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This page is written by the game's inventor, Graeme Neatham.

Delta88 Chess

There are three regular shapes that tile the plane, square, regular hexagon and equilateral triangle. Of these the triangle is very much the poor relation in its use in CVs. I am investigating this poor relation, the Trigonal Board, and using the Chessvariant Wiki to record my thoughts. This variant is based upon that work and is intended to translate the FIDE pieces to a trigonal board in a conservative way; retaining a FIDE feel while adding just a twist of triangular versatility.


The board is constructed from 88 equilateral triangles (trigons or trigs) arranged in 8 ranks of 11 files.

Each player has 22 pieces consisting of:

  • 1 King
  • 1 Queen
  • 1 Tower
  • 2 Knights-Errant
  • 2 Knights-Paladin
  • 2 Bishops
  • 2 Spires
  • 11 Pawns
start position


King king

The King may move a single step to any one of the 12 adjacent trigs provided that trig is safe (not atttacked by an enemy piece).

In the image on the right these 12 adjacent trigs are indicated by orange dots for the white king on the blue trig; and by blue dots for the white king on the yellow trig.

The King may also castle by moving 3 steps towards one of the Spires, which Spire then leaps to the trig just beyond the King.

In the image, the red king will finish its castle move on the trig with a red dot, while the spire will finish on the trig with a black dot.
king move
Queen queen
(Spire + Bishop)

queeen move
Tower tower

tower move

spire move
Bishop bishop

bishop move
Knight-Errant knight-errant

knight-errant move
Knight-Paladin knight-paladin

knight-paladin move
pawn move
Pawn pawn

Pawn movement is shown by the image on the left.

A pawn may move 1 trig directly forward to a trig of a different colour. On its first move a pawn may move an optional second step. When moving directly forward the pawn may not capture and may not leap over other pieces.

These moves are shown by orange dots.

Pawns capture by moving forward to a trig of the same colour.

These captures are shown by red crosses.

En-Passant capture is allowed.

Pawns promote on reaching the far-most rank.


Unless stated otherwise, the rules of FIDE chess apply.

There are two players, White and Red.
Turns, consisting of moving a single friendly piece, alternate between the players with White going first.


Piece Values

Initial guestimates:
  • Pawn -------------- 1.0
  • Knight-Errant ----- 3.0
  • Knight-Paladin ---- 3.0
  • Bishop ------------- 5.0
  • Spire -------------- 6.0
  • Tower -------------- 10.5
  • Queen -------------- 11.5


My primary interest when designing CVs (or any board game) concerns the board itself. The topology of the playing arena is what fascinates me: its shape, the shape of its cells, and the connections between those cells. I freely admit that I have little interest in the pieces beyond the challenge of assigning them relative values within a given game. The continued creation of fanciful fairy constructs leaves me somewhat puzzzled and bemused, struggling to understand and to answer my own unspoken "Why?". This is not a criticism of the piece proliferators; the fault, if any fault there be, is entirely mine: it is merely a statement of my own peculiar paradigm and a pointer to the motivation behind the genesis and design of this variant

Equivalent Hex Board

(from an idea by Joe Joyce)

The trigonal board presented in the above description can be replaced by an hexagonal-lattice (hex-lat) board; an hexagonal board where every third hexagon is removed.  Such a board is illustrated in the two images below.

The equivalence to a trigonal board is shown in the left image where the hexagons can be seen to be the central part of a trig and the missing hexes occur where the points of the trigs have been removed.  The trigonal edge-step remains an edge step on the hex-lat and is illustrated on the image by a green line.  The point-steps on the hex-lat follow the pink lines with the missing hexes acting as the trigonal point connections.

The right image below shows the starting array for Delta88 Chess using the hex-lat board.

hex-lattice initial array

The pieces and their movement on this hex-lat board are shown below, the reachable cells being marked with a red star (or a blue star in the case of a pawn's capturing move).

The images used were produced from the Game Courier Preset


king move


queen move


tower move


spire move

Knight Errant

knight errant move

Knight Paladin

knight paladin move


bishop move


pawn move

This 'user submitted' page is a collaboration between the posting user and the Chess Variant Pages. Registered contributors to the Chess Variant Pages have the ability to post their own works, subject to review and editing by the Chess Variant Pages Editorial Staff.

By Graeme C Neatham.
Web page created: 2007-08-18. Web page last updated: 2008-06-27