Keyword Q&A
[ Play Chess Games ]


Keyword Query: Play Chess Games
Interpretation:
Okay, I get that you want to play games of Chess ... What you didn't specify was how or where -

Online, or on your computer?

Against a computer opponent, or human-vs-human?

So, we'll cover the different types here - all decent stuff, no ropey games.

Instant Chess

Overview:
Free to play, Online Game(s), Human-vs-Human.

If you're after a playing chess against other humans, for free, then InstantChess.com offers a ready-supply of opponents, from 147 different countries.

My first experience of InstantChess.com was, well, an instant game of Chess - I picked myself a nickname, clicked "Start Game" and, within seconds, I was doing battle (the actual game is the one you can see, in the above video clip).

InstantChess.com does have a paid option, for which you get to analyze potential opponents, among other details ... But, if you're not fussed and want to take on all-comers, you're good to go, for free.


SparkChess

Overview:
Free to play, Online Game, Human-vs-Computer.

Should you prefer to play chess games online, for free, but against a Computer opponent - instead of another human - then SparkChess offers a neat environment and good playability, with 3 levels of difficulty to choose.

There is a fourth level - Guru - but for that you need to pay to download their premium software version (which you play on your computer).

The paid version does offer a 2D View, whereas the 3D version doesn't. You also get additional analysis tools with the paid version.

The free version of SparkChess is very good for beginners, as you get the ever-useful highlighted squares, which help you learn how the Pawns and Pieces move.

However, if you're looking to study chess seriously, my money went into Fritz 12 and I've never regretted it.


WinBoard

Overview:
Free (Download), PC Software, Human-vs-Computer, Human-vs-Human.

If you prefer to play chess chess games on your computer, but aren't yet ready to purchase a training tool like Fritz 12; or, you don't have the correct version of Microsoft Windows; you'll find WinBoard will give you a fun game.

The Chessboard and gameplay are all customizable, with many options for setting it up more to your liking.


Chess Titans

Overview:
Microsoft Windows Game, Human-vs-Computer, Human-vs-Human.

Another one where you can play chess games for free - but there's a catch ...

Whether you get to play Chess Titans, depends on your computer having the correct version of Microsoft Windows.

Apparently, Windows XP's Service Pack 3 comes with Chess Titans, but thereafter you need either Windows Vista or Windows 7 ... and even then, it's not available on all versions - it's excluded from Windows Vista Starter and Windows Vista Home Basic.

If you do have access to Chess Titans, it's worth exploring if you're a beginner who's looking to learning the basics, such as how the Pawns and Pieces move.

Beyond that, it's more-or-less just a leisure-time game.


Fritz 12

Overview:
Chess Training Software, Human-vs-Computer, Human-vs-Human.

Now then, if you don't just want to play chess games, but want to train and learn and practice so you get better, then you'll want Chess Training Software like the very capable Fritz 12.

You don't just get a computer opponent to play against, you also get a suite of training and analysis tools.

In addition, the DVD-ROM that comes with the package contains a series of video tutorials for beginners, presented by an English chap, IM Andrew Martin.

It costs about US$60, but it'll last you well through from total beginner to elite Chess Player level, if you wish to take your Chess Training that far. That's value for money, eh?


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