Table of Contents
Playing Battle Chess Enhanced CD-ROM
Basics of Chess
The Individual Pieces
The King, Queen, Rook, Bishop, Knight, Pawn
The Individual Importance of Each Piece
Check and Checkmate
The Three Phases of a Chess Game
The Opening Game
The Middle Game
The End Game
Drawn Games: The Other Ending
Playing Battle Chess Enhanced CD-ROM
The white pieces (colored red in Battle Chess) move first. To move a piece, click on the square the piece stands on with the left mouse button, and then on the square you want to move to. If the destination square does not flash when you point to it, then the piece cannot legally move there. If you change your mind after clicking on a piece's square and you want to move a different piece, you can click again in the piece's square to de-select it and start over.
After the piece walks over to the square you select, it will be Black's turn. (In Battle Chess, the black pieces are colored blue.) If your opponent is a human, use the same technique to move the piece you wish. If your opponent is the computer, it will think for a few seconds (depending on the Level menu) and then move its chosen piece.
Play then alternates back and forth between Red and Blue until there is a checkmate or stalemate, ending the game.
When a pawn reaches the eighth rank, a window will appear in the middle of the screen. Click on one of the pieces in this window to promote your pawn.
To perform this uncommon move (as discussed in the manual on page 21), move your pawn to the square directly behind the enemy pawn. The pawns will know what to do after that.
When your King is in check, the cursor will change to a "check" icon. It will change back to normal when the King escapes check.
When the King is in check and cannot escape, checkmate occurs, as discussed on pages 24-27 of the manual. When this happens, the piece that forced the King into checkmate will automatically move and capture the King.
Battle Chess menus
Note: The DOS and MPC versions of Battle Chess have slightly different menu structures. For instance, to change the difficulty level, in the DOS version you would go to the "Levels" menu, but in the MPC version, you go to the "Options" menu under "Difficulty". If an item isn't where you would expect it, forgive us! Check out adjacent menus and you'll probably find the item. The following menu descriptions emphasize the DOS version.
The Battle Chess� menu bar is normally invisible so you can see the whole chess board.
DOS version: To make the menu bar appear, hold down your right mouse button. The menu bar will appear at the top of the screen. While still holding down the right mouse button, move the mouse pointer up to the menu you want to select. A menu will drop down from the menu title when you point to it. Keep holding down the right mouse button and drag the mouse down to the option you want to select. Then release the right mouse button. The option will be selected.
If you don't have a mouse, press the <F1> key to make the menu bar appear, and then use the right, left, up, and down arrow keys on your keyboard to navigate through the menu options. Press <Enter> to select an option.
MPC� version: To make the menu bar appear, move the mouse pointer to the top of the screen. The menu bar will appear. Then choose menu options in the usual Windows fashion.
Load Game: Resumes a game you previously saved. When you pick this option, a dialog box will appear on the screen. Use the arrow keys or your mouse to pick a game and press <Enter>. The current game will be discarded and the game you choose will be loaded.
Save Game: Saves a game so you can resume it later. Type a description of your game and press <Enter> to save it.
New Game: Starts a new game at any time, discarding the game in progress.
Setup Board: Lets you set up the pieces on the board however you wish, to test strategies, play classic chess problems, or just give yourself another Queen if you are behind. You can move pieces around by first clicking (with the left mouse button) on the piece you want to move, then moving the piece where you want it to go, and finally, clicking again with the left mouse button to drop the piece there. To remove a piece, click on it with the left mouse button, move it off the edge of the board, and drop it by clicking again with the left mouse button. To add pieces, click with the left mouse button on one of the pieces displayed on the side of the board, move it where you want to place it, and click again with the left mouse button to drop it onto the board.
When setting up the board, three menu options are available. You can call up the menu bar in the usual way: by holding down the right mouse button.
Clear Board: Remove all pieces from the board.
Restore Board: Return the board to the way it was before you picked the "Setup Board" option in the first place.
Done: Ends the Set up Board session and returns to regular play.
Note that in the MPC� version, the Setup Board option is in the Move menu.
Tutorial (DOS version): Starts the 25-minute cartoon tutorial, in which each chess piece comes out on the board to demonstrate its own characteristics and play, from the basics to some light strategy and history. If you want to skip ahead to another piece, hold down the right mouse button and select a different piece from the menu that appears. To exit the tutorial, hold down the right mouse button and choose "Done" from the menu that appears.
In the MPC� version, you can access the tutorial from the Help menu.
Quit: Quits Battle Chess�.
Force Move: Stops the computer from thinking and forces it to make the best move it has thought of so far. Use this option when the cursor indicates the computer is thinking, and you don't want to wait for it to finish its turn.
Take Back: If you make a mistake, use this option to take back one move on one side, so you get another chance. You can Take Back up to 60 moves.
