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

Chance Chess

Chance Chess is a set of playing cards, to be used together with a normal chess set. The set consists of 101 cards: several cards of the type: `Play a King', `Play a Pawn', etc., 25 cards of the type `Play any Piece', and one reshuffle card. Players draw a card, and then move the type of piece dictated by the card - if not possible, then the turn is lost. So, if white starts with drawing a `Play a Rook' card, his turn is lost. When one draws: `Play any Piece', any piece may be moved; the reshuffle card means that the deck must be reshuffled.

It seems to me that the mixture of the different types of cards is well thought, and that the `Play any Piece' cards make this game not only a game of pure luck, while the game certainly will fulfill its purpose: give weak chess players a reasonable chance when playing against strong players.

Chance Chess Co. has its own WWW site, where you can find more information on this chess variant, including how to order a set for a very reasonable price.

It is not really a game to play with serious gamers: too much luck is involved here. However, for children that start to learn chess, the game is very nice. I now play it against mine (8 and 6), with the rule that I draw cards, they do not. We slightly modified the rules (to give me a little chance): when I draw a card whose piece I cannot play, I draw another card. When in check, no card has to be drawn (but unlike in the official chance chess, I don't get a second move in the turn).

Some pictures

These pictures were made with the camera of a Silicon Graphics Workstation by Hans Bodlaender.

Written by Hans Bodlaender. With thanks to: Chris Giminez from Chance Chess Co. for sending me a complimentary copy of their game.
WWW page created: January 22, 1997. Last modified: June 9, 1997.