August 29th, and 3 months on ...
I chanced upon this site while bunking-in with an old college mate of mine.
The Presentation and Lay-Out made the best of my first impressions. And the first two were:
- Live Chess. The previous sites I'd joined or played as a Guest had it's pluses, but lacked the Live atmosphere. And playing Live here is conducive; equipped with an idiot-proof navigation. It's not all Utopian. There's some lag, some disconnects, but none too frequent. In addition, the post-game Comp Analysis is a nice crutch when reviewing game archives.
- Articles. A hodgepodge of annotated games, opening principles, endgame studies, book reviews, etc. are penned, for the most part, by Titled players. The senior players especially, concoct well-written and pleasantly instructive guidelines for the betterment of chess play. [Edit: some of these articles are excerpts from books or from articles published on other chess sites.]
The interactive tools (TT/Drills/Mentor) though befitting of a good presentation, and of a good layout, lacks the notable ingredients that are found abundantly on other sites. So it's a for me [ingredients: Puzzles from TT lack credibility, Drills are missing substance, Mentor's lessons are questionable]
Videos get a "[sorry I'm at a loss of a concrete description of what I truly want to express here]" because the mini-clips give you an idea of the menu, but that's it.
Last, and certainly not the least, is a fine plus: Help & Support is truly helpful and supportive. Service etiquette is a rare commodity on a chess site. So imagine my surprise, when that one brush with mishap, led me to a friendly fella who was prompt, and polite. He gets a
Premium Membership as a Product, is worth the consideration if Live was the only reason for this season (and for the other seasons too). And though it's only a reasonable amount of dollars that's requested, it's the preference for the plural (reason-s) that makes sense for Customer & Product Profitability.