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Comments by David Cannon

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Tigrey. (Updated!) Combination of Expanded Chess and Tiger Chess. (12x12, Cells: 144) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2022-11-19 UTC

Could we get some info on how the non-FIDE pieces move? Thanks.


Play Nadvorney's Spherical Chess on Game Courier. Play Nadnorney's adaptation of Chess to a spherical board on Game Courier.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2022-03-29 UTCExcellent ★★★★★

I love the concept of spherical chess. I think one thing needs to be changed, however. Chess is already drawish enough on a square board, and more so on a round board. On a spherical board, where pieces move in all directions, draws may become the overwhelming norm. That is not my preference.

So, on a board like this, I would love to see something done about that. Possible ways to do it would be to put some restrictions on the movement of the King (as in XiangQi and Janggi), or to immobilize the King when in check, or to take away the King's ability to capture pieces, including attacking pieces.


Kingsmen. 9x9 board with two extra Bishops. Pieces gain the King's moveset upon reaching the last three ranks.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2021-06-28 UTC

Do the "crowned" pieces become royal? I.e., do they gain ONLY the movement capabilities of the King, or do they have to be checkmated along with the King?

Ed. note: I've moved this to the Kingsmen thread on the assumption that was what was intended. Please let us know if this is the wrong place; it was originally posted as a comment on the home page.


CHESSAGON. CHESSAGON® is like traditional Chess, but with Triangles, with one new additional piece named the Duke.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2021-02-09 UTCExcellent ★★★★★

I'm pleased to see this game! One correction : it is a trigonal, not hexaxonal, chess variant. The cells are triangles, not hexagons.

That said, I think this is an excellent contribution to the much under-explored trigonal tiling. Apart from a couple of games contributed by Graeme Neatham and Christian Freeling, along with a couple of my own, I think this is a little-used tiling which has lots of interesting possibilities for play.


Lions and Unicorns Chess. With the 16 standard pieces and 4 powerful leapers. (10x8, Cells: 80) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2020-12-22 UTC

You mention that Jetan has long fascinated you. But I see few parallels between this game and Jetan. Can you please explain the connection and/or inspiration?


Who is Behind the Chess Variant Pages?. The editors, past editors, contributors, and inventors behind this site.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2020-06-29 UTCExcellent ★★★★★

Welcome to our two new editors. It's great to see some new blood. 

Next step : see some new blood in terms of contributors, not just editors, too. I'll try to find time to design a new variant or two myself, if I can get some letup from my 70-hours a week job, but I'd also love to see a lot more game designers get on board.


Chess+. Players choose when and where to place their pieces behind the pawns.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2020-05-27 UTCExcellent ★★★★★

Great idea. I have always loved Fischerrandom Chess, but I really don't like the way it gives players no control over where their pieces start. I also consider Fischer's castling rule to be cludgy and it's hard to believe that a man of his genius came up with that. Your project fixes those shortcomings. 

One tweak I'd make if it were up to me is to require both players to enter ALL their pieces before making any other moves. White would enter a piece, followed by black, and they'd take it in turns to enter pieces, one at a time, until the first and eighth ranks were full. Of course, Bishops must be required to be on different coloured squares. 


Spartan Chess. A game with unequal armies. (8x8, Cells: 64) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2020-04-08 UTCExcellent ★★★★★

I don't usually like games with different armies, but this is an exception. You've put a lot of thought into making a game whose different armies are not unevenly matched. For sure, the Spartan side lacks a Queen and its army appears to be slightly less powerful, but that is compensated for by the presence of two kings, both of which must be checkmated/captured. 


Choiss. First place your squares, then your pawns, then your pieces, then move.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2018-05-11 UTCExcellent ★★★★★

This is very similar to a game that I have conceptualized, but never published. My own game starts with the usual 8x8 square board and the pieces arranged as usual, with all the usual rules of play, except that in lieu of moving a piece, either player may move an unoccupied square. A square may only be removed from the edge of the board (an edge cell being one with less than four orthogonally adjacent cells) and placed orthogonally adjacent to another cell.

I have a (general) rule of not publishing things here until I have programmed them for Zillions. I'm a mediocre programmer at the best of times, and when it comes to creating cells that may be moved by either player, I'm stuck. I've worked out how to make cells that only one player can move, but making them neutral and moveable for both sides is something I've had no success with. 

I've thought of a similar game based on moveable hexagons.


Anyway, I'm glad to see I'm not the only one to have thought of a game with a "dynamic" board.


Palace Shogi. A complicated hybrid of Shogi, Xiang Qi, and Chess.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2018-04-25 UTCExcellent ★★★★★

Hi Silvia! Thank you for introducing us to this exotic blend, which is one of the best I've seen. I've seen a few east-west hybrids before, and even tried inventing a couple of them myself, which I never published here because I didn't like them very much — they seemed to be neither fish nor fowl. But yours blends them in a way that doesn't seem forced or stretched, and I really like that!


CHESSAGON. CHESSAGON® is like traditional Chess, but with Triangles, with one new additional piece named the Duke.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2018-04-23 UTCGood ★★★★

I'm delighted to see a variant based on triangular cells, rather than squares or hexagons. Not that there's anything wrong with squares and hexagons, but that triangles are under-explored and under-exploited. Christian Freeling and Graeme Neatham invented several trigonal chess games, and I contributed a couple of my own (Rotorblades Chess and Rotorblades Fusion Chess). And of course there's Klinzha. But for the most part, inventors seem to give triangular boards a miss. 

