Is there any variation of chess where the winner has to take all of the opponents pieces rather than just force the capture of one of them ?

I guess sacrifices wouldn't work well in this variation of chess.

  • 1
    @BrianTowers: This question is not about antichess/losing chess/..., (where the winner has to get rid of pieces) but about a variety where the winner has to take all the pieces of the opponent. Commented Jan 29, 2017 at 20:45
  • 1
    @user1583209 You're right, I read it too quickly Previous comment retracted.
    – Brian Towers
    Commented Jan 29, 2017 at 22:06

4 Answers 4


Horde/Dunsany's chess would match your requirement for one side (the other has to mate).


First of all, the historical rules of Shatranj include the victory condition "bare King", i.e., capturing all pieces except the King is a victory, except that the other player can capture the last piece of the first player immediately after the loss of his last piece (then, the game is drawn).

As a modern variant, there is Extinction Chess (aka Survival of the Species) where the extinction of one piece type (Knight, Bishop etc.) wins the game.


Capture all is the chess variant you are looking for.

Chess variant with no check or checkmate. Players win by capturing all opposing pieces.

Presence or absence of king can be set, but even if there is a king, the check-rule does not apply to it, and it can be captured like any other piece (and its picture is different to emphasize this rule).

Otherwise the rules of chess apply, with the following difference: Pawns can also promote to king.

Note: if the player on turn has pieces but no legal moves, it is a stalemate, i.e. draw.

Inventor: Uray M. János (year: 2013)

Source: https://greenchess.net/rules.php?v=capture-all

  • By the way, sacrifices would still be there (and still interesting) in this chess variant as well. Commented Jul 2, 2023 at 5:45

Back in the 70s/80s when I experimented with Chess Variants I tried what we would call in Italian Mangiatutto (Eat-it-all) who was just that: King had no special priviliges and the goal was to take all of the opponent's army.

Basically, checkers played with chess pieces.

Quite dull.

To spice it up we would play it in the fashion of Progressive Chess: White starts with 1 move, Black plays 2, white follows with 3, black with 4 and so on. It got a bit trickier in this way.

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