by The Committee of Referees,
Hong Kong Chinese Chess Association
English Translation DRAFTS of Asian Rules by Eric Wu.

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Chapter 4: Asian Chinese Chess Rules


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When Hong Kong Chinese Chess Association (HKCCA) was formed in 1979 one of its charters was to formalize a set of Chinese Chess rules. To consolidate several existing rules, HKCCA used two guidelines:
The Committee of Referees met in Macao in 1982 and finalized a set of rules which became the initial version of the Asian Rules. After almost 10 years of field use, the Committee met again in Hong Kong in 1989 and developed guidelines for organizing tournaments. The results were added to the Asian Rules.


Chinese Chess Rules [top level title for the entire book]

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Tiến lên miền nam

The Chinese Chess set includes a board and 32 Chinese Chess pieces for the two players.

The board has 10 horizontal lines (rows) and 9 vertical lines (files). In the middle of the board the central 7 files are broken to form a horizontal space called the "river". The pieces are placed and move on the intersections of the lines, including on the "river banks" but never in the squares formed by the lines.

The pieces are round and flat; they are identified with Chinese characters. The two sides are usually distinguished with the colors of red and black.

Tiến lên miền nam

1. King's movements are limited to the center square marked with an X. King moves one space (step) at a time and can only move vertically or horizontally. King cannot move diagonally. There is one King for each side.

2. Guards are also confined to the center square marked with an X. Guards move one diagonal space at a time and cannot move horizontally or vertically. There are two Guards for each side.

3. Ministers' movements are confined to its own territory, which means a Minister cannot move across the river. Ministers move diagonally and at two spaces at a time, which means it always moves up or down for two spaces and left or right for another two spaces. Therefore, a Minister can only be on seven spots in the board. A Minister can be "blocked", that is if there is a piece (from either side) in the next diagonal space of the Minister, the Minister cannot move toward that direction. There are two Ministers for each side.

4. Rooks can move horizontally or vertically for any empty spaces. There are two Rooks for each side.

5. Knights can only move one space horizontally or vertically AND another space diagonally to either forward direction. Knights can also be blocked. If there is a piece (from either side) right next to the Knight, the Knight cannot move toward that direction. There are two Knights for each side.

6. Cannons can move horizontally or vertically for any empty spaces just like Rooks. However, to take a piece, a cannon has to jump over another piece (which is called a CANNON MOUNT) from either side. There is no limit on the empty spaces between Cannon and the cannon mount or between cannon mount and the piece being taken. There are two Cannons for each side.

7. Pawns move one space at a time. Before a Pawn moves across the river, it moves forward only. Once a Pawn has moved across the river, it can move forward or horizontally to either direction. A Pawn can never move backward. There are five Pawns for each side.

8. To capture an opponent's piece, one moves a piece legally to the point which is occupied by the piece being taken. A piece cannot take another piece from its own side.

9. Kings are not allowed to face each other directly. This means there must be at least a piece from either side in the vertical line between the two kings. A King will be captured if it moves into the "line of sight" of the other King.

10. One side is "checking" if it can capture the other side's King in the next move. The side being checked should "resolve the check" or lose. For example, one side checks with a cannon, the other side can resolve the check by 1) taking the cannon, 2) moving the cannon mount if the cannon mount is its piece, 3) stuffing another piece between the cannon and its own king, or 4) moving the King to a point where it is not threatened with capture or facing the opposing King.

Tiến lên miền nam

1. A game starts as the Red side takes the first move. After that the Black side moves, then Red, then Black, and so on. Toss a coin to decide who play Red. When playing multiple games, the two players take turns to play Red.

2. If a player touches a piece, he/she must move that piece. Some more details:


Chơi game Tiến lên Miền nam

Skipped.
This section is very rigid and boring. The translator takes the liberty to assume that there is not enough interest. To organize a tournament, get on ICCS and SHOUT! :-)

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Same as Chapter 2.


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Tiến lên miền nam

  1. Check - A move of any piece that causes the opponent's King to be threatened with capture in the next move. When checking, one should verbally inform the other player for courtesy.

  2. Checkmate - Check in such a way that the opponent's King cannot resolve the check.

  3. Threatening to Checkmate (TTC) - A piece moves into a position where it can launch a sequence of attack that leads to checkmate.

  4. Chase - A piece moves to a position where it can capture an opponent's piece, which is not the King, in the next move.

  5. Exchange - Using piece "A" to capture the opponent's piece "B" and let the opponent take piece "A". Sometimes, losing "A" does not happen in the opponent's exact next move. Usually it is an exchange only when the value of "A" and "B" are similar.

  6. Block - A piece moves to a position where it prevents the opponent from moving one of its pieces in certain direction.

