How to play Chaturaji

Learn the rules to the board game Chaturaji quickly and concisely – This video has no distractions, just the rules.

Play Chaturaji online for free here:

(As an affiliate we earn from qualifying subscriptions)

The rules are the same as regular chess, except for these changes. For a refresher of those rules, check out this video. The object of the game is to get the most points, there is no checkmate. You earn points by capturing pieces and checking kings:
Pawns are worth 1, knights & kings are 3, and bishops & sailboat are 5.
Checking 2 enemy kings simultaneously is worth 1 point and checking 3 kings simultaneously is worth 5.

In the bottom left of the board, setup 4 red pawns on the 2nd row. On the first, from left to right, set up: Sailboat, Knight, Bishop, King. Rotate this setup 90 degrees around the board with blue, yellow, and green like so. The sailboat moves like a rook.

Red goes first then play proceeds clockwise. Pawns still move forward, in the direction away from their rear rank starting pieces, towards the far side of the board, capturing diagonally forward. Pawns may not perform their initial double step move, therefore En passant is not allowed. Pawns must promote to a rook went they reach the far side of the board.

Castling is not allowed. Kings may move to a threatened space and do not need to move out of check. Once your king is captured, your turns are skipped. All your pieces remain on the board and are considered “dead”. Dead pieces no longer move, cannot be passed through, but they can still be captured. Capturing dead pieces earns 0 points, except for Kings, which still yield 3.

The game ends when 3 kings have been captured then the player with the most points wins, even if their king had been captured. Alternatively, if you are so far ahead in points, you can claim victory and end the game, earning 3 points for every remaining king on the board. If the remaining material on the board, and the current scores, determine it is only possible for 1 player to win, then the game ends automatically.

Players are not allowed to team up or work together; or suggest moves or strategy. The player with the most points at the end, wins.


  1. "Pawns may not perform their intial double step move, therefore En Passant is not allow"

    1:07 "does double step move and enpassant"

  2. Wait, if the boat moves the same as a Rook and there's a Rook in the game, why have a boat?!

  3. The rules are the same as for regular chess, except for these changes: There is no board or pieces. Each player has three darts. …

  4. This video is inaccurate. The rules of movement for some pieces are not right. (This comment is from my 7-year-old son.)

  5. How many points does a rook(not sailboat) give you?
    5 like a sailboat? 1 as it was a pawn? Or 0 at all?

  6. How about you use a rook as a sailboat and a queen as a rook

  7. I would like to see a Russian translation of this video, but I don't think I can find it

  8. What's the point of having a sailboat? If it has the same moves as a rook, just call it a rook?

  9. You should one day cover "Tank Chess".

    It's really fun on TableTop Simulator.

  10. Another variant that disables en passant. why

  11. Wait, how can there be a dead king if you need to capture a king to have the pieces of its color dead?

  12. Wait, how can you have a dead king to capture if the only way to be a dead piece is by capturing their king?

  13. 1:42 How can an uncaptured king be dead, other than by resignation?

  14. I'd learned it with different piece moves, where the Boat leaped two squares diagonally (and could capture the other three Boats if on completing its move all four Boats were in a 2×2 square), and the Bishop was a Rook.

  15. -Will it be difficult to name this new variation of chess we figured out?
    -Actually it would be super easy, barely an inconvenience.
    -Oh really?
    -Yes. I say, we take the original name of chess and change it a bit.

  16. I believe that this game is a variation of Chaturanga since they have different rules and peices, as well as dice

  17. If the sailboat doesn't do anything different than the Rook oh, why not just make it a rook? It doesn't make any sense to have it be a different piece altogether other than the fact that you're not supposed to Castle just make the rule you're not supposed to cancel why change it to a sailboat? Honestly what I thought was going to happen instead of the castling ability I thought the King was going to be able to board the sailboat and move around like a rook. That would be interesting. It has the abilities and importance of both king and rook. One square diagonal movement, as many squares in straight lines as possible. If sailboat is captured, you lose both and the points for both. I can see that. Otherwise why change it?

  18. Is the sailboat only a sailboat to disallow castling? I don't see why it couldn't just be a rook.

  19. Wait, it’s (chu-too-ru-gee)
    And not (chah-to-rah-jee)?

  20. Wait so if only double and triple checks give points, then regular checks do nothing?

  21. Too confusing for my 3 brain cells to handle.

  22. @TripleSGames It's Chaturanga, not Chaturaji.

  23. Why is the queen replaced with the boat

  24. 0:45 put ur pawn at b3 and bishop to b2 and then put the bishop to c3 to probably checkmate the opponent

  25. 02:06 In this example:

    Red wins with 10 points.

    Yellow, the only remaining player has 3 points.

    Clearly, there's more than 7 points available on the board – I do not understand?

  26. What if you reveal a check by a third party's piece? Who, if anyone, gets the points?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *