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Chess variants (000)
Odds-game, Fischer Random, etc.

Number of games in database: 629
Years covered: 1620 to 2020
Overall record:
   White wins 57.9%
   Black wins 31.5%
   Draws 10.7%

Popularity graph, by decade

Explore this opening  |  Search for sacrifices in this opening.
With the White Pieces With the Black Pieces
Paul Morphy  161 games
Siegbert Tarrasch  28 games
Wilhelm Steinitz  26 games
NN  73 games
Charles Maurian  65 games
Paul Morphy  30 games
NOTABLE GAMES [what is this?]
White Wins Black Wins
Morphy vs Le Carpentier, 1849
Morphy vs A Morphy, 1850
Tarrasch vs Romberg, 1893
Mandolfo vs Kolisch, 1858
Morphy vs Maurian, 1855
Cochrane vs A Deschapelles, 1821
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 page 1 of 26; games 1-25 of 629  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Greco vs NN 1-031620?000 Chess variants
2. Bernard / Carlier vs Philidor 1-0321780Miscellaneous Game000 Chess variants
3. Maseres vs Philidor 0-1581783Blindfold Simultaneous000 Chess variants
4. Philidor vs J Bruehl 0-1201788London000 Chess variants
5. Leycester vs Philidor 0-1241788blind sim.000 Chess variants
6. Leycester vs Philidor 0-1351788Odds London000 Chess variants
7. Leycester vs Philidor 0-1291788Odds London000 Chess variants
8. Leycester vs Philidor ½-½791788London000 Chess variants
9. Philidor vs J Bruehl ½-½491788London000 Chess variants
10. Nowell vs Philidor 0-1601788London Blind Simul000 Chess variants
11. Philidor vs J Bruehl 1-0481788London000 Chess variants
12. Philidor vs J Wilson 1-0441789London000 Chess variants
13. Philidor vs Cotter 1-0221789London000 Chess variants
14. Philidor vs J Bruehl 0-1391789London000 Chess variants
15. Philidor vs J Bruehl 1-0191789London000 Chess variants
16. Philidor vs J Bruehl 1-0281789London000 Chess variants
17. G Jennings vs Philidor 1-0451790London Blind000 Chess variants
18. G Jennings vs Philidor 0-1281790London Blind000 Chess variants
19. J Bruehl vs Philidor 0-1331790London Blind000 Chess variants
20. J Bruehl vs Philidor ½-½531790London Blind000 Chess variants
21. Philidor vs G Atwood 1-0221794London000 Chess variants
22. G Atwood vs Philidor 0-1251795London000 Chess variants
23. Philidor vs G Atwood 0-1481795Odds Game a1 Rook and c7 pawn000 Chess variants
24. Philidor vs G Atwood 1-0271795London000 Chess variants
25. Philidor vs G Atwood 0-1141795London000 Chess variants
 page 1 of 26; games 1-25 of 629  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2)  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 2 OF 3 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Nov-21-06  WarmasterKron: <Scan> Are you familiar with Grand Chess? It is played on a 10x10 board and uses two new pieces: the Archbishop (B/N) and Chancellor (R/N).

Btw, the combination of R/B/N is basically just Q/N and generally called an Amazon (Z).

Nov-22-06  Whitehat1963: Here's a strange variant that I invented (well, with a lot of influences):

1. Start with all the pawns on the second rank as usual, but take turns placing one piece (blindly selected from a hat) on the first rank squares a1 to h1. The two sides will have different setups. Now you have your initial setup and are ready to play.

2. Play your first 10 moves attempting to create glaring weaknesses on your own side (because you will switch sides after the 10th move), but keep the following in mind:

- You cannot move any piece twice.
- You cannot castle.
- You cannot capture.
- You must keep all your pieces on your half of the board. - You cannot place yourself or your opponent in check.

3. Switch sides, flip a coin to decide who moves first (yes, black can move first).

4. Play normally from there. Enjoy.

I call it Random Switch Chess.

The games are pretty wild.

Jan-15-07  edo.chess: <keypusher> <OK, here is an excerpt from the Soltis column.> Thanks for this excerpt! This is very useful information in providing bounds on the rating effects of the various odds. If the odds-givers at the Marshall Chess Club won virtually every game, it suggests that:

(1) the rating advantage of pawn and move is less than 300 points and probably less than 200;

(2) the rating advantage of a knight is is less than 500 and probably less than 400;

(3) the rating advantage of a rook is probably less than 600.

Taking pawn and move as an example, the rating differences were 200-399, and the odds-givers won, whereas if the rating advantage of pawn and move were really, say 300 (the middle of the range), we'd expect about a 50% score in these games. Since the score was actually (almost) 100%, the rating advantage is probably not substantially above 200 or we'd have expected the odds-receivers to score something at least.

