What is chess? According to the Oxford dictionary “a board game for two players, the object of which is to put the opponent’s king under a direct attack, leading to checkmate”.
In other words chess is a board game in which the main idea is to destroy your opponents army and finally to checkmate the king. If you are completely new to chess I recommend reading Basic Chess Rules: Easy Guide to Learn Chess article first.What makes chess so unique from the rest of the board games is the fact that there are almost infinite number of positions that can arise.
ELO is the most popular rating system which is used to calculate chess strength of players in FIDE, USCF and the majority of chess federations and online chess websites (like ICC or Yahoo! chess). The higher ELO rating is the stronger a player is. In ELO system, a player moves from one class to another (say from class C to class B) for every 200 points earned. If the difference between ELO ratings of two players is 200 points, the strongest player will win about 75% of games. If the difference between ratings is 400 points, the stronger player will win about 95% of games. If the difference is 600 points the stronger side will most likely win 99.999% of all games. Let’s say somebody with 1400 ELO plays somebody with 2000 ELO. The second one will win all games. Well, except for those drawn in case of tornado or fire…
How it all begins…
Chess is very old and wise game which was invented in India about 2000 years ago. In the very beginning, only Indian kings played this game. Instead of going to war two Indian shahs (kings) just set down with the chess board between them and decided whose land is whose and who is stronger. This way they saved their armies and lives of thousands of innocent people. The game of chess was called the game of kings.
The rules were almost identical to the modern chess. Queen was able to move only one square in each direction. There was no “castle” and “en passant”.
Online chess is fun. Online chess is cool. Online chess is easy to play. But have you ever think about how much time do you spend playing online chess and later wondering why are you not doing well over the board, at real “wooden” chess (or may you be using plastic USCF chess set) somewhere on the Atlantic Open with standard time control? While playing online most people most commonly play so-called quick chess, with time control 10 or 15 minutes for game or even shorter. This kind of chess has NO REAL VALUE for improving your standard time control chess.
Here is a very nice collection of greatest chess players of XX century. If you know well the characters of these players you will easily understand why one or another player is presented the way he is. We all know that Tahl was a great fighter and never accepted (well… almost never) draws. That’s why he is presented in form of boxer with the chess board on a boxing glove. Karpov was famous for his prophylactic moves, so he is shown in from of archer. Smyslov treated chess more like an art than a sport. He is a music composer in this collection. There are total of 13 chess grandmasters in this collection: Karpov, Kotov, Tahl, Botvinik, Pologaevski, Smyslov, Boleslavski, Keres, Spaski, Bronstein, Petrosian, Stein, Taimanov.