Around 1920, Arnold Schönberg tried out a game for four armed forces with his coalition or alliance chess, inspired by the World War I military arsenal. We have summarized the basic rules and game variants, the figures’ moves and their distribution, and also prepared 3D scans of the figures. Try it yourself!

This chess game is played on a board with 10 x 10 squares and chessmen with nine ways of moving, their rules of movement either taken over from traditional chess or combined from old figures. Two “major powers” (yellow, black) and two “minor powers” (green, red) form a coalition in the first three rounds. The red minor power symbolizes the air force (fliers) and the green one the navy (submarines), whereas the yellow and black major powers stand for the army (motorcyclist, engineer, artillery, marksman, machine gun, tank). The king retains its traditional function.       

3D scans of the chessmen and a digital realization of the game board, affording open access for downloading on our website, allow a wealth of creative solutions; 3D prints, original size or variably scaled for outdoor games, are all possible, as well as reamed sculptures in various materials.

Hobbyists can recreate the chess game with Lego, carve it in wood, put it together with scrap paper and metal (like Schönberg) and much more … 

Link: Chess page