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The Chess Variant Pages



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

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Kevin Pacey wrote on 2015-12-24 UTC
Earlier I wrote:

"...what I chose to represent a Unicorn seems fairly okay to me, as the animal (whatever it is ) at least shows one pretty straight looking horn as far as I can tell, though at the least the head is rather thick for it to be horse-like - but possibly this is a blessing when trying to tell the piece easily apart from a knight in a given diagram."

Fwiw, in looking up the mythical animal 'Unicorn', I discovered that sometimes one can be goat-like (instead of horse-like):

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unicorn

An example of a goat with a beard, such as what might be shown by the animal symbol I used to represent a Unicorn in my diagrams, would be an Irish white goat. That's if ignoring the possibly single horn in my chosen animal symbol (to perhaps tell better if a single horn is the case, I think I can actually make out part of the animal's far eye by looking closely, in the case of a White piece version at least). Within the following link besides the Irish white goat I also noticed examples of another breed, namely a mother with her kids, which had both thick heads and thick necks:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goat#Anatomy_and_health

One more thing I came across elsewhere on the web was a mention that the length and thickness of a Unicorn's horn can vary.


Disconcertingly for me, all this seems to go against a convention in fairy chess circles to show Unicorns as horse-like. That is, as Knights with long thin single horns that are as long as, e.g., from an eye to the mouth. However, I was happy to have any sort of moral support for my depiction of a Unicorn (aside from a Balloon) in my diagrams, with the available Diagram Designer piece sets that I had to choose from. :)

[edit: in checking the 'Properties' of the animal image shown as a Unicorn in my diagrams, it's used to represent a Gnu normally it would seem. Joke's on me. :) ]

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