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Jeff's Gameblog
Saturday, 24 April 2004
Last Enochian chess graphic
Now all I have to do is finish the research and write the page.



This fellow is the Black Knight in a traditional Enochian set. I colored him myself. The guidelines for doing so are not complete, so I had to make a few guesses.

Posted by jrients at 8:32 AM CDT
Friday, 23 April 2004
This will probably hose the screen width...


Here's the first draft of an initial array for a chess variant that combines the more interesting features of 3 well-known large board variants: Omega Chess, Tamerlan Chess (a historical variant that has also been called Shatranj Kamil and Shatranj Al-Kabil), and Gothic Chess. Gothic Chess is an improvement upon Capablanca's Chess, which itself is a re-invention of Bird's Chess and/or an older variant by Carrera.

The rules for this variant basically write themselves. The "pawn of X" promotion mechanic comes from Tamerlane and Chaturanga. The other new pieces are directly adopted from Gothic and Omega chess. The only real questions are the castling rules, any special rules regarding the wizards' corner spaces, and the pawn of king promotion. For the latter, the easiest solution would be for the pawn of kings to promote to Men, i.e. non-royal kings. I am also considering using the Prince, which is a similar piece but in this case the prince would also have to be captured or mated to insure victory.

Posted by jrients at 4:12 PM CDT
Updated: Friday, 23 April 2004 4:17 PM CDT

So here's a look at the color scheme of a traditional Enochian Chess board:



Doesn't look very helpful as a gameboard, does it?

Posted by jrients at 12:28 PM CDT

Finished up the other seven starting boards for Enochian chess. While working on them I got some ideas for a couple other chess variants:

Tamerlane's Pawns: Orthodox 8x8 board and array, except that each pawn can only promote to one kind of piece. The pawn in front of the queen promotes to a queen, the pawn in front of a knight promotes to a knight, etc. The pawn in front of the king promotes to a prince, which moves and takes like a king. If a prince is in play it must be eliminated before the king can be checked.

Tamerlane's Gothic Omega (working title): Combine Gothic and Omega Chess with Tamerlane-style pawns.

Posted by jrients at 10:29 AM CDT
Good News and Bad News
Good News: My contest entry is up at ChessVariants.com. (I've really got to get my HTML skills up to snuff. The coding on the page is terrible.)

Bad News: Last night I tried working on Zillions file for a modest variant using Crooks instead of Rooks in an otherwise orthodox chess game. I get getting an "out of memory" error, even after a restart. If my computer is virused I'll kick myself for not updating the virus protection.

Posted by jrients at 7:52 AM CDT
Thursday, 22 April 2004



Here's my first graphic depicting an orthodox chess-style interpetation of Enochian Chess as a game. There are seven other possible initial arrays. I also need to do some examples of the "concourse of the bishops" special case and some graphics giving examples of an authentic Enochian piece and board.

Posted by jrients at 4:24 PM CDT
Updated: Thursday, 22 April 2004 4:25 PM CDT
Back from lunch.
As I guessed, I had misread the passage describing the various initial set-ups for Enochian Chess. I had thought there were 2 possibly arrays, when in fact there are eight. Seems I am nowhere near down with my graphics for my article. This sort of confusion is one of the key reasons why I want to write a gamer-oriented description of Enochian Chess. If the text wasn't so interested in talking about the "Earth of Fire" board or whatever it might be easier to see the chess game underneath all the magickal stuff.

Posted by jrients at 2:26 PM CDT

Looks like I'll have some homework at lunch. I've been working on some graphics for a ChessVariants.com write-up on Enochian Chess. I've got the initial set-up boards done, but I read a line in my source material that indicates opposing bishops should be on different colors. All my bishops are on the same color. At this point I don't know if I got the set-up wrong (likely) or if the author's description of the game is contradictory. Honestly, I don't see that an Enochian Chess enthusiast using a tradition board would be able to tell whether the bishops are on identical colored squares or not. The boards are colored in a confusing way that does not enable gameplay.

Posted by jrients at 11:47 AM CDT



Last night's Savage Worlds game was a blast. Best session so far. We tracked Rat Bastardo the Bandit/Con-man to his cave lair, but the sam of a batch got away again! We tangled with a half dozen of his minions in a sort of warm-up fight and later threw down with a trio of Bonejaws. These critters are kinda like direbears with skulls where their faces should be. That was a hell of a fight. The two bigger Bonejaws were Wild Cards, making this our first fight with enemies who were our mechanical equals. Artemis the Ranger overcame his yellow streak long enough to prove instrumental in our victory, but was tragically and horrifically disemboweled by the biggest of the Bonejaws. Amazingly, my PC Rondoo achieved a couple of successes in melee combat, thanks to my new favorite maneuever, the wild swing.

Ray's druid character mysteriously vanished. Apparently the character was not clicking for Ray. His replacement PC is a punk kid named Jonny. Unlike almost every punk kid I have seen played before, Jonny is not an orphan. This presents all sorts of difficulties such that I'm kinda wondering if Ray thought this through. Next session my character Rondoo will be pushing for temporarily abandoning the purusuit of Rat Bastardo in order to reunite Jonny with his parents, especially after the poor lad was nearly mauled to death by a Bonejaw while in our care. Maybe Ray is used to the sort of game in which player characters have a special "I'm a PC" light over their head. Or maybe he wants to stir things up in this manner. Either way, it should be interesting.

Posted by jrients at 9:22 AM CDT
Updated: Thursday, 22 April 2004 11:27 AM CDT
Wednesday, 21 April 2004
Blogging like mad today.


I guess I was inspired by the timely completion of my entry into the ChessVariants.com 44-square contest. Today I whipped up a small submission outlining Alex Randolph's Knight Chase from the book A Gamut of Games by Sid Sackson.

Posted by jrients at 4:04 PM CDT

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