Chessality will have a free open test between 6th-15th of August!
We would like to invite you all to join Chessality’s open public test!
The test will take place between the 6th of August to Sunday the 15th of August! We will be posting more information and updates on Twitter, Chessality’s forum, and discord!
Play with your lichess account in VR vs other lichess VR players and lichess non-VR players! Any questions are welcome on the forum/discord!
About the Game
Chessality is bringing "over-the-board" (OTB) chess to you!… and much, much more!
One of the most classic strategic board games can finally be properly played, enjoyed, and studied in VR!
Enjoy realistic/cartoonish environments on fun, exciting, and heart-pumping single and team battles!
Feel the intensity of OTB competitive play by joining official Chessality tournaments placing you in a competitive VR environment dedicated to tournaments.
Have fun with your friends on team battles for fun and for serious climbing of the ranks!
This game is aimed at both casual players, enthusiasts, dedicated chess players, and modders who enjoy customizing their game’s visuals.
- Immerse in over-the-board chess games using ‘focus’ environments with nice simple playlists or just silent, or enjoy casual games on calm/stressful aesthetically realistic/cartoonish environments! There is a total of 5 maps available, and more to come!
- Basic playlist offering option to load songs from Youtube or your local mp3s.
- Lichess integration: Don’t feel like walking away from your already amazing ranking in lichess? No worries. We have almost full integration. Yes. Join all lichess tournaments, different chess variations (not all as of yet), view/add/challenge your friends, play casual and competitive. Yes, you can play with non-Chessality users across all platforms. Show your trophies and lichess’ donator flags. It also supports multiple lichess accounts for households with multiple lichess players (disabled multi-user on release*).
- Multiple chessmen skins and chessboard skins: in addition to the ability to load your own custom skins/3D models for your chessmen/chessboard.
- Play both Chessality’s and lichess’ puzzles to improve your skills based on your puzzle ratings on a variety of tactical themes!
- Classic tutorial of the basics of how to play the game
- Learn openings: learn intuitively with a selective level of deepness. Don’t just learn the best moves, but Chessality shows you how to play any of the openings we have available both for black and for white, displaying both the best moves for each side as well as classic mistakes from your opponent and how to punish the mistakes. This is aimed at all skill levels, from beginners to at least International Masters. [partial DLC]
- Blindfold chess: Ever wanted to learn blindfold chess but never tried, or was it too overwhelming the first time? Chessality has different levels of blindfold (all levels include a voice announcing the move):
- Level 1: All chessmen are made of transparent glass of the same color tone
- Level 2: All chessmen and chessboard are made of glass
- Level 3: No pieces, just chessboard and a 2D table showing all the historical moves of the game in notation form (i.e., e2e4)
- Level 4: No pieces, just chessboard and a 2D table showing the last 3 moves of the game
- Level 5: No pieces, just chessboard and a table showing the last move of the game
- Level 6: No pieces, just chessboard.
WIP Features planned for release
- Simple and intuitive menu with the ability to display advanced settings
- Game modes: in addition to most of lichess’ game modes, we also including Poisoned Pawn and Dice Chess game modes
- Ability to interact in VR with other VR user(s) when playing with Chessality users
- Music integration from Spotify
- Voice command to move the pieces and toggling some in-game options. This is perfect for full blindness training. [DLC]
- Learn end games
- Learning openings: selective test for testing your skills on one or several openings and variations with selective deepness. [partial DLC]
- Study chess by connecting to a local instance of Chessbase 16 and Fritz, with features that may assist chess schools or private tutors. [DLC]
- Study using lichess’ study mode
- Bringing modern games’ ranking system to chess: you have your own Chessality MMR, in addition to lichess’. Chessality’s ranking system includes tiers (Silver/Gold/Platinum/Diamond/Grandmaster), and divisions reset every season.
- Team matches: create teams and have 3v3 and 5v5 team matches.
- Create your own single/team tourney with casual settings or hardcore selective settings like: "to end a turn, you must hit your clock," "use the same hand used to move a piece to hit the clock," "knocking your king down accidentally is the same as resigning," etc. Great for casual tournaments, club tournaments, or others. You may also fill gaps with AIs using Stockfish 13 at different levels. Tournament settings also include limiting the tournament for Chessality users only, in case you want a VR-only tournament.
- Language support (in addition to the original US English): Norwegian, Spanish (Mexico), Portuguese (Brazil), and Polish. Chessality requires community support for further language support.
- Streaming features and shortcuts to make the lives of streamers easier.
- Integration with another 2D chess group for further expanding chess cross-play.
- Steamworks integration for custom environments and other community content.
- More chessmen skins, chessboard skins, and environments
- Voice descriptions of events and tutorials
Yes, there are some DLCs planned. However, all chessmen/chessboard skins will also be complete freely available to be downloaded from our website and can be "side-loaded" using the available feature of loading custom models to Chessality. These won’t be shown to your opponent (if they are using VR) but are fully available to you.
Any cool ideas or integration requests? Tell us! We are very open to ideas!
Will a non-VR version be available?
As of right now, there is no plan. Although there is code implemented for debugging without using a VR headset, one of this project’s goals is to bring emphasis to OTB chess and add a meaningful and replayable VR game to your library. We don’t want to downplay the VR in this game by offering a non-VR option. Furthermore, there are already several very well accomplished 2D options of the game.
Release date information
Originally planned for December 2020, but now the plan is around may-august 2021. We feel very safe about these range dates to release the game as actually, the gameplay is quite very well polished, and most original features for release are ready. However, further advertisement, artwork, and environmental polishment seem in order before release. The actual feature list is much longer than described, and the planned feature list is even much longer. Due to the almost pure focus of the client, server, integration of third-party services, game mechanics, and aesthetics development, almost nothing has been done on artwork and advertisement until now.
Want to help?
We would gladly accept any free help you can offer! Especially artwork and advertisement 😉
Author personal notes
Yes, 2D digital chess is incredible and offers very convenient playability/portability. However, 2D digital chess doesn’t 100% translate your skills to OTB chess, nor OTB is efficient as training on 2D digital chess.
Chessality is probably not a true replacement for over-the-board chess nor a true upgrade from 2D digital chess, but just another way to play the game. I will try to offer as much functionality and realism for true hard-core OTB players and offer the convenience of the digital world to more casual players while trying to keep the core values of chess to the best of my abilities as a human.
"Without the element of enjoyment, it is not worth trying to excel at anything." – Magnus Carlsen
"Every chess master was once a beginner." – Irving Chernev
"No one will regret the time dedicated to chess, as it will help in any profession." – Tigran Petrosyan
"You must lead your opponent into a dark forest where 2+2=5 and the path out is only wide enough for one." – Mikhail Tal
"If you wish to succeed, you must brave the risk of failure." – Garry Kasparov
"The winner of the game is the player who makes the next-to-last mistake." – Tartakower
"****, I didn’t see that!" – Most players (probably)
- OS: Windows 10
- Processor: Intel i5-4590 / AMD Ryzen 5 1500X or greater
- Memory: 8 GB RAM
- Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 1060 / AMD Radeon RX 480 or greater
- Network: Broadband Internet connection
- Storage: 10 GB available space
- Sound Card: Its chess. You don't need sound.
- Additional Notes: Recommend higher as these are the minimum to get VR working.
- OS: Windows 10
- Processor: Threadripper 3990x / AMD Ryzen 9 5900X
- Memory: 256 GB RAM
- Graphics: RTX 3090
- Network: Broadband Internet connection
- Storage: 100 GB available space
- Sound Card: Something that output non-screeching sounds.
- Additional Notes: Yes, its a chess game, but its not in just black and white.