For many people, chess is a game that can be considered a way of life. Those who are extremely passionate about chess can gain peace of mind as well as find it extremely competitive pushing themselves to win. Of course, as a game that has been around for such a long time, it has earned a lot of fans over the years. Chess is a very difficult game to master and while it is a board game it is so much more, while it may not be simple, and difficult for children it can be fun, challenging, and much more.

Chess is a great game because it requires so much thought, strategy, and practice. It may not be for everyone as it is not a game that you would play just because you're bored. Chess is truly a game that has many faces. some consider a form of science, and many would also consider the game of chess to be a form of art. There are many ways that chess can be considered as an art, of course, art in and of itself is something that is interpreted. People can view music as art, different sports as art, landscapes even as art, so of course chess players and enthusiasts understand the many different styles and strategies that are used in the game of chess and see it as a form of art.

What exactly makes chess a form of art? If you are a beginner and want to know more about chess then understanding how to interpret chess and find the beauty in the game will help motivate you to practice more and improve your game. If you are already someone that plays the game but would like to be more motivated then seeing the beauty in the game may help you to motivate yourself to become a better or even great chess player.

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The History of Chess

To first talk about how chess is an art form, we must look quickly at the history of the game. There are few games in the world that are as historically important as chess or have been around as long as chess has.

To begin with a precursor to the modern game developed in what is now Northern India around the sixth or seventh century was played and it was called chaturanga. This game resembles greatly what we know as chess today. However, it wasn't just a board game with pieces it involved dice as well. Then from Northern India, a game was developed in the Middle East and Central Asia. Thanks to the Silk Roads another form of early chess was developed in China, which was the most popular version in the Far East.

Finally, through Persia and the expanding Islamic Empire (which made it all the way to Western Europe), the game made it to Europe. After a few more centuries we were able to see the appearance of the modern rules of chess take shape by the year 1300, over 700 years ago.

There are Many Variants of Chess

Chess pieces on a chess board
Chess players have invented many variants of the game over the years. Source: Pexels

While we are all used to seeing the image of a typical chessboard there are actually far more ways than you can play chess. So many variants of the modern chess game have appeared over the years. According to the Encyclopedia of Chess over two thousand variants of chess exist.

You can say chess is more than just a game and even an art form thanks to the number of styles and variants created by people all over the world. Such variants include:

Double Chess

Double Chess is as the name suggests, is chess but with basically double the pieces and a much larger chessboard. The Same strategy applies the players need to checkmate the opposing player's king in order to win the match.

Circular Chess

Circular Chess is played on a circular board. There are four rings with sixteen squares to play on.

Grid Chess

Another unique spin on the normal game of chess. This time the chessboard is set up into grids. If you want a move to be legal your piece must cross one of the grid lines.

Infinite Chess

As the name suggests it is a really, really big game of chess. Infinite Chess is a chess game that involves a large number of spaces and players. Up to seventy-six pieces are laid out across an unbounded chessboard. It is a game studied by chess players and mathematicians due to the number of moves and tactics one can use in a game of Infinite Chess.

There are many more variants of the game of chess. How can we say that thanks to these variants, chess can be considered an art?

Chess was seen as a game with one set of (modern) rules for a long time. People have found the game interesting enough to change it over and over again creating a new fresh way of playing. For some chess is an example of a sport. There are certain sports that have been around for hundreds of years that do not have so many variants.

Creating a different style of chess, after another can show how the game influences people's creativity, which can make it considered to be an art or an art form. It is also important to note the number of strategies and techniques that were invented for the normal game of chess.

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Different Techniques and Styles of Chess

Chess pieces on a chess board
There are many techniques to use to give you an advantage in chess. Source: Pexels

Over the many many years that chess has existed, many new techniques and styles have been invented. As chess champions have needed to beat other champions innovation has been key. In this innovation fans of chess have found it to be a type of art. Chess lovers can really appreciate a surprise move or technique.

There are quite a few different tactics in the game of chess so let's have a look at some things you can learn and become a real chess pro.

Fork

A Fork is a really useful move. A Fork is performed by using one of your pieces to attack two or more of your opponent's pieces simultaneously. The objective of this technique is to gain the advantage of having more pieces than your opponent.

Pin

The point of using the Pin maneuver is to block your opponent from being able to use his or her more important pieces. You are only able to perform a Pin with your rook, Queen, or bishop since they can move more than one square.

Sacrifices

This is a more typical strategy in chess, as you have the pieces to sacrifice which are your pawns. If you use your pawn as a sacrifice to gain an advantage that is called a "Gambit".

These are just some of the many different strategies you can use in the game of chess. Playing chess is full of strategy and practice but needs improvisation as well. The appreciation of great chess players with knowledge of moves and techniques can be seen as art through the vision that is needed by a player to pull off some of these moves.

Chess Tactics for Beginners

To be able to use techniques and possibly play other variants of the game you will need to play a lot and practice a lot. If you are a beginner here are some quick tips for you to improve your skills during chess matches.

  • Start with a pawn
  • Move Knights and Bishops before Queen, rooks, or king
  • Don't wait too long to use your stronger pieces
  • Use the Castling move
  • Think before each move

Another useful resource for you to practice your game and have someone help you is to find a personal tutor for chess. Superprof has some excellent chess tutors that you can find in your area, and if not in your area you can find some that give lessons online via Skype.

Why is Chess Important

Chess has been around for a very long time and is seen as many different things and is used as a metaphor for life in general. Chess is great for your mental health as well as your concentration and intelligence, it can help you in school and general problem solving that you will need in school and your professional life.

Chess has been an important game for mankind since it was first created many centuries ago and this is why it remains important and influential to this day. Chess is important as a game and for many a style of art.

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Chris