Battle of titans
Three players game, one player controls FIDE chess army, another player controls Xiang-qi army, and third is, of course, Shogi army. Claudio Martins Jaguaribe and Charles Gilman had similar idea independently (Gilman's board is slightly different, please, look at this comment), but complete rules are by me. Note that i did not tried to make this game well-balanced (expect adding special pieces for XQ player and drop ability to Shogi pieces). But there are several optional rules, wich can make game more balanced.
Sorry for horrible diagrams. First, look at this and this page to understand, what i mean. Board of "Battle of titans" is similar to board of "Game of three kingdoms" expect that there is only one palace - in Xiang-qi player's camp. Xiang-qi camp. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Pa -- Pa -- Pa -- Pa -- Pa -- Ca -- Ba -- Ba -- Ca -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Ro Ho El Ad Ki Ad El Ho Ro Pa - pawn, Ca - cannon, Ba - banner, Ro - chariot (rook), Ho - horse, El - elephant, Ad - advisor, Ki - king (general). Usual 3x3 palace. Shogi camp. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Pa Pa Pa Pa Pa Pa Pa Pa Pa -- An -- -- -- -- -- Fl -- La Ho Si Go Ki Go Si Ho La Shogi setup is usual. Pa - pawn, An - angle mover, Fl - flying chariot, La - lance, Ho - horse, Si - silver general, Go - gold general, Ki - king. FIDE camp. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Pa Pa Pa Pa Pa Pa Pa Pa Pa Ro Kn Bi Qu Ki Ar Bi Kn Ro Pa - pawn, Ro - rook, Kn - knight, Bi - bishop, Qu - queen, Ar - archbishop, Ki - king. FIDE archbishop-side 4 files are connected with XQ 4 ranks, FIDE queen-side 4 files are connected with Shogi flying chariot-side 4 files, Shogi angle-walker-side ranks with XQ 4 ranks (XQ player's left cannon can capture FIDE archbishop-side knight, right cannon can capture Shogi angle mover on first move). Cantral (king) file of ezch playeer is connected with central files of 2 other players. Orthogonal-moving piece can go from central file to central files of other two camps. Diagonal moves are a little hard to visualize, remember that single diagonal step is like one orthogonal step, when another one at right angles. Bishops are unbound on this board. 'Forward' means out of one's own part of the board and further into either of the others, so that when any Shogi general crosses between the FIDE and XQ areas that move is considered a 'backward' one and the 'forward' direction(s) switch from further into one to further into the other.
Banner is based on additional pieces from original 3-players Xiang-qi variants. When in XQ camp, it moves 2 steps orthogonal, when, in same move, makes diagonal outward step. Thus, it can reach same squares as camel, but don't leap. In FIDE and Shogi camps it moves as rook. It was added because XQ player is too weak. Hump (non-array piece) leaps as camel, but only in 2 forwardmost directons, promotes to gold general. -- -- -- -- -- -- xx -- xx -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Hu -- -- -- -- -- -- -- You should be familar with other pieces (if you are not, you better stop reading this). Marshal and archbishop are from Capablance chess, camel is from Tamerlane chess.
Xiang-qi: General can capture FIDE and Shogi kings if they are on rook lines and there are no pieces between them ("bare facing" rules) either with rifle-capture (capture without moving) or replacement capture. When capturing other kings by replacement, it's possible to move out of palace. When general is out of palce, he cannot return back. Advisor also can leave palacee after this, but not return back, elephants can cross river, but not return to XQ camp. Shogi: Pieces promotes on last 3 ranks in camp of either opponent. When they captures, opponent's captured pieces are transformed into respective Shogi pieces (see below) and can be dropped. Promoted FIDE pawns are not demoted. It's allowed to drop 2 pawns on home camp central file if there are no pawns on central files of other camps, but there may not be more than 1 pawn in central file of certain hostile camp. Ignore prohibition of dropping pawn to checkmate. Captured kings cannot be dropped. FIDE: Both castling works like queen-side castling. It's not allowed to castle through attack of either opponent. Pawns may make double (but not tripple) step. They can be captured en-passant by Xiang-qi pawns (when they moves sideways) and by Shogi horses and humps. On either last rank pawns promotes to queen, archbishop, marshal, bishop, knight, rook or camel. Other rules: XQ player moves first, Shogi player second, FIDE player third. Win by capturing kings of both opponents. Pieces of player, who lost king, are transformed into corresponding pieces of player, who captured king. Shogi pieces demotes here. Xiang-qi pawns can be transformed into Shogi and FIDE pawns on last ranks, they immediately promotes (same rules for Shogi forward-only pieces). Table of correspondence of pieces: Pawn (FIDE) - Pawn (Xiang-qi) - Pawn (Shogi, see Shogi rules). Queen - Advisor (see Xiang-qi rules) - Gold general. Bishop - Elephant - Silver general. Knight - Horse (Xiang-qi) - Horse (Shogi). Rook - Chariot (Xiang-qi, same as rook) - Lance. Marshal - Cannon - Flying chariot (Shogi rook, see Shogi rules). Archbishop - Vao - Angle walker (Shogi bishop, see Shogi rules). Camel - Banner -Hump.
Alternative setup for Fide player: -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Pa Pa Pa Pa Pa Pa -- Pa Pa Ro Kn Bi Qu Ki Bi -- Kn Ro You can also play on board, suggested by Gilman (see "introdution"). Another optional rule: pieces don't transform when captured by Shogi pieces or friendly king is captured. Dropping captured pieces is ability of Shogi pieces, not Shogi player. Vaos are impossible in this game. FIDE pawn promotions to marshals and camels (and archbishops, if playing with alternative setup) is optionally not allowed. Team variant. Almost all team multiplayer variants can be played by 2 players, here one of players controls 2 armies. I added this variant because i wanted play it with Game courier, but it don't support 3-players games (there is a way to play cut-throat game, third player must write his moves in kibbitz comments). Two players forms team (it's not allowed to capture teammate's pieces), but third player's king is replaced with extremely strong piece. Player with that piece always moves second (turn order of two other players is same). When strong-king player captures king of one of his opponent's, his strong king demotes to normal king. When strong king is captured, both team players wins or they must continue playing against each other (it must be chosen before playing. Of course, only first variant can be chosen if one person controls 2 armies). Strong kings movement rules: FIDE - Maharaja, compound of rook, bishop and knight. Shogi - Lion, makes one or two king's moves, not necessary in same direction (even back to starting square), captures on either or both, or may leap to square, wich can be reached with second step. Xiang-qi - Yitong, compound of Chinese horse, rook and cannon. Plus, advisors can leave palace and elepahnts can ross river. If Yitong demotes in palace (it's ulikely), advisors return to palace, but after this cannot leave it, elephants can return to home camp, but can't cross river further. If it demotes out of palace, advisors can leave palace and cannot return here, elephants can leave home camp, but not return. It's main advantage is that it's hard to be blocked. On first move, Shogi player's best decision is to protect central pawn. All these strong kings can cross check freely.
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By Daniil Frolov.
Web page created: 2010-08-19. Web page last updated: 2010-08-19