Shogi - the Japanese form of chess

4/4/2016 – Shogi is the Japanese variation of chess. In Shogi you can use the pieces you captured from your opponent to strengthen your own army. An idea bughouse fans might find appealing. Thanks to the internet Shogi is becoming more and more popular in Europe and in March beginners and experienced players tried their skills in the Open German Championships.

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German Shogi Championship 2016

by Stephan Michels

Shogi (or Japanese Chess) has the same roots as classical chess but there are crucial differences. In Shogi  you can use the pieces you captured from your opponent to strengthen your own army. This often leads to furious endgame battles in which both sides try to mate the enemy king at all costs.

Beginning...

 

...and end

In Lippstadt, Germany, 21 shogi enthusiasts met from 19th to 20th March to play in the German and the Open German Championship. Some of the participants were experienced players with a Dan ranking, others were beginners, who had only recently discovered their passion for the game. Players came from Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, Denmark, and Sweden.

The German Championship was played in k.o. mode, with a time limit of 45 minutes for the whole game. When a player had used these 45 minutes he had a maximum of 40 seconds for each of his all following moves.

The playing venue at the Lippe river

View from the playing venue

Daniel Prill became German Champion 2016 after winning the final against Jochen Drechsler, German Champion 2015. Places three and four went to Bernd Sprenger and Ingo Köhler.

Daniel Prill also won the open tournament - ahead of Thomas Heshe and Jochen Drechsler.

Impressions from the tournament

The endgame is reached and a decision is close

Shogi gets more and more popular in Germany and in Europe and the internet offers interested players a chance to practice the game, e.g. on the 81Dojo server, at the moment the only server in English. It also offers a number of Shogi variations.

Highlights for European shogi players are the European Championship and the World Open Shogi Championship, which will be played in August in Amsterdam, and which is open for all.

Play Shogi online...


About the author:

Stephan Michels runs the website www.shogi24.com which offers information from international shogi events. He is also author of the book Shogi – Schach der Samurai: Einführung in das faszinierende japanische Schach (Shogi - Chess of the Samurai: Introduction to the fascinating game of Japanese Chess).