One of the oldest chess strategy books, from 1561, recommends playing with your back to the sun to blind your opponent. If playing at night by a fire, it advises you to cast a shadow over the board with your hand, so your opponent “will not be able to see where to play his pieces.”
Chess grandmaster Bobby Fischer literally spat on a US order warning him that a rematch in Eastern Europe would violate US sanctions. He played the match and then spent the next 16 years as a fugitive outside the US until his death.
In 1770 a man invented a machine that could play a strong game of chess against a human opponent. The “android” that played the game was nicknamed The Turk (as was the machine itself). It wasn’t until 1857 that it was revealed to be a hoax (a chess master was hiding in the machine).
Villagers in the India village of Marottichal began playing chess as an alternative to drinking after a ban on alcohol.The village is now known as ‘Chess Village’ due to its near 100% chess literacy.
In May 1997, an IBM supercomputer known as Deep Blue beat then chess world champion Garry Kasparov, who had once bragged he would never lose to a machine. After 15 years, it was discovered that the critical move made by Deep Blue was due to a bug in its software.
In 1999 chess Grandmaster Garry Kasparov played The World in a game of chess that lasted over four months. Over 50,000 people from more than 75 countries participated in the game with moves being decided by majority vote. Garry ended up winning on turn 62 when 51% of The World decided to resign.
In Armenia, all children aged 6 and up are taught chess at school, as it is a mandatory part of their curriculum.
A murderer in Russia killed 61 people in his aim to kill 1 person for each square of the chess board.
Garry Kasparov played the world at a game of chess online, where over 50,000 different people from over 75 countries voted on the best move. Kasparov won.
There is a variant of chess called “Singularity Chess” played on a board distorted in the center. Due to the distortion, some pieces can make U-turns, attack the same square multiple ways, and bishops can change square colors.