What Happens In Chess If Only Kings Are Left?

What Happens In Chess If Only Kings Are Left?

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The game of chess can be a very competitive game. It’s a game where 2 intellectual minds will literally battle each other over a 64 square board with alternating colors.

It has been one of the most popular games in history traveling across countries and cultures. It’s where kings and queens battle for dominance and the victor rules the board. 

There have been countless games and tournaments played where it has received international attention, while it is also easy enough where the common man can play. 

You don’t need to be of a certain income level to play, and you don’t need to have the most expensive chess set possible to find a willing opponent. However, finding a mind to battle against is always a new and intriguing opportunity. 

But as you play the game, and you each are capturing each other’s pieces, what happens when only the kings are left?

Once both players are down to their kings (or even kings and one other piece) the game will almost always end in a draw. If only the kings are left the game will always end in a draw. 

Since kings can only move one space all around them it is not possible for one king to trap the other king by itself. 

Your kings are the most valuable pieces on your chess board. They represent the kingdom you are fighting for. If they fall, then your entire kingdom is lost no matter how many pieces are left on the board. 

The king is guarded and surrounded by his 15 other pieces on the squares surrounding him. The king is the one who determines the winner and the loser of the chess match. 

If you’re in a position to possibly capture your opponent’s king, it’s a chance you definitely should take.

As you are playing, generally your pawns are captured and taken first. They don’t hold as much importance, so it’s not too big of a deal if you lose them. They are generally the first on the battlefield to fight against your opponent, therefore they are captured quickly. 

The pieces in the back are generally used more slowly, but they are still very useful as the game progresses. As the game continues, you start to lose more and more pieces. And you may be starting to sweat a little as you figure out what your next move is to be. 

Hopefully as you’re losing pieces, you’re also gaining your opponent’s pieces causing him or her to feel the burn of losing pieces as well. However, what happens if you each have cleared the board of each other’s pieces except the king? 

How does that affect the game?

If there’s only the kings left on the board, then it’s called a draw or a tie. You no longer have any option that’s available to put your opponent’s king into checkmate. 

You both played well, and you were able to capture the other’s pieces, but there’s clearly no other available pieces to take. You could do the 50 move rule where if there’s no piece captured after a total of 50 moves have been placed, then it’s an automatic draw. 

The other option is that either player can call for a draw at any time. Either way, the game is over when only the kings are left. 

So whether you play very competitively, or just a friendly game between friends and acquaintances, if there’s only kings left in the game, then it’s a draw and you know you have met your equal in the game. 

Chess can be very intriguing and can help you expand your mind as you plan ahead your future moves. But now you know, when only kings are left, it’s a draw!

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Can You Checkmate With Only Pawns?

If you look at a general game of chess, the pawns are thought of as the weakest players. In the game, the pawn can only move one square at a time except for the first move. Since they are generally the first piece to be played, they are the first piece to fall. 

They can only capture pieces that are in a diagonal square where an adjacent opponent’s piece may be. They are thought to be easily expendable in the endgame of chess. 

However, even with this chess piece and its weaknesses, is it possible that you can checkmate with only pawns?

When I first heard this question, my immediate answer was, “Who would be crazy enough to allow a pawn that opportunity?” The pawns, in my limited experience, are generally gone by the time the game is halfway done. 

Pawns are likened to a peasant in a fiefdom. They are mere foot soldiers who are easily expendable in the long run. So how could this even be thought of as a possibility in the long run of the game of chess? 

What power does a pawn have that could possibly make it able to capture a king?

So can you checkmate with a pawn? Is this even part of the equation you need to think of when playing chess? 

You actually can checkmate a king with a pawn! Although this is rare it can happen. 

Now before I go further let me explain my answer, you may determine that the pawn isn’t as worthless as originally thought. 

The first way a pawn may trap a king into a checkmate, is to promote your pawns to a queen who then will have the opportunity to have new powers to bring the king to checkmate. The other option is to checkmate the king with your actual pawn. 

Now with how each piece is made, the second option isn’t very likely to happen, but the first is very feasible.

Now consider how a pawn moves. It can only move straight forward except when capturing on a diagonal square directly in front of it. So for the pawn to be able to capture the king, the pawn must be on a diagonal square directly in front of it. That will put it in check. Then to put it in checkmate, the king must also not have any option of moving or taking the pawn without being killed. 

Now, this is a very difficult position to be able to achieve, so it’s not a move that’s generally used.

Now the other option is to promote your pawns to a queen. You can promote a pawn if it can successfully reach the other end of the board without being captured. It can then be exchanged for either a queen, rook, bishop, or knight, whichever the player may choose. 

Using this new piece with its moves, you have a much better opportunity of putting the opponent’s king into checkmate. It gives the game a whole new dimension to the average pawn. 

It now puts the pawns into valuable positions to be used to a greater advantage. If you choose a rook and there’s nothing else blocking your piece from the king, that automatically puts you in the position to declare a check!

Now all of this is highly unusual, but games can be won and lost all due to a pawn. Knowing what I do now concerning pawns, I’ll be using this knowledge to my advantage and hopefully astound my next partner in the game to win. 

Whether you’re able to put your opponent’s king into checkmate with only the pawns, or you are able to promote your pawns into your choice of weapon to be unleashed in your arsenal against your opponent, you now know that it is entirely possible for the king to be put into checkmate with only your pawns. 

The pawns are no longer just expendable pieces, but can become valuable if they can survive the trek across the board to gain all nes powers and help you win the game!

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