You are on the backup site for Any posts, moves, or other changes you make here will not be permanent, because the pages and database from the main site will be backed up here every midnight EST. Additionally, things may not be working right, because this site is also a testbed for newer system software. So, if you are not here to test, develop, or merely read this site, you may want to change .org to .com in the navigation bar and go to the main site.

The Chess Variant Pages

[ Help | Earliest Comments | Latest Comments ]
[ List All Subjects of Discussion | Create New Subject of Discussion ]
[ List Latest Comments Only For Pages | Games | Rated Pages | Rated Games | Subjects of Discussion ]

Comments/Ratings for a Single Item

Later Reverse Order Earlier
Very Heavy Chess. A lot of firepower with all compounds of classical chess pieces.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Kevin Pacey wrote on 2022-05-17 UTC

On the topic of piece names, I've noticed that in some languages the name for a chess rook translates to ship (or to boat, also). Thus 'Admiral' (or my choice of 'Sailor', in Sac Chess) gets bonus points as a choice of name, perhaps (for the piece type in question, a promoted rook in shogi), i.e. a person who uses a watercraft's power.

Maybe there's a slightly related argument that a real-life knight, in the past, is a person who uses a horse (arguably knight is a more elevated title than horseman, which would also work).

Jean-Louis Cazaux wrote on 2022-05-07 UTC

@Bn Em: thank you for your comments. Quite informative. About Heroin, drug or female hero, I was sure that it was a link. According to WP:

The head of Bayer's research department reputedly coined the drug's new name of "heroin," based on the German heroisch which means "heroic, strong" (from the ancient Greek word "heros, ήρως").

To be back on this debate on BWN and RFN, I hesitate between Popess/Heroin which are a bit generic or Pythia/Valkyrie which are more strongly culturally marked.

At this moment, although I like the second pair, I prefer to stick with the first couple because it will be easier to use in an other CV where a Greek or a Viking reference could be awkward. I think that Popess and Heroin do carry what I wanted them to carry, the idea of being at the top of a pyramid, being feminine, one link to spiritual, one link to physical strength. They are immediately understandable.

Sure, they are not very common words, but BWN and RFN are not very common in CVs either.

Jean-Louis Cazaux wrote on 2022-05-07 UTC

No I disagree. Popess is a word that can be used to designate someone, feminine, with a dominant position in a given domain. For instance I heard just today on radio someone speaking of a lady working in the shade for foreign affairs in France, saying she was the popess of the diplomats in her time in Paris circles. Even "pope" is used sometimes with this type of speech.

Maybe you don't know. You didn't know what a pythia is, so you don't know everything.

So, I have no problem at all to use Pope or Popess, not less than using King, Queen, Emperor, Guru, Emir, Shah or I don't know what.

On the contrary when you use the name of one person, many may think that you represent this person. Imagine I would want to honour Macron in chess, and I say, this piece is a Macron. Then if we have 2 Macrons on board, it is strange. There is no difference, if it is about Macron or Sissa.

Now, I don't care at all if games are using 2 Sissa, or 3 or 10. It's really fine with me. I understand the reference, I like it.

Fergus Duniho wrote on 2022-05-07 UTC

but as Jean‐Louis notes, if we can have two Sissas…

Sissa is a name borrowed from a person's name, in this case a mythical inventor of Chess. Presumably, the piece is not understood to be this very mythical inventor of Chess but is just named in his honor. This is different than a title for a rank that is allowed to only one person at a time within a given hierarchy.

Bn Em wrote on 2022-05-07 UTC

If we're talking prior usage, it's worth mentioning that Valkyrie has at least three distinct usages already: A queen that can also relocate friendly pieces, Bishop capturing as Queen, and a 3D‐specific piece moving as Rook or jumping two steps on either kind of diagonal. Conversely Heroine (albeit perhaps due to potential Drug associations) is afaict only used by Gilman for a Hex‐prism‐specific compound

Fwiw, Gilman also uses Hero on that last page, and there's also a Hero in Hero Chess. Surprisingly, Gilman seems to lack names for the two pieces under discussion (Knight+Chatelaine/Primate, to use his terminology) though. I suppose one could suggest Catholicos for BWN, as a rank above cardinal that starts with Ca‐ (for the usual extrapolations: Zetholicos ⁊c), but besides the long and awkward Archchancellor (note the double ⟨ch⟩) idk what he'd've used for the RFN

Pythia seems to be unused (understandably, given its relative obscurity); arguably it falls afoul of Fergus' objection to multiple ‘popesses’, as there was only one Pythia at a time, but as Jean‐Louis notes, if we can have two Sissas…

Imo Popess feels a bit awkward as a word, and I share Jean‐Louis' reservations re unnecessary loanwords; Pythia, Valkyrie, Heroine, and Baroness all sound fine to me

Kevin Pacey wrote on 2022-05-06 UTC

Hi Jean-Louis.

