[Retros] More on en passant chess.

peter.fayers at virgin.net peter.fayers at virgin.net
Wed Mar 28 03:00:10 EDT 2007

Thanks to Andrew for his "war" metaphor; I was thinking more in terms of playing rugby (or American football) - as soon as an opponent starts to move, you go and tackle (block) him thus preventing him reaching his destination. From this, we have to allow line-of-movement captures, from either in front or behind.
Another good reason for allowing them is to ask "will it need a special clause in the rules to include them, or exclude them?".

Back to Noam's points about whether replacement of "captured" pieces should include Kings, I think yes, although this can lead to some interesting phenomena:

White: Nd1, Ke1, Rh1. Black Rf3.

White can play 1 Kf1 without being in check; any attempt by Black to capture RxKf1 will be met by 2 Nxf2 ep.

However, according to my previous theory regarding consecutive ep catures, WHITE MAY NOT CASTLE - he will be moving through check! 1 0-0 will be met by RxKf1 ep, and here White cannot capture Nxf2 ep, as he is still moving his King.

(Think of one-handed players, who must let go of a piece before picking up the next one. In the first case, after W plays Kf1 he immediately lets go of the King and grabs his Knight, ready to intercept the black Rook. In the case of castling, he still has the King in his hand, playing it towards g1, so cannot pcik up the Knight).

Does this make sense, or is it too contrived?

Any more contributions on this topic are welcome: I am planning an article in the magazine Variant Chess on this, to demonstrate the difficulties of inventing new variants: how a seemingly simple idea ("all units can be captured ep") can lead to such world-wide debate.

Best wishes,Peter.
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