Replay: If you decide you liked a series of moves you just removed with Take Back, use this option to undo the series of Take Backs, one at a time. You can Replay as many moves as you have taken back.
Suggest Move: This option asks Battle Chess for a hint. Battle Chess will flash two squares, one for the piece it thinks you should move and the other for the destination. Be warned that Battle Chess suggests the move it would make if playing at Level 1; this move may not be the best move possible for your strategy.
(In the MPC version, the "Options" menu contains most of the following items.)
Sound On/Sound Off: Turns music and footstep sounds on and off. Note that combat sound will always be on, because the Battle Chess animation routines require sound to run. If you really need to turn all sound off, just lower the volume on your speakers or CD-ROM drive's volume control.
3D Board/2D Board: Switches between the 2D board, which is a standard chess board without animation, and the 3D board, where the pieces move and fight with animation.
Human, IBM, Modem Red: You can select only one of these options at a time. The selected option tells the computer who plays the Red pieces. (Of course, "Red" in Battle Chess� is equivalent to "White" in regular chess.)
Human, IBM, Modem Blue: You can select only one of these options at a time. The selected option tells the computer who plays the Black pieces. ("Blue" in Battle Chess is equivalent to "Black" in regular chess.)
To watch Battle Chess play itself, set both colors to "IBM". To play against a friend using the same computer, set both colors to "Human." To play against a friend on a different computer, see Step by Step Modem Play Instructions, below.
Options menu (MPC� version only)
The Options menu in the MPC� version contains three animation options for use in the 3D board view, as well as a "Modem" menu.
Full Animation: This option will turn all Battle Chess animation on.
Animate Combats: This option enables combat animation, but turns off walking animation.
Quickplay: This option turns off all Battle Chess animation.
Modem: This submenu has four commands within it. They are only available when one player is set to "Modem" in the "Settings" menu. See Step by step modem play instructions for more detailed instructions, as well as instructions for modem play in the DOS version.
Dial: Dials a phone number by sending an "AT" command to your modem.
Hangup: Hangs up your phone line. This will terminate a modem connection if one exists.
Wait for call: Sets your modem to automatically answer the phone if someone calls you. This lets another Battle Chess player call you and connect.
Send message: Sends a message to your opponent, to share information or taunting.
Only one Level may be active at a time. Note that in the MPC� version, difficulty levels are accessed by entering the "Options" menu and then examining the "Difficulty" sub-menu.
Novice: Sets the computer to be at its easiest to beat. Novice level will take the shortest amount of time to think and will occasionally make some critical
Levels 1 to 9: The higher the level, the more time the computer will take to think. More time means that Battle Chess has more time to find a better move and will correspondingly play a better game of chess.
Set Time: If you wish, you can set Battle Chess to think for any amount of time. The number you enter will be the maximum amount of time Battle Chess will think, from 1 minute to 10,000 minutes. Battle Chess will move before this time limit is up.
Help menu (MPC version)
Selecting a chess piece from this menu will start the Battle Chess tutorial with that piece. If you'd like to see the entire tutorial (about 25 minutes long), select "King" and sit back with a beverage as each piece comes out in turn to teach you about chess, from the basics to some light strategy and history. You can click on the left mouse buton to exit.
Step By Step Modem Play Instructions
You can play Battle Chess against a distant opponent if each of you has a Hayes-compatible modem. You can even play against a computer that isn't IBM-compatible, as long as the other computer is running Battle Chess. If your modem is properly connected to your computer's serial port, as shown in your modem manual, follow these steps to play a modem game.
1. Arrange with your opponent who will play Blue, who will play Red, who will call, and who will receive the call. Then, both of you should run Battle Chess. Use the "Modem plays Red" or "Modem plays Blue" menu option to set your opponent's color. Hang up the phone on both ends before continuing.
2. One player must set his modem to answer the phone. MPC� version: Choose the "Wait for Call" option from the "Modem" submenu. DOS version: Press <F2>. Then type ATS0=1 and press <Enter>. (That's a "zero," not the letter "O".)
3. The other player must call the player whose modem is set to answer the phone. MPC version: Pick the "Dial" option from the Modem submenu, then type in the phone number you want to dial and press "Enter." DOS version: Press <F2>. Then type ATDT followed by the phone number and press <Enter>. For instance, you might type ATDT1-714-555-1212 before pressing <Enter>. The dashes in the phone number are not needed.
If all goes well, your computer will pick up the phone, dial the number, and connect with the answering computer.
At this point you can start your chess game. When you move a piece, the same piece will move on the computer on the other end. Note that after the two players are connected, the menu options New Game, Setup Board, and Load Game will send an entire new chess board to both sides, discarding the current game. The menu options Take Back and Replay are disabled.
When you set one player to Modem, you can send text to your opponent. MPC version: Choose the Send Message option from the Modem submenu and type the text you want to send. When you press <Enter>, Battle Chess� sends that text. DOS version: Press <F2>, type your text message, and press <Enter> to send the text.
