How to Play Army Chess / Luzhanqi / 陸戰棋

Luzhanqi (Land Battle Chess), also known as Jun Qi (Army Chess), is a two-player board game from China. It bears many similarities to Dou Shou Qi (Animal Chess) and the Western board game Stratego.


The Board

The board is composed of various terrain features that affect the movement of the pieces.



Luzhanqi_-_Soldier Station
Soldier Station, “Bingzhan”, 兵站

A normal space. Pieces can move on or off these spots and can attack or be captured.

Campsite, “Xingying”, 行营

A piece in this space is “encamped” and cannot be attacked in this space.

Headquarters, “Dayingben”, 大营本

The Flag is held in one of these two headquarter spaces.

Luzhanqi_-_Front Line
Front Line, “Qianxian”, 前线

These mark the boundary between both sides. Pieces do not land on these spaces, they pass over them.

Mountains, “Shanjie”, 山界

These are obstacles that cannot be moved onto. Pieces must move around them over the Front Line.


Pieces can move any number of playing spaces along a railroad in a straight line, as long as it is not obstructed by another piece. Engineer pieces can move around the railroad corners as well.


Pieces move from one space to another along these roads.


The Pieces

Luzhanqi_-_Field Marshall

Field Marshall, “Siling”, 司令
Rank 9


General, “Junzhang”, 军长
Rank 8

Luzhanqi_-_Lieutenant General

Lieutenant General, “Shizhang”, 师长
Rank 7

Luzhanqi_-_Brigadier General

Brigadier, “Luzhang”, 旅长
Rank 6


Colonel, “Tuanzhang”, 团长
Rank 5


Major, “Yingzhang”, 营长
Rank 4


Captain, “Lianzhang”, 连长
Rank 3

Luzhanqi_-_Platoon Commander

Platoon Commander, “Paizhang”, 排长
Rank 2


Engineer, “Gongbing”, 工兵
Rank 1


Bomb, “Zhadan”, 炸弹


Landmine, “Dilei”, 地雷


Flag, “Junqi”, 军旗



Players start by arranging their pieces upright on their half of the board, with the markings of their pieces facing towards them, invisible to the opponent. The flag is placed in one of the two headquarters and cannot move. Bombs cannot be placed on the front line (the sixth rank).



Each player alternates making one move per turn. The goal is to win the game by capturing the opponent’s flag.

When a piece attacks an opposing piece, the piece with the lower rank is removed (“1” being the highest rank and “9” being the lowest). This is determined by a referee. The referee removes the destroyed piece without revealing their identities. Therefore, memorizing what occurred to what piece helps narrow down what the other piece might possibly be.

If there is no referee, then every time there is an attack the players must temporarily reveal the identity of the two pieces to determine the outcome.

Any piece on a campsite is safe and cannot be attacked.

The following pieces have special features and abilities:

Engineer_-_This is the only piece that can move around corners on the railroad. They can turn as many corners as they like. Engineers can also capture landmines without being destroyed.

Bombs_-_Bombs can capture any other piece, but is also destroyed in the process, thus removed from the board. Any piece that attacks a bomb is also destroyed and removed along with the bomb.

Landmines – Any piece that attacks a landmine (except for engineers) is destroyed along with the landmine and are both removed.


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