For what it's worth, 'heroine' is often used over here in movie reviews, to describe a character that's the leading lady (and/or helper of some sort to the male 'hero'). I mentioned Joe's 'Hero' piece type since he chose the name for it in spite of any misgivings that it might possibly be a bit generic.

Sometimes it's easy to be over- (or under-) critical of one's own ideas, especially on second thought. I think 'heroine' is just fine for RNF type.

Jean-Louis Cazaux wrote on 2022-05-05 UTC

Thank you for all your feedbacks.

To Greg, python and heroine carry the same meaning in French and other languages as well. In French is even worse for Heroin, as héroine is the word for both the female hero and the drug.

To Joe, even if I'm French, I'm reluctant to use French words. It is not a solution, it is not good if two different pieces are named with the same word but in two different languages. Although there are (famous) existing cases (Ferz, Alfil, Cavalier, Chevalier, ...)

HG's Pythia is very good. Not all religions are Christian in the span of mankind history and geography. The Pythia was an important person in Greek religion in the Antiquity.

Yes, Heroine is kind of generic and yes, not very common in usage. I'm not very happy with it.

All that demonstrates that we have progresses to make for the gender issue :=)

Joe Joyce wrote on 2022-05-05 UTC

While I'm pretty inactive these days, I do play the occasional game, and when I check for moves, I check what's new. First, thank you Kevin for pointing out names I've already used for pieces.

For your tentative 'high priestess', I think "grande prêtresse" is possibly a good choice.

Similarly, for 'hero' I think "héros" with both the accent and ending "s" is a decent choice.

The accents in the names mark them as non-English, and the spellings maintain the separation of your and my pieces without really changing the names you wished. I admit that I am naming deficient and no one except me may actually like the alternates, so feel free to ignore or delete this post.

Kevin Pacey wrote on 2022-05-05 UTC

For what it's worth, 'Hero' is already a known Fairy Piece on this website (Joe Joyce might have invented).

Fergus Duniho wrote on 2022-05-05 UTC

In general, hierarchical Christian religions of the sort that have bishops do not have very high ranking positions for women. So, if you want a piece that is a high-ranked female religious figure that fits with bishop, you're not going to find one. Alternatives include using a neologism like Cardinaless or abandoning one of your requirements for naming the piece. Mixing religious titles from very different religions doesn't work well, because Christianity, from which we get bishops, doesn't easily mix with other religions. Diagonal moving pieces do not always have religious names. For example, the Queen moves diagonally but doesn't have a religious name.

Fergus Duniho wrote on 2022-05-05 UTC

The drug is heroin. Heroine is the feminine form of hero, but its usage has become less common.Supergirl used to be called a superheroine, and now she and other superheroines get called superheroes. My main issue with the name heroine is that it is kind of generic.

I don't know what a Pythia or a Pythoness is, but the latter brings to mind a lamia rather than something religious.

Greg Strong wrote on 2022-05-05 UTC

Pythia is good. Pythoness sounds like a female python (a type of snake). I realize that's not what is meant but I think most English speakers will know of python but not this word so they will think of a snake.

Valkyrie is a good name. Heroine is not a bad name but unfortunately is also the name of a dangerous drug and that usage is probably more common.

Jean-Louis Cazaux wrote on 2022-05-05 UTC

I had thought of Abbess but it doesn't sound high enough, and there is an Abbott (F4N) which is less than a Cardinal, so it would be strange to have the Abbess as Cardinal+King.

I like Baroness for the phonetics. But it lacks the religion field, and baron/baroness is a low noble rank.

Pythia is exactly the kind of word I was looking for!!!!

If Popess hurts people too much, why not Pythia. According to WP, Pythoness is also used. What is the best for English-speaking players?

As we are there, what do you think of Heroine for RKN (RFN actually). I wanted a feminine, warrior-like name. Isn't too vague? At a moment I was thinking of Valkyrie.

Do you have an opinion?

Greg Strong wrote on 2022-05-04 UTC

Another suggestion I would make is Baroness. It has the B for Bishop, the N for Knight, and while it lacks a K, it is a royal title, and it has an R for roi, the French name for the King.

