•  What you need:
    A chess board and pieces

    Aim of the game:
    The aim of the game is to use your army to capture the enemy king.

    The armies:
    There is a White army and a Black army. Both armies have the same pieces. These are:

    Name Picture Symbol Description How it moves
    1 King     The King is the most important piece in the army. If he is captured, the game is lost.
    1 square in any direction (forward, back, across or diagonally)
    1 Queen     The Queen is the most powerful piece. Any number of squares in any direction
    2 Castles     Castles are strong pieces which are good both at attacking the enemy and defending the King. Sometimes the Castle is called a ‘Rook’. Any number of squares forward, back or across (but not diagonally)
    2 Bishops     Bishops are good at attacking late on in the game. Because they move diagonally, they always stay on the same colour square that they started on. Any number of square diagonally
    2 Knights     Knights are at their best when there are lots of pieces on the board, and they can use their ability to jump over other pieces. ‘L shaped’ – two squares forward (or back) and one square across; or two squares across and one square forward (or back). The Knight can jump over other pieces while doing this.
    8 Pawns     Pawns are the foot soldiers in the army. They gradually advance on the opposing army, but also need to defend the King. Usually one square forward. If it is capturing an opposing piece, however, it moves one square forward diagonally.

    Each pawn may move two squares forward the first time it moves. If it does, it cannot capture in the same move.

    Pawns can never move backwards.

    Hint: the White Queen starts on a white square, and the Black Queen starts on a black square.

    White and Black take it in turns to move a piece (in Chess, the White army always goes first). Remember each piece has its own way of moving as described above. A piece can capture an opposing piece by landing on that piece’s square.

    The aim of the game is to capture the enemy King. If you move one of your pieces to attack the King – in other words, your piece could capture him next move – you say ‘check’. This means, roughly ‘watch out for your King!’.

    If he or she is in check, your opponent needs to defend the King – either by moving him out of the way of the attack, blocking the attack with another piece, or capturing the piece that threatened to capture the King.

    If your opponent can’t defend the King in any of these ways, you say ‘checkmate’. This means ‘the king is dead’. Remember that you must never move your King into ‘check’ as this would mean your opponent could capture your King straightaway.

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