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This page is written by the game's inventor, Ralph Betza.

The Colorbound Clobberers

Actual games played between chessmasters:
A Colorbound Clobberers Game!
Another One! (5/15/96)
A Third Game! (5/15/96)
A Fourth Game! (6/19/96)
Guess what...

A Problem (Mate in 2)

Here is the very first good game of chess with different armies, with one of the armies being the standard ordinary everyday army of FIDE chess, and the other being, well, what to call it?

I decided on a sports metaphor for naming this army, and so we have
The Colorbound Clobberers
as the name of the new team, and
The Fabulous FIDEs
as the name of their opponents in this game.

The Colorbound Clobberers versus The Fabulous FIDEs

Observations About Colorbound Clobberers

The Waffle is elsewhere stated to be weaker than the Knight, but perhaps this is merely an artifact of having tested it as a plug-in with the rest of the FIDE team. Imagine FIDE chess with White's Knights replaced by Waffles; after 1. e4 e5 2. WA g1-e3, the WA is well-placed at e3, but it obstructs the path of the Bc1; this is not a problem for the Clobberers. In fact, the Waffle is very close in value to the Knight, only a tiny bit weaker. The Waffle is very strong once it gets to a good square, but getting it there can be awkward.

The BD is obviously stronger than the FAD, but not by much. In practice, you can treat these two pieces as being of equal value. The BD is obviously stronger than the N, and the FAD is also stronger than the N. How much stronger? Who can say...

The BD should be thought of as equal in value to the Rook. The FAD is presumed to be weaker than the Rook. How much weaker? Who can say...

The Clobberers are a team with a weak "Queen" but an overstrength "Bishop". The weakness of one makes up for the strength of the other. There are disadvantages to having so few weak pieces, of course, and advantages to having a weak "Queen" (for an example of this, look at move 19 of FIDE-CC-02.html where White chose not to trade Q for NB, and thereby lost his King).

If you just look at the values of the individual pieces, the Clobberers seem to have the advantage. Add to this the fact that the Clobberers can develop quickly, without moving too many Pawns, and things begin to look sticky for the FIDEs.

On the other hand, the Clobberers are awfully colorbound. They can easily get into situations where all their strength is concentrated on squares of a single color, leaving them either unable to exploit an advantage or vulnerable to attack on the other color.

The real equalizer is the hard-working, straightforward, and steadfast FIDE Rook. This piece has great endurance, and actually gains strength as the game goes along. I have seen games where things looked bad for the FIDEs from the opening kickoff, and seemed to be getting worse and worse, until suddenly there were just a few chessmen left standing on the field and the Rooks began scoring goal after goal.

Next in series: The Remarkable Rookies

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