Chess: The Basics (Rules, First Moves, and More)

Table of contents

The world's most popular game, chess, can be learned at any time. Chess has simple rules that are easy to learn:

Start learning chess with this video of International Master Danny Rensch breaking it all down for you.

Step 1 Positioning the Chess Pieces

When the chessboard is first set up, it is arranged so that the white (or light) square is in the lower right corner for each player.

Set up Chess Board

The chess pieces are always set up in the same formation. Pawns populate the second rank (row). A chess board is laid out with rooks in the corners, knights next to them, bishops in the empty squares, the queen on her own color (white queen on white, black queen on black), and the king on the final empty square.

Chess board

It will be a breeze to get the game board set up in the beginning.

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Step 2 The Chess Pieces' Various Motions

Each of the six types of pieces has a unique movement. Although the knight can jump over other pieces, chess pieces can never move onto a square already occupied by another player's piece. It is possible to capture an opponent's piece by moving one of these pieces to replace it. In chess, pieces are typically moved so that they are in a position to either capture an opponent's pieces (by landing on their square and replacing them) or defend one's own pieces from capture.

Chess King Advancement Techniques

The king is the most vital but also one of the most vulnerable pieces in the chess set. There is a one-square limit on the king's movements in all directions, including vertically, horizontally, laterally, and diagonally.

There is a chance the king will never put himself in check (a vulnerable position). "Check" occurs when an opponent successfully attacks the king.

King Chess Movement

In Chess, The Queen's Advances and Defenses

The queen is the strongest piece in the game. As long as she does not cross over into her own pieces, she is free to move as far as possible in any straight direction (forward, backward, horizontally, or vertically).

Just like any other piece, the queen's turn ends when she captures an enemy piece. Take note of how the black king is compelled to retreat after the white queen has captured the black queen.

Queen Chess Movement

Chess Rook Movements

As far as it wants, the rook can only go forward, backward, and to the sides.

When the rooks are guarding each other and cooperating, they become a very potent piece.

Rook Chess Movement

The Bishop's Advancement in Chess

The bishop's range of motion is unrestricted so long as it remains diagonal. Each bishop chooses a side (light or dark) at the outset and must never switch.

Bishops are able to mask each other's flaws and thus work well together.

Bishop Chess Movement

Positioning the Chess Knight

The knight's unique movement pattern resembles the shape of an "L," spanning two squares in one direction before making a second move at a 90-degree angle.

In addition, knights are the only pieces with the ability to jump over obstacles.

Knight Chess Movement

The Pawn's Advance in Chess

Pawns are unique in that they move forward but capture diagonally when attacking. The only exception to this rule is the pawn's first move, in which case it can advance two squares.

Only the diagonal square in front of a pawn can be captured. Never will they be able to go or catch something in reverse If another piece is blocking the pawn's path, the pawn will be unable to advance or capture it.

Pawn chess movement

image-default.445cb543.svg Playing a game of solitaire chess in which you must win by removing all of your pieces is a useful strategy.

Step 3 Learn the Intricacies of the Chess Game

In chess, there are a few unusual rules that at first glance could be confusing. They were designed to add new levels of excitement and variety to the gameplay.

The Chess Player's Guide to Advancing a Pawn

If a pawn makes it to the opposite side of the board, it can be promoted to any other piece (except the king or another pawn) in chess.

It is possible to upgrade a pawn to a higher-level piece such as a knight, bishop, rook, or queen. Despite popular belief, pawns can be traded for any piece, not just those that have been captured. Quite the opposite is true. In most cases, a pawn will be upgraded to a queen. One can only advance pawns.

How to promote a pawn in chess

Explaining the Chess Move "En Passant"

The final pawn rule is known as "en passant," which is French for "in passing." With its first move, a pawn can advance two squares in any direction, but if it lands next to an opponent's pawn, it can be captured by that pawn as it "jump-captures" the first pawn.

Chess en passant

You have to make this special move right after the first pawn has passed, or you won't be able to capture it. To better grasp this strange but crucial rule, please click through the following example.

en passant

A Guide to Chess Castles

A further specialized rule in chess is called castling. Both securing your king's safety and bringing your rook out of the corner can be accomplished with this single move. On his turn, the player can move his king two squares to one side, and then his rook from the corner of that side to the square directly across from the king on the opposite side of the board. Here's an example: However, the following are prerequisites for castle building:

  • That king's very first move is required.
  • The rook's first move must be the starting position.
  • For the king and rook to move, there must be no pieces in their path.
  • The monarch might not be in or go through a vetting process

Observe that the king moves closer to the board's edge in the direction you castle. Castling "kingside" describes this strategy. "Queenside" casting refers to crossing over to the opposite side from the monarch's seat. When castling, the king only advances two squares regardless of which side he is on.

How to castle in chess

Step 4 Learn the Chess Opening Position.

