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Usurp Chess

The King is unfit to rule! Slay him!
  [vote for,

Used to play this years ago. It's a very fun variant to normal chess in which you can remove your King from power and place one of your other loyal subjects as King of the board. They retain their movement attributes but it's game over if they get caught. Simply use your move to take the King King with one of your own pieces, as you would an opponent piece, and place a little hat on the New King.

Sure, the Queen might immediately seize power, but as an agressive piece she's usually in the thick of things, and you don't want her to be in unnecessary danger. Bishops and rooks are probably best but knights are favoured among maverick players. Prawns spell disaster, plus you have to have your King in front of the prawns in the first place to take power, which is uncommon and if you're in that position you're probably losing horribly already.

Some further gameplay testing is required. It might be prudent to limit the new King's movement to 3 squares at a time if a bishop, rook or Queen is your usurper, blaming it perhaps on their shiny new cloak and jewels.

Timing is everything. If your King King is being surrounded by the enemy, wait until the last minute to remove him from power, which might (1) allow you to take the King King's attackers with the New King (b) completely throw off your opponents strategy, or (iii) put you in a position to counter attack.

Try it, it adds a whole new strategic concept to the game and can be very rewarding.

theleopard, Oct 29 2007

Crazyhouse http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crazyhouse
Kind of "Invasion of the Body Snatchers", but with chess. [zen_tom, Oct 30 2007]

[21's] Chao-ess Anarchist Chess
[theleopard, Oct 30 2007]


       you waste a move to take your own king (king)? sounds barmy to me.
po, Oct 29 2007

       You waste a move to make your King hugely more mobile.
theleopard, Oct 29 2007

       Why have a king at all? Aren't all the other pieces more likely to rise up, slaughter the King, send the Queen into exile (only allowed to use column 'A' of the board) and form a republic with a president (which moves from piece to piece every two turns)?
hippo, Oct 29 2007

       Or call an assembly with the enemy and organise a peace through diplomacy, after which the two armies can invade the draughts board as a peace keeping force.
theleopard, Oct 29 2007

       //Prawns spell disaster, plus you have to have your King in front of the prawns in the first place to take power, which is uncommon and if you're in that position you're probably losing horribly already.//   

       Once, I can understand, a slip-up, mere type. But twice? Were you really playing chess or just pushing food around the seafood buffet?
Noexit, Oct 29 2007

       Shirley everybody plays with prawns? Pour a bag of assorted frozen seafood on to the board - shrimp, moluscs, oysters and the like - and viola! Hey pesto, instant chess pieces.
theleopard, Oct 29 2007

       //Shirley everybody plays with prawns//

Sounds like a good basis for a Cthulhoid chess set.
DrBob, Oct 29 2007

       I wonder if computer chess games could be programmed to take into account this or other facotrs. They could then play a few thousand matches to game test it. It may be that usurpers must be limited to certain pieces.
bungston, Oct 29 2007

       I play this all the time. Very rewarding. However, a queen isn't so bad. Just advance some pawns to replace the Queen. Or play Crazyhouse variant. Getting several queens is eazy in Crazyhouse variant.
Shadow Phoenix, Oct 29 2007

       Can you tell us what Crazyhouse variant is?   

       [bungston], I don't know how much you could learn from automated gameplay testing, apart from a predicted average length of games. Testing the gameplay is all about how the new rule effects a player's enjoyment of the game. Hopefully some Bakers will try it, see how it pans out.
theleopard, Oct 29 2007

       The thing about the automated game is that they would need a new algorith to determine when to usurp. I predict many long draws between sides which both have usurper queens.
bungston, Oct 29 2007

       I like the idea - and might give it a try, but my first thought is that too many games could end in tron-like hermaphroditic shuttling.   

       How about some kind of Samurai variant, where the pawns are allowed to commit seppuku? This would gently provide a whole set of new opening gambits to the game, and create a new form of discovered attack.
zen_tom, Oct 30 2007

       [bungston], fair enough; seeing how often the computer came to a draw would be a useful indicator of how good the game variant is. This, and the tron-like hermaphroditic shuttling is the reason why I thought perhaps the New King's movement might need to be limited.   

       Love the seppuku idea. The amount of times I just want that freakin prawn out of the way. Like when you're trying to get your rooks in to a useful attack position.
theleopard, Oct 30 2007

       Crazyhouse variant is a version of chess where you obtain all the pieces you have taken from your opponent. They are kept in reserve, same as usual. But in this version, you may summon your opponent's fallen pieces to your aid any time you wish. The revived piece is in your colour and appears in its starting position, but on your side. Similar to tandem/bughouse chess, but one-on-one.
Shadow Phoenix, Oct 31 2007


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