When you receive text from your opponent, it will appear in a window on the screen. Pressing <Enter> clears this window.
When you are finished playing, you can break the connection and hang up the phone. MPC version: Choose the Hangup option from the Modem menu. DOS version: Press <F2>, then type ATH and press <Enter>.
Playing over a serial cable
If both computers are at the same location, you can set up a direct connection between the two computers to play. Plug a null-modem cable between the modem ports of the two computers. Each player must then pick "Modem plays Red" or "Modem plays Blue." You can then start playing without having to use the Modem menu.
The Basics of Chess
There is a darkness over the battlefield. The wind sighs gently and there, in the distance, comes the flash of lightning and the rumble of thunder. With a sudden gust of wind, your warriors appear: the King, the Queen, two each of Bishops, Knights and Rooks, and before them all, a row of Pawns. Waiting, your King turns to you, ready to order his servants forward to their deaths in your battle to rule the field. Yet you hesitate. In that moment, you hear the clank of armor as the wind grows stronger, and somewhere nearby, there comes the sound of metal upon metal as one of your warriors draws his blade, impatient for the coming slaughter. Suddenly, the thunder crackles overhead and lightning flashes shadows upon the checkered board. The time has come. There can be no more delay. The storm is upon you, and so too the battle. You make your choice-a Pawn marches forward against the darkness opposing you. And here Battle Chess begins...
The goal of playing a game of chess is identical to that of many other games: specifically, defeating your opponent. In chess, this is done by placing your opponent's King in checkmate. Every move you make should be for this goal and to prevent your opponent from doing the same to you!
The Basic Basics
Here are the rules of chess in a nutshell:
Two opponents play against each other. One player is usually White and the other Black. In Battle Chess Enhanced CD-ROM, the White pieces are colored red, and the Black pieces are colored blue.
Each player has one King, one Queen, two Rooks, two Bishops, two Knights, and eight Pawns.
The object of chess is to checkmate your opponent's King.
The White player always moves first and then the two players alternate moves. You must move when it is your turn.
You may only move one piece per turn (with the exception of castling; see Castling) A move is when a piece moves from one square to another square. Each kind of piece moves in its own individual way, described in The Individual Pieces section.
No piece (except the Knight) may jump over or pass through any other piece on the board when it moves. Only one piece can be on the same square at a time.
Any piece may capture any of the opponent's pieces by landing on the same square with it. The captured piece is removed from the board and is out of the game. You may only capture one piece per turn.
When an opponent's piece threatens the other player's King, meaning that piece could capture the King on the next move, the King is said to be in "check."
If your King is in check, you have three options: One, you must move your King out of check; two, block the attack with another piece; or three, capture the piece putting your King in check. If you cannot escape check in any one of these ways, the King is in "checkmate," you lose, and the game is over.
In Battle Chess, your pieces will appear as in Figure 16. Read The Individual Pieces for their characteristics.
As you can see by looking at your screen, the chessboard consists of 64 alternating dark and light squares, 32 white and 32 black. For the purpose of this manual, the light squares and pieces will be referred to as white and the dark as black to match traditional chess notation. The squares are arranged in 8 rows and columns. When you start up Battle Chess, all the pieces are in their starting positions. All chess games start from this initial position.
In Chess, White always moves first. This means that the player controlling the White pieces moves one White piece for their first turn. The Black player moves next, also limited to one move for one piece. The actual game itself consists of the players making a series of alternating moves, one piece at a time. White first, then Black, then White, then Black, and so on until the end of the game. The only time that a player may move more than one piece per turn is during castling (see Castling), and this may occur only once per player per game.
With the exception of the Knight, all chess pieces must move in straight lines. Some chess pieces may move on the rank, that is, in any straight line across the board (see Figure 17a). Other pieces may move on the file, that is, in any straight line up and down the board (see Figure 17b). And there are other pieces which move on the diagonal, or in any straight line of squares that meet only at one corner (see Figure 17c). Some pieces may move using a combination of these: on the rank, on the file and/or on the diagonal.
The only restriction on this movement is that you cannot move your pieces through or into a square already occupied by another one of your pieces. The exception to this restriction is the Knight, which can move through or over pieces, but cannot land in a square already occupied by a piece of his own color or the opposite color unless he intends to capture it. You can move a piece into a square already occupied by one of your opponent's pieces provided you have an open line of attack. This is your primary method for capturing an opponent's pieces. Specific methods of attack will be covered under each individual piece description.
The Individual Pieces
The King is your most important piece. As noted above, once he is checkmated, the game is over. The two primary goals of your game, then, will be to protect your King from being checkmated and to put your opponent's King in checkmate instead. You will do this by using a combination of defenses and attacks by your various pieces. Without them, your King is practically helpless.
