Anyone that enjoys playing chess can find a game online, no matter what their skill level is. The Internet is full of games, with players scattered around the world. Not only are their games, but tournaments, communities, blogs, tutorial sites, and forums. The key is to where to find online chess and the best site for your interests and abilities. Here are three very different sites, along with their pros and cons:
Pros: This site has a lot to offer â€“ lots of information, groups, and articles. It seems pretty obvious that the administrator of the site really loves his game â€“ there are reading lists, strategy instructions, and rules guides. Aside from the learning aspect of the site, there are a lot of people registered and playing on the site. The site has a ticker on the top of the variety of things going on â€“ how many thousands are registered and playing, how many tournaments are going on, and the number of clubs and games. With the thousands of matches and clubs happening, there’s bound to be one that is just right for you.
Cons: While the site has a lot information, games, and other things that could appeal to chess players, it really has an amateur-ish look and feel to it. It’s full of links to sites that just seem like spam and has a lot of advertisements to regular products. This makes it feel really busy and overwhelming, which may be a deterrent to someone who is new to the online chess scene.
Pros: This site is quite the opposite than the previous one â€“ the homepage has only a few items on it. It is very straightforward and fairly easy to navigate. One thing that sets it apart from many online chess sites is that there is no registration process. All that is needed is a name and you can start playing right away. This is nice because it allows first-time users to get an idea of what the site is like without having to spend the time registering. Another interesting thing about this site is that it attempts to make chess a spectator sport. The site says that it does this by searching through the games in play and finding the fastest moving, most interesting ones â€“ they do this because most players would rather watch a rapidly moving game instead of a two-hour-long one.
Cons: The simplicity of this site has both its advantages and disadvantages. The disadvantage is that there isn’t much explanation of the site â€“ it appear that you just get started in a game and figure it out on your own. While the no registration part may be appealing to some, others may prefer a registration that allows them to specify their skill level and abilities. The instant start-up of the game doesn’t seem necessarily ideal for advanced players â€“ they might get bored playing people that don’t match their skill level until they find one that works.
Pros: The Internet Chess Club site seems like the site for online chess. There is so much going on with site â€“ tournaments, games to watch, contests, clubs, and live event coverage â€“ yet it is very organized and very easy to follow. The site is geared for members only and there is a membership fee. However, if you are a serious online chess player and chess enthusiast, it worth considering purchasing (they start as low as six months for $34.95 to three years for $149.95). With a membership, members can do a variety of things: thousands of players at various levels to play with, tournaments, team games, lectures, events, and even private lessons from world-class chess players. This site is definitely impressive.
Cons: The only con there might be is that it isn’t for the casual chess player, especially since membership comes with a pricetag (which seems pretty uncommon for most online chess).
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