gnushogi: We know the lion by his claw

gnugo gave me a shudder because it looked and behaved so much like my mortal enemy gnuchess. Seeing gnushogi is like catching a doppelgänger.


Shogi, in case you are not familiar with it, is also known as Japanese chess and is probably famous for allowing captured pieces to return to the board in the service of the captor. It’s not an easy game to master, possibly because it has (in my opinion) a more complex arrangement than the traditional chess game.

Which means I am hopeless at it. A friend tried to teach me more than once, but he was quite skilled and I was more fascinated by the kanji written on each piece. I appreciate pictures and colors, you see. 🙄

I will leave it to you to learn the rules and strategies, and speak to the gnushogi text client only. Of which, I must admit, I have no particular love for.

I complained about gnuchess almost a year ago, and to be honest, I have the same critique of gnushogi. It’s not only obvious that one was built from the other, but that they both suffer from the same faults.

Controls are obtuse coordinate sets. The board is not labeled. You have to ask to see it. The game updates by scrolling, but only provides a numbered move, and its results. I could go on, but I said most of this a year ago.

I understand that the program is intended as a backend for the XShogi application, but that only reinforces my belief that it’s not really intended to be used as a console game. And if it was, its designers did a terrible job.

No matter. Games like gnushogi and gnugo, and even gnuchess, if I must be honest, are probably better played on a real board, rather than fighting an uncomfortable interface or a dense display. At least until something better comes along. … 😉

2 thoughts on “gnushogi: We know the lion by his claw

  1. Pingback: Bonus: A short score of games | Inconsolation

  2. Pingback: Bonus: A short score of games | Linux Admins

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