Game Description: Play chess against 3 different computer opponents.
How to Play Spark Chess:
- Choose White (pieces) or Black (pieces) by clicking on the arrow between the two knights near the bottom of the screen.
- White always goes first.
- Choose your desired difficulty level by clicking on one of the pictures: Cody is the beginner level. Cody is still learning. Play with him if you're a beginner. Claire is the intermediate level. Claire still makes blunders, but you need to focus a little. Perfect for a coffee break. Boris is the advanced level. Get ready for a challenge. Boris will do his best to beat you, so don't play unless you're an advanced player. (There is also a fourth level named Guru. Guru is only available if you purchase the game. Since I only have free versions of games here on Richard's Game Reviews, the Guru level is locked and is not available on my site).
- Your pieces are always at the bottom. Your opponent's pieces are at the top.
- If you chose the White pieces, you go first. If you selected Black, the computer will make the first move.
- After the first move, play alternates between you and your opponent.
- When it is your turn to make a move click on the piece you want to move. Spark Chess will light up the board with green colored squares. (If the piece you clicked on has no green squares light up, this means the piece is not eligible to be moved at this particular point and time). To complete your move, click on any green square. (If, after clicking on a piece, should you change your mind and wish to move a different piece, just click on the piece a second time. The green squares will disappear. Now, click on a different piece to move).
- Should you make a blunder, and wish to undo your mistake, you may click the 'Undo Move' button located in the right panel.
- Standard chess rules apply.
- Spark Chess does allow castling. If you are not familar with the castling rules of chess, and would like to learn, please click here for a brief explanation.
- Spark Chess recognizes the en-passant capture. If you are not familiar with the en-passant move, and would like to learn, please read this.
- Spark Chess implements standard draw rules of chess based on three repetitions or 50 pawnless moves. (If you are not sure how the draw rules work, well neither do I. Presumably, the game will let you know if there is a draw. So, don't worry about it. Just play).
- If you need to quit, before finishing your game, Spark Chess should automatically save your game for you. Then, as long as you use the same computer, you should be able to pick up your game where you last left off.
Richard's Rating: 4 out of 5.
Pro: Ever since I started Richard's Game Reviews, about a year-and-a-half ago, I have been searching for an available computer chess game that can consistently beat me. It's not that I am a particularly good chess player. I'm not. (This is not false modesty on my part. I am just being honest in acknowledging my own limitations). Speaking frankly, all of the other computer chess games I have here on this site are, at least to me, not very challenging. That is definitely not the case with Spark Chess! When I play at the highest difficulty, against Boris, I have yet to win. In fact, I usually get beaten quite soundly. The nice thing is, of course, if you are not ready to take on Boris you can always play against Cody or Claire. (Even Cody, the beginner level, is probably more challenging than the other computer chess games on my site even when they are played at their highest levels). So, there are 3 very good levels to play, each level presenting a nice challenge. If you have not yet played Spark Chess I certainly recommend that you give it a try.
Con: The only thing I don't like about Spark Chess, and the only reason I did not give it my highest rating of 5 out of 5, is the lack of depth perception. Sometimes it can be a little hard to distinguish what row a piece is on unless you look very carefully.