Chess has roots that date all the way back to the sixth century. That makes it one of the oldest games that still exists today.
People from all over the globe sit down and enjoy friendly matches regularly. Although, with the rise of video games, some people think the ancient pastime is at risk.
For that reason, they may wonder, will chess die?
Chess has been around for hundreds of years, and it shows no signs of slowing down. The game is arguably more popular now than it was hundreds of years ago. This is mostly due to information about the rules being readily available.
In this article, we’ll walk you through the origins of the game. We’ll also cover some of the reasons it’s still around to this day.
What Are the Origins of Chess?
We can trace back the origin of chess to sixth-century India. During the Gupta dynasty, people played a game called Chaturanga.
It was similar to chess, but the pieces and rules were different. Within a few years, the game spread all over the country.
After that, it made its way to Persia. From there, the Arab world adopted the game and began to develop it.
Because of that, there are many iterations of chess. Each region came up with its own set of rules and movements for the pieces.
Over time, this grew into the chess we all know and love today.
Now, it’s more than 1,500 years later, and the game is still incredibly prominent. There are millions of players in the world of all ages, genders, and social backgrounds.
On top of that, there are countless global tournaments and championships. For that reason, some people argue that chess is more popular today than it ever was.
So, we think chess is here to stay.
What Makes Chess Popular?
Now that you know that chess isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, we can dive into why that is. In this section, we’ll go over some of the reasons the game is still popular today.
1. Improves Strategic Thinking
Unlike most other games, chess exclusively relies on the players’ strategic abilities. Each competitor is in complete control of their pieces and nothing is up to chance.
The only way for them to win is to outwit their opponents.
Because of that, chess can help you develop your strategic thinking skills. It’ll teach you how to take a step back and examine the whole picture.
Thankfully, this skill can transfer to almost all other aspects of your life.
Not only will this make solving problems easier, but you’ll also make fewer mistakes. That makes it an incredibly useful skill.
2. Creates a Sense of Community
As we mentioned, there are millions of chess players scattered across the globe. Most of them are introverts who don’t like being around large groups of people.
This can make connecting with society a little tough. So, chess players have created online platforms to stay in touch with each other.
There are hundreds of forums and websites dedicated to the game. Because of that, the players get to talk to other people who share their interests.
They can use these communities to make new friends or exchange battle strategies.
3. Easy to Set Up and Play
Many people think that chess is a complicated game with many moving parts. While the pastime can be complex, it’s not all that difficult to master.
All you have to do is learn how each piece moves and some basic rules. After that, you can set up a board in a few minutes and begin playing.
That means you can enjoy chess almost anywhere without much effort.
This was particularly beneficial during quarantine. At the time, everyone was stuck at home with few sources of entertainment.
Luckily, they had chess on their side. They could set up a game and forget about the world for a few hours.
4. Countless Strategies to Try Out
On a standard chessboard, there are 32 pieces, 16 on each side. Each one of the characters moves in a unique way.
Because of that, there are hundreds of possible strategies that you can employ. A few examples of these include:
- The Queen’s Gambit
- The English Opening
- The King’s Indian Defense
- The Scotch Game
This means every time you play, you can try out a new attack plan. For that reason, a single person can play hundreds of chess games without repeating a single move.
That can be thrilling to any amateur tactician.
5. Can be Lucrative
To many people, chess isn’t just a game. It’s also the way they earn a living and keep food on the table. Chess can be quite lucrative if you know what you’re doing.
That’s because of tournaments. The main prize at the end of the competitions usually includes some form of monetary reward.
So, if you win a few chess championships, you can live comfortably off of your prizes. Yet, it may take years before your skills are well-rounded enough to win tournaments.
6. Fun to Play
Aside from thinking about tactics and making money, chess is pretty fun on its own. Even if you’re not a huge fan of strategic thinking, you can still enjoy the game.
It’ll engage your brain and keep you invested for hours.
On top of that, it can awaken your competitive side, because let’s face it, who doesn’t like winning?
7. Enhances Social Skills
While you can play chess on your own, a traditional game involves two players. Once the match starts, the competitors won’t do much talking.
Each one will spend the majority of their time fixated on the board.
Although, to win they have to study their opponent. Since they don’t use words, the players will need to look for other queues.
For instance, they’ll have to rely on body language and posture. This can do wonders for your social life. You’ll learn how to read people without talking to them first.
Will chess die? The simple answer to this question is no, from the looks of it, chess will be around for a long time.
Since its start in the sixth century, the game has gained a lot of traction across the world.
Today, it’s still one of the most popular games for many reasons. For instance, chess can help you improve your strategic thinking skills.
Other than that, the game can be lucrative if you join tournaments. Finally, we can’t deny how much fun playing a match of chess can be.