“Every chess master was once a beginner”
“Every chess master was once a beginner”

Chess is a game in a league of its own and has been studied and analyzed for hundreds of years. More books have been written about chess than all other sports combined, which demonstrates the endless intrigue and enjoyment that chess produces. You start off the game with one of 20 possible moves, that number quickly grows towards what seems like an infinite amount of combinations.  You can look up Shannon’s Number to dig into the number of possible chess games. There’s an old story of a King who asks a pauper what he wants as his reward for a good deed, the popper asked for 1 grain of rice for the first square on a chess board which doubles for every square on the board.  So, 1 on the first square, 2 on the next, 4 on the next and so on and so forth until all 64 squares are accounted for. The King was quick to agree to this small request, but quickly found out there wasn’t enough rice on the planet

much less his kingdom to fulfill it. Einstein is said to have stated that “compound interest is the eighth wonder of the world” and this chess example famously highlights the theme. It’s been suggested that chess can help raise your IQ, improve memory, help to increase your creativity, and even help with the prevention of Alzheimer’s. Likewise, chess helps to foster social skills through healthy competition, and teaches strategy, planning and foresight. In more recent times chess has proven to be a practical and unique way in which to gauge specific areas of AI (Artificial Intelligence).

Chess is one of the mediums in which genius can be radiated not simply by sheer calculation, but by intuition and creativity as well. Chess is also one of a few things that humans can be born with innate skills at without much training, like music and math.  Magnus Carlsen was a grandmaster by the age of 13, and more recently Sergey Karjakin made grandmaster at 12 years old!  Samuel Reshevsky use to give exhibitions where he would simultaneously play multiple players when he was 6 years old!

The game of chess itself, is as simple as it is complicated.  It takes a few hours to learn the moves but a lifetime to master them.  As your experience in chess develops the beauty displayed within the game starts to show itself.  After learning the basic moves and playing a few games you learn to appreciate the genius of the masters. It’s amazing to look at some of the games played by young master’s like Bobby Fischer or Josh Waitzkin.  Look up Bobby Fischer’s game of the century or Joshua Waitzkin vs Edward A Frumkin for genius games played by these masters when they were 11. Chess games played by the  masters can are pieces of art compromised of mathematical constructs in patterns and logic.

As we move on chess is still relevant and its history is still being written, especially now as the world moves past the space race, and the arms race to find itself in a potential race for AI. Chess may be a good litmus test for this; recently Google’s AI unbelievably managed to teach itself chess in 4 hours and within that timeframe to become superhuman at it. It crushed a previous AI engine model.  It’s true computers now dominate the chess world, with only the very top human grandmasters able to realistically challenge the new chess engines.  Spending time playing people from around the world on chess.com shows that a similar ranked human and computer think in vastly different ways.

FEATURED BOOK REVIEW

Bobby Fischer Teaches Chess

By Bobby Fischer

For the young ones, written by one of the best (if not the best) players of all time. Richard Feynman use to say you don’t really understand something unless you can explain it in simple terms to anyone. A master breaks it down for the little one

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The Chess Armory 15” Wooden Chess set is a sturdy and modern set for players of any level. With its attention to detail and interior felt storage it is a great board which mixes style with practicality. Recommended for beginner, novice and intermediate players.

The Chess Armory 15” collapsible set folding chess box was designed for convenience and is the perfect set for travel. It is compact, small and easily fits into a back pack; this is the ideal set to take to your local coffee shop for quick games with friends.

Recommended Tools

Chess doesn’t require anything more than a board and pieces to play, but a few additional tools should be considered for the sake of convenience and comfort, especially as you progress in the game. The chess products we recommend are available on Amazon, these are affiliate links which means we do make a small comission off purchases made from the links. The chess tools and books we recommend here are ones we have tried and have experience with.

 

Chess Clocks: If you are not familiar with chess clocks, this is the standard way for players to keep track of their time during matches. Chess clocks, in general, fall into two broad categories: Analog and Digital. Digital clocks offer far more precision and numerous additional features over there analog counterparts, and for those reasons we at Chessarmory.com recommend digital clock usage.

