Double Chariots

The Chariot is the most powerful attacker. Checkmate with two Chariots is rather simple when your opponent has nothing to shield the check. A common situation is: you have one Chariot controlling your opponent’s 2nd rank, and checkmate his King on the baseline (or on the palace top rank). In the left diagram below, Red wins at once with R1+4 as the Black King is unable to step forward owing to the presence of the other ‘intercepting’ Chariot. Incidentally, a Red Pawn at B71 would serve the same purpose.

Now look at the other side of the same board: the Black Chariot at the heart of the palace is controlling Red’s 2nd rank as well as the central file, immobilizing the enemy King completely. If it were his turn, Black could checkmate with the other Chariot on the baseline, or on the 4th file.

If Black moves first, checkmate with R6+4 or R6=4.

Red can’t win in this example, he should settle for a draw by trading off a Chariot.

The Staggered Chariots

A checkmate combination in which every move is a check is called ‘Serial Checkmate’ (连将杀). One should note that if the two Chariots are lined up along the same file, Serial Checkmate on the wing is not possible as one Chariot will be obstructing the other. This fact is at times critical when both sides are competing for speed in the offensive. Therefore, this double-Chariot checkmate is given the name ‘Staggered Chariots’ (双车错).

In the diagram on the right, Red has both his Chariots piled up on the edge. A serial checkmate is not possible in this situation. You may click the Auto button, set the speed to 2 seconds, and watch on. Red needs one move to stagger his Chariots, but he can’t afford to do that or he will be immediately checkmated by Black with R6+1. Well, Red should be happy that he still can save the day by exchanging a Chariot at the end.

On the next page, we shall examine some common attacking tactics employing the Staggered Chariots checkmate.