Lesson 7: Draw Games
Occasionally (but not often), shogi games end in draws with neither sente nor gote winning. There are two ways to draw a game: Repetition and Impasse.
Draw by Repetition
In Japanese, Sennichite (???), which means Thousand Day Moves. Repetition means the same position happens four times in the same game. In order for two positions to be considered the same, the position on the board and the pieces in hand must be the same, and it must be the same player to move. The only exception is that repetition by perpetual check is illegal. If repetition of four identical positions happens with perpetual check, the checking player loses.
Draw by Impasse
In Japanese, Jishogi (???), which means “Held Shogi.” Impasse occurs when both kings enter each other’s camps. Upon both kings entering the camps, the players may agree to an impasse. In impasse, the outcome is determined by the material each player has. The King isn’t counted. Major pieces (Rook and Bishop) are 5 points, and everything else is 1 point, whether it’s promoted or not. If a player has less than 24 points, he loses. If both players have over 24 points, it’s a draw.
For a visual explanation of Impasse, watch Hidetchi’s video?How to Play Shogi (??) -Lesson #16- Impasse.