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The touch-move rule is a rule of chess.

Details[]

The rule is as follows:

  • If a player touches one or more of their own pieces, they must move the first piece touched that can legally move;
  • If a player touches one or more of the opponent's pieces, they must capture the first piece touched that can be captured with a legal move;
  • If a player touches one or more pieces of each color, they must capture the first enemy piece touched with the first friendly piece touched, or, if this is illegal, move or capture the first piece touched that can be legally moved or captured. If it cannot be determined whether a friendly piece or an enemy piece was touched first, the friendly piece will be considered to have been touched first.
  • If a player intends to castle, they must touch their king first, then a rook. The player is then required to castle on that side, if this is legal. If castling on this side is illegal, the player must make a legal move with their king, which may include castling on the other side.
  • If a player, intending to castle, touches a rook and then their king, they are not allowed to castle and must make a legal move with the rook instead, if possible.

If none of the pieces touched can be moved or captured (a good example is when player has touched their king but all its adjoining squares have been blocked or occupied by the other pieces), then the player will not be obliged to move or capture the piece(s) and is free to make any legal move.

In friendly games, this rule is not often enforced due to its slightly strict nature, even though it is still a rule of chess.

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