No matter how old you are, it’s never too late to learn how to play chess. To help you start learning the great chess game, we’ve created this basic guide for beginners. This guide will teach you the rules, how chess pieces move on a chessboard, and the basic strategy. It is recommended to understand the rules before starting to play chess online to compete against other players.
The first step in learning how to play chess is to know the different pieces. Each player has 16 pieces to start the game. There are 6 different types of chess pieces. Here is the list of pieces and their number for each player (white side and black side):
- King (1)
- Queen (1)
- Bishop (2)
- Knight (2)
- Rook (2)
- Pawn (8)
How to place the pieces on a Chessboard
Before you start playing chess, you need to know how to correctly place the pieces on a chess board. Traditional chess is played between two players, with one player using white (or clear) pieces, while the other player uses black (or dark) pieces.
A chessboard is composed of 64 square boxes (8 boxes X 8 boxes), half of which are white (or light) and the other half is colored (black or dark). The colors of the squares are alternated so that none of the squares have the same color as itself up, down, or on the sides. The same colored squares are rather diagonal to each other.
At the beginning of the game, the board must be positioned so that each player has a white square (or clear) at the bottom right.
Chess pieces are always organized and arranged in the same way at the beginning of each chess game, in the two closest ranks of each player.
For the white player, the first row (the row closest to the player) is always arranged in the following order from left to right:
Rook, Knight, Bishop, queen, king, Bishop, knight, rook.
The second row contains the 8 counters of the same color (white).
On the side of the black player (point of view of the black player), the first row is arranged from left to right in the following order:
Rook, Knight, Bishop, King, Queen, Bishop, Knight, Rook.
The second row contains the 8 counters of the same color (black).
The king and queen pieces on each side must face each other. The queen is always on her own color (the white queen is on a white box and the black queen on a black box).
Which player moves first?
The player who uses the white (or clear) pieces always moves first. Players alternate their turns throughout the game. At each turn, a player may only move one piece, with the exception of a move called Roque, which will be explained in more detail below.
When playing chess with friends, you can flip a coin to determine who will have whites first or allow the less experienced player to play first.
How is the Chess Pieces moving?
One of the most basic rules to know is moving pieces on the chessboard. While each of the 6 coin types moves differently, all coins share similar rules:
Pieces can never move on a square where one of their pieces is currently placed.
Pieces cannot move or pass through their own pieces (although the knight has the ability to jump over, making it an exception). This means that pieces of the same color cannot be moved to the same box.
While the pieces cannot be moved on squares where their own pieces are positioned, they can move on a square of their opponent’s pieces, which “captures” the opponent’s piece.
When a piece captures an opponent’s piece, the turn is over, then the other player will play.
You cannot play chess without knowing how chess pieces are moving, so we’ve described the unique moves for each piece:
The step of the pieces on the chessboard
How to Move the King in Chess
The King is the most precious piece in chess. He can only move one box at a time. Also, any box contiguous to his is accessible to him unless this box is controlled by the opposite party. In the middle of the chessboard, the king thus controls eight boxes to the maximum. This number decreases if the king is on one side of the board.
How to Move the Queen in Chess
The Queen is the most powerful piece in chess. It combines the power of a Fool and a Rook. It moves in effect at will on the vertical, horizontal and on the diagonals. Placed in the center of the chessboard, the queen controls 27 boxes. Due to its power, the queen is also called heavy piece. Be careful however, if the queen is positioned on a box controlled by an opponent’s piece, it can be captured.
How to Move the Bishop in Chess
The Fool is also a piece acting at a distance but this time on the diagonals. The Fool is less powerful than the Rook because it can move only on squares of its original color, so it is called minor piece. Example, if at the beginning of the game, the Bishopman is positioned on a white box, he will be able to move, throughout the game, only on white boxes. Placed in the center, the Bishopman controls 13 squares.
