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Wildebeest Chess. Variant on an 10 by 11 board with extra jumping pieces. (11x10, Cells: 110) (Recognized!)[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
🕸📝Fergus Duniho wrote on Fri, Apr 28 10:35 PM UTC in reply to Max Koval from 06:27 PM:

I have never thought of Utrecht that way, and although you have shared that you do, I still don't.

Max Koval wrote on Fri, Apr 28 06:27 PM UTC in reply to Fergus Duniho from 05:44 PM:

It is not as much about history or a utilitarian purpose, but rather a design that gives the website its distinctive style. This set is a sort of symbol since Alfaeire's base chess font Alpha is used commonly, so it is more difficult to associate it with this particular website. That's the idea, there's no need to use Utrecht anymore, but it would be right to preserve it on the very first pages.

🕸📝Fergus Duniho wrote on Fri, Apr 28 05:44 PM UTC in reply to Max Koval from 04:39 PM:

Alpha is the font that Alfaerie is based on, but Alfaerie got its start here and has almost as much history here as Utrecht does. Before Alfaerie came along, Utrecht provided more images of different Chess variant pieces than other sets did, which was important for representing many Chess variants. But Alfaerie does what Utrecht did, and it does it better.

Max Koval wrote on Fri, Apr 28 04:39 PM UTC in reply to Fergus Duniho from 02:06 PM:

I think it is somewhat wrong because Utrecht is a part of the CVP's history. I'm visiting this site since about 2012, the time when I didn't speak English, and this theme is largely associated by me with it. It's something like a brand because Alpha is widely used on other chess websites.

🕸📝Fergus Duniho wrote on Fri, Apr 28 02:06 PM UTC in reply to H. G. Muller from 06:45 AM:

In the Interactive Diagrams I inserted as main diagram in existing articles I always respected the design choice of the author, trying to make the Interactive Diagram resemble it as closely as possible.

That is usually appropriate, especially when the author is still active on the site.

Should there be a systematic effort to eliminate all piece representations other than Alfaerie?

No, but it's usually appropriate to replace Utrecht with Alfaerie. The Utrecht style was frequently used on pages, because it got a head start on other sets. It was created by the site's founder, and he created some JavaScript code for displaying diagrams on pages. Since then, David Howe and I produced some better looking sets out of Chess fonts. David's Alfaerie set became particularly popular, and many people added new pieces to it. When I make a diagram, I choose the most suitable set for that game. This is sometimes Alfaerie, and it is sometimes not, but it is never Utrecht.

H. G. Muller wrote on Fri, Apr 28 06:45 AM UTC in reply to Fergus Duniho from Thu Apr 27 05:54 PM:

A question about editorial policy:

I noticed that you used Alfaerie in the new diagram, while the original diagram used the 'small' (Utrecht) set. In the Interactive Diagrams I inserted as main diagram in existing articles I always respected the design choice of the author, trying to make the Interactive Diagram resemble it as closely as possible.

Should there be a systematic effort to eliminate all piece representations other than Alfaerie?

🕸📝Fergus Duniho wrote on Thu, Apr 27 05:54 PM UTC in reply to H. G. Muller from 01:19 PM:

I put it in a table, and it seems to be working now. I also copied some things from your earlier Interactive Diagram in the comments.

H. G. Muller wrote on Thu, Apr 27 01:19 PM UTC in reply to Fergus Duniho from 12:20 PM:

Its a very strange matter, that it sometimes works, and then without any changes, stops working.

BTW, your Diagram doesn't use the correct move for the Pawn; it should be fW* to allow it to always move up to the midline (even from 3rd rank).

🕸📝Fergus Duniho wrote on Thu, Apr 27 12:20 PM UTC in reply to H. G. Muller from 07:03 AM:

Was this on a mobile device? On my PC that Diagram seems to work fine. But on my tablet it didn't.

No, I do all my development on my desktop. I am using my Fire tablet now, and it is working.

H. G. Muller wrote on Thu, Apr 27 07:03 AM UTC in reply to Fergus Duniho from Wed Apr 26 10:35 PM:

It did initially, but then it stopped, ...

Was this on a mobile device? On my PC that Diagram seems to work fine. But on my tablet it didn't.

