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Battle Chess 2: Chinese Chess manual

                          Battle Chess II: Chinese Chess

Using Keyboard- To move your chess pieces, use the arrows to position flashing
square under the piece you want to move, then press  to select it.Select
the desired destination point by using the arrows and press .  (You will
notice that legal moves are solid green squares and illegal ones are solid red.)
You can also move the flashing square by using algebraic notation.  For example,
to move the Knight you would type B1  C3 .

Using Mouse- To move your chess pieces, use the mouse to position the flashing
square under the piece you want to move, then press the left button to select. 
Select the desired destination point by using the mouse, then press the left
button.  (You will notice that legal moves are solid green squares and illegal
ones are solid red.)

[There was a bunch of bullshit that I skipped, it is easy to figure it out, just
talked about the menus and stupid shit like that] -RM

Playing Battle Chess II by Modem
     Arrange with your opponent who will be red and who will be blue.  One playe
must set his side to auto-answer.  Do this by hitting  and then type ATS0=1
and pressing the  key.  The other player must call you.  To dial hit 
type ATD XXX-XXXX.  There are two steps to break the connection.  First hit 
then hit +++, and wait a sec.  Then hit  and type ATH. The game transfers at
a whopping 300 baud with 8 bits and no parity.  

Playing BC2 with Serial Cables
     Just hook up a null modem cable and you are set.  Same as above, just no
dialing commands and the like.

Basics of Chinese Chess
     The goal of playing a game of Chinese Chess is identical to that of many
other games - specifically, defeating your opponent.  In Chinese Chess, this is
done by placing your opponent's King in checkmate or stalemate.

     Here are the rules of Chinese Chess in a nutshell:

-Two opponents play against each other.  One player is red and the other blue.

-Each player has one king, two rooks,two cannons,two knights,two ministers,two
counsellors and five pawns.

-The object of the game is to put the opponent's king in checkmate or stalemate.

-The red player moves first then you alternate.

-You can only move one piece per turn.

-No piece (except the cannon) may jump or move through any other piece on the

-You take a piece by landing on the same spot.

-If your king is threatened, you are in check and must move out of check.

The Board
     As you can see by looking at your screen, the chessboard consists of nine
vertical and ten horizontal lines.  Each side has an Imperial Palace made up of
nine points in the 3x3 square marked by the diagonal lines.  The open section,
calledthe river,in the center of the board divides the northern territory from
the southern.  The markings at some of the intersections denote the starting
positions of the pawns and the cannons.

The Pieces

     The King may move one point forward, backward, left, or right, but never
diagonally.  He is also restricted to movement within the Imperial Palace.  The
King may never move so that he is in check or directly across the board from the
enemy King with no pieces in between.  Also, another piece may not move in such
a way that the King will be in check or that he'll be directly facing the enemy


     Counsellors may move one point in any diag. direction within the Imperial


     Ministers may move exactly 2 points in a diagonal direction along the same
line.  They may never cross the river and they cannot jump over or through
obstructing pieces.

     Knights may move one point forward, backward,left, or right followed by one
point diagonally left or right.  Unlike conventional chess, the Knight may not
leap over pieces to make its move. For example, if a point directly ahead of the
Knight is occupied, the Knight cannot move forward in that direction.

     Rooks may move any number of unobstructed points in a horizontal or vert.


     The Cannon moves much like the Rook. It may move any number of points in 
horizontal or vertical direction.  However, in order to capture a piece, the
Cannon must first jump over a single piece of either color.This piece is called
a "bridge" or "screen."  The Cannon then moves to the point occupied by the
captured piece.

     Pawns may move a single point forward, until they cross the river.  After
crossing, they may move left or right in addition to forward.  Pawns may never
move backward and they never promote upon reaching the far end of the Board. 
Unlike conventional chess, they capture by moving straight ahead.

Roman Lettering
Each piece is represented with the following on the 2D Roman board:
     K- Kings
     G- Counsellors
     M- Ministers
     N- Knights
     R- Rooks
     C- Cannons
     P- Pawns

The Individual Importance of Each Piece
     By now, you should be getting a sense of the power of each piece.
     The Rook is considered the most powerful piece because of ability to move
swiftly from one side of the board to the other.  It is considered to have the
roughly the power of a Knight and Cannon combined.Its power diminishes slightly
toward the end of the game as it requires the help of other pieces to penetrate
a well-established enemy defense.
     The Cannon is considered the second most powerful piece because of its
ability to destroy from a distance and its swift movement.  Like the Rook, its
power diminishes toward the end of the game because capturing power is reduced
as more pieces are eliminated from play.  However, it is perhaps the most
important piece during the opening both offensively and defensively.
     The Knight is considered only slightly less powerful than the Cannon cos
of its restricted movement early in the game.  During that time, it is used
primarily for defense.Its power greatly increases toward the mid-game as fewer
pieces get in its way.
     Ministers and Counsellors are very limited because the former can never
cross the river and the latter cannot leave the Imperial Palace.  
     Pawns are considered the least powerful pieces because of their limited
movement.  Once across the river, however, the Pawn's power increases as its
movement abilities increase.  Initially, a Pawn is used to block the enemy's
attacks and provide bridges for the Cannons.Unlike conventional chess,Pawns are
not promoted when reaching the far horizontal line.Therefore, it is not always
wise to advance your pawns too far across the board.
Winning the Game
     Because of the limitations on many of the pieces' movements, Chinese Chess
games are generally shorter than conventional chess games. Basically, there are
two ways to win: Put your opponent in checkmate or stalemate.    
     A checkmate occurs when a King is in check and he has no way to escape and
he has no way to escape the check. A stalemate occurs when a player has no legal
moves to make.  A player is considered to be in check when his King can be
captured by an enemy piece on his opponent's next move.A player can escape check
in many ways: move the king to a safe place, move another piece to block king,
capture the enemy piece.
     A player who cannot escape check in one of these 3 ways is said to be in
checkmate and the game is over.  If a player is not in check, but any move the
player makes will put him in check, is called stalemate.

