Home Page Updates And Zombies!

Home Page Updates And Zombies!

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October is here! Check out the latest news and updates from as we continue to make your online chess experience as zombie-filled enjoyable and enriching as possible.

Here's what this monthly update covers:

Product & Engineering

The Product Team and Engineering Team have been focusing on quality-of-life improvements, performance, and four all-new variants, including a particularly mighty one that’s taking the internet by storm…

A screenshot of the settings menu on, showing new features.

  • Home page rework 
    The team has worked on a new and improved home page to refresh the site and help you navigate to the products you want. You now have the ability to turn off the new top row, re-add old quick links, and more. Check it out in your settings.
  • Full rework of the Friend UX on Android
    Chess is better with friends. To help make playing with your friends simple and easy, there’s been a frontend overhaul on the Android app; a new invite functionality makes it simpler than ever to send a challenge to your friend (or accept one) while playing on your phone. There are now also QR codes you can use to add friends quickly!
  • Events improvements
    Ever had trouble keeping track of who’s winning a tournament? A new knockout bracket can be found in the results tab in /events to enrich your event experience. The team has also made improvements behind the scenes to improve the reliability and performance of Events in general.

  • Four new variants:
    • Duck Chess
      The duck is a (cute, yellow, plastic) brick; pieces cannot move through the square occupied by the duck. However, knights can jump over the duck. Each player’s turn has 2 steps: After moving a piece, the duck must be moved to an empty square. There is no check or checkmate. Capture the opponent’s king to win.
    • Setup Chess
      Before the game starts, players set up their pieces and pawns, one by one. Each player has 39 material points to spend however they’d like. Pieces can be placed on the first 3 ranks, pawns on the 2nd and 3rd ranks.
    • Seirawan Chess
      Each player has two extra pieces in their piece bank; the elephant combines the movements of the rook and knight, while the hawk combines the bishop and knight. When a piece is moved for the first time, the elephant or hawk can be placed on the vacated square, as part of the move. Pawns can be promoted to an elephant or a hawk.
    • Crazyhouse
      Captured pieces are added to your piece bank and can be dropped on any empty square.
  • Puzzle update
    We curate our puzzles to make sure they’re fun, logical, and satisfying. Despite delisting a lot of puzzles last month (to make sure you only get the best ones), we ultimately added 12,061 playable puzzles, going from 503,170 at the start of the month to 515,231 on September 30.

If you are an engineer and want to help grow the game of chess, come work with us! Visit to find out more.


The Global Championship is in full swing, and other major competitions on continued throughout September.

CGC bracket


Here are some of the Community Team’s highlights from the last month (and a call to action for you)!

  • Many community members who aren’t playing anymore in the Global Championship still have a strong investment in the outcome of the tournament: 10,197 people are participating in the 100k Bracket Challenge. While some major upsets mean no one had a perfect bracket, the competition is still red-hot, and winners of this free-to-enter competition will receive some cool merch packages. Who will have the best chess prediction skills in the world? 
  • TwitchCon North America happened in San Diego last weekend, and was there with our very own booth full of fun chess-related activities. We had a blast meeting so many of you!
  • Over 1,000 people have now joined the online chess streaming community as part of the Community Streamer Program. Some have even made the jump to being official Partner Streamers… stay tuned for more on that later this month!
  • Lastly, we need your feedback. What features would you like to see on What do you like (or dislike) about your online or app-based chess experience? Leave your comments below and a special guest or two may be answering your questions next month… discord community


The last month has been a busy one for the news team, with major stories happening around the chess world.

  • is excited to announce the launch of our newest app, "Checkmate Or Die!" In this game, only two things can happen: you either checkmate the zombies or they eat you! Quickly solve all the mating puzzles that come your way to escape the wrath of the living dead.
  • A few zombies escaped the app and made it onto our Play Computer page. This is your chance to play against Zombaru, Zombiachtchi, Zombianno, Zotez, and Zombanny right here on
  • How often is the world champion the best player in the world? We can agree that Magnus Carlsen, who has been world number-one by rating since 2010 and world champion since 2013, is both. At some point next year, however, he won't be… but is this situation more common than we think? Check out this deep-dive into the question.
  • The talented WFM Maria Emelianova, also known as PhotoChess, was our Streamer of the Month for September! Check out some of her all-time favorite photos, learn how she started streaming, and find out how she became one of the world's pre-eminent chess photographers. checkmate or die

Fair Play

Fair Play stats for September:

  • 26,546 Fair Play closures (including 15 titled players)
  • 52,793 mute actions
  • 46,619 accounts muted
  • 56,452 abuse closures

The Hans Niemann report can be found in full here.


Lastly, some numbers from the Support Team. Here are the stats for September:

  • Average Time to First Response: 38 hours
  • Total Support Responses: 34,509
  • Average Quality by Member Rating: 94%
  • Total Ratings: 3,639

As always, thank you for making such an amazing place, and thank you for the comments you leave on these updates. Stay tuned—your thoughts might be featured in one of these updates soon...

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