each of the others. This coincidence in piece density also prompted me to revert to 9 ranks rather than the 10 of Okisaki Shogi as 3 lots of 3 ranks appealed more to my aesthetic sense, especially when other diomensions are divisible by 3 as well.

The name followed from the pieces. The array includes three Man and Beast 01 ladies - the Empress, Queen, and Duchess - and promotion, such as Rook to Baroness, gives others. Likewise the array has six kinds of Man and Beast 04 general - Sky, Coast, Brass, Steel, Azure, and Jade. Again promotion, such as Brass to Sun and Steel to Moon, gives the other six.

Setup

Ranks are numbered 1 to 9, filestacks lettered a to f, and levels lettered u (top) to z (bottom).

Level u

Level v

Level w

Level x

Level y

Level z
same as Level u

Pieces

I have made use of this image set to get satisfactory images for all pieces, including promotees.

King analogue, moving one step:

The EMPEROR moves along any of the 26 radials, and must be kept out of check. It is unpromotable. There is one Emperor aside, represented by the large King.

Queen analogues, moving any distance through empty intermediate cells:

The EMPRESS moves along any of the 26 radials. It is unpromotable. There is one Empress aside, represented by the medium King.
The DUCHESS moves along any of the 6 orthogonals and 8 NDs. It is promotable to DOWAGER by adding remaining Emperor moves. There is one Duchess aside, represented by the medium Rook.
The GOVERNOR moves along any of the 12 SDs and 8 NDs. It is promotable to REGENT by adding remaining Emperor moves. There are two Governors aside, represented by the medium Bishop.

Rook analogues, moving any distance through empty intermediate cells:

The QUEEN moves along any of the 6 orthogonals and 12 SDs. It is promotable to DIARCH by adding remaining Emperor moves. There is one Queen aside, represented by the large Rook.
The ROOK moves along any of the 6 orthogonals. It is promotable to BARONESS by adding remaining Emperor moves. There are two Rooks aside, represented by the small Rook.
The BISHOP moves along any of the 12 SDs. It is promotable to POPE by adding remaining Emperor moves. There are two Bishops aside, represented by the small Bishop.

Bishop analogue, moving any distance through empty intermediate cells:

The UNICORN moves along any of the 8 NDs. It is promotable to USURPER by adding remaining Emperor moves. There are four Unicorns aside, represented by the large Point.

Goldgeneral analogues, moving one step:

The SKYGENERAL moves along any of the 6 orthogonals, 12 SDs, and 4 forward NDs. It is unpromotable. There are two Skygenerals aside, represented by the large Goldgeneral.
The BRASSGENERAL moves along any of the 6 orthogonals and 4 forward NDs. It is promotable to SUNGENERAL by adding remaining forward Emperor moves. There are two Brassgenerals aside, represented by the large Wing.
The STEELGENERAL moves along any of the 12 SDs and 4 forward NDs. It is promotable to MOONGENERAL by adding remaining forward Emperor moves. There are two Steelgenerals aside, represented by the large Silvergeneral.

Silvergeneral analogues, moving one step:

The COASTGENERAL moves along any of the 8 NDs, the forward orthogonal, and the 4 forward SDs. It is unpromotable. There are four Coastgenerals aside, represented by the medium Goldgeneral.
The AZUREGENERAL moves along any of the 8 NDs and the forward orthogonal. It is promotable to FORESTGENERAL by adding remaining forward Emperor moves. There are four Azuregenerals aside, represented by the medium Wing.
The JADEGENERAL moves along any of the 8 NDs and 4 forward SDs. It is promotable to SEAGENERAL by adding remaining forward Emperor moves. There are four Jadegenerals aside, represented by the medium Silvergeneral.

Rookranker analogues, moving one step:

The QUEENRANKER moves along any of the forward orthogonal, backward orthogonal, and 4 forward and 4 backward SDs. It is unpromotable. There are four Queenrankers aside, represented by the small Goldgeneral.
The ROOKRANKER moves along the forward orthogonal and backward orthogonal. It is "reversibly promotable" to the GOLDGENERAL that moves one step along any of the 6 orthogonals and 4 forward SDs. There are four Rookrankers aside, represented by the small Wing.
The BISHORANKER moves along any of the 4 forward and 4 backward SDs. It is "reversibly promotable" to the SILVERGENERAL that moves one step along any of the 12 SDs and the forward orthogonal. There are four Bishorankers aside, represented by the small Silvergeneral.

Point analogue, moving one step:

The PRINCELING moves along any of the forward orthogonal and 4 forward SDs. It is promotable to PRINCE by adding one-step moves along the remaining orthogonals and SDs. There are thirty-six Princelings aside, represented by the medium and small Points.

Rules

There is no initial double-step move, En Passant, or Castling.

As the Princeling otherwise has a choice of up to five cells to move forward to, a player may not have three or more unpromoted Princelings on the same file. Nor can they have more than four unpromoted Rookrankers on a file, more than two unpromoted Bishops on the same Bishop binding, or more than two unpromoted Unicorns on the same Unicorn binding.

Promotable pieces can be promoted at the end of any move entering, moving within, or leaving the three ranks of the enemy camp. In the case of the Rookranker/Goldgeneral and Bishoranker/Silvergeneral the switch can be made either way at the end of such a move, as both forms of the pieces have their advantages and disadvantages. A Princeling reaching the far rank must be promoted.

A player capturing an enemy piece may later, in place of a normal move, add that piece to their own army, in its array form on a cell where promotion would not be compulsory.

Check, Checkmate, and Stalemate are as standard.



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By Charles Gilman.
Web page created: 2006-04-23. Web page last updated: 2016-03-14