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Mad Scientist Chess. Fetch me the Pawn, Igor! (8x8, Cells: 64) [All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Jeremy Good wrote on 2007-03-17 UTC

You will find that many, many worthy games do not have presets and I think the main explanation for that is the Game Courier PBM is relatively new and nobody has been able to find the time to systematically go through our encyclopedia of chess variants and add them. What ever assistance you can provide in this area will be appreciated. In fact, I'm very grateful to you, Abdul-Rahman, for the work you have already done in creating presets for games that don't have them. I encourage more such work if you can find the time. I myself have a backlog of dozens of games that I've created presets for and haven't yet submitted. There are many more which require more labor than usual because nobody has designed pieces to match those described.

Sometimes a game is easier to create conceptually than it is to implement visually. Many of these games, I'm convinced, have never been playtested at all, even by their inventors. Or if they have, they've quickly been abandoned because of the clumsiness of the visuals. This inventor appears to have used Icehouse pieces to attempt playing his game. For me, visualization is very important and without the ability to visualize standardized sets of uniform pieces, I get lost easily. Sometimes, someone will create presets which use the same sets of pieces defined in different ways for different games. Personally, I find it very, very difficult to play such games because I find it hard to remember how the rules have changed for the same pieces from game to game. Some people have a much easier time adapting to shifting conventions like that.

This particular game would require crabs and barcs (and crab and barc compounds), yet these pieces are only playable together if they are flippable because otherwise, it is too confusing. It is hard to distinguish the crab from the barc unless they are facing the appropriate ways. Lacking the programming ability to change the piece set myself, I've twice put out a request to make the crabs and barcs flippable. When they do become flippable, I will work on making a preset. By the way, this game has something in common with Betza's Overprotection Chess, which also does not yet have a preset but should have one, in my opinion.