The Damned Chessmen are netherworld-crafted chess pieces which appear in Devil May Cry 3. They move of their own accord, and whether the game of chess is based on these demons, or vice versa, is said to be unknown.
The Damned Pawn is the weakest of the Chessmen, but often appears in great numbers that can allow it to overwhelm its enemy. Like a real pawn, it can only move forward one space (two spaces on its first movement), but attacks by swiftly uncrossing its swords to the spaces immediately diagonal to it. If it reaches the other side of the Damned Chess Board, it will be promoted to either a Damned Knight, Damned Bishop, Damned Rook, or Damned Queen. Fake Pawns also appear throughout the tower.
The Damned Knight is faster and stronger than the pawn, but still not much of a threat. Like a real knight, it can only move in an L-shaped motion. It jumps very high during this movement, and spears the ground when it lands. It can attack during this movement, or by swinging its horn at nearby enemies.
The Damned Bishop is slow, but its magical skill makes it a potent support piece.  Like a real bishop, it can only move diagonally. It can summon a ring of fire which it focuses into arrows and shoots down its lanes of movement, or it can summon a small vortex of wind that heals it and nearby pieces. However, it is considered more dangerous than the Rook (see below), because the fireballs it shoots will spin around it at first damaging the player if close enough or trying long combos against him. Fake Bishops also appear throughout the tower.
The Damned Rook is also slow, but is very powerful and can summon other pieces. Like a real rook, it can only move horizontally or vertically, but it can also switch places with the Damned King when it castles. It attacks by opening up its body and firing lasers down its lanes of movement.
The Damned Queen is the most powerful of all the Chessmen, and so she only appears on the Damned Chess Board. Like a real queen, she can move in any direction, diagonal or straight, and is very swift in her movements. She attacks while she moves, making her very dangerous, but she lets out a cackle before moving that serves as a warning, and her path is illuminated with violet smoke. She will let out a groan once defeated.
The Damned King is the most important piece because he controls all the others. Like a real king, defeating it will end the game, and so he only appears on the Damned Chess Board. If attacked, he will attempt to castle and switch places with any Damned Rook. After castling, or if no rook is on the board, the King's head will swing back, and it will reveal a red sphere that casts an area attack, damaging anyone less than two spaces away from it.
Interestingly, the Damned King bears an obvious resemblance to Mundus (especially with its three eyes). This would fit with his title as the "Devil Emperor".
They appear infrequently throughout the game, primarily inhabiting the Damned Chess Board in the Netherworld, where they play out a game of chess against Dante, (and Vergil in the Special Edition.) On this chessboard, they only move one at a time in order of weakest to strongest, and are invulnerable when not moving or attacking. All of the pieces have blue parts on them, which glow red whenever they attack. One main objective when fighting them is to rid the board of all Pawns and Rooks, as the King will more than often castle to evade damage should any rooks on the board exist.
Concerning combat, Damned Chess Pieces should be fought with strategic approaches with hard hitting and blunt weapons, as edged and fast weapons like the Rebellion and Ebony & Ivory will only become something of a hindrance as the pieces bear much endurance, being made of stone, and quickly unleashed power with ranges of effect is a key factor in the battle to wear them down quicker. Devil Arms like Cerberus and Beowulf, and heavy artillery Guns such as the Spiral and the Kalina Ann will prove much effective against them. One should also have their reflexes keen and their observance quick, as Chess Pieces will increase in aggression and activity as the battle goes on.
Concerning Styles, it is best that the player have mastered at least one Style.
With Devil Arms, attacking is best in the Chess Piece's blind spots; one should also not forget about the Bishop's spinning fireball spell. Quick attacks work greater here, as they reduce the risk of getting caught off guard, but advanced players can find time to unleash more punishing attacks.
With Guns, it would be highly advisable that the Gunslinger style be mastered and having heavy power guns like the Spiral and the Kalina Ann be put to use, as Damned Pawns demolish in 3-5 hits when the pair is used successfully. When used together, despite being slow, they also have a switch out trick, allowing Dante to consistently fire a steady stream of blows. Safe recesses when Chess Pieces finish attacking can allow Dante to use more intricate techniques, such as Refractor, Trick Shot, and Hysteric.
All pieces are highly vulnerable to the Royalguard Style Royal Release attack.
Chess is an ancient strategy-based board game invented in India. It has long been regarded as a "game of kings", and is considered one of the most difficult games to master.
- ↑ Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening, Lesser Demons File — Damned Chessmen: "Netherworld-crafted chess pieces. Whether the idea of the human version of chess come from these pieces or the other way around is unknown."
- ↑ Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening, Lesser Demons File — Damned Pawn: "Netherworld-crafted chess pieces. The pieces themselves move of their own accord. The pawn, although weak in strength, is able to win battles with sheer numbers."
- ↑ Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening, Lesser Demons File — Damned Knight: "Netherworld-crafted chess pieces. The pieces themselves move of their own accord. The knight has great mobility and jumping ability, which it uses to trample enemies."
- ↑ Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening, Lesser Demons File — Damned Bishop: "Netherworld-crafted chess pieces. The pieces themselves move of their own accord. The bishop uses its fearsome magic power in the form of a magic arrow to snipe foes."
- ↑ Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening, Lesser Demons File — Damned Rook: "Netherworld-crafted chess pieces. The pieces themselves move of their own accord. The rook, in addition to having high attack power, can produce other chess pieces."
- ↑ Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening, Lesser Demons File — Damned Queen: "Netherworld-crafted chess pieces. The pieces themselves move of their own accord. The queen has both great mobility and power. She is regarded as the strongest piece."
- ↑ Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening, Lesser Demons File — Damned King: "Netherworld-crafted chess pieces. The pieces themselves move of their own accord. The king, and rightly so, controls all other pieces. Defeat him and the others will fall."
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