3-Pawn

"The more perfect a nature is, the fewer means it requires for its operation."
—Aristotle, 4th century BCE

Photo of Hexes 3-pawn chess for two players.
chess board printed on aluminum, with standard tournament-size chess pieces.

Simply put, is the most parsimonious, full-complement chess game on the planet. Weighing in at a mere twenty-four chess pieces on thirty hexagons, this insanely simple design facillitates a surprisingly rich chess experience. It plays faster than more complicated chess games, but is less forgiving of mistakes. is a compressed chess game. The pawns do not get two-hex opening moves, and consequently there is no en passant rule. has a couple of idiosyncracies. The first is its odd shape. Chess boards are organized by rank and file (row and column). The 3-pawn chess board has three files (columns), but they bend 60° at the third and eighth ranks. Playing is like waging a battle in a gorge between steep rocky walls. The second idiosyncracy is that due to the chess-board's narrow shape, a king and knight can accomplish checkmate without help from other pieces.


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Illustration of Hexes 3-Pawn chess for two players.