As a rule, the player whose pieces are colored white goes first. Therefore, players typically flip a coin or have one player guess the color of the hidden pawn in the other player's hand to determine who gets to be white. From there, play continues with White making a move, Black responding, White making another move, Black responding, and so on until the game ends. White has the slight advantage of being able to move first, which can be used to launch an early attack.

Step 5 It's time to brush up on your chess skills by reviewing the rules for victory.

A chess game can be won in a number of ways, including checkmate, resignation, forfeit on time, and draw.

Chess Checkmate Strategy

The goal of chess is to checkmate your opponent's king. This occurs when the king is trapped and unable to escape from his bonds.

An unchecked king has only three options:

  • Get out of his way (even though he can't castle )
  • interpose another piece to prevent the check or
  • get your hands on the piece that is a threat to the king

If the king is checkmated, the game is over. Usually, the game is over when the king is not captured or removed from the board.

If a player is careless early in the game, checkmate can occur. See an illustration of the Fools mate, a 2-move checkmate, below.  

Chess Diagramming Techniques

Sometimes in chess, instead of one player coming out on top, the game ends in a tie. There are five potential outcomes in a chess game, all of which result in a draw:

  • A stalemate occurs when one player has the turn to move but cannot because his king is not in check and there is no other legal move available to him.

Chess Stalemate

Black is not in danger and has no further options after Qc7. After a scoreless period, a tie is declared.  

  • It's possible that the two teams will call it a draw and call it a day.
  • There aren't enough pieces for a checkmate to be achieved (e.g., a king and a bishop versus a queen and a rook). a king)
  • If a player's position is the same three times (not necessarily consecutively), they will call it a draw.
  • In the past fifty moves, neither player has advanced a pawn or captured an opponent's piece.

Step 6 Learn the Rook and Pawn Moves

All chess players should have a basic understanding of these four concepts:

Keep the King safe!

The king is usually safest in the corners of the board, so move him there. Do not delay castling The general rule is that you should castle as soon as possible. Just keep in mind that if your own king is checkmated first, it won't matter how close you were to checkmating your opponent.

Don't Hand Out Bits and Pieces

Don't squander your pieces on carelessness. You can't checkmate your opponent without all the pieces. Each chess piece has a specific value, and most players use a simple system to keep track of those values. What is the value of each chess piece?

  • One pawn equals one
  • What is the value of a knight?
  • There is a 3 value attached to a bishop.
  • At a value of 5, a rook is an important piece.
  • Having a queen makes you nine
  • Infinitely valuable, the king is.

The point system is merely a decision-making tool to help you determine when to capture, exchange, or make other moves during the game; it has no bearing on the outcome.

chess pieces value

Keep the action in the middle of the board.

In order to win, your pieces and pawns should be positioned to dominate the board's center. You'll have more freedom to maneuver your pieces and your opponent will have a harder time finding favorable squares for his pieces if you dominate the center. White makes some excellent moves to establish dominance in the center, while black makes some poor ones.

Put Your Entire Chess Set To Use

In the aforementioned chess game, white moved all of his pieces. You're doing your pieces no favors by leaving them in the back row of the board. If you want to have more options when attacking the king, you should try to develop all of your pieces. Attacking with only one or two pieces is useless against a competent foe.

image-default.445cb543.svg Here's a great article for newbies: 10 Mistakes Newbies Often Make

Step 7 Play a lot of games to hone your skills.

The best way to improve your chess game is to play a lot of games. The same amount of practice is required for advancement whether you engage in offline, in-person, or online play. Getting into a chess match is simple in today's modern world.

Understanding the Rules of Alternative Chess Games

While the vast majority of chess players adhere to the generally accepted set of rules, there are those who prefer to experiment with variants. These chess variations have their own name. Specific guidelines apply to each variant:

  • In Chess960 (Fischer Random), the pieces start in a completely arbitrary position. The pawns remain where they normally start, but the rest of the pieces are shuffled around.
  • The objective of King of the Hill is to position your king in the "top of the hill" in the middle of the board. "
  • Usually played in teams of two, the bughouse format is a fast-paced, competitive game. When one player on a team captures an enemy piece, it is made available to the other players on that team. For instance, if I am playing White and my Black teammate steals a white knight from our opponent, I will have a knight available to place on any empty square. In any of my subsequent twists, I will be able to do so.
  • As a very exciting variant, "crazyhouse" allows you to use your opponent's pieces in your own game. In other words, if I'm White and I capture a black pawn from my opponent, I'll get to use that pawn as a white pawn in my army. As a matter of fact, I can do so in any of my upcoming actions.
  • First player to check the opponent's king three times wins in a game of "3-Check."

