The Official 3D8 Chess Ruleset
(based upon the 3D8L ruleset)

The game of 3D8 chess is based upon the Official 3D8L ruleset. There are a few distinct minor modifications that are designed to facilitate the physical act of constructing a set and actually playing a real live game with another person.

The primary goal for 3D8 is to provide a playing experience as close as possible to that of 3D8L by using the chess pieces from 8 standard 2D chess sets. This very practical solution will allow any player to easily acquire a physical set and begin playing.

The 3D8 playing experience embodies the entire 3D8L experience from a piece movement standpoint. Put another way - all of the piece movements in 3D8L are present and accounted for in 3D8.

Here is an accounting summary of the differences between the two piece sets:

Piece          3D8  3D8L
Pawn            64    64
GrandKnight     16     1
Bishop          16     8
Rook            16     8
Queen            8     2
King/Prince     1/7   1/0
Mace             0     8
Knight (plain)   0     8
Knight (green)   0     8
Knight (red)     0     8
RookBishop       0     4
RookMace         0     4
BishopMace       0     4
               128   128

3D8 does not use the seven additional unique pieces in 3D8L but the movement of these pieces is embodied in one or more of the 3D8 pieces.

The RookBishop, RookMace, BishopMace and Mace are all embodied in the Queen of which there are an additional 6!

The PlainKnight GreenKnight and RedKnight are all embodied in the Grand Knight of which there are an additional 15!

(3D8 board and pieces)

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Since there are 8 King piece type shapes in 8 standard 2D sets, 3D8 uses the additional 7 pieces as Princes! A Prince is identical to the King in every way except that it can be captured as any other normal piece without ending the game. And the Prince cannot Castle.


Here is the initial setup for 3D8:

Diagram - Intial 3D8 Setup for White pieces.
(white pieces are intentionally dark for better image contrast only)
(each row/colum has a King, a Queen, 2 Rooks, 2 Bishops, 2 Knights from a standard 2D set)

The King is still at 5e1 as shown in the diagram. The other 7 king shaped pieces are the Princes. For practical purposes, in an actual game, the single King piece can be marked in some way - a ribbon, rubberband, paint, tape, etc. And since 3D8 does not have any RookBishops, the 3D8 King does not castle diagonally. But it can still castle left,right,up,down with the rooks.


Here is the distilled recipe for cooking 3D8 from 3D8L ingredients:

Remove the Knights (Plain,Green,Red), Maces, RookBishops, RookMaces, BishopMaces.(-44 pieces)
Add 8 bishops, 8 rooks, 6 Queens, 15 GrandKnights, 7 Princes. (+44 pieces)
The King cannot castle diagonally.
Setup according to the diagram above.

Copyright (c) 1984-2003, Ray Edward Bornert II. All Rights Reserved.

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