chess

In this game, which is very appreciated in western countries, two players lead armies composed of different pieces. Each piece's power and importance is represented by its movement. The variety and long range of the movements available create an extremely dynamic and complex game. To be successful you must plan a long-term strategy and be vigialant of every move, for one mistake mays cost you the game.

The game originated in 6th century India, from where it spread across the globe. It reached the modern format in 15th century Europe and, since then, chess strategy and organizations have greatly developed.

For 2 players, with an approximate duration of 40 minutes for casual play. The rules of chess are actually quite simple, but the game can be deep and complex even for experienced players. It can be great fun as a game and a great mental challenge as a sport – you choose which.

History

Chess descends from board games developed in India, the oldest recorded being known as “chaturanga”, from the sixth century of our era. The game was soon taken into Persia where it was adopted by the nobility (the expression “check-mate” descends from persian “Shāh Māt” , meaning “the king is helpless”). Following the Islamic Conquer of Persia in the seventh century, the game was brought into the Muslim world, from where it spread into Europe, from Portugal to Russia.

In Europe, chess soon became a popular game rich in variations. Since it was a game of skill rather than luck, it became popular with noblemen, scholars, knights and clergy alike. In the fifteenth century it had roughly the same rules as the modern game. The eighteenth century saw the popularization of tournaments, the crescent community of professional players and an unprecedented sophistication of techniques.

A story commonly associated with chess tells us that an Indian mathematician, having invented chess, presented it to his king. The king was so impressed that he allowed the mathematician to choose his own reward - and what he asked was, simply, rice. He asked the king for one grain of rice for the first square on the board and for each next square twice the rice of the previous (so two grains for the second square, four grains for the third square and so on). The king promptly accepted but, after weeks, still no one could calculate the size of the king's debt - they only knew the cost of all that rice was greater than the value of the whole kingdom. To honor his debt, the king was then forced to give the whole of his kingdom to the mathematician.

(In case you're wondering, the result would be just less than 18.5 quintillion grains: a mountain of rice taller than Mount Everest and enough to provide for all contemporary demand for rice for 800 years.)