I had a similar experience with one of the Diagrams in the 'huge variants' subject thread, when I tried to show it to a colleague on my Samsung tablet. Initially everthing worked fine, but then during the demonstration it suddenly stopped being responsive to touches on the board and on the piece names in the table. Opening and closing the piece table still worked under those conditions, though.

Now the touch screens use a different event for manupulating the pieces than on a PC ('ontouch' rather than 'onmousedown'). That they behave differently would suggest the problem is in the touch-event handler. I am not sure they really behave differently, though, because the Wildebeest Diagram now works again on my tablet as well. (While I am certain that earlier this morning it didn't.)

It is very strange that this problem does not manifest itself consistently. One hypothesis would be that there is a name collision between the Diagram script and some of the JavaScript that is loaded on behalf of the advertizements that appear on the same page. So that it depends on which ad gets loaded.

Also, how do you use Betza notation to specify castling for this game?

You have to specify each castling possibility separately: KisO1isO2isO3isO4 . (In the comments there already was a Diagram that uses this.) For the isO1 it will highlight the Rook amongst the King destinations, and take the one-step castling when you click that. (It would also have used that highlighting for isO5, but since that is not allowed here there is no ambiguity.)

In the betzaNew.js version of the script the move entry would work differently: after selecting King the square next to it would be highlighted by a cyan star to indicate there is an as yet ambiguous move to that square. When you then click that star, it would highlight the square next to King with the yellow circle, and the Rook with a castling symbol, and a third click would be needed for resolving the ambiguity by clicking one of those. An initial castling highlight on the Rook would then always mean isO5 castling. (Or, on other boards, castling where the King ends up in the corner.)

🕸📝Fergus Duniho wrote on Wed, Apr 26 10:35 PM UTC:

I'm making an Interactive Diagram for this game, but it is currently not showing the moves of pieces. It did initially, but then it stopped, and restoring the HTML to when it was working didn't seem to help. Also, how do you use Betza notation to specify castling for this game?

Kevin Pacey wrote on Thu, Mar 1, 2018 09:36 AM UTC:Excellent ★★★★★

A lovely use of the otherwise powerful jumping pieces included, by having them on a rather long board.

H. G. Muller wrote on Mon, Oct 9, 2017 07:55 PM UTC:
files=11 ranks=10 graphicsDir=/membergraphics/MSelven-chess/ whitePrefix=w blackPrefix=b graphicsType=png useMarkers=1 startShade=#C0FF40 satellite=wildebeest symmetry=rotate promoChoice=QW pawn::fmW*fceF::a2-k2 knight:N:::b1,j1 bishop::::c1,d1 camel::::h1,i1 rook::::a1,k1 wildebeest::NC:gnu:g1 queen::::e1 king::KisO1isO2isO3isO4::f1

Wildebeest Chess adds two new leaper types to the FIDE setup, two minors and one major. (And the Wildebeest is only a major by virtue of the rule that stalemate is also a win.) What so far stopped it from being represented in an interactive diagram was the castling rule, in particular that a castling King can also end up on an adjacent square (sO1 castling in XBetza notation). With the usual convention that castling is entered by using the King, this would be ambiguous with a normal King move. The diagram script is now enhanced to understand a click on the applicable Rook (which will also be highlighted) as target square of a King move as a command to castle to the adjacent square.

Georg Spengler wrote on Sun, Jan 4, 2015 08:53 PM UTC:Excellent ★★★★★
One of my favorite large board games. Playing it gives a kind of breathy feeling, if that makes sense. Like on a wide open field; your limbs seem's like playing chess on Pandora... In a way.

Charles Gilman wrote on Thu, Dec 9, 2010 07:17 PM UTC:
Well the Knight in Diana does need a different symbol from the King, Bishops, and Rooks as it is a different piece. You didn't actually ask what piece I'd forgotten to replace [insert link] with, so there's fault on both our sides. I've put it in now, and as you will see it is a different piece from all the existing Wildebeest ones. A third Knight would be illogical in a game that is pushing the analogy between the Knight-Camel and Rook-Bishop dualities.

George Duke wrote on Thu, Dec 9, 2010 05:35 PM UTC:
I review 'New Rules for Classic Games' by Schmittberger in earlier comment this article, Wildebeest is ranked high as current number 15 at Next Chess; Next Chess is on track to be turned into article more accessible than its connected threads.

