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The Chess Variant Pages

This page is written by the game's inventor, Adam DeWitt. This game is a favorite of its inventor.

Cannon Shosu Shogi

Cannnon Shosu Shogi (大砲小数将棋 shōsū shōgi, "cannon decimal shogi") is a variant of Shosu Shogi inspired by Cannon Shogi. It adds three new pieces to the game (six if you include promoted pieces) - Dogs, Silver Cannons, and Gold Cannons. Each piece comes in pairs and has a new promotion (to Side Mover, Bishop General, and Rook General, respectively).


An interactive diagram has been provided (The Javascript source code was written by H. G. Muller) to make it easier to understand how each piece moves. The Mnemonic piece directory uses H. G. Muller's Mnemonic pieces. The white Shogi pieces used in the diagram and the table in the Pieces section are my own pieces, made using a free online pixel art drawing tool called Pixilart. The tan Shogi pieces are from the Tenjiku Shogi Pieces set. They were made by an unknown author.

files=10 ranks=10 holdingsType=-1 promoOffset=11 promoZone=3 maxPromote=10 promoChoice=+ royal=22 graphicsDir=../membergraphics/MScannon-shosu-shogi/ whitePrefix=w blackPrefix=b lightShade=#FFFF80 darkShade=#FFFF80 graphicsType=png?nocache=true enableAI=0 squareSize=45 symmetry=rotate pawn:P:fW:p:a3,b3,c3,d3,e3,f3,g3,h3,i3,j3 dog:D:bFfW:d:c4,h4 bishop:B:B:b:b2 rook:R:R:r:i2 silver cannon:I:mBcpB:i:d2,g2 gold cannon:C:mRcpR:c:c2,h2 lance:L:fR:l:a1,j1 knight:N:ffN:n:b1,i1 silver general:S:FfW:s:c1,h1 gold general:G:WfF:g:d1,g1 queen:Q:Q:q:e1 tokin:+P:WfF:p2: side mover:+D:WsR:d2: dragon horse:+B:BW:b2: dragon king:+R:RF:r2: bishop general:+I:(paf)2cBmcB:i2: rook general:+C:(paf)2cRmcR:c2: vertical mover:+L:WvR:l2: white horse:+N:N:n2: gold general:+S:WfF:s2: drunk elephant:+G:FfsW:g2: king:K:K:k:f1

Only the location of the pieces of one side are mentioned below. The setup for the other side can be obtained by rotating the board 180 degrees.

First Rank

Second Rank

Third Rank

Fourth Rank


The following table shows the moves of the pieces. XBetza notation is included for easier reference.

Piece Promoted Piece


The King moves one space in any direction, but not into check. (K)

The King does not promote.


The Queen moves as it does in Chess - it slides orthogonally or diagonally. (Q)

The Queen does not promote.


The Rook moves as it does in Chess - it slides orthogonally. (R)

Dragon King

The Dragon King moves as it does in Shogi - it can move as a Rook or as a King. (RF)


The Bishop moves as it does in Chess - it slides diagonally. (B)

Dragon Horse

The Dragon Horse moves as it does in Shogi - it can move as a Bishop or as a King. (BW)

Gold Cannon

The Gold Cannon moves like a Rook but must jump one piece along the line of attack to capture. (mRcpR)

Rook General

The Rook General moves as a Rook but can jump up to two pieces along the line of attack when taking. ((paf)2cRmcR)

Silver Cannon

The Silver Cannon moves like a Bishop but must jump one piece along the line of attack to capture. (mBcpB)

Bishop General

The Bishop General moves as a Bishop but can jump up to two pieces along the line of attack when taking. ((paf)2cBmcB)

Gold General

The Gold General moves as it does in Shogi - it moves one square orthogonally or diagonally forward. (WfF)

Drunk Elephant

The Drunk Elephant moves one square diagonally, sideways, or directly forward. (FfsW)

Silver General

The Silver General moves as it does in Shogi - it moves one square diagonally or directly forward. (FfW)

Gold General

The Gold General moves as it does in Shogi - it moves one square orthogonally or diagonally forward. (WfF)


The Knight moves as it does in Shogi - it jumps two squares forward and one square sideways. (ffN)

White Horse

The White Horse moves like the Knight in Chess - it jumps to the nearest square that a Queen cannot. (N)


The Lance slides directly forward. (fR)

Vertical Mover

The Vertical Mover can slide vertically or move one square sideways. (WvR)


The Dog can step one square directly forward or diagonally backward. (bFfW)

Side Mover

The Side Mover can slide sideways or move one square vertically. (WsR)


The Pawn moves as it does in Shogi - one square orthogonally forward. (fW)


The Tokin moves as it does in Shogi - it moves one square orthogonally or diagonally forward. (WfF)



When a piece moves to, from, or within the owner’s promotion zone, the owner may promote that piece. The promotion zone is the last three ranks of the board - the three ranks occupied by the opponent’s pieces at the start of the game. Promotion is optional – a player need not promote a piece immediately upon entering the promotion zone. However, a piece must promote if it would otherwise have no legal moves left on a subsequent turn. The promotions for each piece are as follows.

Rook => Dragon King

Bishop => Dragon Horse

Gold Cannon => Rook General

Silver Cannon => Bishop General

Gold General => Great General

Silver General => Vice General

Knight => White Horse

Lance => Vertical Mover

Dog => Side Mover

Pawn => Tokin

A promoted piece that get captured reverts to its unpromoted state. Otherwise, a promotion is permanent. Promoted pieces cannot be demoted in any other way. Pieces can only promote once – promoted pieces cannot promote any further. The King and Queen do not promote.

Lances, Knights, and Pawns

If a Lance, Knight, or Pawn reaches the last rank, it must promote because it would otherwise have no legal moves left on a subsequent turn. A Knight that reaches the penultimate rank must promote for the exact same reason.


Captured pieces get retained in hand and can be brought back into play under the capturing player’s control. On any turn, instead of moving a piece on the board, a player may return a captured piece to any empty square on the board. This is called dropping the piece, or simply a drop. A drop counts as a complete move. The rules regarding drops are as follows.

Captures and promotions may occur normally on a subsequent move of the piece.

Lances and Knights

Lances and Knights may not be dropped onto the last rank, as they would have no legal moves left. Knights may not be dropped onto the penultimate rank for the exact same reason.


In addition to the rules mentioned above, there are special rules concerning pawn drops.

Check, Checkmate, and Stalemate

When a King is threatened with capture on the next turn, it is in check. A King that is in check must immediately get out of check. This can be done in one of three ways, depending on the situation:

If the king is in check and cannot escape capture, it is in checkmate. Checkmate counts as a loss for the checkmated player. If a player's king is not in check but has no legal moves, it is in stalemate. The result of a stalemate is the same as that of checkmate – it is a loss for the stalemated player.

Illegal Move

A player who makes an illegal move loses immediately. Illegal moves include:

Repetition Draw 千日手 sennichite - If the same game position occurs four times with the same player to move and the same pieces in hand for each player, then the game ends in a draw.

Impasse - If both kings have advanced into their respective promotion zones and neither player can hope to mate the other or to gain any further material, the players may agree to a draw.


The White Horse's Japanese name, 白馬 (hakuba), translates to "white horse". This should not be confused with the White Horse from Chu Shogi, whose Japanese name, 白駒 (hakuku), actually translates to "white piece".

Similar Games

Computer Play

You can Play Cannon Shosu Shogi online with Game Courier.

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 Adam DeWitt.

Last revised by Adam DeWitt.

Web page created: 2020-09-10. Web page last updated: 2020-09-10