I had actually completely forgotten that these types of puzzles even existed and only rediscovered it completely by accident recently. I was watching a YouTube video and somewhere in between they mentioned a chess puzzle and I thought to myself, “Huh, that’s interesting. I should look that up,” because I had completely forgotten about their existence. So afterwards when I looked it up I realised I had actually seen these before in some old puzzle books (you know the ones that had the solutions at the end of the book) and I immediately slammed myself on the forehead thinking, “Why did I forget about these?”
Any way let’s get back to the matter at hand, chess puzzles.
In a chess puzzle you are presented with a chess board with all or some of the pieces in various positions (like you are seeing it mid-game). The aim of all chess puzzles is to check mate your “opponent” within a set number of moves.
Some chess puzzles are created from actual games and some are made just for the sake of the puzzle. For the most part the rules of chess puzzles are simple:
- You play the puzzle as you would a normal game of chess.
- All the pieces move as they would in a normal game of chess.
- You have to finish the game within a set number of moves.
Of course there are variations to these puzzles where the objective is changed, for example:
- Deduce the last move made
- Can your opponent castle?
- Is there a piece missing/which piece is missing?
- Help your “opponent” checkmate your king
Many people love chess puzzles, some like to make up difficult puzzles for others to play, some just like to solve them and find the optimum moves, some like to decipher the different ways one could solve a puzzle. There are even competitions held over chess puzzles with prizes given out to the best solvers.
Chess puzzles are almost as old as the game itself and can be traced back all the way to the Middle Ages.
Chess puzzles are still popular, there are even entire websites dedicated just to them, like:
There are even mobile apps for them.
If you like puzzles or maybe are thinking of using puzzles to de-stress a little, then you can try it out. Just make sure you know the rules of normal chess otherwise you won’t be able to play. In case you aren’t familiar with the game here’s a website called chess.com that teaches you the basics and even teaches you a little strategy.
Well go ahead and have fun; meanwhile I need to solve this puzzle. Let’s see, if I move this rook here then his bishop will get me but I can take him out with this pawn and…. no that won’t work, let me try again.