Chess has been around for like forever. The earliest form of Chess that resembles modern Chess was found during the Gupta period. Like most things in history, the Persians picked it up from us, then the Moors kicked some Persian ass and learned Chess from them. The Moors then kicked the Spaniards and taught them Chess. And like that it spread across all civilizations.
The Sanskrit word for Chess “Chaturanga” represents the four major divisions of the ancient and medieval armies -- Elephants, Chariots, Horsemen and Foot Soldiers. The problem with Chess is, our armies are nothing like that. We have come a long way from slaying people with a sword while riding on a horse. That time has passed.
Most big Armies today along with the Navy and the Air Force are ready and capable to fight a two ocean war with a major power. But which two major countries are on the brink of a two ocean war? Iceland and Ivory Coast? That time has passed too. It’s over. The mechanism for world domination has changed and with that, the nature of war too.
The war of the future is terrorism. It is and it will be a small group of dissidents who, perhaps, unbeknownst to their own governments plot to bomb public places, kill innocent civilians and hurt the country’s economy to make a political point. As an Indian whose ancestors have invented the game of Chess, I feel it is my duty to post modernize the beautiful intellectual game to reflect the current war scenario.
Highlights from a few games...
Over the last two months, I have managed to convince three or four people (it's really hard) to play a few games of Jihadi Chess with me and I have seen some interesting variations in strategy. The beginning of the game was quite normal. The fun begins when a player loses the queen.
On most occasions, the players who lost the queen tended to use the rooks quite recklessly (may be because of the eagerness to wage Jihad) and players who still had the queen tended to become a little paranoid and often went on killing pawns as if they were cockroaches meant to be squashed with a high heeled shoe putting more important pieces at great risk in the process. There was also one instant where a player sacrificed his rook just to prevent the other player from waging Jihad.
One obvious rule not explicitly written down is that blowing up the pawn should not result in a check for the Jihadi side. This is not that easy to pull off especially after your King has seen some action. The most interesting development in this format is that the winning player is forced to think twice about getting his pieces forward during the endgame which turned out to be a huge advantage for the losing side. (which is good for me since I usually am on the losing side!)
If you have nothing to do (which is evident from the fact that you're reading this) and if you have Chess board, I urge you to try Jihadi Chess. If you do, do not forget to leave some highlights/insights on this version so that we can make it better. Also if anyone is interested in collaborating with me to make a simple flash application so that people can play online, mail me at this address and we'll try to build something :)
Whatever you do, do not write off Jihadi Chess like you have written off 300 Chess!
|Image taken from www.pichaus.com|