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Subject: I'd love to find a great chess-like game. rss

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Scott
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I'm a huge fan of chess and I'll never quit playing it or get sick of it. I love that I can study it and find opponents anytime (as long as I can access a computer). But sometimes I wish I could find a game like it that has more new territory to uncover. It doesn't even have to be a game of perfect information; just something that requires a similar amount of thought and concentration.

Neither Chinese Chess nor Shogi amaze me.

Go: all the pieces do the same thing so it's just not my cup of tea.

Navia Dratp: Kind of blah about it.

Chess variants (Fischer random etc.) just don't do anything for me.

I like other abstracts like the Gipf games and Twixt but they have that same GO thing going on.

Dungeon Twister: I got it because of all the comments comparing it to chess but it's more random than I expected.

I've looked through the geeklist on this subject and just don't see much.

Any Ideas?
 
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Luke Morris
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Why not check out HIVE? I love chess and played Hive last week and thought it was excellent.
 
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Mark Buetow
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Bonaparte at Marengo has been compared to chess in terms of its tactical choices and maneuvering aspects. And it's very well themed (being a unique style of wargame) which adds interest to its playing.
 
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Jon Greisz
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I tend to like a little theme in my games, so I'm not a good person to answer. That beign said, of the games on my list that , I'd look at the some or all of the following:

- Darter games (Dragons of Kir, Darter)
- Deflexion
- Battle Line
- Hera and Zeus
- Lord of the Rings Confrontation
- Kingdoms
- Blokus
 
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Rob Robinson
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Hive was the game that immediately sprung to mind.
 
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Andreas Josefsson
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Well if the thought of pieces being/doing the same bores you (your Go comment), maybe you should check out Octi - a pretty intense abstract where you decide each game how you're pieces move.



Personally I'm not much into abstracts, but Octi just hooks me.
 
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Ola Mikael Hansson
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How about Mastery ? (It's on boardgamegeek, but no link to the rules - they are at http://www.io.com/~sjohn/mastery.htm )

Arimaa might be worth looking into - myself, I grew jaded with it... but enjoyed it for a while.

Cannon and Castle Danger are two interesting chess-like games... the first almost only have one kind of piece though (... the soldiers - there is also the town which functions as the king and can't move).

Terrace has different pieces and one wins by either capturing the other's T-piece or reaching the goal with one's own. I can't wrap my head around it, and it feels a bit too defensive, but might be worth checking out.

Or have a browse around www.chessvariants.org - there are some variants out there that really change the game! Dan Troyka's Weave & Dungeon, for example, doesn't have many similarities with regular chess... different board, different pieces - only the goal of checkmate remains familiar.

Hive and Octi (as mentioned by previous posters)are good games and might be worth checking out as well.
 
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J. Green
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Field Command
Hive
Octi
Deflexion
Dreamblade (lots of randomness but essentially chess meets M:tG with dice)
Abalone
Tally Ho (more for a younger crowd)
DVONN
 
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Barry Kendall
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"Deflexion" is quite chess-like, especially in the impact of a dynamic similar to "Discovered Check" in which the move of one piece actually uncovers an attack from quite another direction. Look for it to be reprinted with a new title, new colors and an Expansion piece before Christmas.

The older boardgame "La-trel" is a chess-like abstract game with some different piece types, capabilities distinguished by shape. However, the board is a simple grid.

The poster's comments about "Bonaparte at Marengo" are spot-on. BaM is the closest thing to "military chess" I've played, although the situation is not purely symmetrical. The interesting, original treatment of territory and roads is easy to understand but challenging to make the best use of.

"High Ground" is another abstract wargame, this time with completely balanced sides and planning. The board displays various terrain in a balanced manner, and the system provides players with the puzzle of maintaining momentum while husbanding strength.

"Field Command" has concealed initial deployment and turn-by-turn plotting on a 3-D board with stylized terrain. There are some very good planning/second-guessing-your-opponent elements in this game.

"Power: the Game" also rewards the kind of planning you like, and in "Power," the capture of hostile pieces adds to your potential force pool. The two-player game with a third "uncontrolled" power in play is particularly interesting. However, the board, depicting multiple land and sea areas, begins in plain view. There is a computer version of "Power" available.