I see that Chessagon tries to be as faithful as possible to traditional chess. That's one "pole" of the chess variant universe; the other "pole" is games like Arimaa, which barely qualify as chess variants. My own taste is for something in the middle —I like games that extrapolate the moves of the traditional pieces to the new geometry, but also introduce pieces that take advantage of the new geometry in a way that the familiar pieces cannot. The only piece of this nature to do so in Chessagon is the Duke, and I think there is room for more unusual pieces that would create interesting possibilities for play. 


AmazonsA game information page
. Amazons and a computer version.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2018-04-22 UTC

I like the game, but I question whether it belongs on this website. To me, a chess variant must meet the following criteria : 

1. Played on a board with multiple cells.

2. Diversity of pieces. In other words, pieces of different types that move and/or capture differently. That is why go and draughts/chequers don't qualify, and I don't think Amazons does, either. 

3. Royalty — there must be a piece (or pieces) whose survival is indispensable. Again, go, chequers, and Amazons don't qualify. Arimaa perhaps does — just : if you lose all eight rabbits, you lose the game. But to have eight royal pieces seems a stretch, so that's why I've said "perhaps". 

I'm aware that this website has a "crossovers" section, which allows for games that have borrowed ideas from chess. Cheskers is a good example. It fails the royalty provision, but meets the diversity provision and therefore qualifies as a crossover. But Amazons fails on both counts, in my opinion. 


Amalgamated Chess. Incorporates some aspects of historical variants, but uses only usual equipment. (8x8, Cells: 64) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2018-04-09 UTC

I still don't understand how the Charging Elephant is supposed to move.


Deception Chess. Each piece has two identities, Cloak and concealed Base.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2018-04-03 UTCExcellent ★★★★★

I like this concept. Pieces can suddenly "come out" as something else. I suppose this could be called a variant of chess with incomplete information — as the "true identity" of each player's pieces is known to the respective players, but not to their opponents. At the same time, cloaking forces the player to decide in advance which piece will morph into what, preventing arbitrariness. 


Tower Chess. Game with additional stationary pieces.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]

Since this comment is for a page that has not been published yet, you must be signed in to read it.

Windows Chess. Windows Chess is played with usual chess equipment on a board inspired by an arch-window. (8x8, Cells: 64) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2013-12-26 UTC
Note to editors: I'm more or less finished now.  I don't know how to link it to the zillions file under the "See also" heading, so I'd be grateful if you'd do that fore me.  Thanks!

Windows Chess ZIP file. Windows Chess is played on a board inspired by an arch window in my neighbourhood.[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2013-12-26 UTC
Note to editors: Could you please link this to the description page (http://www.chessvariants.org/index/msdisplay.php?itemid=MSwindowschess) under the "See also" section? I don't know how to do it:-(  Thanks!

Windows Chess. Windows Chess is played with usual chess equipment on a board inspired by an arch-window. (8x8, Cells: 64) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2013-12-25 UTC
I'm not finished yet.  I have a few more images to upload and some polishing to do before the game is ready for publication, so I would respectfully ask the editors to postpone publication until I've finished (in 24-48 hours or so).  Thanks!

Dürer's Chess. Dürer's Chess, played on a board of 151 tessellating pentagons and diamonds. (Cells: 151) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2011-05-01 UTC
I don't know what's causing the problem - maybe it's my own server. All I know is that whenever I try to download, a window pops open asking for your password. But never mind - I also found some of your games on the Zillions website. I've downloaded a few by now and am studying them:-) I think I've got the general idea figured out now, so you'll see an update here soon. Thanks a lot!

David Cannon wrote on 2011-04-29 UTC
Thanks to Mats and Nicholas. Mats, I tried to look at your games, but when I tried to download them, a box popped up asking for your password!

David Cannon wrote on 2011-04-29 UTC
I have just released version 2.1, whose greatly optimised code should make the game run much more efficiently, especially on older computers.

Diagonal Oblong Chess. The board is an oblong in diagonal direction. By Shi Ji. (8x8, Cells: 64) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2010-12-27 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
A simple but far-reaching innovation which creates some interesting possibilities for play.

Spartan Chess. A game with unequal armies. (8x8, Cells: 64) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2010-11-13 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
Upgrading my rating to 'excellent', having seen all the additional explanations added. Well done, Seven.

David Cannon wrote on 2010-11-10 UTCGood ★★★★
On the whole I like this game, but please refrain from making claims that cannot be substantiated. 'No opening book' and 'No end game strategies' are, in my judgement, subjective claims. FIDE chess - officially - has no opening book either. No does it have any official end game strategy. Just look up the rules of FIDE chess - you won't find anything about openings or end games. The popular openings (Ruy Lopez, Sicilian, etc.) are simply choices that have become popular because players have found them workable. Your game, Steven, isn't well known yet. But you can bet your life on it that if and when it does become well-known, people will be analyzing opening and closing strategies to find optimal advantages for each player.

SerPent Chess 50. Pentagonal cells form hexagonal blocks in two ways. (Cells: 50) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
David Cannon wrote on 2010-10-15 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
I'm always delighted to see a game using new tiling patterns. This pentagonal tiling is one that I have thought about, but never gotten round to implementing. Thanks for sharing this one, Charles!

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