Chess Variants

Play these fantastic chess variants and have fun!

image-default.445cb543.svg Article Suggestion -> 5 Outstanding Chess Varieties

The 960 Variation of Chess: How to Play

However, instead of the usual starting position of the pieces on the back rank, which is always the same, in Chess960 they are placed randomly in one of 960 possible positions. The King and Rook castle in the same way as in regular chess, by moving to the g1 and f1 or c1 and d1 squares, respectively. 960 is played similarly to traditional chess, but with more options for the opening move.


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Chess Tournament Etiquette: A Guide for Players

There is a standard set of regulations that many tournaments adhere to. Even if you plan on playing at home or online, you should still consider giving these rules a try for practice.

  • A player must move one of their own pieces if they touch it, provided the move is legal. It is mandatory to capture an opponent's piece if your piece touches one. Anyone who wants to make a minor change to a piece's position on the board must first make an announcement, typically by saying "adjust."
  • Most tournaments use clocks and timers to limit how long players have to play each game, rather than each individual move. There is a set amount of time available for the duration of the game, and each player is free to use it however they see fit. After a player makes a move, they can start the other player's clock by touching a button or pulling a lever. Time is a factor in chess, and if a player runs out of it and their opponent calls time, they lose (unless their opponent doesn't have enough pieces to checkmate, in which case it's a draw).

Questions and Answers (FAQs) About the Strategy Board Game of Chess

There's a chance that you're feeling a little bit overwhelmed by all this information. This is why we've compiled this list of frequently asked questions, which is designed to help those just getting started in the chess world. In any case, we hope you find them helpful.

Chess Frequently asked questions

The Ways In Which I Can Improve My Chess Skills

Learning the rules and some basic strategies is just the beginning; there is so much more to the game of chess than that! There are three things you can do to get better:

  1. Have a chess party and play a lot of games. Take as much time as you need to play. Whether you win or lose, every game offers valuable lessons.
  2. Study with chess lessons — If you want to make rapid progress, taking some chess lessons online is a great idea. If you're interested in learning how to play chess, you can find some helpful resources
  3. Enjoy yourself; if you don't win every game right away, that's okay. Including the world champions, everyone eventually loses. You can keep on playing chess forever if you treat it like a game and take something positive away from every loss you experience.

image-default.445cb543.svg Article Suggested: 7 Ways to Improve Your Chess Game

Which move do you think is the best to make first in chess?

There is no universally agreed-upon best chess move, but it's usually wise to focus on establishing central control as soon as possible. Because of this, most players will move one of their central pawns (in front of their king or queen) two spaces with a move of 1 or 2. d4 or 1 e4 Other participants often pick 1. c4 or 1 Nf3 Most alternative strategies are inferior. After much thought, Bobby Fischer settled on plan B: move the king pawn one space to the Best Answer: e4

Color Order in Chess

It's standard practice for the player with the white pieces to go first in any board game.

Can A Pawn Go In Reverse?

Pawns can't go in reverse But once a pawn reaches the other side of the board, it must be promoted to a higher-value piece (like a queen). Then it acts similarly to that piece and can even reverse direction.

Can Multiple Chess Pieces Be Moved At Once?

When it is your turn to move, you may only move one chess piece at a time, with one exception. To castle is to simultaneously move the king and rook.

Which Chess Pawn Is the Most Crucial?

Most chess players would agree that the king is the most crucial piece. Defeat means game over if the king is lost. However, the queen is chess's most potent piece.

Who Invented the Game of Chess and When

Though its precise genesis is unknown, chess is widely assumed to have developed from similar games played in India nearly 2,000 years ago. Present-day chess can trace its roots back to Europe in the 15th century, where it first gained widespread popularity.

image-default.445cb543.svg An Excellent Read: The 10 Most Seminal Occasions in Chess History

The Longest Chess Game Ever Played

Nikoli vs. Kramnik was the longest (in terms of moves) tournament chess game ever played. As a result, Arsovi performed in Belgrade, Serbia, in 1989.

image-default.445cb543.svg History's Longest Chess Games

How Do You Read Chess Notation?

We needed a system of notation to enable post-game analysis of chess games. With its help, we can put the entire game on record and then play it as many times as we like. Just making sure to correctly record our own and our opponent's moves is enough.

Chess Notation

In order to keep track of your games, you can use chess notation.

Coordinates are assigned to each square, and the pieces are denoted by letters (N for knight, B for bishop, Q for queen, R for rook, and K for king).

image-default.445cb543.svg Highly Recommended Reading -> Chess Notation: A Guide to the Game's Notational Language

The Purpose of Chess

Playing chess entails two players on opposite sides of a board with 64 squares of alternating colors. One king, one queen, two rooks, two bishops, two knights, and eight pawns make up each player's set of sixteen pieces.

Chess material

Checkmating the opponent's king is the objective of the game. When the king is "in check," or in a position from which he can be captured, and there is no way for him to avoid it, checkmate has occurred.

If you are interested in playing chess, you can create a free account at get on the game at com, and have fun!

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