How to Move the Knight in Chess
The knight moves atypically. It moves in “L”, that is, for example, 2 boxes forward and one side. He has the ability to “jump” over the pieces of his camp or the opposing side. Which makes it a weapon of choice for different tactical combinations.
How to Move the Rook in Chess
The Rook is a powerful piece because it acts at a distance, moving at will on the verticals and on the horizontal ones. Whatever its position on the chessboard, the rook controls 14 squares. Due to its power, its ability to move quickly on the chessboard, the rook is called heavy room. Attention, if a rook is positioned on a box controlled by an opponent’s piece, it can be captured.
How to Move the Pawn in Chess
The pawns are the soul of chess told us Philidor. Any pawn movement must be done with great care because unlike other pieces, the pawn cannot go back.
The pawn can advance only one box, either vertically or diagonally in the form of a catch as shown in the diagram.
When the pawn is on his starting square, he can advance exceptionally two spaces.
Finally, when he arrives on the last row, he can promote himself in another room (knight, or bishop, or rook or queen).
The red arrow indicates that the two white and black pieces are intertwined. If it’s up to the whites to play, then the f5 token can go e6 and capture the black pawn.
Discover the Special Rules of Chess
There are some unique rules as well as special moves that you need to know before playing chess.
How to Promote a Pawn in Chess
When a piece reaches the other side of the board (row/row 8), the piece becomes another piece of chess, as desired. After your pawn has reached this position, you can choose to trade your pawn against a queen, a rook, a Bishop or a knight. As part of the same move, the new piece is replaced on the same square as the piece that reached row 8.
Typically, you’ll want to trade your pawn for a queen. As mentioned earlier, reinea is the most powerful chess piece. But it depends on the situation, which you will learn later.
If you play at home and do not have extra coins, while the pawn should become a different piece, you can use the pawn to represent that new coin. In chess tournaments, according to the FIDE chess rules, it is necessary to really trade the pawn for the new piece.
How to do “en passant” in Chess
By the way and Roque are perhaps the most bizarre rules of chess.
In chess, the rule of movement “en passant” refers to a rule where if a pawn goes up two squares on its first move and crosses an opponent’s piece, the opposing counter can move diagonally and capture the original piece.
It is important to remember that “en passant” can only be done when a pawn moves two squares for the first time
How to Castle in Chess
The last special chess rule is castling. This chess rule can be strange for beginners, so read the following carefully.
The castle chess rule allows the king to move two squares on one side (when he can usually move only one square in any direction) to then pass the tower to the other side, directly to the previous place of the king. However, to make this move, certain conditions must apply:
- Neither the king nor the rook must have moved before.
- No room should be placed between the king and the rook.
- The king cannot be engaged, as well as the boxes where he must move to “cast”.
How to win in Chess
There are two ways to finish a game of chess. A chess game can end either with checkmate or with a draw game or pat.
How to Checkmate in Chess
The goal of chess and how to win is to “subdue” the king of your opponent. The king of your opponent must be defeated and not be able to move on one square or be defended.
Draw game in chess
The game of chess does not always end with victory/failure. Sometimes the game ends in a draw or a pat.
The game may end with a draw for one of the following reasons:
- An impasse occurs. This means that if the opposing player can only play with his king and he is not in check but cannot go to any box that is “attacked”, he has no legal move to make. He is, therefore, Pat and the game is considered to draw (1/2 – 1/2 or 50/50).
- There are 50 consecutive hits where no player has captured a piece or moved a piece (called the move rule of 50 moves)
- A player may declare a draw if the exact same position is repeated. These repeat positions must not occur consecutively.
- There are not enough coins on the board to force a checkmate (example: King vs. King).
- Players mutually accept a draw
Congratulations, you’re ready to start playing
You now know enough to start playing. We covered the basic rules of chess and how to play chess, move pieces on a chessboard. I think you understand how to play chess. While you should now be well equipped to play chess, you can continue reading to learn the strategy, tactics, and tricks to improve your game. Good Luck to all!