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P.O.C. - Progressive 007 Chess

Progressive 007 Chess is the progressive variant of 007 chess, invented by Edward Jackman.

Bill Taylor and Joao Neto reinvented in the spring of 1997 this game, not aware that what they invented actually already existed. They wanted to create a chess variant that had the following properties:

  1. the game record should be exactly as for orthodox chess;
  2. it should be possible to play moves for your opponent's pieces.
The solution to reconcile these goals was by using a modification of the concept of progressive chess; they called it Progressive Orthodox Chess.


White has the white pieces, Black has the black. However, players also play with the pieces of their opponent, as described below. A player loses when his king is checkmated. All individual moves must be legal chess moves, but are played by the players in increasing series, progressive-chess style. Firstly, White plays one move (a white man), then Black plays 2 moves (a black man then a white), then White plays 3 moves (black, white, black), then Black plays 4 moves (white, black, white, black); and so on.


Bill Taylor and Joao Neto have played three games so far. Bill writes:

All have been short, though, this doubtless reflects our inexperience, rather than an intrinsic property. Though one can't get so many moves of one's own in, in each move series, the fact that one can move the opponent king means a different sort of danger is always present, as the games below show.

Anyway, we are rather pleased with the game, and earnestly recommend keen chess varianters to give it a go.

In fact, we intend to run an email tournament later in the year; so get some practice in now!

We have little idea of strategy etc yet, but this thought has occurred to me, that seems to suggest that black has a slight advantage in this variant. If you look at move-color sequences, efficient mate is only possible if you have the last move of your sequence with your own color. Otherwise you have an "unusable" move. Checking this out, we see...

moves       pieces     mate    plus 
W  B         w  b      moves   helps 
1  -         1  -       1       . 
.  2         1  1       1       . 
3  .         1  2       1       1 
.  4         2  2       2       1 
5  .         3  2       3       2 
.  6         3  3       3       2 
7  .         3  4       3       3 
.  8         4  4       4       3 
..and so on. The left 2 columns show whose move it is. The next 2 show whose pieces he moves. The next, the number of his own pieces moved; this is the crucial one. The last is also quite important, the number of opponent "helpful" moves he gets to make - this excludes the last one, if it was last of a series, (this move is often worthless).

So this tells how close each player can come to giving mate. As you can see, black keeps getting an extra gain of 1, every 4th series.

If this is a correct analysis, it seems a nice automatic correction to the generally-agreed slight 1st-move advantage to white in ordinary progressive chess.

Sample games

Below, you find the three games that have been played by Bill and Joao:

Progressive Orthodox Chess Game 1
White: Bill Taylor; Black: Joao Neto.

  1. e4 b6
  2. Ke2 e6
  3. d4 Ke7
  4. Qd3 f6
  5. Qa6 Bxa6+
  6. Ke3 Qc8
  7. Bxa6 c6
  8. Bxc8 e5
  9. Ba6 Nxa6
  10. f3 exd4+
  11. Kd2 g6
  12. Kd3 Bh6
  13. Bxh6 Rf8
  14. Bxf8+ Kd8
  15. Kc4 c5
  16. Kd5 Ne7+
  17. Kd6 Nc7
  18. Bh6 Nc8++

Progressive Orthodox Chess Game 2
White: Joao Neto; Black: Bill Taylor.

  1. g3 Nc6
  2. f3 f6
  3. Nc3 Kf7
  4. e3 Nd4
  5. Qe2 Nxe2
  6. Nd5 c6
  7. Bxe2 Qc7
  8. Nxc7 a6
  9. Bxa6 Rxa6
  10. Na8 Rxa8
  11. Kd1 Kg6
  12. e4 Kg5
  13. g5 Kf4
  14. d4++

Progressive Orthodox Chess Game 3
White: Bill Taylor; Black: Joao Neto.

  1. g4 e5
  2. f3 Ne7
  3. e4 Rg8
  4. Na3 Nec6
  5. Ke2 Bxa3
  6. bxa3 Qe7
  7. Ke1 Qxa3
  8. Bxa3 Nb4
  9. Ne2 b5
  10. c3 Nd3++

Written by Bill Taylor and Hans Bodlaender.
WWW page created: April 2, 1997. Last modified: February 28, 2001.