Shogi Pieces Size Guide

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When you’re playing shogi, it’s important to use the correct pieces.

Shogi is a Japanese game that is played on a board with nine squares down and nine across.

There are 16 different pieces in the game, each with its own unique movement.

In This Blog Post – We’ll take a look at the different pieces and their size relative to one another. We’ll also provide a guide on how to choose the right piece for your next move.

Shogi Pieces Size Guide

There are 20 pieces each player gets at the beginning of each Shogi game.

Shogi Japanese game
Shogi Japanese traditional game

These 20 pieces comprised is:

  • 9 pawns
  • 2 knights
  • 2 lances
  • 2 gold generals
  • 2 silver generals
  • 1 rook
  • 1 bishop
  • and 1 king

Unlike the commonly known chess pieces which are 3D modeled, Shogi pieces are flat and adopt a pentagonal shape with one end of the piece being flat shaped and the other side is sharp where two ends meet like a triangle and the names of the piece written on top.

Shogi Pieces Sizes

PieceHeightWidthThicknessAngle
King32 mm28.7 mm9.7 mm81deg
Rook, Bishop31 mm27.7 mm9.3 mm81 deg
Gold General, Silver General30 mm26.7 mm8.8 mm81 deg
Knight29 mm25.5 mm8.3 mm81 deg
Lance28 mm23.5 mm8.0 mm81 deg
Pawn27 mm22.5 mm7.75 mm81 deg
Shogi Pieces Sizes

There is no queen in the Shogi pieces like in international chess.

Throughout this guide you will notice that there are pieces in Shogi that share the same name as international chess pieces but they do not make the same kind of movement as the international chess pieces.

Wooden Board
Yellow Mountain Imports Shogi Japanese Chess Game Set
$52.99

The Yellow Mountain Imports Shogi Japanese Chess Game Set is a comprehensive kit for playing Shogi, the traditional Japanese chess game. It includes a wooden board with drawers for piece storage and comes with the traditional Koma playing pieces. This set offers an authentic and enjoyable Shogi experience.

We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you. Thanks!
02/08/2024 10:08 am GMT

The Shogi game board is not colored in black and white blocks like the international chess game board, the Shogi game board just simply has square blocks on it that have the same color.

The Pawn

Shogi Pawn - piece size
Shogi Pawn

Size: 27mm x 22.5mm

The Shogi pawn piece does not share the same movement as the international pawn piece.

The Shogi pawn piece can only move in a single straight direction and only advance by one block ahead of it.

Unlike the international pawn piece which can advance by two blocks in a single direction and can also attack diagonally if there is a piece diagonally placed next to it.

The Shogi pawn piece can only attack in the direction it moves in and cannot perform any diagonal attacks on the opponent’s chess pieces which gives it less freedom of movement compared to the international pawn piece.

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The promoted pawn piece has much more freedom of movement, it can only advance by one block in either right whether diagonally, horizontally, or vertically but cannot move back in a diagonal direction.

The pawn is placed in the front row, which is the third row from the bottom of the player’s board view occupying all blocks.

The Gold General

Shogi Gold General piece
Shogi Gold General

Size: 30mm x 26.7mm

The gold general can only advance by one block in either way whether diagonally, horizontally, or vertically but cannot move back in a diagonal direction.

The gold general is placed on the first bottom row from the player’s board view on blocks 4 and 6 respectively.

The gold general can’t gain promotion.

The Silver General

Shogi Silver General - piece size
Shogi Silver General

Size: 30mm x 26.7mm

The silver general can only advance forward by one block either straight or diagonally and can only move backward in a diagonal direction.

The promoted silver general can only advance by one block in either way whether diagonally, horizontally, or vertically but upon promotion, it loses its privilege to move backward in a diagonal direction and can only move backward in a horizontal direction.

The silver general is placed on the first bottom row from the player’s board view on blocks 3 and 7 respectively.

The Lance

Shogi Lance - piece size
Shogi Lance

Size: 28mm x 23.5mm

The lance can only advance forward by a maximum of 1 or 2 blocks in a horizontal direction and cannot move backward.

The promoted lance can only advance by one block in either way whether diagonally, horizontally, or vertically but cannot move back in a diagonal direction.

The lance is placed on the first bottom row from the player’s board view on both ends of the row respectively.

The Knights

Shogi Knights - piece size
Shogi Knights

Size: 29mm x 25.5mm

The Shogi knight piece does not share the same movement as the international knight piece.

The Shogi knight piece can only jump in a diagonal direction in the next column besides it either left or right and only advance by strictly three blocks ahead in that column of it.

The Shogi knight can eliminate a piece in one of the blocks it can advance to but can’t eliminate pieces that are in blocks that it can’t advance in even if the piece is next to it.

Unlike the international knight piece which can advance by two blocks in either a vertical or horizontal direction then by one block on its left, right, upward, and downward to complete its movement including backward.

The Shogi Knight can’t move backward.

The promoted knight can only advance by one block in either way whether diagonally, horizontally, or vertically but upon promotion, it loses its privilege to move backward in a diagonal direction and can only move backward in a horizontal direction.

The knight is placed on the first bottom row from the player’s board view on blocks 2 and 8 on the row respectively.

The Bishop

Shogi bishop piece
Shogi Bishop

Size: 31mm x 27.7mm

The bishop piece can only move in a diagonal direction in an upward or downward direction from where it is positioned and is not limited on how many blocks it can advance in either of the diagonal directions.

The promoted bishop is called the dragon-horse and still regains the diagonal movement that allows it to advance upward or downward by however available blocks in the diagonal plane from where it’s positioned but also gets to move in a straight vertical and horizontal movement but by only one block.

The bishop is placed on the second bottom row from the player’s board view from the left on the second block.

The Rook

Shogi rook - piece size
Shogi Rook

Size: 31mm x 27.7mm

The rook can only advance in an orthogonal direction which is in a vertical or horizontal direction by however many blocks it can in the vertical or horizontal plane based on where it is placed on the board.

The promoted rook is called the dragon king and still regains the vertical and horizontal movement that allows it to advance upward or downward by however available blocks in the diagonal plane from where its positioned.

It also gets to move in a diagonal movement but by only one block.

The rook is placed on the second bottom row from the player’s board view from the right on the second block.

The King

Shogi King piece board
Shogi King

Size: 32mm x 28.7mm

The king can advance in orthogonal, vertical, horizontal, and diagonally by only one block.

It can repeat the same movements in a backward direction as well.

The king is placed on the first bottom row from the player’s board view from the right on the 5th block which is the center block.

The king can’t gain promotion.

Wooden Board
Yellow Mountain Imports Shogi Japanese Chess Game Set
$52.99

The Yellow Mountain Imports Shogi Japanese Chess Game Set is a comprehensive kit for playing Shogi, the traditional Japanese chess game. It includes a wooden board with drawers for piece storage and comes with the traditional Koma playing pieces. This set offers an authentic and enjoyable Shogi experience.

We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you. Thanks!
02/08/2024 10:08 am GMT

Conclusion

The Shogi Pieces Size Guide is a useful resource for anyone who wants to learn the basics of how shogi pieces are measured.

Anyone can use this guide since it doesn’t matter what size you are or whether your fingers are fat or thin.

The article discusses all eight chess piece measurements: in height (from tallest to shortest), width and length.

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