This article will discuss more than 50 exciting chess statistics that will blow your mind away.
1. The longest chess match to be recorded stretches for more than 20 hours! The contestants, Goran Arsovic and Ivan Nikolic put their wits at stake and played a marathon of a game.
2. According to chess global stats, there have been a little over 1700 chess grandmasters or GMs up to date. To reach this level of mastery, each would-be grandmaster spends around 12,000 hours studying the game.
3. When considering chess move statistics, more chess moves can be possible than the number of atoms in the entire universe! Mathematicians put this number at 1080.
4. Chess stats from the internet suggest that more than 600 million people play chess daily, including physical and online matches. Indeed one of the most interesting chess statistics proves that chess holds sway over a large chunk of the global population.
5. When it comes to countries such as the United States of America, India, Germany, Russia, and the United Kingdom, at least 70% of its people have played chess once in their entire lifetime.
6. Chess global stats indicate that the most expensive chess board ever made has a price tag of more than USD 4 million. This most remarkable chess board is named the ‘Pearl Royale Chess Set’ and consists of diamonds, sapphires and gold.
7. Apart from the official version of chess that everyone knows about, approximately 2000 other chess variants exist across the planet.
Some well-known chess variants include King of the Hill, Chess 960, Bughouse Chess, 3-Check, and Crazyhouse Chess.
8. Mathematicians have calculated that the most number of moves theoretically possible in a single chess game is 5949.
9. As discussed in our other blogs, ‘chess openings’ are integral to a competitive chess match, and the opening moves have the power to decide the game’s fate. Chess aficionados who have researched chess move statistics in detail have found that there can be a staggering 318,979,564,000 different chess openings at any given time. And this only concerns the first four moves of the game.
10. Anyone with a dint of chess knowledge would have heard of current undisputed world chess champion Magnus Carlsen. Carlsen has been the champion since defeating Vishwanathan Anand in 2013. Interestingly, the concept of a ‘world champion’ in chess was adopted only in 1886.
11. On average, a chess grandmaster competes in 75 professional bouts in a year. Once the match is played, it is a common practice among GMs to analyse each game thoroughly to bring out the pluses and minuses.
12. As per chess global stats, the hugely successful Netflix show ‘The Queen’s Gambit’ propelled millions of new chess enthusiasts to the 64-squared board. Online chess statistics have shown that over three million fresh users joined the online chess platform ‘Chess.com’ immediately after the show’s release.
13. The success of ‘The Queen’s Gambit’ also gave way to a record number of sales of chess-related products in the United States. People engaged with chess stats have stated that there had been an 87% rise in the sale of chess boards and a 603% rise in chess books after the show hit the screens.
14. The world’s foremost GMs earn a startling amount of prize money from participating in and winning tournaments. World champion Magnus Carlsen regularly gets paid in the millions in elite chess tournaments.
15. The ‘GM title was officially put in place by the Federation Internationale des Echecs (FIDE) in 1950.
16. There have been 1742 male chess grandmasters and 39 female chess grandmasters.
17. The youngest chess grandmaster in history happens to be Abhimanyu Mishra. He achieved this astonishing feat in June 2021 at the age of twelve years, four months and twenty-five days.
18. People working with chess move statistics have recorded that it takes only two moves to checkmate an opponent. This happens when a player plays with black pieces and follows the sequence of movements that looks like this chess parlance – 1. g4 e6 2. f4 Qh4#.
19. In a game between Walker and Thornton in 1992, not a single player could capture a rival’s piece after 100 moves, and this is a world record under chess move statistics.
20. The second book to be printed in English was a chess book, with the title ‘The Game of Chess.’
21. Chess statistics show that an average chess game lasts 38 moves.
22. The highest number of chess moves played in a single game numbered 269!
23. The country that has produced the maximum number of chess grandmasters is Russia, with over 250.
24. The capturing technique known as ‘en passant’ came in use in 1280.
25. A chess game played between Narcis Vinyoles and Francesc de Castellvi in 1475 in Italy is believed to be the oldest one ever to be recorded in writing.
26. The youngest world chess champion of all time, Garry Kasparov, was only 22 when he made history in 1985.
27. The present form of chess we are familiar with was designed in 1090 in Europe.
28. Foldable chess boards, available on the SquareOff website, were first invented in 1125 by a clergyman.
29. The person who held the world title for the most prolonged duration was Emanuel Lasker. He was the world champion for more than 26 years!
30. When GM Bernstein of Russia was ordered to be shot to death in 1918, he could save himself by beating an official in charge of his execution.
31. The first recorded chess engine was called ‘The Turk’. It was built in 1779 but was later proved to be a fake.
32. Until 1600, a rule dictated that a player who could capture all rival chess pieces, except the king, would become the winner.
33. The credit for the invention of the first chess engine goes to Alan Turing, a feat he achieved in 1951.
34. Only a handful of players have been able to reach or cross the FIDE rating mark of 2800.
35. Magnus Carlsen has the highest FIDE rating score of all time. He reached up to 2882, more than Garry Kasparov’s 2851.
36. The first instance when a computer chess engine beat a human player occurred in November 1988.
37. The rule that allows pawns to advance two squares instead of one on their first move was added to the game in 1280 in Spain.
38. The number of possibilities increases as a chess game progresses. There could be more than 400 possible moves after the first moves of a game are played.
39. After two moves have been played, an estimated 72,084 various movements can be applied by each player.
40. When three moves are completed by each player, another 9 million options open up.
41. The chess statistics related to chess moves are breathtaking. There could be more than 318 billion different positions that chess pieces can move after each player is through with four moves each.
42. The number of unique 40-move chess games is higher than the existing number of electrons in the known universe!
43. When the knight moves around a chess board, it could have over 122 million movement patterns.
44. The first chess board in its present version was invented in 1090 in Europe.
45. Eric Knoppert holds the record of having played the most speed chess games – 500, within 68 hours.
46. The first time an American chess player could beat someone from the Soviet Union was Frank Marshall in 1924.
47. You must have noticed chess players competing with a clock next to the board. Keeping note of time has always been integral to the game, and the first mechanical clock meant for chess was invented in 1883 by Thomas Wilson.
48. The person who holds the record for the longest losing streak is Nicholas McLeod of Canada. He was beaten 31 times in a double round-robin tournament in New York.
49. Chess has the unique honour of being the first game to be played in outer space. Soviet cosmonauts on board the Soyuz-9 spacecraft competed against the ground crew in a drawn match in 1970.
50. The first time a chess-only magazine was published was in 1836.
51. Chess is a game that transcends boundaries, and it is believed to have originated in India sometime in the first millennium AD and then found its way to foreign lands in the subsequent centuries. The all-encompassing nature of chess has aided in becoming a much-loved strategy game in many countries.
Learning about chess statistics is a great way to ramp up your interest in the game. Chess is a versatile game that can help anyone sharpen their cognitive and analytical skills.
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