Chess with a computer – training for beginners or a challenge for grandmasters?

Chess/Mental sports
Chandler Lee
Chess with a computer – training for beginners or a challenge for grandmasters?
It takes approx. 4 minutes to read this article

Online mental games are becoming more and more popular. The number of fans of the “royal game” is also growing, but is computer chess a solution for everyone? Find out how virtual chess algorithms work and on which sites it is best to try your hand.

How the program outperforms the real player

Virtual chess is based on calculations that show possible moves and ways to finish the game. In this case, the online version will work better for beginners or players in training. The developed algorithm makes the most advantageous decision in a given situation and reduces potential losses. This means that it does not adapt to the game of its opponent, although it plans moves in the long run. What is more, the chess programs are constantly updated with real-life games, thanks to which the database expands. It is estimated that the most advanced software is based on almost 8 million tournament games from around the world and on their basis selects the most advantageous game variant.

The advantage of virtual chess is also adjustment of the level of the game to the player’s skills. In practice the player plays against a bot that is at a similar level of knowledge and skills. Such a solution can be beneficial for people starting to play chess, but it will not work as a real training, because it has many limitations in possible strategies and game endings.

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“This is chess. The art of lying, killing and war.” – Arturo Pérez-Reverte

How he thinks…

Published by BAZAr Cipher Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Disadvantages of virtual gaming

The computer that is the opponent of the real player is able to make the most advantageous moves and plan the further game, but it cannot predict the movement of the player on the other side of the screen. Although the base is very wide, the possibilities of playing the game are almost infinite, thus giving the physical player a chance to outsmart the software. The computer has a better chance of ending the game on a positive note, but all the potential combinations have not been realized, and thus the software does not know about them. This would be different for the game of checkers, which was solved in 2007.

A significant disadvantage of virtual chess is that the program is unable to play strategically and must choose the most advantageous solution. In practice, this means that the bot will not sacrifice any piece in order to gain an advantage at a later stage of the game. Developed thinking is after all reserved for humans, and in this case the computer remains in a zero-one system, in which it calculates the number of pieces and moves needed to complete the game.

Grandmasters and online chess

Virtual games are not only an activity for chess adepts or amateurs, but also facilitate training for the best players in the world. Moving away from the traditional game and sparring partner makes it possible to practice anywhere in the world where there is internet access. Developed programs are also available as apps for your phone, making training more mobile.

Grandmaster chess players are often pitted against a computer that theoretically has a much broader base of potential solutions than they do. This does not mean that they are on the losing end, but they have a chance to duel with a usually infallible bot. This way of training will only make sense until chess is finally solved. After this crucial moment, the program will have all the existing variants and will lead the game, not giving much chance to the opponent.

Where to play chess online?

The most popular site for playing online is chess .com. The software allows you to choose the difficulty level and style of the bot, provides valuable tips while playing and is free. The site’s community is very active online and has numerous blogs and social media groups where players share their experience. Popular programs also include, which is used by Magnus Carlsen among others, which shows clear and extensive statistics for each game, and

Featured photo: Pixabay

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