I am not the right kind of smart to play chess. A lot of people suck at it, and just being smart doesn’t help. It takes a certain patience and a skill for long-term planning, both require focus, discipline and training. It also requires a strong resistance to falling asleep while sitting down, ability to avoid daydreaming and a skill for not flipping the board when you lose after 4 hours of grueling play. O yea, and if you play it in the park, you have to do all this on a fucking timer. Fuck that! I am just not studied enough in the art of chess to really know how to play! I know the basics though. Plenty of sorry fuckers know the basics! We were fucking taught them by some masochistic prick (or prickess) that taught us to play only so they could experiment with strategies before mercilessly murdering us. It’s not funny. It’s not fucking fair. And it is about fucking time we got even.
Thanks to this fucking guy, we’ll be able to do just that. Study that face. He’s is the guy normal people like me will be hi-fiving while our chess-skilled friends will hire a band of rabid ninja monkeys to hunt him down. Really, I am pretty sure that the kickstarter for the game will be used to fend off rabid bands of ninja monkeys. All he did was add cards to chess. Yup. That is fucking it! So what do they do? Oh, my that is the fun part. In short, they will make it so that you will be on fair ground against your chess-club friends. It makes chess shorter, more fun and hilarious. Our game took only an hour and a half, accounting for the stops to marvel at the wonderful art on the cards. The creator was able to send me some demo PDF’s that I printed for play!
My brother Joel has an awesome twili… I MEAN.. vampires vs werewoles chess set. Black is werewolves, white is vampires. It went with the medieval theme of the game, and even played on some of its more magical or demonic cards. You play chess as normal, except at the start each player gets 5 cards. You can play one card per turn and there are two different card types: T cards that take up a whole turn and C cards that play concurrently with a piece move. Now, I started off the shenanigans with a “Rally the Troops” card that allowed me to move three pawns at once! It was one hell of an opening move that made my brother laugh and get his game on!
As we played we realized that this made chess casual and even entertaining. We scarcely took the game more seriously than we would have if we were playing parcheesi. And as each card went down, it made one of us laugh and groan simultaneously. After a few turns, I started really getting devious with Joel. I charged my rook through a pawn with “Phantasmic Step” and took my brother’s rook, leaving him a little confused. This happened a lot though, one or the other of us would make a crafty play or take a good piece and we’d look at the card: half to verify that was actually in the deck, half to see the artwork and read the card itself. The cards can often be funny and they make a serious effort to look really really nice, which worked. Look through the cards on the Beguile site. Rather lovely.
Then there is this fucking card. Did you read that card? Yea, I was mopping the floor with him. I got all of his pawns, a rook, a knight and even his queen while simultaneously making a few devious plays of my own. I used “Necromancy” after sacrificing my queen for a good capture, then I used a bishop to take a few pieces and played “Sacrificial Lamb” to sacrifice a pawn and keep my bishop. I was closing in for the kill… then he played that shit up there! I heaved a massive sigh and traded spots with him. Now faced with grim prospects, I began picking my attacks more carefully.
Joel started getting really devious, throwing out a few plays that got a couple of my pieces. At one point he played “Holy Warrior” and moved his knight like a bishop to take my knight. Except I had “Man in the Mirror” and took his knight instead! There were a number of really clever plays he got off, but by the luck of the cards I was able to get his army down to nothing but a king. I got his king into checkmate and! …. He played “Back Against the Wall” teleporting the king across the board. He was also able to use catacombs to get across the board and take a couple of my last remaining pieces with just his fucking king! That was ok, though. After a while I was letting him take all my pieces. just waiting. Waiting until stalemate. Once it happened I stood victorious! I threw down “Sir Charles Roundhouse”, which allows you to win in a stalemate! I got that card on the second turn and was able to really give it to him!
The moral of this story is that you don’t need to know how to play chess to have fun with chess anymore. Beguile adds some great flavor and a faster pace to a game that is traditionally pretty tough and makes it casual and entertaining in ways that it was never meant to be. The great news is that the Kickstarter is already past 50%! Woochah! Let’s get some money in there so we can start working on those stretch goals! (note to Americans: It’s a Canadian Kickstarter, so exchange rates account for the shipping cost!) This would be a fantastic addition to any nerd’s game cabinet! I wonder if something like this could be done for checkers?