Almost Chess is a chess variant invented by Ralph Betza in 1977. The game is played using a standard chessboard and pieces, except the players' queens are replaced by chancellors, which combine the moves of a rook and a knight.
Almost Chess was featured in NOST[a] magazine Nost-algia, beginning with issue 205.
|This article uses algebraic notation to describe chess moves.|
Replacing queens with chancellors imparts a radical change to the nature of the chess game, despite the queen and chancellor having equal strengths. For example, bishops are stronger and knights are weaker. Betza commented that Almost Chess is a good introductory chess variant for players, due to its great similarity to standard chess and the naturalness of the change from queen to chancellor.
Sort of Almost Chess
Around 1994, Betza invented Sort of Almost Chess, a variation whereby one player owns a chancellor, and the opponent owns a queen. Betza considers the chances for both sides equal, even for advanced players, since the queen and chancellor have equal strengths.
Sort of Almost Chess emerged from Betza's research on the values of chess pieces, which culminated in the development of Chess with different armies.
- Pritchard, D. B. (1994). The Encyclopedia of Chess Variants. Games & Puzzles Publications. p. 7. ISBN 0-9524142-0-1.
- Pritchard, D. B. (2007). The Classified Encyclopedia of Chess Variants. John Beasley. p. 124. ISBN 978-0-9555168-0-1.
- "Almost chess" by Hans Bodlaender and Ralph Betza, The Chess Variant Pages