In my Edo rating system, I've been using (in the most recent version) a rating advantage of 174 for pawn and move; 349 for the knight and 500 for the rook. These are at least consistent with the upper limits suggested by the Marshall Chess Club experiment, though they must of course still be considered very tentative.

In the Kibbitzer's Corner for games of Robert James Fischer, <SBC> mentioned (on July 4, 2006) a match that Kasparov won 2.5-1.5 against Terry Chapman, Kasparov giving odds of 2 pawns (and extra time). Since Kasparov had a FIDE rating at the time of 2827 and Chapman seems to have been rated 2156 (though that might have been a few years later) the rating difference we can take to be about 671. A score of 2.5/4 normally amounts to about an 89 point rating difference, so Kasparov was playing at about 2156+89=2245 compared to Chapman's 2156. This suggests a rating disadvantage of 2827-2245=582 when giving odds of 2 pawns, which is much more than we'd expect from the Marshall Chess Club evidence that even knight odds make less than a 400 point difference. There are arguments in the same discussion that Kasparov could have done better, but the fact is he didn't. In any case 4 games is limited evidence, carrying less weight than the approximately 40 games of the Marshall Chess Club experiment.

More evidence is clearly needed, and <SBC> has also suggested doing experiments with computer programs giving odds: an excellent idea.

Jun-23-07  2021: <BishopofBlunder>
Jun-23-07  2021: Has anyone heard of Three Checks Chess? You win if you check your opponent three times.
Jun-23-07  2021: Anybody heard of Alice Chess?
Jun-23-07  ughaibu: Alice chess is a nice game. Genuinely interesting variant.
Jun-23-07  2021: How about Monster Chess?
Jun-23-07  2021: Also there is Patrol Chess
Jun-23-07  2021: Here is some more:

Checkers Chess

Checkless Chess

Knight Relay Chess

Jun-23-07  2021: If you want all of them, here they are:
Jun-23-07  WarmasterKron: <2021> I've played both Knight Relay Chess and Three Checks Chess. The latter is surprisingly tricky.
Jul-18-07  Sibahi: if you want most of them (which are much more than the wiki article), have a look at
Aug-04-07  Ed Trice: I like Gothic Chess personally :)

Aug-20-07  arunjangity: ok, i give up...what is it???
Premium Chessgames Member
  WannaBe: That's what happens after you've drank about a dozen glasses of those yellow liquid! =)
Jun-15-08  Xeroxx: This opening should be applied more often by white because white wins 65.0 per cent of the games!
Sep-24-08  just a kid: Maybe Kramnik or Leko should take up this opening more often.
Oct-11-08  ThePawnOTron2: The best of all is obviously ThePawnOTron2 Chess, where captured pieces can be placed on the board by the player whose piece was captured?


Jan-02-09  WhiteRook48: what an opening!!
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: Edward Winter mentions in "Kings, Commoners and Knaves" (Russell Enterprises, 1999) that there were several games in the 19th century where one player would remove their Queen, but would receive extra pawns as compensation. There are multiple games with one player receiving 8 extra pawns, plus 1 game where the player received 9 pawns - General Guingret v L Kieseritzky.

White had extra pawns on c4, d4, e4, f4, g4, b3, c3, f3 and g3.

Jan-15-09  TheaN: Knight mate:


Same as orthodox with these changes:

1) On b1 and g1 there will be a White King and on b8 and g8 there will be a Black King as regular Kings without the King's characteristics. They cannot castle, may be attacked, the attack does not have to be negated and they may be captured as normal pieces.

2) On e1 there will be a White Knight and on e8 there will be a Black Knight as regular Knights with the characteristics of a King, although they move as Knights. They may castle where orthodox rules apply, an attack on them must be negated and they may not be captured.

3) Pawns cannot be promoted into Knights and may promote into Kings.

4) As in orthodox chess, an attacked Knight is in checkmate when the attack cannot be negated and the checkmated players loses, and if a player cannot move when he is not in check will result in stalemate with a draw.

This variant can be immensely complex as one, the King's value cannot be easily disputed, two, Knights are easily checkmated and three, in the beginning it might be completely counterintuitive to move with Kings and let the Knight stay put.

I enjoy this one from time to time.

Jan-15-09  kellmano: Reading this page has given me a hunger to play some chess variants. The only one I have really played at all is chess960
Jan-29-09  patzer of patzers: Does anyone have/know where I could easily access opening theory on pawn and move (also possibly pawn and two) games? I recently played a game giving pawn and move, and responded to 1.e4 with 1...e5??? It was only by luck that my opponent didn't see the devastating 2.Qh5+...
Premium Chessgames Member
  Phony Benoni: <patzer of patzers> Well, if you're not talking about <recent> therey:

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