With the exception of castling, your King can only move one square at a time in any one direction (see Figure 18). Under no circumstance may your King move into check, meaning your King may never move directly into an open line of attack from an opposing player's piece. If you did then you'd lose the game. This does not mean, however, that your King is completely defenseless. If there is an enemy piece directly adjacent to your King, you can use him to take that piece, provided that you're not moving him into check. This is the only way you can use your King to directly attack another piece. The King is not a piece intended to be used heavily in offense. In fact, it's fairly safe to say that if you're reduced to relying heavily on the King's offensive capability early in a game, things are getting pretty grim. Toward the end of a game, however, both sides have usually been reduced to a handful of pieces, and at this time the King's attacking power can be very useful. Generally speaking, you should strive toward successfully defending the King while carrying on your offense with the other pieces, and with this balance of power you'll have a much better chance at victory.
Like your King, your Queen can move or attack in any straight line in any direction. Unlike your King, however, your Queen can move as many squares as she wants, provided there is an open path (see Movement Restrictions and Figure 19a). No other piece has such a wide range of movement, which makes the Queen your most powerful piece. Even so, don't be tempted to overuse or rely too heavily upon her. As you will see, a good game of chess is won using a combination of pieces, and over-reliance on any one piece is an almost guaranteed path to defeat.
Your Rooks (each side has two) are restricted to rank and file movements only (movement across the board or movement up and down the board). Like the Queen, either Rook can move from one side of the board to the other during a turn, again provided the rank and/or file is clear of obstructing pieces. Because of this movement capability, your Rooks are considered second only to your Queen in terms of power (see Figure 19b).
Your two Bishops are restricted to diagonal movement only. For instance, provided that you have an open path, you can move a Bishop from the lower left corner of the board to the upper right corner. Keep in mind both Bishops start on a color, one on black, one on white, and each Bishop must remain on that same color for the entire game. If you play as White, the Bishop on the left hand side of the board starts on a black square, and will always move on black squares (see Figure 20a).
The Knight is your most unusual piece. Rather than moving in a straight line like all the other pieces, he moves in an L-shaped pattern. Also unlike all the other pieces, he can skip over any pieces in his way. Unlike checkers, however, this does not mean that he captures any of those pieces. If there is an opponent's piece on the square where the Knight lands, only that piece is captured. Although it should be fairly obvious, keep in mind that your Knights cannot land on a square already occupied by one of your own pieces (see Figures 20b-c and Figure 21a).
The Pawn is your weakest piece, and as a result, the most expendable. This might be why you get eight of them. Pawns act as the footsoldiers or pikemen of your army, advancing slowly across the board, performing your initial attacks. They are usually the first to defend your side against your opponent's attack. Unlike any of your other pieces, the Pawns do not have the option of retreat. Pawns can only move forward, one square at a time.
The exception to one square at a time is on each Pawn's first move. It may, but is not required to, move forward two squares at that time. See Figure 22a for an illustration of Pawn movement. Each of your eight Pawns may do this once on each of their first moves.
Unlike the other pieces, the Pawn's attack pattern does not match its movement pattern. Rather, the Pawn may only attack one space at either diagonal ahead of it (see Figure 21b).
The Pawn may not attack ahead of itself. So the Pawn may never move into a square directly ahead if it's occupied by any other piece. Often two Pawns meet and are deadlocked until another piece captures one of the Pawns, or until one of the Pawns can capture a piece diagonally ahead.
There is another method of attack that occurs in only one situation: when an enemy Pawn moves two squares forward, bypassing one of your attacking Pawns (this can only happen on the enemy Pawn's initial two-space move). On your following turn your bypassed Pawn has the option of capturing the opposing Pawn even though it is not at a diagonal from yours. Your Pawn merely advances diagonally by one square, moving into the square directly behind the enemy Pawn (as though the enemy Pawn only moved one square), and your opponent's Pawn is captured. This move is called en passant (a French term meaning "in passing").
It is not a required move. There may be times when you will not want to take your opponent's Pawn in this situation. If you do not take your opponent's Pawn at that time, you may not repeat en passant with that same enemy Pawn. En passant only occurs when an enemy Pawn advances two squares, an event which only occurs once per Pawn in any game. Three turns later, for example, you cannot follow through an en passant (see Figures 22a-c).
Finally, if one of your Pawns manages to cross the entire board, upon reaching the opposite side of the board, your Pawn gets promoted to another piece. Your Pawn changes into a Queen, a Rook, a Bishop or a Knight (it's your choice as to which piece it becomes, but it must change into something.) Your Pawn may not remain a Pawn, nor may it become a King. If you somehow manage to move all eight Pawns to the other side of the board you could have nine Queens on the board: your original Queen, plus eight promoted Pawns (see Figure 23b page 23).
