Balance 12

Les échecs duodécimaux équilibrés

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Notice: this variant is now surpassed by METAMACHY


Balance 12 is an other variant of Perfect 12, replacing Prince and Camel by Bow and Machine. Those two new pieces are the counterpart of Cannon and Elephant, respectively.

Like Perfect 12 and Toulousain Chess, Balance 12 has a total of 2x36 pieces, giving a piece density of 0.5 as for FIDE chess. Also, it has the same 3 "super" pieces (Queen, Gryphon, Lion). The originality is that, here, every "orthogonal" piece has its diagonal counterpart:


Orthogonal move

Diagonal move









The orthodox setup is kept in the center of the board. Here, Rook, Knight, Bishop are found in the classical order.

Moves, Captures and other Rules

  • All pieces moving like in Perfect 12. The new pieces are:
  • Machine: it is an orthogonal counterpart of the Elephant as it moves 1 or 2 cases orthogonally, jumping over the first case if it is occupied. Then, it combines the moves of old Dabbaba and Wazir found in ancient Muslim Chess variants.

  • Bow: it is the diagonal counterpart of the Chinese Cannon. It moves like a Bishop and needs an intermediate piece between itself and its victim to capture it. The Bow jumps the intermediate and takes the victim on its square. The intermediate is left unaffected.

Castling: like in Perfect 12.

End Of Game: Victory is obtained when the opposite King is checkmated. All other types of endgame (pat, perpetual check,...) are classic.

Pieces Value

Zillions gives these average values, normalized to 5 for the Rook:

Pawn: 0.8, Machine: 2.7, Elephant: 2.3, Knight: 2.4,
Bow: 3.3, Bishop: 3.4, Cannon: 4.9, Rook: 5,
Lion: 7.4, Gryphon: 7.9, Queen: 8.2 . 

You can play Balance 12 Chess if you own Z-o-G. Download this zip-file: (in the Perfect12  zrf file)