To play Level-Up Chess, in addition to a standard chess set you’ll need some way of clearly marking a piece that’s been leveled up, such as by placing a checker underneath them.
Level-Up Chess begins like any other version of chess, but when a piece performs a capture it levels up to a more powerful piece, as follows. When a piece levels up, it gains new options for movement, but also retains all movement options of its old form.
- Pawn -> Squire: May move as a knight, but only forwards. Squires may be promoted upon reaching the last rank, like a normal pawn.
- Bishop -> Archbishop: May move one space orthogonally.
- Knight -> Crusader: If the Crusader captures a pawn or squire, it may immediately move again. This second move may not result in a capture.
- Rook -> Raider: After the rook captures any piece, it may move one space orthogonally.
- Queen -> Empress: May move as a knight.
- King -> Emperor: May make two moves in a row. Can not move into a square which would place it in check, even if it could then move out of check.
Note that in the case of the Knight and the Rook, they may not perform a second move on the same turn that they’re promoted as they weren’t yet a Crusader or Raider when they made the capture.