Chess.com releases documentary “The History of Chess: A Reflection of Us”

Chess has an incredible history dating back over a millennium. As one of the oldest board games, chess is shrouded in tradition and great history. From its origin in India to its spread and evolution around the world, the game of chess has captivated hundreds of millions of people.

The history of chess is intimately linked to the history of its greatest players and champions and to the battles of style, ideas and philosophy that have been waged on the chessboard since the first world chess championship took place. was disputed in 1886.

The history of chess has been told many times in books but has not been translated into video. So far. Chess.com is proud to announce that for the first time, you can discover the history of the game in a documentary dedicated to the subject: The history of chess: a reflection of us.

From the game’s humble beginnings, it has evolved into the game we know and love today. It spread all over the world and at the end of the 19th century the game had its first official world champion. From the first world champions, through the many Soviet champions, to Bobby Fischer and Boris Spassky’s match of the century in 1972, to modern day champions, this documentary covers it all.

The history of chess: a reflection of us was a nine-month project exploring the history of the World Chess Championship, chess champions and their personalities. It also explores how the way the game has developed over the years is a reflection of players, politics, and the world we live in. Backed by extensive research of thousands of newspaper articles, artwork, and historical footage and images, the documentary brings the history of chess to life.

The documentary features rare photography and footage, like this behind-the-scenes image of general manager Bobby Fischer shaving.

The documentary also brings first-hand accounts from world champions, historians and prominent chess personalities. GM world champions Viswanathan Anand and Alexandra Kosteniuk, GM championship challenger Nigel Short and legendary NM trainer Bruce Pandolfini are just a few of the experts who shared their insights into historic chess events.

When I finally became world champion, I was then able to realize that I had done something historic, (…) and that from now on, India would always have its first world champion.
— Anand, former world champion

I was captivated by the game from the start, as many gamers have been. I simply loved it. And that’s really what it’s all about: loving the game. Realizing how much fun it can be; its pure play, the challenge of it. (…) Tapping into your resources to find the right move will make anyone smile.
— Pandolfini, chess coach

Chess: a reflection of us begins with a brief history of the game and how it became a global sport. It then explores the first and all subsequent World Chess Championships. The documentary also explores the best players in the game and how they have shaped the world championship over the years. Finally, he taps into the final title match between GMs Magnus Carlsen and Ian Nepomniachtchi.

Be sure to watch Chess: A Reflection of Us in full on YouTube or right here in this article, and let us know your thoughts below.


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