The Individual Importance of Each Piece
By now, you should be getting a sense of the power of each piece. The Queen is your most powerful piece. The Rook is considered next in power, and the Bishop and Knight are both in third place. Although the Knight is limited in how many squares he can move in one turn, he can still use all 64 squares of the board. A Bishop, on the other hand, can use only 32 squares maximum (remember, a Bishop always stays on his starting color), and this trade-off between mobility and the potential number of squares that can be attacked ties these two pieces at third in power. However in the end game, two Bishops are favored against two Knights or one Bishop and one Knight. Last, of course, is the Pawn with its very limited mobility. But don't forget the Pawn is able to change into the most powerful piece if it can be moved completely across the board. As for the King, he is admittedly limited in power through most of the game, but as both sides lose more pieces the King's limited power becomes more useful.
A way of remembering all of this is to think in terms of points: a Queen is worth about 9 points, a Rook about 5, a Bishop or Knight about 3, and a Pawn about 1. Keeping this in mind, you can see that you would come out well ahead in power if you were able to trade a Knight for a Queen. On the other hand, the exchange of a Knight for a Bishop is ordinarily a fair trade. Keep in mind again, that there will be times when you may want to trade a high value piece for one of much lower power. For instance, if by trading a Queen for a Pawn you can set up for checkmate in the next move, then it wouldn't really matter how many points you lose in the piece transaction.
All that ultimately matters in the game of chess is whether or not you win the game. Everything else, including points, is second.
Castling can occur only once per player per game. It is the only time a player may move two pieces during one turn, and the only time that a King may move more than one square during one turn. It is a powerful defensive move, and as a matter of good strategy, it is recommended that you castle fairly early in the game.
Castling can only occur when there is a clear path between your King and either of your Rooks. Provided you meet that and a couple of other restrictions, you may move your King two squares to the right or left, depending on which Rook you are using. That Rook is moved to the opposite side of the King. When you are finished castling, the Rook ends up closer to the center of the board which makes it more versatile, and your King is placed in an easier defended space (see Figures 24a-c).
Not surprisingly, there are restrictions on the use of castling. You already know one of them: There must be an open path between the King and the Rook which will be used to castle. Second, the Rook and King must not have been moved at any time during the game preceding the castling. Third, the King must not be in check, cannot move into check, and cannot move through check. If there is an open line of attack by an opposing piece on any square in between the King and the Rook, the King may not castle in that direction, even if the path is clear of other pieces. Figures 25a-c show situations in which White may not castle.
Check and Checkmate
The terms check and checkmate have been used several times in this manual. Here, we will go into more detail.
Check and checkmate always involve the King because the King is the only piece which can be placed in a condition of check or checkmate. The King is the only piece which cannot put another King into check or checkmate, although sometimes he assists.
Check occurs when a King is under direct attack by an enemy piece. In the case of the Queen, Rook, Bishop and Pawn, this attack will come in a straight, unblocked line (rank, file, or diagonal) to your King. In the case of the Knight, the direct attack will be in an L-shaped pattern, possibly directly over some of your defending pieces. Keep in mind that a Queen, Rook or Bishop can place your King in check from the opposite side of the board, provided that there is an open path between the attacking piece and your King. As for the Pawn, it can place your King in check only if it is at an adjacent diagonal from your King. The only exception to this is when a Pawn actually reaches the other side of the board. At that time, as the Pawn is promoted, a King in that same rank, file or diagonal may suddenly fall into check as the Pawn is replaced with, for example, a Rook or Queen. Again, the King can only be in check at that moment if there is an open path between the King and the attacking piece. The only exception to this is the Knight, which never requires an open path between it and any piece it is attacking.
There are three ways to escape check:
The King may move out of the line of attack.
Another piece may move and block the line of attack.
The attacking piece may be captured.
You must escape check in one of these ways as soon as the King is in check. If you can't escape check the King is in checkmate and the game is over. A simple definition of checkmate: "An attack on the King which allows no possible escape."
You may never move the King into check, nor move another of your pieces so that an opened line of attack places your King in check. A piece preventing your King from being in check like this is called a pinned piece. These rules may be factors in blocking the King's escape from check so watch out for them. As stated earlier, one of your prime objectives is to avoid being placed in checkmate, while trying to place your opponent's King in checkmate.
See Figures 27a-c and 28a-c for several examples of check and checkmate:
27a-The White Queen is checking the Black King. The Black King can move one square to the left or right to escape check, or move its Bishop between the King and Queen to block the attack.
27b-The White Bishop is checking the Black King. The King can escape check by moving one square to the left or right.
27c-The White Bishop is checking the Black King. The Black King can escape by moving to quite a few different squares, or the Black Rook can move to block the attack.
28a-A "discovered check." When the White Knight moves, the Black King discovers that he has been checked by the White Rook. (The Black King can escape by moving to either side.)
