Chess captures minds of students


Fara Wiles

Freshmen Cooper Stuart, Bach Troung, Shane Six and William Yang play chess together on March 21, 2022.

Bishop to B6, checkmate. From an old forgotten game to a new trend, chess has skyrocketed in popularity.

“Chess is fun, because it is a fun, strategy game that exercises my brain when I sit in class bored,” said sophomore Nisheel Patel. “It is really easy to learn the basics and get the hang of it.”

Students from all grade levels have played chess on their Chromebooks. With hundreds of millions of active users on alone, it has become one of the most favored board games.

Chess involves two players and 16 wooden characters on the board, which contains two rooks, two knights, two bishops, eight pawns, a queen and a king. The game’s rules limits legal movements for each piece with additional rules on how they can eliminate an opponent piece. When a piece threatens the opponent’s king, it is called “check” and opponent must remove or avoid the threat. When the king is fully surrounded and immovable out of check, “checkmate” is called. Players attempt to eliminate the opponent’s other pieces and completely surround their king in a way it is immovable. 

“Move your knights out on the first move; defending is harder than attacking your opponents because your pieces are mostly trapped in its original position,” said Nisheel.

Chess’s origin dates back thousands years in history; however, competition started in the 1800s. Different modes and variations slightly manipulate the game; the most popular being classical, rapid and blitz, according to Cable News Network. 

A single blitz game can allocate only 10 minutes, rapid games take anywhere from 10 to 60 minutes, while classical takes over an hour. Competition matches are usually played on classical mode, while matches intended for speed are played on rapid or blitz mode.

“I love chess; it is one of the only quick, unblocked games I can play in class and doesn’t take up too much time,” said freshman Cooper Stewart.

Today, people can play chess almost anywhere, with hundreds of websites that give access to this traditional game. Students play and communicate with others in real time through the game.

“Chess is really all about strategy and seeing your opponent’s next move. There are many variations of the game, so you can not go wrong with it,” said sophomore Kai England.