Pen and Paper RPG House Rules

Making our favorite games even better

Spycraft Chess

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A game I was working on that won’t be published so I can share it here.

Since the board is finished and we feel it is marketable it will likely be released in 2019.

Play options:

Standard game: Play one game with Seven Assets a piece.

Handicapped Game: Play one game with the stronger player having fewer Assets.

World War Trilogy: Buy all Assets for all three games before the first game.

Cold War: Play a standard game or a World War Trilogy and after the last game flip a coin and if it comes up heads then a new game is added giving the loser a new chance for final victory.

Rules:

Start the game with 7 Assets. Each side picks their Assets prior to the first move during the pregame. Assets can be played prior to a player finishing a move by taking their hands off of the piece.

A Patient is the target of an Agent or Asset. An Agent can be any piece that is not the King on the other side that has been recruited or suborned to spy on your side.

The center of the board is known as the DMZ which is where the safe house and honeypot assets can be used. These are the middle four rows.

Assets:

Use post-it notes or small notecards to write down the type of Asset and details. If using premade cards or a video game than use icons that are in parentheses.

Treasury (coin): Each asset labeled Treasury is one that can be used with another asset card to empower a powerful Asset.

Diplomatic Immunity (Diplomat): Play and discard this Asset and remove an effect caused by an Asset with a duration from one of your pieces.

Safehouse (a safe in the shape of a house): Play this Asset and a Treasury Asset and move a piece into the center of the board. Lay the piece down in the new place and the piece cannot affect or be affected for the next five turns. No other piece can move into that square for the duration.

Shell game (three cups): Swap your king with a predetermined type of piece such as a rook or a pawn that you write down on an asset card. This uses your action for your turn and expends this asset.

Confusion (Dunce cap):  Late Game Asset: After turn 40 play this Asset and two Treasury Assets and your Opponent skips a turn if not in check.

Quagmire (quicksand with an arm reaching out): Write down on an asset card a square in the middle rows of the board.  Once any piece moves into that square this asset is activated and any piece that later enters that square for the next five turns cannot leave until the asset is expended. Each time a new piece enters the square the duration is reset. Either player can spend a Treasury Asset and extend the duration by another five turns.

Defector in Place (Honeypot): Write down on an asset card a square in the middle rows of the board. Once any enemy piece moves into that square this asset can be activated and the piece can be suborned to your side if you spend treasury assets equal to the piece’s value.

Agent Provocateur (snowflake):  Write down a category of piece on an Asset card. Later in the game, an Agent can be activated among the category of the piece and any enemy piece this Agent threatens can after spending a Treasury Asset be frozen in place for the next five turns. This Agent can be used as long as the player has Treasury Assets and the Agent is threatening a piece.

Agent of Influence (smiling politician): Write down a category of piece on an Asset card. Later in the game, an Agent can be activated among the category of the piece and any enemy piece this Agent threatens can after spending a Treasury Asset be forced to move one time within for the next five turns. This Agent can be used as long as the player has Treasury Assets and the Agent is threatening a piece.

Burn Notice (papyrus on fire):  This Asset allows you to remove any piece on the board that is or was once yours upon the expenditure of a Treasury Asset.

Triple Agent (Greek drama masks): Allows the Asset to take over temporarily any piece that the enemy has suborned for five turns by expending a Treasury Asset. This can be extended for another five turns with another Treasury Asset spent.

Mole: (Sleeping soldier):  Late Game Asset. After the 40th turn you may play this asset and spend a Treasury Asset plus your move this round and force your opponent to choose one of their pawns to be the patient and that piece becomes yours for the rest of the game and is replaced with a pawn of your color.

Siberian Candidate (bottle of vodka): Late Game Asset. After turn 40 this Asset can be played and it prevents your opponent’s king from moving for 5 turns. After those five turns, you can spend a Treasury Asset to extend the duration another five turns.

Coercion (a bear trap): Any piece that is threatened and cannot make a legal move can be suborned and made into a defector. Use this Asset and Treasury Assets equal to the value of the piece. Upon use, Asset is discarded.

Quisling (?): Late Game Asset.  After turn 40 you can play this Asset and force your opponent to move their King on their next turn or if the King can’t move then move an adjacent piece to the King. Upon use, this Asset is discarded.

Scenario (strategy map?): Play Asset and discard Asset upon use and your piece returns to its position on the previous turn and make a move as normal from the position it had been the previous round.

Reconnaissance (an eye?): Use this Asset on the first or second move of the game to allow one of your knights to move twice.

Inquisition (Spaniards?) : Play this Asset before the 40th move of the game and all Late Game Assets on both sides are burned and removed from play. This uses your move.

Legend (Spy v Spy?): Late Game Asset. After turn 40 you can play this Asset and one of your pawns pretends to be a pawn of the other player and can’t be taken by an enemy piece for five turns though it is vulnerable to Assets.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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