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The Chess Variant Pages

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H. G. Muller wrote on 2020-05-31 UTC

I used XBoard, which I hacked to save all the PGN renderings of its pieces to separate files. XBoard works with external SVG piece images, and has a fall-back scheme where it first replaces a piece which it cannot find the image file for in the user-specified pieceImageDirectory by a file White/BlackTile.svg, before trying other options. So if you let it use a direcory that only contains a file with a blank Shogi tile, it will use it for all the pieces. XBoard works by internally rendering the SVG to raster images of the current square size, and uses those to draw on any board it wants to display. I just intercepted the produced raster images, and let it save those to PNG files.

And then it has an option -inscriptions, which can contain an arbitrary unicode string, where the individual or pairs of characters are printed over the pieces. So I just copy-pasted all the kanji from the Wikipedia pages to make such a string, set XBoard to the desired square size, et voila! Then I had to rename all the saved PNG files, so I could do the next batch. Still took me more than a day to get them all; I had to tweek the kanji-inscription procedure for some of the pieces to prevent the kanji from overlapping; especially the 'general' kanji was written higher than the others.

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