For what its worth, I like this idea a lot

H. G. Muller wrote on 2022-05-04 UTC

Just some suggestions: 'Pithia' is a kind of high priestess. 'Abbess' is a female abbot: head of a community of Nuns.

Jean-Louis Cazaux wrote on 2022-05-04 UTC

Indeed, I wanted to change Templar for High Priestess. Then, I made a small search and found what Kevin is saying. This High Priestess is even referred on several places, so I can't ignore it. It plays as FAN. I thought about Reverend Mother, but it's too long. This how I came to Popess. The word exists.

Freemason is too heavily loaded. Several people are freemason and I'm not sure it won't be insulting for them, as they defined themselves as atheist too. That issue is complex, I prefer not going into it.

The 3 objections from Fergus are strange. Are Amazon, Gryphon, Manticore, Hyppogriff, Sylph, existing more than Popess? Are Bede, Bishopper, Barc, Ferfil, Vao, Ubi-Ubi more real? Is it possible to have 2 Sissa on the same game? Momess or something like this, would be an invention, not easily understandable.

Maybe I don't see the problem with Popess, the more I think, the more I like it.

Fergus Duniho wrote on 2022-05-04 UTC

Another suggestion I would make is Baroness. It has the B for Bishop, the N for Knight, and while it lacks a K, it is a royal title, and it has an R for roi, the French name for the King.

Kevin Pacey wrote on 2022-05-04 UTC

I'd note High Priestess is used for a different piece type than BNW, in a number of CVs invented years ago by Joe Joyce that are still played on Game Courier now and then.

For BNW some years ago I thought up 'Freemason' (made it to wiki on Fairy Pieces, somehow). Historically the name could arguably be extended back to masonry. Freemasonry also includes a religious element to it, a Google search revealed. Main reason I picked the name was that it begins with 'F', which no other piece type in my Sac Chess CV started with. [edit: I picked 'Ship' for RNF since RF I called Sailor, and I'd use 'H' as its initial]. However a drawback is that Ship is used for many piece types/CVs, I later learned.

Somewhere in CVP's Man and Beast piece articles Charles Gilman long ago offered different names for BNW and RNF types than any mentioned in this thread. I like the name that Very Heavy Chess uses for RNF.

Fergus Duniho wrote on 2022-05-04 UTC

There are a few problems with the name Popess:

  1. Unless you're counting Pope Joan, there has been no such thing.
  2. Presumably, there would be only one Popess if there were one, because it would be a female Pope, but your game gives each player two of them.
  3. The word derives from a word meaning father. Presumably, the word for a female equivalent of a Pope should derive from a word for mother.

Here are some possible alternatives:

  • Mother Superior - the highest rank reached by nuns in the Catholic Church.
  • High Priestess - a common term for a high ranking female cleric, and it is used in the major arcana of the Tarot.
  • Bokononess - a made-up word formed from the name of a fictional religion portrayed in Kurt Vonnegut's novel Cat's Cradle.

Jean-Louis Cazaux wrote on 2022-05-04 UTC

I have abandoned the name of Templar for the BKN, because Templar is used in other variants with other moves. I have adopted Popess which seems unused (although I wouldn't be surprised to be wrong).

For fun, Bikini would have been a possible alternative too.

Kevin Pacey wrote on 2020-12-23 UTC

I (a Canadian) was born on a NATO/Canadian air force base near Metz in France, so maybe it's the French air or something. :) Francis Fahys, also French, knows well that area in Northeast France; he hasn't logged onto this CVP website for a few months though (he seems to only play CVs on Game Courier, on this site).

Jean-Louis Cazaux wrote on 2020-12-23 UTC

I think we are a bit attracted by the same concepts. Very Heavy Chess is maybe really too much and at the end boring. First tries I made with ZoG didn't show that but time will tell. Using compounds of FIDE pieces is also a direction I had in mind for my family of CV beyond Metamachy and Zanzibar.

Kevin Pacey wrote on 2020-12-23 UTC

Interesting CV concept. I'd been thinking for a while now of making a somewhat similar CV (same piece types used) but for on a 12x12 board, with pawns moving up to 3 steps initially, but I was a bit afraid the pieces of each army might not come into substantial contact soon enough with 6 ranks in between the armies at the start, unlike in Very Heavy Chess.

Fergus Duniho wrote on 2020-12-22 UTC

Very Heavy Chess is ready


Jean-Louis Cazaux wrote on 2020-12-22 UTC

Very Heavy Chess is ready

25 comments displayed

Later Reverse Order Earlier

Permalink to the exact comments currently displayed.