This time, I thought to write about a game that has been around more than 800 years. The game is called chess, and some say that the origins actually go all the way back almost two thousand years to a game called chaturaṅga. Of course, we are talking about the modern equivalent, computer chess. When I was younger, I really had no interest in chess. The game appeared so simple and boring. But I also remember the event that triggered my interest in chess. That moment was playing Battle Chess on Amiga. That game was basically a simple chess, but the pieces were replaced by animated characters. It was so cool to try to get all the possible combinations and see how for example the tower beats a soldier or king beats a queen. I remember the animation was pretty good too, considering this was almost 20 years ago.
So, a long time has passed and I decided to give it a go for a more modern chess, without the funny / gory animations. There are a few different chess games over at Gametop, but at the end of the day, rules of chess are same, it is just the graphics and details that might be somewhat different. I decided to go ahead with the game that seems to have fewer bells and whistles, it is just called Chess.
The Gametop chess is a really simple affair, probably suitable for people who are really into chess. You will get a 3D view of the chess board, but also another top down view which shows the placement of the pieces in a more clear manner. The 3D board can be rotated to get a better angle of the pieces.
You can play against the computer or against your friend in a hotseat fashion. There are a couple of cool features that a “traditional” chess might not have. First of all, you can save and load your game. And secondly, there is an option to undo turns. I’m really not an expert in chess, so the undo feature can become really handy. Then again, I’m not able to think so much ahead that “undo-ing” a few moves would be all that helpful. I’m quite sure the more hardcore chess players appreciate the 2D view of the pieces which makes it a lot easier to understand the whole situation. Other than that, there is not much to the game. There is a running timer and you can choose to play your own music files if you prefer listing something while playing.
I’m not able to comment if the computer is a good player or not, just because it’s been such a long time since I played chess. The computer managed to beat me at least, but as I mentioned, that does not prove anything yet. I’m quite sure that hardcore chess players have some of their own games with different chess scenarios, difficulty levels and so on. But for a casual chess player, this is just perfect. And of course the price of the game is really wallet friendly too, it is available free of charge. It will open a browser window to Gametop every time you quit the game, but that’s about it.
Verdict for Chess 6 / 10
Chess gets six out of ten points. The game is not bad, but while playing this, I realized that personally I prefer all these classic games with some interesting twist, with all the bells and whistles if you please. I doubt this chess game would have hooked me 20 years ago how Battle Chess did.