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This page is written by the game's inventor, Sidney LeVasseur.

Royal court

This game was invented by Sidney LeVasseur in 1998

The board - The board comprises 80 squares, 8 ranks and 10 files, colored alternately light and dark. The players, designated white and black, sit on opposite sides. The board is placed so that there is a light square in the left hand corner of each player.

The pieces - Each player has 20 pieces, which are placed on the board at the beginning of the game as showing in figure 1. The pieces are distinguished by their shapes into 7 kinds:

White: King f1, Queen e1, Rooks a1 and j1, Bishops d1 and g1, Knights c1 and h1, Crowned knights b1 and i1 and the pawns one on each square of the second rank.

Black: King f8, Queen e8, Rooks a8 and j8, Bishops d8 and g8, Knights c8 and h8, Crowned khight b8 and i8 and the pawns one on each square of the seventh rank.


The Queen, Rooks, Knights, Bishops and Pawns move the same as in chess.

The King moves the same as in chess with the exception of castling

The Crowned knight has two possible moves (1) It can move one square in any direction. (2) It can move like a Knight. See figure 2.


Castling - is a compound move of the King and the Rook that may be made, if at all, only once in the game. It is legal if neither the King nor the Rook has yet moved; if all squares between them on the rank are vacant and no adverse pieces commands a square that the King will pass over; and if the King is not in check. The move is executed by moving the King three squares toward the Rook, and then placing the Rook on the square last passed over by the King. Either the King-Rook or the Queen-Rook may be used in castling.

Object of play - The game is won by capturing the adverse King. The capture is never consummated; when the King is attacked and cannot escape, he is said to be checkmated and the game ends forthwith. Many games end by resignation of a player who sees that he cannot escape eventual defeat. A threat to capture the adverse King is a check; a check must of course be averted or the game forfeited. The only ways of meeting a check are to move the King, capture the attacking piece or interpose on the line of the check given by a distant Queen, Rook or Bishop.

Drawn games - A game may be abandoned as drawn for any of the following reason:

Rules and pieces that are different than orthodox chess: castling and the Crowned knight.


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Written by Sidney LeVasseur. HTML conversion by David Howe.
This variant is an entry in the 1999 Large Variant contest.

WWW page created: April 13, 1999. Last modified: May 8, 1999.