Chess tournaments Chess strategy Computer chess Chess players FIDE Chess variants Chess rules and history

Capablanca random chess

a b c d e f g h i j
8 8
7 7
6 6
5 5
4 4
3 3
2 2
1 1
a b c d e f g h i j
Capablanca Random Chess. One of the 12118 possible starting positions.

Capablanca Random Chess (CRC) is a chess variant invented by Reinhard Scharnagl in 2004. It combines the piece set and 10x8 board from Capablanca Chess with the permutation idea of Fischer Random Chess (Chess960). This game won a contest in 2005 held at The Chess Variant Pages to design a chess variant based upon the theme of the number 10.


The rules are the same as in Capablanca chess but initial setup is randomized. White and black pieces are set up in symmetrical position. The pieces on the first rank are placed in a random way with the following restrictions:

The first restriction is taken from Fischer Random Chess for the purpose of balancing the power of colorbound bishops. The second restriction is based upon the first restriction but extrapolated to the unique piece set used within CRC. The third restriction is taken from Fischer Random Chess to preserve castling ability. The fourth restriction helps to minimize the advantage held by white in having the first move of the game. The fifth restriction is to avoid possible legal issues in America with Gothic Chess, which was formerly protected by a US patent. The sixth restriction was introduced later upon discovery by Reinhard Scharnagl that such positions might increase the first move of the game advantage for white.

Together, these six rules restrict the opening setup to 12,118 starting positions.

Extended FEN Encoding

Within Capablanca Random Chess, X-FEN is used (to represent positions).