Dragonfly 7×7 starting setup[1]
Dragonfly 7×7 starting setup[1]

Dragonfly (also known as Shuttle Chess or Bird Chess) is a chess variant invented by Christian Freeling in 1983.[2][3][4] There are no queens, and a captured bishop, knight, or rook becomes the property of the capturer, who may play it as his own on a turn to any open square. The board is 7×7 squares, or alternatively a 61-cell hexagon with two additional pawns per side.

The game is an offshoot and simplification of a Freeling game named Loonybird (or Dragon Chess). Still, "Play is complex and interesting. Draws are rare too." (Wood 1994:94)

Game rules

The standard rules of chess apply, including winning by checkmate. But Dragonfly follows these special rules:

Dragonfly hex

Dragonfly hex starting setup[1]
Dragonfly hex starting setup[1]

Dragonfly on the hex board is played the same as Dragonfly 7×7, except that pieces move and capture as in Gliński's hexagonal chess (with the exceptions that pawns have no initial double-step option, and castling is permitted).

See also


  1. ^ a b Pritchard (1994), p. 362
  2. ^ Pritchard (1994), p. 96
  3. ^ Pritchard (2007), p. 159
  4. ^ Wood, P.C. (April–September 1994). "Dragonfly". Variant Chess. Vol. 2 no. 14. British Chess Variants Society. p. 94. ISSN 0958-8248.