It might be a boring late night where you browsed your Facebook and Instagram along with other social networks over 10 times, Googled “interesting subreddits” and even watched some YouTube compilations but couldn’t make your boredom go away. There is one more thing left worth giving a try: play online chess.
Chess is commonly acknowledged as a long, boring game so how exactly it is helping us? The keyword here is “online” chess. I was taught to play chess by my dad when I was around 6-7 years old and had only played against him back in those years. It wasn’t until 2 years ago that I came across online chess and got really hooked (yes, I was bored too). So how is “online” chess fun?
First of all, when playing online you can choose a set time for the game where both sides have equal time to finish the game, if you run out of time you lose. These can be 3, 5 and 10 minutes games which are called blitz. There is also an option of choosing increment time control where each player gets increment in time (usually 2 or 5 seconds) by each move. Short time control makes the game exciting and prevents long thoughts by the opponent. There is also a 1 minute game and it is called bullet. With some electronic music and caffeine rich drinks bullet games can make your hours pass like minutes.
Another factor that makes chess fun is the learning process. As humans we love progressing and becoming better at something (at least some of us do, right?). Well, chess is a game where progress almost never ends.
Marc LeBlanc is a computer scientist who creates computer games professionally. Throughout the years, his rationalities of game design have been esteemed globally all through the E-sports game developing community. In his philosophy, there are precisely eight kinds of fun.
- Sensation – feeling pleasure while playing
- Fantasy – engaging in a fictional realm
- Narrative – listening to a story
- Challenge – facing grueling opposition
- Fellowship – interacting with the community
- Discovery – mapping uncharted territory
- Expression – playing with personal freedom
- Submission – coming back for more
Although this is a list made for videogames, 6 of them are directly related to chess as well, leaving Fantasy and Narrative.
Sensation – yes, moments come where you feel like a genius after delivering a checkmate or making a comeback from a lost position.
Challenge – yes, chess is always about challenge either it is a weaker opponent you are playing or a stronger one.
Fellowship – yes, chess might not be a popular game between your friends but there are estimated 600 million chess players in the world. This number comes many chess communities available online or in your town.
Discovery – yes, this is a game that is beyond our mere human minds to solve and even computer haven’t solved it and are not expected to do it in foreseeable future. So it is safe to say there are plenty of new strategies and tactics to discover.
Expression – yes, do you have an attacking and active personality? You can play the game with an attacking style (hoping you know what you are doing) or choose to be defensive if you are a patient person. Your personality can be expressed on the board and so can your opponent’s.
Submission – yes, online chess is really addictive. Not only the game itself but sometimes even watching other players’ stream is extremely fun. Do you want an example? Check out Chessbrah on YouTube, thank me later.
Some popular online chess platforms: