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Home Page Overview Tooltips Creating an Account

Playing Games

Starting Games Challenges Making Moves and Analysis Board Castling and Pawn Promotion Conditional Moves Offering / Claiming Draws

Starting Games

There are four ways to start a new game:

  • Accept an open game invitation
  • Post an open game invitation
  • Send a challenge to a particular player
  • Accept a challenge from another player

Note: Challenges are covered on a separate page here.

Accepting an Open Game Invitation

Click on 'New Game' in the navigation bar. If there are open game invitations they will be displayed at the top of the page - one invitaion per line. Each invitaion can be for a number of games (from 1 to 6). Take note of the details of the game before accepting the invitation. To accept the invitaion click the 'Play' link in the right-hand column.

Some invitation can't be accepted. In this case the right-hand column will say 'Can't join' in red. This can be several reasons for this:

  • Your rating is not in the specified range
  • The time control is not available (for basic accounts)
  • The number of games would exceed your game limit (for basic accounts)
Details of the invitation preventing you from joining are shown in red. Hover your mouse over these items to display a tool-tip which will explain the reason.

Posting an Open Game Invitation

To post an open game invitation, click on 'New Game' in the navigation bar. In the lower part of the page (under the open game invitations) is a form where you can specify the details for the games you want to play.
For 'Invitation type' you can choose 'Open to anyone' or 'Challenge a particular player'. Note that challenges are only available with premium accounts. See the Challenges Help Page for more information.

Then choose a rating range for your opponent. This is useful if you prefer to play someone of a particular level of ability.

Game type can be 'Standard Chess' or 'Fischer Random'. Specify 'Rated' or 'Unrated', the preferred time control, the number of games and your colour. Some options are not available with basic accounts. For most items, you can hover your mouse over the '?' to get more information in a tool-tip.


You can start a game by sending a challenge to another player of your choice, or by accepting a challenge sent to you.

Challenges are covered on their own page here