28b-A checkmate of the White King by the Black Queen. The Black Queen has just moved across to QR6 (QR6 is chess notation which will be discussed next), checking the White King. Since there is no place the White King can move where he won't be in check, it's checkmate.
28c-A checkmate of the White King by the Black Bishop. Again, the White King cannot escape from check, so he is in checkmate.
If you wish to review the specifics on each piece before we continue, refer to the previous sections. The next part of this manual deals with chess strategy.
To show you some basic opening moves, and to show you how to study and understand other books on chess strategy, you should at least know basic chess notation. Some simple things to remember before we begin are:
If you divide the chess board vertically right down the middle, you will notice that both Queens are to one side of the line, while the Kings are on the other. This is important for chess notation, since every piece on the King's side of the board is referred to as "King's piece" (i.e., King's Rook, King's Bishop, etc.) while every piece on the Queens' side is referred to as "Queen's piece" (see Figure 29a).
This also applies to Pawns (see Figure 29b). However it is not necessary to continually refer to Pawns using their full names. King's Rook Pawn can just be referred to as a Pawn during a move unless it is unclear precisely which Pawn you are using.
As for the files (the columns of squares on the board), keep in mind that they are named just like the pieces. The King's file is the file the King is located on, while the Queen's Knight file is the file that the Queen's Knight is located on at the start of the game. The ranks (the rows of squares across the board) each have two names, depending on whether you are looking at them from the Black or White side.
You should be able to see that every location on the board can be identified by a combination of rank and file. Since there are two names for each rank location, there are consequently two names for every square. Using abbreviations, each square on the board is identified as shown in Figure 30. The top name in each square is the Black player's name for that square; the lower name is the White player's name for the same square.
Keep in mind that when the White player moves, you must use the White player's names for the squares he or she is playing. Likewise, when the Black player moves, use the Black player's names for the squares he or she is playing.
Now that you know the names of each piece and each square, the only other thing to understand is the shorthand to record each move. P-K4 is the most common first move in most chess games. It means that the King's Pawn moves out two ranks to rank four. The Pawn's starting position of K2 (King's Two) is given as obvious (on a first move, where else would it be?), as is the fact that the Pawn being used is the King's Pawn. No other pawn could reach K4 on the first turn.
Sample Chess Game Walk-Through
To put it all together, let's play a quick sample game over the next few pages, with notation and illustrations. This particular game is called Scholar's Mate.
The chess notation for this entire game is as follows:
What does this mean? Let's see:
For White's first move, P-K4, the board looks like Figure 31a. Black responds by doing exactly the same thing (P-K4) in Figure 31b.
In Figure 31c, White moves its King's Bishop to the 4th rank of the Queen's Bishop file (B-B4). Black's response to this is to move its King's Bishop to the 4th rank of its Queen's Bishop file (B-B4) in Figure 32a.
The next thing that White does is to move its Queen to the 5th rank of the King's Rook file. This is an important move because the Queen is now threatening two of Black's pieces. By attacking at a diagonal, the Queen can take Black's Bishop's Pawn on the next move or the Queen can take Black's King's Pawn (see Figure 32b). One of these attacks, the attack against the Black Bishop's Pawn, will lead to checkmate and the end of the game if Black fails to respond properly. The other attack will lead only to check because, after the Queen captures the King's Pawn, the Queen's line of attack against the King could be blocked by several Black pieces: the Queen, the King's Bishop, or the King's Knight.
Black responds to these two potential attacks by guarding the King's Pawn. As you can see by the notation, the "??" denotes a very bad move. The reason? Although the Knight is now guarding the King's Pawn, guaranteeing that the White Queen would be captured if it were to capture the Pawn, Black has failed to guard against the more deadly attack: the White Queen's attack against the Bishop's Pawn. The board now looks like Figure 32c.
White finishes the game by moving the Queen to the 7th rank in the King's Bishop file and taking the Bishop's Pawn (see Figure 33a). This places the King in checkmate. Remember our definition of checkmate: the King is in check, cannot take the Queen without entering into check (notice that the Queen is guarded by its Bishop at B4), and cannot escape to any other unoccupied square that is not already under attack by the Queen. Also, the attacking Queen cannot be eliminated by any other piece, nor have its line of attack blocked.
There are several simple ways in which Black could have avoided checkmate. One is as simple as moving the Black Queen to King's Two (written as Q-K2) which would have simultaneously guarded both Pawns under attack and which would have ended the threat of check or checkmate by the White Queen (the reason, of course, is because the White Queen could then be taken by the Black Queen). Figure 33b shows this simple defense.
The other defenses against this attack should also be obvious. Try a few variations on this game, and you should see the alternatives.
You now should have a basic understanding of the game of chess as well as a basic understanding of chess notation.
Now for some more detail...
The Three Phases of a Chess Game
Chess is said to have three phases: an opening game, a middle game, and an end game. We'll talk about each of them.