  7. Sacrifice - A piece moves to a position where it can be taken by the opponent.

  8. Idle - A move that does not Check, TTC, Chase, Exchange, Block, or Sacrifice.

  9. Perpetual Check - Continuously checking the opponent, causing the sequence of moves from both sides to fall into a fixed pattern.

  10. Similar definitions also apply to "Perpetual Block", "Perpetual Exchange", and "Perpetual Sacrifice".

  11. Perpetual TTC - Every move is a TTC.

  12. Perpetual Chase - When one keeps chasing and the other keeps resolving the chase, one is perpetually chasing. (Translator's note: this rule is subtle, please see examples in Section 4 of this chapter.)

  13. Resolve TTC - A move directly resolves the other side's TTC. Similar definitions can also be used in "Resolve Check" and "Resolve Chase".

  14. Return the Check (RTC) - In one move one resolves a check and checks the other side simultaneously.

  15. Very often, a move can resolve a threat and apply another threat to the opponent simultaneously. Examples are: "resolving a TTC, returning a TTC, and chasing", "resolving a TTC and returning a chase", or "resolving a check and returning a check".

  16. Protected - A piece is protected if there is a piece that can capture any piece that takes the protected piece. When "A" takes "B", if "C" can take "A", "B" is protected.

  17. Real protector - When a protected piece is taken, the protector can actually remove the taker.

  18. False protector - When a protected piece is taken, the protector cannot actually remove the taker.

  19. One check and one TTC - Follow a check immediately with a TTC.

  20. Similar definitions also apply to "one check and one chase", "one check and one idle", "one threatening to checkmate and one chase", "one threatening to checkmate and one idle", "several check and one threatening to checkmate", and "several check and one idle".

  21. Two checks and one RTC - one side keeps checking and the other side, while in resolving the checks, has one RTC in every two moves.

  22. Two chases and one chase back - one side keeps chasing and the other side, while in resolving the chases, has one chase back in every two moves.

  23. Two chase and two chase back - one side repeats a pattern with two consecutive chases and the other side, while in resolving the chases, has two chases back in return.

    Tiến lên miền nam

    Four principles in deciding a game with the rules:

    • 1. When neither side violates the rules and both persist on not altering their moves. The game can be ruled as a draw.

    • 2. When both sides violate the same rule at the same time, the game can be ruled as a draw.

    • 3. If one side perpetually check and the other side perpetually chase, the perpetually checking side has to stop or be ruled to lose.

    • 4. If one side violates the rules and the other side does not, the side violating the rules has to change. Otherwise, it loses.

    Tiến lên miền nam

    • 1. In any case, the side who perpetually checks will be ruled to lose.

    • 2. The game will be ruled as a draw if neither side wants to resolve any of the following circumstances: perpetually TTC , one check and one TTC, one check and one chase, one check and one idle, one check and one threatening to "check and capture", and one chase and one threatening to "check and capture".

    • 3. One loses if one perpetually chases. However, one is allowed to perpetually chase a pawn that has not moved acrossed the river. One also loses if one uses two or more pieces to perpetually chase. However, if one of the chasing pieces is a Pawn or a King, this perpetual chase is legal.

    • 4. One piece chasing two or more pieces is a draw. Two pieces chasing two or more pieces is also a draw.

    • >5. In "Two chase and one chase back", the "two chase" side is "perpetually chasing" and has to change. Otherwise, it loses.

    • 6. It is a draw if one side perpetually chases a "protected" piece when the protector is a real protector. One loses if one perpetually chases a "protected" piece when the protector is a false protector. But a Knight or a Cannon cannot perpetually chase a protected Rook.

    • 7. It is a draw if one piece perpetually chases a piece of the same type. But if the chased piece cannot escape freely, the chasing side has to change or lose. A free Knight cannot perpetually chase a blocked Knight.

    • 8. While repeating two chase moves, if one of the moves also constitutes an offer to exchange, it is still a perpetual chase. (The above is the translator's interpretation. Literally, it should go as "While chasing two, ...", which the translator thinks may be a typo. Anyone who is familiar with the rules please correct him.)
      While in a perpetual chase, if every move is also an offer to exchange, it is still a perpetual chase.

    • 9. It is a draw if a King or a Pawn perpetually chases. It is still a draw if a King or a Pawn works with a Rook, a Knight, or a Cannon to perpetually chase.

    • 10. Perpetually blocking, sacrificing, offering to exchange, and "threatening to check and capture" are all draws.

    Section 4 : Detail Rules and Examples
    • 1. The side that captures the other's King first wins.
    • 2. The side that surrounds the other's pieces so that none can make any legal move wins.
    • 3. The side who violates a rule, asked by the referee to alter, and repeats the violation for three times will be ruled to lose.
    • 4. It is a draw when both sides cannot win, one side suggests a draw and the other side agrees, or the referee declares so.
    • 5. It can be ruled a draw if both sides repeat a sequence of moves that return to the same state but there is no violation of any rules and both sides refuse to change moves.


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