Yury Markushin

Today I will be doing a review of an online chess playing website called There are many websites that allow you to play online chess.

What’s so special about this one? Well, let’s take a closer look from the inside and find out.

When you login to the ChessLive, the interface looks nice and clean. You can look for the game with specified parameters such as time control, time increment and opponent’s strength. The time control can be adjusted from 1 to 25 minutes, increment from 1 to 15 seconds and opponent’s strength from 1500 to 2600.

Everything looks clear and bluish (I like this color scheme, you have probably noticed it already from layout).

Searching for Game

Once you have created a game, it appears in the chart below. Since I haven’t played any of the games yet I’m assigned a provisional rating of 1500. That seems a little bit too high, most servers give you a standard 1200. The chess players are denoted as chess pieces by the relative ‘weight’. For example, 1500-1600 is a pawn, 1600-1800 is a knight, 1800-2000 is a bishop, 2000-2200 is a rook, etc. I must agree with ChessLive team, I also usually favor bishops to knights (except for dead closed positions)

Playing Environment

When the game is started the chess board page appears. Everything works smoothly, without any lag or freezing (at least for me). The board and pieces are big enough and easy to distinguish. Clocks are also fairly visible. Chess pieces make cool clicking sounds when the move is made. There is also some special ringing sound for captures.

That’s useful for some, who like to browse the web while waiting for the opponent’s move. You can also play with the account’s settings and change the chess board theme to brown, lilac (purple!) and gray.

Training Environment

Not only you can play on but you can also improve your tactics skills. This section however, is only available for VIP members. Thanks to Mr. David Kaufmann, I was able to take a look at it for the review purposes. There are various possibilities for training as you can see below:

This is one of the tactics problems, can you find mate in 2 for White?

White to move and mate in 2

I don’t typically play bullet (1 minute time control) games, but I did it here for testing purposes. You can see the game below. Don’t judge it, as Rashid Nezhmetdinov stated He who analyses blitz is stupid.

Verdict is a new, awesome website for playing chess online. It already has around 14,000 registered members, so finding a game is not a problem. The interface is clean, responsive and easy to use. The tactics exercises are also a valuable resource for those who wants to improve.

I was a little surprised with a small range of time controls, it can only be adjusted to 25 minutes max per side. Some people like playing longer chess games, so adding 30, 45 and 90 minutes controls makes a lot of sense. Other than that, the site is pretty awesome!

I recommend you to check the out, play couple of game and leave some comments below!

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Updated 01.13.2024


David Kaufmann:
Good afternoon dear Alex. You will find players with 2.000 and also International Masters. They are all starting and gain Elo in Chess Live is not easy because there are very good players.All the best and hope you enjoy Chess Live.
Alex H.:
Congrats on a good chess playing site. The only problem I see not enough high rated players. I loggin and the highest rated person was 1600. I'm 2160 FIDE myself.
David Kaufmann:
Good afternoon. Now, we disabled for a month the engine because we would like to incorporate this functionality in games, live games and also in a new training system that we are developing. We would be really grateful if you can test all the features and give us your feedback so we can improve. All the best,
John Tennon:
It says that a premium membership includes an analysis engine function. Is it worth paying for? I mean is it a strong engine on a mainframe computer or just a CRAFTY?The reason I'm asking, since it was not covered in the review. :sigh:
David Kaufmann:
Good afternoon dear Ketish. At the moment that's the situation but in the following weeks we are going to let chess players see and download their games for free.All the best and hope you enjoy Chess Live :)
I played a game there, then I tried to save it and it did not let me! Only VIP members can save games?