index 2002
Letter #18 -  2002

Sub:    Fischer random Chess
Date:   7/8/2002 1:19:57 PM MDT
From:  C. A. Bonilla

Have you ever heard about a kind of Chess setup created by Bobby Fischer which is called “Random Chess”?

What, and how is it, or what's the purpose?

Thank you very much.
C. A. Bonilla

Dear viewer,

Bobby Fischer, a former world Chess champion, proposed a variant of orthodox Chess wherein the initial setup of pieces is chosen randomly. Fischer thereby joined the ranks of other former world champions, such as Capablanca, who proposed changes to the rules of Chess -- none of which were ever implemented.

Fischer random Chess also known as Chess 960, is somewhat similar to the older shuffle Chess, or prechess (or other related variants), yet has a unique style of its own. An extensive introduction and history of the game was written by Eric van Reem.

Fischer random Chess is played with an orthodox Chess set but employs a randomly generated array. Each new setup is determined by a computer program (or manual procedure) which assigns starting squares according to the following guidelines:

-All remaining white pieces are placed on the first rank.
-The white King is placed somewhere between the two white Rooks.
-The white Bishops are placed on opposite-colored squares.
-The black pieces are placed equal-and-opposite the white pieces.

Orthodox Chess pieces are used exclusively.

Rules: Orthodox Chess rules apply when applicable.

Castling may be performed under the following conditions:

-Neither King nor Rook have moved.
-The King is not in check before or after castling.
-All squares between King and Rook are vacant.
-No square through which the King must move is under attack.
-When King and Rook cannot move equidistant, the King moves the  shorter distance.


This javascript will let you generate and view all 960 possible Fischer random Chess variants and their respective FEN strings:

Generate random positions

Convert to or from a number


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