The Opening Game
The opening game can be defined as the portion of the game that occurs generally between the first move and the eighth to the fifteenth move. The point of the opening game is to organize and coordinate your pieces as quickly as possible in order to take maximum advantage of their power. If you're a beginner, this is where you are going to make most of your mistakes. The mistake made in the sample game Scholar's Mate, for instance, is fairly common. An even simpler variation of that game, which can be just as easily lost by a bad move, is appropriately called the Fool's Mate. This game is pictured in Figure 34.
As you can see, the attack again relies heavily on early development of the Queen and on White's poor responses to that development. Keep in mind that the Fool's Mate and the Scholar's Mate are regarded as very amateur games-ordinarily, even a poor player will spot your attempt to play one of these games and will respond with an appropriate defense.
The Fool's Mate and Scholar's Mate are two games to avoid. There are plenty of better ways to start your chess game. In fact, there are 169.5 octillion (169,518,829,100,-544,000,000,000,000,000) possible combinations of the first 10 moves. To avoid making the wrong opening moves, keep the following things in mind:
Your first move should be a center Pawn (the Queen's Pawn or King's Pawn). Otherwise, do not move too many of the other Pawns and never forget that a Pawn cannot retreat once it goes forward.
Avoid moving the same piece twice during the opening game. Remember, if the point of the opening game is to organize and coordinate your pieces as quickly as possible in order to take maximum advantage of their power, then wasting several moves on one piece isn't likely to assist this.
On the other hand, if by moving the same piece twice you have a chance to make a useful capture, or if you can take advantage of an opportunity created by a blunder on your opponent's part, then do it. The key thing to always remember is that winning is all that matters in chess. If, by breaking some of these general guidelines, you can still win, then by all means, ignore these suggestions. However these guidelines will generally help you win.
Move out your Knights and Bishops before you move out the Rooks and Queen. For best control of the board, try to move them toward the center of the board. From the center each piece will have greater control of the board around it. From the edge of the board, the area controlled by each piece is diminished.
Initially, you should stay on your side of the board. This strategy was violated by the White Queen in the Fool's Mate and by the Black Queen in the Scholar's Mate. If you try these games against an experienced player, you will learn the hard way why it's not a good idea to violate this particular rule.
Castle early in the game. This will give you a stronger defense, move one of your Rooks to a better attack position, and allow your other pieces to concentrate on the offensive. It is also a good idea to castle on the King's side so you have less area to defend.
Do not move your Queen out too early. It is unlikely you will be able to accomplish a Fool's Mate or Scholar's Mate, and it is far more likely that your opponent will concentrate all attacks on your Queen.
Move your Rooks to K1 or Q1. If you have castled early, and if you opened with a center Pawn move, this will allow your Rooks a greater range of power than leaving them in either corner.
Do not prematurely move your most powerful pieces into the center of the board. To do so invites attack against them by other pieces-for instance, to move your Queen out too early invites attack by weaker pieces, even Pawns. Likewise, if you move one of your Rooks out into the center of the board prematurely, you risk losing it to a Knight, Bishop or Pawn.
If you keep these things in mind during your opening game, you will have a better chance at winning.
The Middle Game
This is the part of the game that follows your opening development (your opening attempts to maximize your power over the board) and that precedes the final battle to finish off your opponent. This is the phase of the game where the attack is critical. You want to be on the offensive here. As in the opening game, however, there are some general things to keep in mind during this phase:
Try to get ahead in power or position. This is the portion of the game where you will concentrate on capturing pieces, particularly powerful pieces. Concentrate on attacking, gaining territory and points, decimating your enemy, and thereby advancing toward checkmate. Attack, but be certain you are not leaving holes in your defenses (remember, you should have already castled). Keep in mind that whoever is on the attack at this time is less likely to make an error than whoever is on the defensive. Attack!
Be especially careful where you put your pieces. This may sound like ridiculously simple advice, but keep in mind that, during the opening game, the important center of the board is fairly open, still subject to control by either player. During the middle game, the center is generally cluttered with many of the squares guarded by one or more pieces, making each move more dangerous than in the opening game.
Watch your opponent's moves. During the middle game, your enemy's moves will be used to decrease your numbers and increase their power just like you're trying to do. Always remember that your opponent is setting up for checkmate.
All of this will set you up for the end game.
The End Game
This is the portion of the game where, all things being equal, both sides will have relatively few pieces left on the board, the King may actually be part of an offensive strategy, and where a Pawn or two may even have crossed the board to become a Queen or another piece. Because you will have fewer pieces on the board, the pieces that remain will increase in importance. Now more than ever, use every piece to its full potential.
At the end of the game, your least powerful pieces are going to assume a new importance. Just the difference of a Pawn or two may decide the outcome of a game. Remember that once a Pawn crosses the board, it can be promoted to a Queen. The use of Pawns during the end game is a major end game strategy.
