Falcon-Hunter Chess

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Falcon-Hunter Chess starting position. The falcon and the hunter, represented here by inverted pieces, are initially off the board.

Falcon-Hunter Chess (also called Schultz's Chess, One-Way Chess, or Meso Chess) is a chess variant invented by Karl Schultz in 1943 employing the two fairy chess pieces falcon and hunter.[1] The game takes several forms, including variations Hunter Chess[2] and Decimal Falcon-Hunter Chess[3][4] added in the 1950s.


Moves of the falcon and hunter[edit]

  • The falcon moves forward as a chess bishop (on diagonals), and backward as a chess rook (along a file).
  • The hunter moves forward as a rook (along a file), and backward as a bishop (on diagonals).

Neither piece can move along a rank. The pieces capture the same as they move.

Falcon-Hunter[edit]

All the rules and conventions of standard chess apply, including the starting setup. The falcon and hunter start the game off the board and out of play (see diagram). Once a player loses (or exchanges) his queen, a rook, a bishop, or a knight, he may, on any subsequent move, enter his falcon or hunter into play on any empty square of his home rank. Doing so constitutes a turn. The player becomes eligible to enter his remaining fairy piece (falcon or hunter) after losing a second piece (queen, rook, bishop, or knight). A move entering the falcon or hunter into play may also give check.

Variations[edit]

  • In one variation, the falcon and hunter are introduced only through pawn promotion: a pawn promotes only to falcon or hunter.
  • In another variation, the starting setup is without queens, and each player's king starts on a new square added to the end of the e-file (the chessboard having a total of 66 squares). The hunter starts on the square normally reserved for the queen; the falcon starts on the square normally reserved for the king. A pawn may promote to any piece, including queen, falcon, or hunter.
  • Falcon-Hunter Chess was renamed Hunter Chess in the 1950s, with rule addition that either a queen or king may castle using a hunter.

Decimal Falcon-Hunter[edit]

Decimal Falcon-Hunter Chess starting setup. In the diagram, falcons are represented by inverted bishops; hunters by inverted rooks.

Decimal Falcon-Hunter Chess (also known as Great One-Way Chess), invented in the 1950s, is played on a 10×10 board with the falcon and hunter already in the starting setup (see diagram). All the standard chess rules and conventions apply, with the following differences:

  • On its first move, a pawn may advance 1, 2, or 3 steps. There is no en passant.
  • On its first move, a knight has the option to move or capture by leaping in a (2,4) pattern (i.e. two steps as a nightrider, where the square corresponding to the first step is jumped).
  • The king slides three squares when castling either kingside or queenside.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Pritchard (1994), pp. 107–08
  2. ^ Pritchard (1994), p. 147
  3. ^ Pritchard (1994), p. 81
  4. ^ Parton, V. R. (1971). "Decimal Falcon-Hunter (Schulz Chess)". 100 Squares for Chess+Damante. 

Bibliography

External links[edit]