I have always believed that out of an infinite number of possible, playable chess variants that could be invented, a single, best, perfect game existed in the imaginary-yet-real, theoretical realm of perfection, waiting to be discovered. Of course, it would never permit itself to be discovered via semi-random searching.
At some point within the last 10 years, I ascertained that this "holy grail" game should be definable with certainty, by indirect means, thru the categorical exclusion of all other imperfect design features, by correctly applying a sufficiently high number of important quality criteria.
I was hopeful that a large set of correctly-defined, important quality criteria relevant to chess variants would eventually emerge which would allow no more than one game to be invented, in sharp contradiction to my established reputation as one of the most prolific chess variant inventors in the world- quickly designing large numbers of games anew in full compliance with every given, quality criterion I could discover anew.
In the midst of these creative and exciting yet frustrating times, my efforts, experience, inspirations and imagination toward inventing new games seemed impossible to defeat. I even wondered once or twice if I would burn-out. Fortunately, the unexpected final series of important, paradigmatic, theoretical breakthroughs occurred.
My chess variant collection has consisted of 20-50 ever-changing games in response to an ever-increasingly long list of quality criteria since shortly after I began in 2000. Now, only one featured game remains … Spherical Chess 400. It deserves more than a casual examination since it is possibly the only perfect, 3-D chess variant in existence.
This game is absolutely free, fully-functional and available here for direct download. A program customized exclusively to play this game well (when given adequate time) installs automatically upon execution. It was written using Axiom, developed by Greg Schmidt, which runs under all modern NT versions of MS Windows (for IBM-compatible computers).
Download whichever you prefer:
spherical.exe (1953 KB)
spherical.zip (1941 KB)
spherical.iso (3070 KB)
They are safe compressed files which, in turn, contain the entire project featuring this game as an executable program (*.exe) with all required graphics (*.bmp) for 2 gameboards with 79 pieces, several visual game piece guides (*.bmp), 4 screenshots (*.bmp), a few descriptive texts (*.pdf) and a couple of essays (*.pdf).
Sept. 14, 2012
Assorted Essays & Texts
Opening Setups Viewing Cabinet
Currently containing 4 flat, 2-D perspectives
of 1 spherical-surface, 3-D game:
Spherical Chess 400
The Chess Variant Pages
Game Theory Review
If you dare, see Derek & Puck play chess!
Derek & Puck play chess!