Check out Chess with Different Armies, our featured variant for July, 2024.

This page is written by the game's inventor, Rich Hutnik.

Skirmish56 Chess

This variant came out of discussions of Simplified Chess. People had complained that Simplified Chess took too much out of normal chess. As a response, this variant is the result. Skirmish56 comes from the fact that it is Skirmish Chess on an 8x7 board (56 squares, thus Skirmish56).

You can play Skirmish56 online here:

You can get a Zillions adaptation of Skirmish56 Chess in this package here:;id=1591


This games uses an 8x7 chess board. Both pieces are placed in the last two rows of their respected sides. On an regular 8x8 chessboard, one set of pieces would be pushed up one row. The just abandoned row is not part of play. Players are suggested to cover up this row of squares to make sure they are not accidentally used.

Diagram of setup (Graphics by Zillions):


Same as in standard FIDE Chess.


Same as in standard FIDE Chess, except that pawns only move one row forward, and don't en passant. In addition, the board is reduced by one row.


This game is based on the rules of Tony Paletta for Skirmish Chess. It is placed on a board developed by John Kipling Lewis out of his work on Simplified Chess. The name, and the combination of the two, is by Richard Hutnik.

This 'user submitted' page is a collaboration between the posting user and the Chess Variant Pages. Registered contributors to the Chess Variant Pages have the ability to post their own works, subject to review and editing by the Chess Variant Pages Editorial Staff.

By Rich Hutnik.
Web page created: 2008-05-10. Web page last updated: 2008-05-10