10th February 2020

Selected by Michael McDowell

Stephen Emmerson

The Problemist Supplement, 2010


Mate in 2
Maos c6, g8
Vaos d6, e4; h3
Paos c8, f1, g7

This week’s problem uses pieces developed from Chinese Chess. The Mao and Pao have equivalents in the Chinese game, while the Vao is derived from the Pao. The Mao moves like a knight, but is not a leaper. It moves first one square laterally then one diagonally; if the lateral square is occupied the Mao cannot move on. The Mao at g8 in the diagram can move to e7, but not to f6 or h6. The Pao and Vao move like a rook and bishop respectively, but to capture must jump over a hurdle. A Pao standing at a1 with a piece (of either colour) at a5 could move along the rank or to a2, a3 or a4, and capture any enemy piece which stopped at a6, a7 or a8.