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Chess piece

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In chess, each player has one of two equivalent sets of pieces (each a different color) at the beginning of the game. Each set has six types of pieces, each with its own pattern of movement:

Other pieces, not used in conventional chess but used in chess variants or certain kinds of chess problems, are known as fairy pieces. For a list, see fairy chess piece.

Physical chess pieces used to play a game are usually three-dimensional figurines, taller than they are wide (a set of pieces designed for a board with squares two inches wide will typically have a king around 3.75 inches tall). They are available in a variety of designs, with the most usual known as the "Staunton design", named after the 19th cenutry English chess player, Howard Staunton, being designed by Nathaniel Cook[?].

For games played at the top level, pieces made of wood are usual, but for lower-level games or very large tournaments, plastic sets are more normal.

Some small magnetic sets, designed to be compact, have pieces more like those used in Shogi and Xiangqi - each piece being a similar flat token, with a symbol drawn on it to show which piece it is.

See Also: Lewis chessmen, Charlemagne chessmen[?], Rules of chess.

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