John Ayer wrote on Thu, Dec 9, 2010 05:17 PM UTC:
As far as I can see, the Diana knight is an ordinary knight, and doesn't need a different symbol. The Duke of Rutland also chose to maintain symmetry by placing a third knight on the queen's off-side. A neat solution, I think.

Charles Gilman wrote on Thu, Dec 9, 2010 06:53 AM UTC:
I can see four ways to make the array more symmetric.

The first and simplest is to allow the 'King swap' of Fergus Duniho's Yang Qi. This stops it mattering that Bishops start on the same binding, likewise camels, and allows this:

The second it to simply swap files e and g over, balancing each kind of colourbound piece with the compound of the other:

The third is to remove the King and its file, the results of which can be seen in my Notchess 100.

The fourth is to put in an extra file with some unrelated piece on it. There has been much discusion here about how the Zebra might be added to this variant. Rather than try to make it part of a two-pairs-plus-their-compound group - which I have done in Wildeurasian Bestiary but which makes for a far more complex game than the one here - it could be a one-off rather like the Diana Knight. I would suggest the following array, to even give balance between the middle two pairs of files:

Claudio Martins Jaguaribe wrote on Mon, Dec 6, 2010 07:20 PM UTC:Excellent ★★★★★
I'm mesmerized by it!

But I've noticed that if you change places of the rooks and knights, all leapers and all sliders will be on one side. I can make the game ore interesting.


Hafsteinn Kjartansson wrote on Sat, Jun 26, 2010 06:11 PM UTC:Excellent ★★★★★

Jeremy Good wrote on Thu, Jul 16, 2009 03:03 PM UTC:
Cool, thanks. Hope it works because I made it the official one. Coincidentally, I was looking at it this game this morning. Send me an invite if you'd like to play it with me.

Thomas wrote on Thu, Jul 16, 2009 10:06 AM UTC:
Game Courier Preset with automation and rule-enforcement:


Thomas wrote on Sat, Jan 10, 2009 05:19 PM UTC:
One might add a one-space orthogonal step to the Knight (Wazir Knight) and
a one-space diagonal step to the Camel (Wizard from Omega Chess), and both
moves to the Wildebeest (Wildebeest plus King). This preserves the symmetry
between the riding and leaping pieces, and now the King is integrated into
it, having the moves which are shared by Queen and Wildebeest.

And the stronger pieces can be seen as a second advantage, if one feels
that the standard pieces are relatively weak for the big board.

George Duke wrote on Sat, Nov 17, 2007 05:20 PM UTC:Excellent ★★★★★
Re: 'New Rules For Classic Games' not indexed, see link here. Ist ein sehr gutes Buch. Der Schriftsteller weiss viel ueber Schach. I re-open my copy 'NRfCG' every few months for wording or terms and names of games, especially because single longest Chapter about 40 pp. covers CVs. Schmittberger's 1992 is very good read though detracted from by CVPage trend to expand the universe of CVs indefinitely. ''New twists'' in Monopoly, Trivial Pursuit, Scrabble, Risk, Mah-Jongg, Bridge, Poker. Chess always the premier game is last Chapter 13, except for denouement, afterword, Chapter 14 on playing by mail. ''Beyond Chess'' covers own Wildebeest: ''Camels by the way are not as valuable as Knights'' is intelligent assessment. Wildebeest of course = N + Camel, whose previous uses documented in 1994 Pritchard's 'ECV' number twenty or more in serious CVs. Wildebeest is considerably better embodiment than (Whale Shogi or) Omega Chess, which also has Camel compound. Thirty other variants include Pre-Chess (like FRC), Screen Chess (similar to recent Verve), V.R.Parton's Kinglet(nice game), T.R. Dawson's Grasshopper Chess (nice concept), Ralph Betza's Avalanche Chess. These last 3 authors with lately-unheralded Sam Loyd comprise the complete membership of the all-time hall-of-fame, or 'qual'(-ity)-of-fame.

Joshua Morris wrote on Fri, Nov 2, 2007 01:17 AM UTC:Excellent ★★★★★
Just wanted to add my 'Excellent' rating.  This game is right up there with Grand Chess.

I have a question for all you Wildebeesters.  Either side can deliver a smothered Fool's Mate on move 2 using the long leap of a Camel or Wildebeest.  This can be defended against in a few ways.  Does this cause opening variety to be limited, in anyone's experience?  Or is it more like Qh5 in OrthoChess, an aggressive move that tends to backfire if the opponent defends well?

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