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ChessOps - ROOK and QUEEN Development

The rook and the queen are called major pieces because they always control a minimum of 14 and 21 squares respectively, and because either piece can still force mate when there are no other pieces left on the board except kings.

The word rook comes from the Persian/Arabic 'rukh' (meaning chariot), which European languages adapted via the Italian 'rocco' (meaning tower). Only non-players call it a 'castle'! The rook frequently plays an important role in the struggle for the centre by controlling central files. Always try to place your rook opposite your opponent's queen (ie. on the same file).

The queen should never be brought out too early in the game. The Centre Counter Defence includes an example of premature queen development. In a large number of openings the best square for the queen is the player's K2 (ie. White's e2 and Black's e7), so that one might term Q-K2 as moving to the queen's natural middle game position.

Basics Dev.3 - Castling Basics - Development Overview