I would like to be able to do load a position into a whatever possible (advanced) engine without kings. For example, the goal of the game would be to annihilate all the possible pieces instead of checkmating the king, and/or the king isn't even on the board. I sometimes test that. One example is when I want to see if a rook can stop two pawns at the 6th rank (it can't, I figured that out). Is there, maybe, an engine for that?

  • Hey @Rewan Demontay ! I didn't ask for Stockfish specifically. I asked about engines overall. Your edit might confuse people. May 9, 2021 at 18:47
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    Especially as problem chess programs kinda are able to do what you want (if it is implemented and you do know how to set the right aim). E.g. you can find out whether a knight can stop pawns by declaring it royal (a queen can hunt down a knight). Note that such programs might be far slower than a game engine. May 9, 2021 at 19:12
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    Chess engiens are designed to find the best way to checkmate the enemy king. They won't be able to evaluate your kingless position
    – David
    May 10, 2021 at 10:02
  • Thanks. And now once again I am really freaking curious why do I get downvoted whenever I type anything. May 11, 2021 at 5:32
  • @LeopardLGD similarly you could ask why you get upvoted. People are free to up- and downvote whatever they feel right. There's no point in taking it as a personal attack
    – David
    May 12, 2021 at 9:14

2 Answers 2


For most such questions perhaps a chess problem engine like Popeye can easily solve it.

However, the kind of goals your question is indicating like extinction of opponent pieces can also be set in configurable chess variant engines, e.g., Fairy-Stockfish or Sjaak II. I would assume that in most cases this will be the easier and faster solution, assuming that the problem is within the scope of the possible rule configurations.


one simple solution would be on chessbase,

when you set up a position, you can ignore the king, you will get a warning that it is illegal, if you ignore that, then you can have it,

PS: i think the keyboard shortcut is s, and then clear the board,

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