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This page is written by the game's inventor, Bob Greenwade.

Rotary Chess

In my parlance, a "rotary counterpart" to a piece is one whose move turns its move by 45 or 90 degrees. For example, the Bishop and Rook are rotary counterparts, as are the Wizard and Sorcerer, and of course the Ferz and Wazir, and the Alfil and Dabbabah.

In my wandering through the world of fairy chess pieces, I've come across a few that should have a rotary counterpart, but don't (as far as I could find). So, I created the counterparts.

This game features those pieces.


The game is played on a 12x12 square board, with the pieces shet up as shown below.


The game is played on a 12x12 square board, with the pieces shet up as shown below.

files=12 ranks=12 promoZone=1 promoChoice=BRQTMLSCGWFJ graphicsDir=/cgi-bin/fen2.php?s=50&t=Greenwade&w=F9F9F9&b=666666&p= squareSize=50 graphicsType= pawn:P:ifmnDfmWfceF:pawn:a3,b3,c3,d3,e3,f3,g3,h3,i3,j3,k3,l3,,a10,b10,c10,d10,e10,f10,g10,h10,i10,j10,k10,l10 bishop:B:B:bishop:e1,h1,,e12,h12 rook:R:R:rook:a1,l1,,a12,l12 queen:Q:Q:queen:f1,,f12 warpriest:T:NG:sword--bishop:b2,k2,,b11,k11 mongoose:M:sWsyafsW:mongoose:a2,l2,,a11,l11 basilisk:L:WG:stone--dragon:f2,g2,,f11,g11 sniff:S:FsN:ferz--wide:c2,j2,,c11,j11 caballero:C:FNZ:calatravanknight:c1,j1,,c12,j12 guard:G:K:guard:d1,i1,,d12,i12 walrus:W:F3mAmG:walrus:d2,i2,,d11,i11 four-diamond:F:WNZFXDX:four--friend:b1,k1,,b12,k12 jackal:J:GZ:jackal:e2,h2,,e11,h11 king:K:KisO4:king:g1,,g12


This game uses all of the orthodox pieces except the Knight; that leaves the King, Queen, Bishop, Rook, and Pawns. They all move as they do in orthodox Chess.

The "rotary" pieces referred to in the title include:

Basilisk (counterpart to Frog): Moves one space orthogonally, or leaps three spaces diagonally. (WG)


Caballero (Calatravan Knight; counterpart to Teutonic Knight): Moves one space diagonally, or leaps (1,2) or (2,3). (FNZ)


Four-Diamond (counterpart to Foursquare, from Jupiter): Moves one space orthogonally, or leaps (1,2), (2,3), (1,4), or (0,5). (WNZFXDX)


Jackal (counterpart to Leon): Leaps three spaces diagonally, or (2,3). (GZ)


Mongoose (counterpart to Snake): Moves one space left or right, then may slide diagonally from there like a Bishop. ([sW?B])


Sniff (counterpart to Fibnif): Moves one space diagonally, or makes a sideways (1,2) leap. (FsN)


Walrus (counterpart to Dolphin): Moves up to three spaces diagonally, but can only leap to the second or third space if not capturing. (F3mAmG)


Warpriest (counterpart to Warlord of Mad Chess): Leaps (1,2) like a Knight, or three spaces diagonally. (NG)


Also appearing:

Guard (Familiar piece): Moves one step in any direction. (K)




Except where noted otherwise, the usual rules of orthodox Chess apply.


Source links for the Frog, Leon, Snake, and Dolphin will be added if and when I can find them.

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 Bob Greenwade.

Last revised by Bob Greenwade.

Web page created: 2023-12-11. Web page last updated: 2023-12-11