Chess News

General chess-related articles and information about SparkChess development; this section is for everyone interested in chess.

Chess Event

Queen of Katwe visits California

Although chess is a game of conflict, with White and Black battling to defeat each other, the world of chess features heart-warming stories of cooperation and success. The critically-acclaimed film Queen of Katwe tells the story of Phiona Mutesi. Phiona grew up in the slums of Katwe in Uganda. After attending the Sports Outreach Mission chess program as a girl, she became the first Woman Candidate Master from Uganda. More 🡢

Elliott and Phiona on the Red Carpet in Hollywood, CA, September 2016

Prizes for your questions for chess coach Elliott Neff

Want to win a one-year SparkChess Premium Live membership and a one-year Chess4Life Online Premium membership (valued at $99) at In the comments to this article, ask National Master Elliott Neff a question. On May 25, SparkChess writer Alexey Root will select the five best questions from the comments. The commenters who asked the “five best” questions will each win a one-year Premium Live membership to SparkChess. More 🡢

Chess photo

Final Four of College Chess 2018 – The Winner is…

In my first article for SparkChess, I asked readers to predict the finish order of the teams playing in the 2018 Final Four of College Chess (formally known as the President’s Cup). The President Cup’s award ceremony was on April 1. The winner was The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV), with seven-and-a-half (7.5) points out of a possible 12 points. Second place was Webster University (WU) with seven (7) points, third place was Texas Tech University (TTU) with five (5) points, and Saint Louis University (SLU) was in last place with four-and-a-half (4.5) points. More 🡢

The Final Four of College Chess

Football, Basketball, and Chess… and YOU could be a winner!

Unlike many U.S. universities, The University of Texas at Dallas (UTD) does not have a football team. Instead, UTD has a chess team. In 2018 Final Four teams of the Pan-American Intercollegiate Team Chess Championships are Webster, Saint Louis University, Texas Tech University (TTU), and The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. Can you predict the order of finish of the four teams and the game points scored by the winning team? Ten Premium Live one-year memberships to Spark Chess will be awarded to participants in this contest. More 🡢

SparkChess - The Free Online Multiplayer Chess Game

Multiplayer Score Adjustment

UPDATED on Jan. 22 with details! We’ve had several requests from our top players to decrease the gaps between scores. Right now, our top players simply can’t find enough similarly-ranked opponents to play against. To refresh your memory, SparkChess uses an Elo-based system for score, but we tweaked its parameters a bit to reward players […] More 🡢

Old vs new SparkChess board

Old vs New: The SparkChess board redesign

With the new board design we introduced for SparkChess 10, some people were left wondering if the change was really necessary . After all, the old design has served the community for eight years and people grew attached to it. Far from us to pursue change for its own sake. In this post I’ll try to explain the reasons for the redesign. More 🡢