How to Mod Chess

It’s a game that nobody can really claim to have mastered, and yet many still try to this day. Until computer programs decrypt a pattern that will essentially deconstruct the game into a series of unbeatable move sets, chess will continue to be what it has been for centuries. But this does not mean that the worldwide game of wits has to be stagnant. Already several ‘mods’ or variances on the game are played worldwide, bringing new and exciting versions of the classic game to fresh audiences. Listed here are some of the alternative ways to play the game that you may wish to incorporate if ‘regular’ chess is wearing you out.


Grandmaster Bobby Fischer invented this variant in 1996. Here the pieces in the first rank are ordered randomly, the new positions for that game are then reflected by the pieces of the opposition. This simple change can alter the tactics of seasoned players, as they have to re-organize how to go about their attacks and bolster new lines of defense. This is a great way to spice up any chess game with little effort.

Horde chess

This one requires a few extra pieces. To make the changes needed for this overwhelming alteration, one side retains the usual set of pieces whereas the other has 36 pawns. Once placed on the board, it’s easy to see how this version got its name. This is a great one to alternate with, as tactically one side plans to out maneuver and the other simply uses its numbers to swallow its opposition with sheer mass.

Cannibal Chess

Despite how bloodthirsty this twist on the game sounds, its quite simple. Often played on bigger unorthodox boards to enhance the games feature, the difference here is that pieces absorb the ability of the pieces they eliminate. This means that any piece has the potential to move further and in more directions. What’s great about this version is that it subconsciously adds character to pieces that happen to do well, giving an underdog story to pawns that become kings, and making deadly assassins out of already treacherous pieces.

Glinski’s Hexagonal Chess

Created way back in 1936, this version doesn’t really alter the rules, instead it simply alters the board. Played unsurprisingly on a hexagonal board, this variation that was created in Poland rose to popularity in Europe the 30’s and 40’s. The board may look odd with its addition of mid tone cells, but this is simply to make the pattern easier to understand and defeats the constant merging of white and black. With the addition of a bishop and a pawn, its fairly easy for any chess player to get stuck into this almost futuristic looking variant.

Kung Fu Chess

Usually a game of turns and patience, Kung Fu chess endeavors to bring some speed and action to the game. Here players do not wait for their opponents to move, instead any player can move any piece at any given time. This makes for a manic game of quick thinking and intense moves, turning the quiet steady game into a fast and frantic one. Try it out if you think your reflexes are up to it.