Overview

Are you tired of all those action games? Or are you sick of running around looking for keys to locked doors? Well Ubi Soft has heard your cries and has taken you off the streets and onto a chess table where you will be able to play through hundreds of different chess matches offline as well as online. One thing you might be wondering is can’t I do that for free on my computer. You are absolutely right you can but here is a game for all of you who haven’t heard of that, or those who are looking for a new place to play chess.

Gameplay

This is one of the most straightforward titles that will be released this year. The game is called Chessmaster, and wouldn’t you know the game is all about Chess. Through the game you will be playing a lot of chess online and off. What separates good chess games from the bad ones are game modes and in Chessmaster you will have your fair share of modes to play on.

One of the first things I noticed about Chessmaster is that it really isn’t made for beginners but more for people who have a pretty good understanding of the game of Chess. For those of you who do have a good understanding of Chess then this will definitely be a game more suited for you.

Chessmaster hosts a slew of game modes that will keep most people busy for quite some time. These game modes include Quick Game, Rated Game, Setup Position, Puzzle of the Day, Online, Championships, Chess School, Famous Games, and Chess Battlefield. The tutorial mode really wasn’t made for beginners but for people looking for new strategies to further advance your chess skills.

I think though out of all the game modes provided the one that stands out the most or that will get the most attention is the online mode. Although people play free online chess all the time now you have a chance to do it on your PS2. The problem is that I found it much more enjoyable to play chess on your computer then on the PS2. I just think that chess was a lot more user friendly on the computer then it is on the PS2 and therefore I stayed away from the online mode.

The one mode that I actually enjoyed was the battlefield chess mode. As you can probably already tell I am not a huge fan of the game of chess but I have a great amount of respect for the game. But the one thing that I have always thought was great was battlefield chess. Seeing your chess pieces actually come to life keeps the game flowing from the normal chess to animated chess which I enjoyed.

Overall the game play’s like you would expect a chess game to play. There really isn’t anything in this game that is going to surprise you. This is a game that is as straightforward as it comes the game is called Chessmaster and in the game you play chess.

What kind of sound would you expect to hear when you are playing chess? Well I would mind some Alternative music but that wasn’t going to happen. So like expected the game includes very soft relaxing background music that is there to sooth the soul. The voice in the game like in all chess games can be quite irritating but it is a step ahead of other chess games that have been released. Overall there is nothing overly wrong with the sound, it basically is just there.

Graphics

It’s quite hard to actually get a grasp on whether Chessmaster is a good or bad looking game. It’s chess and it looks like a chess board with the chess pieces. There really isn’t a whole lot you can get out of this section. I do think though that Ubi Soft could have done a much better job setting up the menu system. The menu’s are very bland and very ugly, they just don’t have much color or detail to them.

I think my biggest complaint with Chessmaster’s graphics is the far out camera. At times I could not see which piece was which and just had to blatantly guess until I figured out which piece was which. You have complete control of the camera to a point, and I just think the camera could have gone in a little closer then it did.

The battlefield chess is the only portion of the game where the pieces are really animated. You will witness the pieces move from point to point and kill the other pieces along the way. It’s not that this hasn’t been done before it was just nice to see that it was included in Chessmaster, and it looks quite good.

Fun Factor

Chess reminds me a lot of golf. In the fact that it is a slow paced game that can have its ups and downs. Chess is one of those games that if you’re on your game you can really have fun with this one. There are plenty of game modes that are available for you that will keep you occupied for quite a while. The replay value is all there because each day there is a new random puzzle for you to figure out that can range from extremely easy to extremely complex. Overall it all depends on your taste for the game of chess, and if you like chess then you will really enjoy this one.

Overall

If you are one who is looking to improve your chess game, then this is really a great game for you. There are plenty of tutorials to help you learn new moves and some great strategy for your game. In addition you will also be given plenty of different opponents to play on and offline so that you can become a Chessmaster. If you are a fan of the game of chess I would recommend this to you, otherwise just stick to the free online chess.

The owner and editor-in-chief of Darkstation.com. I've been apart of the website since 2002 and purchased the website in 2010. Owning and running Darkstation is a dream come true. I love video games and I love writing and talking about them even more.