Some Important Pawn-Related, End Game Rules
If you are two Pawns ahead of your opponent, winning the game is considered easy, assuming you make no major mistakes. This can even be said of the player who is only one Pawn ahead, but of course, the opposing player will target that Pawn once it tries to run for a promotion.
Two of your Pawns in a row (one directly in front of the other) is a weak position. Likewise, a Pawn by itself is weak or, for that matter, so is a Pawn that is blocked from forward movement.
If one or several of your Pawns are able to pass through your opponent's lines of defense, advance them as fast as you can toward the other side of the board (with the intent of promoting them to Queens).
If you are one or two Pawns ahead of your opponent, and if you must make a choice between specific types of pieces to trade, then trade your power pieces first (your Queen, Rooks, Knights, and Bishops), but not your Pawns.
If you are one or two Pawns behind your opponent, and if you must make a choice between specific types of pieces to trade, then trade your Pawns, not your power pieces.
If you are down to one Bishop, avoid putting your Pawns on squares that are the same color as your Bishop (that is, if you have a Bishop that moves only one white squares, don't block the white squares with your Pawns).
If you and your opponent trade away all your power pieces, don't worry. When Pawns are the only pieces left you still have the potential of trading each Pawn for a Queen. In some ways, therefore, this is actually the easiest kind of game to win.
A Few Other End Rules with Other Pieces
By the end of the game your King will become a more powerful piece. Take advantage of his power; if you are going to use your King offensively, now is the time.
If you have two Bishops, and your opponent has only a Bishop and Knight, then you have the advantage. Following that line of thought, Bishops are generally better than Knights during the end game. So if you must trade power pieces, trade the Knights first.
Drawn Games: The Other Ending
As said earlier, the entire point of chess is winning. There is another possibility. If neither side wins, there is a tie game, called a draw.
There are several types of drawn games. These include:
Draw by Mutual Agreement: This is when both players agree that a game is drawn.
Draw by Perpetual Check: This occurs when one player continually puts the other player's King in check (not checkmate) and the checked player has no alternative but to endlessly repeat the same moves to avoid check.
Draw by Stalemate: For the purpose of explaining this, let's look at it strictly from your point of view. Stalemate occurs when 1) it is your turn to move, 2) your King is not in check, and 3) your only remaining move is to move the King onto a square which would place him in check (which, of course, is illegal). Under these three conditions the game is a stalemate and drawn. No victory, no defeat either.
Draw by Insufficient Checkmating Material: Simply, neither side has enough pieces left on the board to achieve checkmate. For example, White has a King, and Black has only a King and a Bishop.
Fifty Move Draw: If fifty moves have been made on each side without a single capture or a single Pawn move, then the game should be considered drawn (for obvious reasons, this rarely happens).
Repeat Move Draw: If a player repeats the exact same move for three continuous turns, then the game can be considered drawn.
This manual covers only the basic moves and strategies of chess as well as basic chess notation. With these skills, you can now go to your local library or book store and find books that will go into much more detail than this manual; almost all of which will include records of the games of past and present chess masters. Since you now know how to read chess notation, you can study and learn from these books and from the games inside them. All of this is nothing without playing the game, so here in front of you is the battlefield: your chessboard. Your warriors stand ready, your training is finished, and there, the storm draws near. Battle Chess awaits you. Let the battle, and the legend, begin...
IBM CD-ROM version
Amir Zbeda of Bazbosoft
MPC CD-ROM version
Pat Wyatt of Silicon & Synapse
Original CD-ROM version
Original Battle Chess
Michael Quarles, Jay Patel, Troy Worrell
David Mosher, Arlene Caberto,Todd Camasta
Scott La Rocca
Alan Howarth, Jason King, Scott La Rocca, Brian Mendelsohn
Brian Mendelsohn, Rick Freeman,
Alan Howarth, Jason King, Mike Papa
Art Dutch, Ryan O'Flannigan,Douglas Coler, Greg Snow, Sandra Snow, K.A. Mouston, Dave Surtees
Bruce J. Balfour and Roger Rittner Productions
Lars Brubaker, Jacob R. Buchert III, Scott Everts, Chris Jones, Steve Nguyen,
Peter Rice, Fred Royal, Chris Taylor
Bruce J. Balfour
, Steven M. Tymon
Bruce Warner, Larry Fukuoka
The Battle Chess music was digitally recorded and mixed at Lion Share Recording, Hollywood, California. The Battle Chess combat sound effects were digitally recorded and mixed at Electric Melody Studios in Glendale, California. Tutorial dialogue was mixed at The Headway Group in Glendale, California.
Copyright 1988-1993 Interplay Productions, Inc. Battle Chess is a registered trademark
of Interplay Productions. All other trademarks are trademarks of their respective holders.