Battle Chess is, for all intents and purposes, Chess - with a twist. The traditional pieces have been replaced with actual figures. Instead of the pieces simply snapping across the game board to their chosen positions, they walk.

And instead of the pieces simply disappearing when captured, the figures actually duke it out in various animated fight scenes; perhaps the best part of the game.

The first time I played Battle Chess was on a Commodore 64. I was at my brother's friend's house, and I was watching it on the screen as they played. Eventually, I got a single turn, and decided I loved the game. We borrowed it, and eventually bought a copy.

Battle Chess also signified my first experience with manual-based copy protection. Oh pish, you know exactly what I'm talking about. You start the game, and you get:

Please enter the 7th word on page 32, paragraph 5 line 4 from the game's instruction manual:

It was annoying, but not much of a deterrant to make me hate the game. (The load times for the battle scenes on the C64 were significantly more annoying.)

Amongst some of the more memorable animations in Battle Chess when one piece takes another piece out:

Castle takes Queen: The castle (which morphs into a huge stone golem) simply gobbles the Queen up.

Knight takes Knight: In the tradition of Monty Python, the loosing Knight bravely fights on as his limbs are chopped off.

Pawn takes Knight: Pawn rebalances the odds by kicking the Knight in the cojones

Queen takes Queen: A bitch fight ensues with slapping and cat sounds.

Castle takes Pawn: Pawn stares at the stone golem then drops his pike, hoping it will leave him alone. Ho ho ho ! bellows the golem, as he drives the pawn into the ground like a piledriver.

A Dutch company has put out a version of Battle Chess where pieces make love with each other rather than fight. See

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