The leap clock is an inexpensive chess clock that does the job. It’s a light weight plastic clock with minimal added features. It does offer a delay and bonus time however, and is very easy to use and reset. We have used it to sponsor chess programs at various schools.

This is an excellent chess clock and it’s the official FIDE chess clock used in tournament matches. It offers various functions and features including ‘Fischer time’. This clock runs off 2 x AAA batteries and has a clear and easy to read display.

The ZMF chess clock is a sleek & solid stainless steel time-keeper. The buttons have a capacitive touch and are stainless steel touch sensing buttons. Various timing modes and features are inbuilt and readily available.

Regularly voted the best chess clock: this feature rich and stainless steel clock offers eight tournament chess modes, four blitz chess modes, and two tournament GO modes as well as 12 user pre-set modes. This is a high quality and high end chess clock which adds a touch of class to any competitive game.

Vinyl Chess Set: these are the boards that you often see at chess clubs and chess meet ups across the country. Their large size and portability makes them a great go to board for traveling, meeting other players at different locations as well as tournament play. The pieces are plastic and light; they can be blown over by a gust of wind and are easier to tip over in general than a wooden set.

An economical vinyl board: you don’t get the weighted pieces but your trade-off is with piece weight, price and convenience.

This includes quadruple weighted pieces! You really feel the difference when you are playing with weighted pieces and this is a solid vinyl chess set where the weighted pieces really set it apart.

A very popular game which is helpful in getting kids started in chess. No Stress Chess takes an interesting approach to learning the game, and this is done with a deck of cards!

Chess Books: every serious chess player has a chess library. We’re dealing with a game that has been studied and analyzed for hundreds of years and has had thousands of book written about it. If you’re an advanced player or you are currently climbing the rating ladder to become one; you very often need to refer to openings and referencing games from the past, and look at various champion examples past and present – and here is where chess books are worth their weight in gold.

This is not a chess book as such, this is a score book for you to keep track of your games. They’re used at all levels of competitive play and enable you to jot down your moves in algebraic notation and save your games.

For early learners and youngsters, this was written by one of the best (if not the best) player of all time. Richard Feynman used to say that you don’t really understand something unless you can explain it in simple terms to anyone. Here a master breaks it down bit by bit for the little ones.

A clear easy and fun read for chess players of all levels. Learn many different checkmating ideas that will strengthen your game. Learn and memorize some of the patterns shown in this book and take advantage when you recognize them during one of your actual games.

This classic chess book illustrates a powerful way in which to view the game. It was written by a grandmaster, and it explains aspects of the overall strategy of chess in an accessible way for all players.

Keep playing chess when away from your chess set with Chess.com/l/chessarmory

As a special offer, Chess.com is offering Chess Armory a free 1 month Diamond Membership.

Keep playing chess when away from your chess set with Chess.com/l/chessarmory

As a special offer, Chess.com is offering Chess Armory a free 1 month Diamond Membership.

Keep playing chess when away from your chess set by going to chess.com/l/chessarmory

As a special offer, Chess.com is offering Chess Armory readers a free 1 month Diamond Membership.

 What People Are Saying

I was extremely impressed with the quality of this chess set... The pieces are well made and the entire kit is beautifully presented... Don't hesitate to buy.

Linda, Amazon Customer

What a beautiful set! There are so many to choose from and I'm so glad we chose this one!

Jenna, Amazon Customer

Excellent presentation, all chips wooden made very strong, box with foam shaped protection inside where all the pieces have their space to keep then fixed and protected. Highly recommend it for active children the materials are good and will last long time. I'm really happy with this unit.

Ben, Amazon Customer

High Quality

Our wooden chess sets are inlaid with walnut for a beautiful timeless look.

Handcrafted

Each Staunton style chess piece is beautifully handcrafted to perfection.

Great Storage

Our chess sets have felted interior with straps for storing pieces safely.

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About us

Chess Amory is a small company created by fans of the game to promote and advocate the game of chess. We aim to introduce quality chess products to the market and keep our subscribers up to date on the latest developments in the world of chess.

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