Drawn Games
     As in conventional chess, if neither side is able to capture the opposing
King, the game ends in a draw. This often happens if neither side has any pieces
remaining which can cross the river.There are two other rules, unique to Chinese
Chess, which help prevent draws:
     1) It is illegal for the same piece to put the opposing King in check three
times in a row.  
     2) It is illegal for a piece to chase an opposing piece back and fourth.  I
either piece moves to more than two squares while the "chase" occurs, then it is
legal to continually threaten that piece.
     Also, if the threatened piece is protected at either point, the chase can

Chinese Chess Notation
     The Objective in Chinese Chess is the same as in conventional chess,
the strategies involved are much different.  In Chinese Chess, A positional
advantage is very important, since the King has such limited mobility.Often, a
substantial material advantage can be offset by a single Rook deep in enemy
territory.  Remember that Chinese Chess is much quicker and deadlier than
conventional chess.It's very common to win or lose in the first few moves of a
game.  Be aware of the many ways a King can be checkmated and watch for these
positions developing.

     There are many different openings in Chinese Chess.Whole volumes have been
dedicated to this single facet of the game.
     The most common opening is the "Central Cannon" opening. this consists of
moving either Cannon directly behind the central pawn.Subsequently, the Knights
may be moved out to defend the centra
similarly.  Otherwise, the central Pawn can advance with little fear of being
captured by the enemy Pawn because it would place the opposing King in check by
the supporting Cannon.
     Other variations on this opening consist of 'jamming' the enemy Cannon by
advancing your other Cannon to the seventh rank or, using the Cannons to defend
ranks adjacent to the river from attack.
     Other strategies involve moving pieces to free the most powerful piece, the
Rook.  Carefully watch which pieces are endangered & which ones you can capture.
     It is important to establish yourself offensively and defensively from the
start of the game. For example, you can capture an enemy Knight with your Cannon
on your very first move.  This is generally not considered a good move since the
resulting loss of your Cannon is usually devastating in the opening game. 
however, it is important to note that you can threaten many pieces within one or
two moves.
     Though the opening game is important, it is not absolutely necessary to
consume a vast knowledge of opening moves since the Chinese Chess board is much
larger and more open than its western cousin.  Imagination and innovation in the
opening game very often results in a far superior position.

     Like conventional chess, there is no single "formula" for success in the
midgame.  There are several guidelines that may be helpful in forming your
strategy:  Do not attack without enough reinforcements.  Try to shift your point
of attack from one side to the other. Capture at least one Minister and Guard to
help you set up your final blow.Keep pressuring your opponent's weakly protected
pieces, even if they are only Pawns.  Move your Rooks out into an attacking
position early, but not at the expense of your initiative.If a piece cannot be
protected from an attack very easily, it is often better to use the 'extra' move
to advance another piece to a much better position.
     When deciding whether or not to sacrifice a piece, take into account
how valuable that piece is at that point of the game.  For instance, a Cannon is
not worth as much later in the game simply because there aren't that many pieces
to jump over.Knights generally tend to become stronger later in the game because
they benefit from greater mobility.Also keep in mind that a Cannon is invaluable
when attacking a well defended King, since it is the only piece in the game that
can jump over other pieces.

     The end-game in Chinese Chess is not quite as complicated as conventional
chess because the King is very limited in its mobility, and a stalemate is
considered a victory.
     There are a few points to keep in mind when approaching the end-game:  The
King cannot move diagonally.Therefore, a Rook can effectively limit the King to
only a few moves without the risk of being captured itself.  The King cannot
directly face the enemy King without another piece between them.  This rule can
effectively be used to contain the enemy King to a smaller area.  Make sure you
have enough pieces to overcome the defenses.  Otherwise, you should try to force
a draw by using your offensive pieces (ones that can cross the river) in defense
     The side with the most pieces or points does not necessarily have the
advantage.  Many strategies exist to win the game or at least force a draw when
you are at the disadvantage.  Learning and practicing end game strategies by
setting up boards with only a few pieces will greatly improve your Chinese Chess