Tamerlane Chess, or Timur's Great Chess, is a chess variant often attributed to the warlord, Tamerlane, also known as Timur Lenk. It is a variant of Shatranj, so it was also called Shatranj Kamil, Perfect Chess, and Shatranj Al-Kabil, Large Chess. Tamerlane was a skilled chess player. Fable has it that he was so immersed in the game that when he heard of his son's birth, he named him after the rook that he was moving. During the time of Tamerlane, this game was played rather exstensively in Persia. Tamerlane believed that chess was not only a liesurely game, but a way of training strategy for the battlefield.
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Board:
The game was played on a uncheckered board of 10x11 squares. To the right of the second column and left of the ninth column were an extra square. These squares were called citadels. When a player is able to move their King, or equivalent piece, into their opponent's citadel the game becomes a draw. No other pieces may be moved into an opponent's citadel, and only a player's adventious king may be moved into their own citadel. The total number of squares on the board are 112.
Pieces:
  • 1 King - K
    The King moves as a king in a normal game of chess. However, once during a game the King may switch places with a friendly piece. When a player has a Prince or adventious king out, their King may be simply taken.
  • 1 Vizier - V
    The Vizier moves one square straight(not diagonal).
  • 1 General - G
    The General moves one square diagonal.
  • 2 Giraffes - Gi
    A Giraffe moves one diagonal and then it must move at least three straight.
  • 2 Pickets - P
    A Picket moves diagonally, but always must move at least two squares.
  • 2 Knights - Kn
    A Knight jumps(goes over pieces) in an L shape. So it remains the same.
  • 2 Rooks - R
    A Rook moves straight, without restraint on number of squares moved. So it remains the same.
  • 2 Elephants - E
    An Elephant jumps two squares diagonally.
  • 2 Camels - C
    A Camel jumps one square diagonally and then jumps two straight.
  • 2 War Engines - W
    A War Engine jumps straight two squares.
  • 11 Pawns - PX
    Pawns act as a normal pawn in that they can move one square forward and can only take pieces that are diagonal of them and forward. However, they do not have the ability to move two squares forward on their first move. In addition, each pawn promotes differently. Promotion occurs when a pawn reaches the last line of the enemy's side.
    • Pawn of Pawns - PPa
      When the Pawn of Pawns reaches the final rank for the first time, it stays there and can not be taken. When the player can put the pawn in a space such that the it attacks a piece which can not escape being taken or that it threatens two enemy pieces, the Pawn of Pawns may be moved there even when occupied by another piece unless it is a King. The piece previously occupying the board is taken from the board, regardless of friend or enemy. Then the Pawn of Pawns moves as a normal pawn again. When it reaches the final rank for the second time, it is moved to the starting square of the Pawn of Kings. When the Pawn of Pawns reaches the final rank for the third time it becomes an adventitious king. This piece moves as a King and should be taken or mated before the opponent can win. When a player has a Prince or adventious king out, their King may be simply taken.
    • Pawn of War Machines - PW
      Promotes to War Machine
    • Pawn of Camels - PC
      Promotes to Camel
    • Pawn of Elephants - PE
      Promotes to Elephant
    • Pawn of Generals - PG
      Promotes to General
    • Pawn of Kings - PK
      Promotes to Prince. A Prince moves as a King, and should be taken or mated before the opponent can win. When a player has a Prince or adventious king out, their King may be simply taken.
    • Pawn of Viziers - PV
      Promotes to Vizier
    • Pawn of Giraffes - PGi
      Promotes to Giraffe
    • Pawn of Pickets - PP
      Promotes to Picket
    • Pawn of Knights - PKn
      Promotes to Knight
    • Pawn of Rooks - PR
      Promotes to Rook
End Game:
  • If a King, Prince, or adventitious king are put into mate with no other King, Prince, or adventious king out then the player that has their piece mated, loses.
  • If a player is stalemated, they lose.
  • If a King, Prince, or adventitious king are moved into their opponent's citadel the game is a draw.

Sources:
http://www.silk-road.com/artl/timur.shtml
http://www.ucalgary.ca/applied_history/tutor/oldwrld/armies/chess.html
http://www.pathguy.com/chess/Tamerlan.htm
http://www.chessvariants.com/historic.dir/tamerlane.html

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