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Teutonic Knight's Chess

Introduction

Teutonic Knight's Chess (in german: Ordensritterschach) features some rarely used pieces on an oblong board with 8 files and 10 ranks. The team is build around the Teutonic Knight (Ordensritter) who combines the moves of Wasir, Knight, and Camel (WNL in Ralph Betza's Funny Notation).

Setup

Back ranks:

In the files a and h are the FIDE chess Rooks, in files b and g are the Teutonic Knights (Ordensritter), in files c and f are Dragon Horses (crowned bishops, WB), in file d is the Archchancellor (crowned chancellor, FNR) and in file e is the FIDE chess King.

In the variant with Crown Princesses, the Dragon Horses on files c and f are replaced by Crown Princesses.

There is one rank of pawns, as in FIDE chess.

Pieces

The Teutonic Knight (Ordensritter) combines the moves of Wasir, Knight, and Camel. It can be seen as an augmented Gnu (NL) or as an augmented Marquis (WN).

The Dragon Horse (Drachenpferd) is the promoted bishop from Shogi. In addition to the bishop's move it can also move as a Wasir one step orthogonally. It is no longer colourbound.

The Crown Princess (Kronprinzessin) is a crowned Bishop-Knight compound known as princess to problemists and under many names to chess variant enthusiasts. It can move as a Wazir, a Bishop, or a Knight (WBN).

The Archchancellor (Erzkanzler) is an improved chancellor. It can move as a Rook, as a Knight, or as a Ferz.

The Pawns are the same as in FIDE chess with the following exceptions: In their first move, they can take a single step, a double step, or a triple step. A Pawn who has advanced only one rank may also use the double step. Capturing en passant is possible.

Rules

The aim of the game is to checkmate the opponent's King. If not otherwise stated, the usual rules of chess apply.

Pawns promote on the last rank to any piece in the initial setup.

I borrow the stalemate rule from the Duke of Rutland's Chess that you loose the game if you carelessly stalemate your opponent.

Notes

This chess variant is built around a new piece, the Teutonic Knight. As far as I know, it is not named before. I conceived this piece while thinking about the Rhino. The Teutonic Knight is a jumping Rhino restricted to three steps. Since the Teutonic Knight is not colourswitching, the bishops should no longer be colourbound, therefore I choose the Dragon Horse in the bishop's position. As a queen I also wanted some fresh and rarely seen piece. I choose the Archchancellor, which was described before. German problemists know this piece under the name Krake (octopus), it also occurs in Pocket Mutation Chess as Superchancellor. I choose the name Archchancellor because it fits into the context of the holy roman empire. The Crown Princess also occurs in Pocket Mutation Chess as Supercardinal.

Charles Gilman has informed me that he has proposed the name Archchancellor for the same piece here. His inspiration comes from Terry Pratchett's Diskworld. Another allusion I was not aware of.

The Colonel of the Nutty Knights army im Chess with different armies can also be described as a Charging Archchancellor, moving forwards and sidewards as an Archchancellor and backwards as a King.

Because the power of the pieces is increased compared to FIDE chess, I made the board longer.

Playtesting shows that there is an interesting tactical tension between the Teutonic Knight and the Archchancellor, because the latter lacks the camel move. Rooks and Dragon Horses are the weakest pieces in this game of about equal value. I found that having a pair of Rooks is worth more than just the value of one rook doubled.

The Archchancellor can force a mate without an assisting piece. Once it can attack an improperly defended King the game is quickly over.

The Teutonic Knight is very mobile on the board and a valuable piece. A King and a Teutonic Knight can mate a lone King.

The Crown Princess is a very strong piece comparable to the Archchancellor. However, she cannot force mate unassisted.



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By Jörg Knappen.
Web page created: 2009-11-19. Web page last updated: 2009-11-19