Chess Variants/Grasshopper Chess

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8a8 black rookb8 black knightc8 black bishopd8 black queene8 black kingf8 black bishopg8 black knighth8 black rook8
7a7 black upside-down queenb7 black upside-down queenc7 black upside-down queend7 black upside-down queene7 black upside-down queenf7 black upside-down queeng7 black upside-down queenh7 black upside-down queen7
6a6 black pawnb6 black pawnc6 black pawnd6 black pawne6 black pawnf6 black pawng6 black pawnh6 black pawn6
5a5 black kingb5 black kingc5 black kingd5 black kinge5 black kingf5 black kingg5 black kingh5 black king5
4a4 black kingb4 black kingc4 black kingd4 black kinge4 black kingf4 black kingg4 black kingh4 black king4
3a3 white pawnb3 white pawnc3 white pawnd3 white pawne3 white pawnf3 white pawng3 white pawnh3 white pawn3
2a2 white upside-down queenb2 white upside-down queenc2 white upside-down queend2 white upside-down queene2 white upside-down queenf2 white upside-down queeng2 white upside-down queenh2 white upside-down queen2
1a1 white rookb1 white knightc1 white bishopd1 white queene1 white kingf1 white bishopg1 white knighth1 white rook1
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Grasshopper chess starting position. The grasshoppers are represented by inverted queens.


Grasshopper Chess is a variant named after its titular piece, the grasshopper.


Grasshopper chess was created in the 1950s by a Frenchman, J. Boyer. The grasshopper piece was inspired by the cannon from xiangqi (Chinese Chess), which must jump another piece when capturing.


Grasshopper chess is set up like the standard game, but the pawns are advanced one rank forward and grasshoppers are placed on the second and seventh ranks, eight per player.

The grasshopper moves like a queen, but it must jump over one piece (called the screen) during its move, and lands on the square immediately beyond that piece. The screen can be of either colour, but it must be there.

A grasshopper cannot move to a square if there is no screen for it to jump over, and it cannot jump two pieces in one turn.

  a b c d e f g h  
8                 8
7                 7
6                 6
5                 5
4                 4
3                 3
2                 2
1                 1
  a b c d e f g h  
The grasshopper can move to any square marked with a dot, or it can capture the black rook on f7.

A pawn is allowed to promote to a grasshopper, if that player wishes.


This chess variant does not not have any notable sub-variants.