Tuesday, November 3, 2009

The Pawn Game, Part 4 - The Rooks

The next peice I like to introduce is the Rook (Castle). This piece is one of the easiest to learn. This is because the Rook moves in straight lines. The Rooks are placed at the corners of the chess board. If you put the Rooks on the chess board alone, they would have free reign to move straight or sideways as far as you would like to move. However when the other pieces you have learned are added to the board, the mobility (ability to move) of this piece is reduced to zero. In this position, the Rook cannot move. In order to move the rook, you would have to first move the pawn in front of the rook two spaces. Then the rook would have two spaces or squares that it could use to move forward after your opponent moves. Let's say you started the game the way I have already told you to, you now have two pawns meeting in the middle of the board and it's white's move, so white moves the pawn two spaces forward that's in front of his rook. It's now black's move. Black moves his rook's pawn; you now also have two sets of pawns meeting on the board. White moves her rook two squares foward and black does the same with his rook. Now its white's turn again and she moves her rook seven squares to the side. She has just moved across what is called the third rank. In chess, we have ranks that go across the board and files that travel up and down the board. We also have diagonals that the bishop and Queen (we will get to her) dominate. The Rook cannot jump over other pieces. The rook can move forward or sideways. It can move until it runs into one of the other pieces on the chess board. Then it can take the enemy piece or if it is one of its own pieces, it must stop. Two pieces cannot stand in the same square -- one must die; chess is a game of war! You cannot take your own men. So if the rook is moved and runs into a piece of its own color it must stop in the square before that piece. The Rook is now the strongest or highest valued piece on the board, it's value is 5 points, the Bishop is valued at 3 points, and the Knight is also three with the pawns being worth 1 point. The game is the same as before -- the only piece that can win this game for you is the pawn. You still must get the pawn to the other side of the board to win! Chess on!!

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