When you pose the question “What is the quintessential board game?”, most people would say Chess. Chess is a timeless board game that features a carefully engineered blend of complexity through the combination of simple mechanics. This allows the game to be easy to learn but hard to master; a high skill ceiling is a necessary component to all great board games. Chess has grown alongside humanity for thousands of years, rules and strategies constantly evolving, to modern chess as it stands today. In recent years, the advent of AI has revolutionized the way chess is played, making today a very historically significant time for chess. Read more about the history of chess on the history page.
“Anyways, enough yapping! Everyone’s heard of chess, but how does it work?”
Chess is turn-based, played between two opposing players, each who control black pieces or white pieces. The objective is to checkmate the opponent’s king, while defending your own. There are 6 pieces for you to crush your opponent with: the pawn, rook, bishop, knight, queen and king. Read more on the fundamentals page.
People of all ages, countries, and languages set their differences aside to indulge in their mutual enjoyment of chess every day, through online chess websites. Most online games require low latency for smooth gameplay, which forces players to connect to region local servers, in other words, for example, people playing GTA V in the Midwest will always play with other players from the Midwest. Chess on the other hand, is so lightweight that it can be played on devices with little to no computing power and very slow internet connections. When you queue for a random opponent online, there is no region-locking, meaning you are playing with people across the globe! My friends and I love to play guess the country based on our opponents displayed flag. Also, it is not uncommon to see people playing chess in public spaces! This is a great way to build a community with those around you. Chess is a great tool to bridge the social gap between older generations and younger generations as well.
It’s no secret that playing chess is all about what’s in between your ears. I like to think of chess as going to the gym for your brain. Studies have shown that playing chess uses both sides of the brain, and improves visual information-processing, decision-making, and pattern recognition. Behavioral studies have also shown that playing chess improves memory and ability to focus as well, and even reduces your risk of dementia. Additionally, these studies have found that playing chess can have profound improvement on a child’s cognitive development.