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Discovery of an alternative Tenjiku Shogi piece

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  • Colin Paul Adams
    Two months ago, my wife (who is Chinese, and doesn t read kana), showed me an article about Tenjiku Shogi. We have finally managed to finish translating it. It
    Message 1 of 3 , May 31, 2008
      Two months ago, my wife (who is Chinese, and doesn't read kana),
      showed me an article about Tenjiku Shogi. We have finally managed to
      finish translating it.

      It describes an alternative piece, which could be used instead of the
      Iron Generals, called the Battering Ram.

      A Battering Ram can move one square sideways, or one square
      forwards. It also has a special ramming move.

      The ramming move works like this:

      The piece is moved vertically up the board across empty squares until
      it encounters an enemy piece (if the file is empty until the end of
      the board, or the first non-empty square is a friendly piece, then it
      may not ram).

      The number of empty squares between the initial square occupied by the
      Battering RAM and the square occupied by the first enemy piece is the
      value of the momentum of the Battering Ram. It must now proceed to
      dissipate all the momentum it has acquired. it does this by continuing
      to move forward.

      Each enemy piece it encounters consumes two points of momentum. The
      Battering Ram enters the square of the enemy piece, which is removed
      from the game.

      Each empty square the Battering Ram enters consumes one point of
      momentum.

      If a Battering Ram encounters an enemy piece when it has only one
      point of momentum left, it shatters. The Battering Ram is removed from
      the game, and the enemy piece is unaffected.

      If a Battering Ram reaches the end of the board without consuming all
      its momentum, it is removed from the game (note that it is legal to
      commit suicide by ramming on an empty file, or where the first piece
      encountered is friendly).

      If a Battering Ram encounters a friendly piece when it has any
      unconsumed momentum left, both the Battering Ram and the friendly
      piece are removed from the game.

      Battering Rams have an elementary form of fire-proofing (they are
      covered in hides) which enables them to penetrate through the fiery
      zone of a Fire Demon. However, upon entering the Fire Demon's square,
      the Battering Ram is consumed by the flames, and both it and the Fire
      Demon are removed from the game.

      Note that a King or Crown Prince is treated as just another piece, so
      a Battering Ram can be used to try to finish the game early.

      After a ramming move, a Battering Ram may not move again in any way
      (except by an enemy piece capturing it) for the number of moves equal
      to the momentum that it built up.

      A Battering Ram promotes to a Vertical Mover. Promotion is of course
      compulsory if it ends its move intact on the final rank.
      --
      Colin Adams
      Preston Lancashire
    • mjwciw
      This new piece seems quite interesting, exotic and unusual, which may explain its inclusion in Tenjiku. I have a couple of questions: 1) Does the author of the
      Message 2 of 3 , Jun 3, 2008
        This new piece seems quite interesting, exotic and unusual, which may
        explain its inclusion in Tenjiku.

        I have a couple of questions:

        1) Does the author of the article state the origin of this piece?
        Does he/she represent it as being of the same antiquity as Tenjiku,
        or is it a more modern invention?

        2) This piece promotes to a Vertical Mover, however the Iron General
        (which it replaces) promotes to a Vertical Soldier, and the Silver
        General also promotes to a Vertical Mover. Is this correct?

        3) Does the Battering Ram consume momentum with the first piece it
        captures during a ramming move? If the answer is yes then this would
        lead to the result that it could not take a piece exactly two squares
        forward, as it would have only one point of momentum and would
        shatter as it attempted to take this piece.

        4) You state that promotion is compulsory if it ends its move intact
        on the first rank. However I understand that the rule in Shogi was
        that promotion was only compulsory if failure to promote meant that
        it could make no other move. For the Battering Ram on the last rank
        it would still have an orthogonal sideways move. (Of course it would
        always be more rational to promote this piece at the last rank.)

        5) If a ramming move leaves the piece in the promotion-zone, can it
        escape the rule about not moving again for a number of turns equal to
        its momentum by promoting at the end of its move? EG if a Ram
        acquires 4 points of momentum during its ramming move, and promotes
        on completion of that move, must the promoted piece wait for its four
        moves, or can it move immediately?

        Malcolm Webb
      • Colin Paul Adams
        ... Colin Two months ago, my wife (who is Chinese, and doesn t read ============== Colin kana), showed me an article about Tenjiku Shogi. We have Colin
        Message 3 of 3 , Nov 30, 2008
          >>>>> "Colin" == Colin Paul Adams <colin@...> writes:

          Colin> Two months ago, my wife (who is Chinese, and doesn't read
          ==============
          Colin> kana), showed me an article about Tenjiku Shogi. We have
          Colin> finally managed to finish translating it.

          I'm surprised that no-one noticed the date of this email of mine.

          20080601.

          Subtract 2 months and you might understand a bit more about the
          historicity.

          P.S.

          Does anyone have any high-quality images (preferably vector graphics)
          of Chu Shogi pieces?
          --
          Colin Adams
          Preston Lancashire
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