Suicide Chess

 

Force opponent to capture all your pieces. The game known also as Losing Chess (do not confuse it with Losers though). Suicide has some history - it is known to be reasonably popular in 1930s in Moscow, 1950s in Germany, and many countries afterwards. In Live Chess the game is available on Lichess, gathering more and more interest there.

 

1. Game rules

The board is setup traditionally, the pieces move and capture as in standard chess, yet the object is to lose all of your pieces.

If either player has a legal capture they must take it. If there are many possible captures, the player is free to choose any of them.

There is no such thing as check, the King is a regular piece, in particular it can be taken. You can even promote pawns to kings. Castling is not permitted.

You win by losing all your pieces. 
Mind the special rule in case of stalemate (no legal move)! The side with less material wins (less material means smaller number of pieces, whatever their value is).

 

2. Game hints

The following quote from Stanislav Goldovski article (broken link?) is crucial for understanding suicide:

(...) contrary to common belief, the strategy of Losing Chess is not giving away your pieces. Instead, illogical as it may seem at first sight, achieving significant material advantage is one of the important strategic steps. Having more material gives you the possibility to 'surround' the opponent with your pieces, gradually restricting him until he runs out of safe moves (zugzwang) , and then - 'ditch' the pieces one by one. To restrict your opponent, you will not only need material advantage, but also advantage in mobility and space. (...)

Opening theory plays very important role in suicide, and can not be ignored even by beginners. To give an example: after 1.e4 black has forced win, same after 1.d4 and 1.d3. The sites linked below contain all the necessary information, so use it - and do not play the moves which immediately lose.

Some unsorted rules of the thumb:

  • keep an eye on a3, h3, a6, h6, those squares are frequently used to force the knight or the bishop out,
  • keep your king,
  • carefully plan your promotions, every kind of promotion may happen to make sense (queen promotion is least frequent)

More suggestions welcome.

 

3. Example games

Suicide draw - yes, draw is possible

Links to particularly valuable examples are welcome.

 

4. Additional info

Suicide Opening Book (so called Nilatac's Book)

Les échecs à qui perd gagne de Fabrice Liardet (very good page about suicide - in French)

 


Terms and Conditions | Privacy Policy | Copyright © 2002 - 2021

SchemingMind.com | Westhoughton | Bolton | England