The new game "VIKTORY II" begins with an upside-down hex grid which is "explored" turn-by-turn. The kind of terrain revealed, in combination with the placement of towns, impacts the kind of forces that can be deployed and their location. However, defeat of hostile pieces is by die-roll, rather than direct elimination as in Chess. Despite this familiar mechanism, there is a great deal that is fresh in "Viktory II."

Perhaps one or more of these will tickle your fancy.
 
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I can't believe that no one has mentioned Feudal.

 
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Richard Hutnik
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To try a ton of chess and chess variants on the PC, go here:
http://www.zillionsofgames.com

You get a bunch of games with it for $20 or so, can play online, and download a lot more games that run on it. Then you could try out a bunch, and find a few that actually you enjoy.
 
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Mark Haigh-Hutchinson
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It's an oldie but you might try 4th Dimension:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/675

 
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R S
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Dreamblade.
 
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Derek Gallacher
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Three games sprang to mind right away.

1st - Hive Much faster than chess but the movement of the pieces has similarities, the game play area is constantly changing, and the victory conditions are familiar (capture of the opponent's chief piece).
Played 32 games of Hive in one night and we still weren't bored, just very tired.

2nd - Yinsh My personal favourite of the Gipf series games. Abstract and combative. Huge sweeping moves across the board, as well as intricate moves to set up long term effects. A winner whenever we play, but as in chess, the better your oponents are the longer the games are going to last. (any of the Gipf would do as a sub, but if you're a strong chess player then Dvonn will bore you sooner )

3rd - Blokus Trigon Area control over piece control. It scales down well for 2-3 player and works exceptionally well as a 4 player. As with all of the suggestions there is no luck involved just piece management. Also quicker than chess if that was a concern. Plays just as well with young and old.
 
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Try the abstracts in the GIPF series.
 
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Steve R Bullock
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Conquest

Chess-like and great- there is even one for sell on BGG right now at a very good price. This game has a bit of a cult following. I bought it 6 months ago and am still playing it off and on!

THIS IS THE GAME YOU SEEK.


 
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Jungle

Perfect information, no luck involved, very easy to learn/teach, variable powered units which can eliminate each other, can be set up played in less than half an hour.
 
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Flying Arrow
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Reef Encounter?
 
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Robert Wesley
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Check this out then: Ploy

Hey look! "Mr. Spock" likes it! Hey Mikey!
cool
 
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Alexander B.
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Even though you nixed this, I played Chess fairly seriously for years and thought the same thing you did about Go at first.

Then I grabbed a few books on it (after seeing some good players play it for the first time) and realized that it is pretty amazing. The really good news is that these days a lot of that info is avaiable for free on-line.

Go has the need to ply deeply of Chess, but also has a level of strategic depth that Chess can never hope to match. It is almost like small Chess games happening inside a large field where each small game can impact surrounding games... amazing stuff!

 
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Tony Chen
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The most chess-like games I know are Chinese Chess, Shogi, and all those other games from the Chess family (Thai, Burmese, Chaturanga, Korean, etc), but you've already mentioned these. Other games that come to mind are Arimaa, Deflexion and Hive.

If you are looking for depth of strategy, either stick with chess or try out Go because I don't think you can find any chess-like game that's nearly as deep as chess.

If you are looking for some (relatively speaking) casual fun, Hive is great.

 
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Mark Rollings
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Am surpised that nobody has mentioned CardChess laugh
 
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David Brain
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Let me add Pacru to the list of interesting 2-player abstracts, with the minor side-benefit that it works with four as well (it claims it works with 3, but I haven't tried it, and suspect that it doesn't really.)
 
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David Stewart
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Centrepoint is worth a look at - however, I think it's a better 4 player chess variant. The pieces and the way they move are very chess like.

A good list of chess variants:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/7336
 
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Stephen Shaw
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Now come on -- I love Hive, but seriously -- Hive is maybe 3% of the strategy in 10% of the time.
 
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