Dec 03

Yes, a Circus of Hells, where all clowns go when they dieClick for full image

Scott B Comments: “Every move was checkmate” Sounds like an extremely short game to me.
Published 1970

Actually, that cover IS a classical work of art!I would touch it without protective gloves.I've seen worse. Far, far, worse.Interesting, but I would still read it in public.Middlng: Neither awful nor awfully goodWould not like to be seen reading that!Awful... just awful...That belongs in a gold-lame picture frame!Gah... my eyes are burning! Feels so good!Good Show Sir! (Average: 5.50 out of 10)

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20 Responses to “A Circus of Hells”

  1. Perry Armstrong Says:

    Gee, those two guys must’ve pissed off Roddenberry something shocking!

  2. THX 1138 Says:

    Playing chicken with a dragon? Or playing dragon with a chicken?

  3. fred Says:

    A Flandry book also contained in this omnibus BAEN masterpiece. Robot dragons are always cool but…….BAEN!

  4. Dead Stuff With Big Teeth Says:

    That’s not a dragon. Look at the torso. That’s no rib cage, those are segments. That’s a prawn. A FrankenPrawn taking up sail skating or something.

  5. Bibliomancer Says:

    A Circus of Hells needs a Fireclown

  6. B. Chiclitz Says:

    As with King of Argent we again see a weird conjunction of stupid chess rules and (in the pink sun here) the Mandelbrot Set.

  7. Ray P Says:

    We are all just pieces in one big chess game. Those men are forked.

  8. Dead Stuff With Big Teeth Says:

    @ScottB: there seem to be only six squares…so, yes, a rather short game. I imagine there must be quite a struggle to see who has the first move.

  9. Tat Wood Says:

    If you fold that cruciform up it becomes a cube. Then you can roll a Red Sun and get an extra go. That gets you out of checkmate. If you roll a Seahorse Head you miss a go. Two Little Men in a Nutcracker sends you to the Matachin Tower (do not pass Go, do not collect 200 Drachms) unless you play your Get Out of Gyoll Free card.

    What, you never played Gene Wolfe Monopoly as kids?

  10. Bibliomancer Says:

    A Circus of Hells needs a Juggler.

  11. Anna T. Says:

    It’s not a robot dragon.

    It’s a robotic horse with wings replacing its front legs, meaning it has no choice but to rear back like that, otherwise it would fall over.

    See? MUCH more logical.

  12. A.R.Yngve Says:

    An infernal game of More-Demagogic-Than-Thou where every move was a Trumpmate.

  13. A.R.Yngve Says:

    “Wanna play chess?”
    “Nah… every move is checkmate.”
    “Call of Duty?”

  14. B. Chiclitz Says:

    “Run, Earl! I can tell by the rearing wings that it’s about to drop a robot-dragon-horse-prawn doo-doo on us!!”

  15. Bibliomancer Says:

    A Circus of Hells needs an Elephant.

  16. Perry Armstrong Says:

    @Bibliomancer: alas, teh elephants are VETOED

  17. Dead Stuff With Big Teeth Says:


  18. DaveM Says:

    “Go on, say you’ll put another prawn on the barby, I dare you”

  19. HappyBookworm Says:

    I guess “every move was check” or “there is danger of checkmate at every move” just didn’t sound dire enough.

    I’m pretty sure that the shortest checkmate possible is three moves, but if someone knows better, please correct me.

  20. Jon K. Says:

    @HBw: Actually, there’s a “fool’s mate” that only takes two moves by each player.

    In algebraic notation:

    1. f3 e5
    2. g4?? Qh4#

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