Why is it so much easier to focus in OTB Games?


I find it much harder to concentrate when looking on the screen than when playing OTB. Especially when I am playing against the computer, I catch myself not having looked at the board at all and just blundering away.

10 minute games on chess.com seem to be an ordeal, but having a quick 10 min game against a colleague is fun.

Does anyone else have the same problem?

Why is that? Is it because of the eye stress caused by the monitor? Is OTB more exciting because the enemy is sitting opposite you? Is it because chess via the computer is a lonely pursuit? Is the stress being caused by rating points?


It's personal problem I quess. I find monitor as well as board quite similar. If I m good otb then Im good online too.


It's like playing with left hand, it doesnt change.


I have the same experience. Well,  at least compared to the otb chess that I used to play. Eye-strain is a definite practical aspect. It is always worth checking your monitor's refersh rate. There's also a free program called f.lux thata djusts your screen instantly to take into account the time of day. I take my eyes away from the screen a lot to avoid strain , especially in a 90 30 game!!!!!

90 30 is a total ordeal that lasts forever online. This year was my first 90 30 online game and I couldn't concentrate at all in it - I hung a pieve as though I was a 800 player.

Maybe you havbe to imagine online that your opponent is facing you - some spotty-faced dweeb who is a member of every Dr Who society Laughing


To the extent there is a difference, it might be due to the psychological investment you must make to play OTB.  To go to a club or cafe, you must get dressed, be sure to have a meal, and spend the time and effort to get there and back.  Online, you can sit there in your pajamas eating Cheezy Poofs, it's easier and may therefore not mean so much to you.

Playing an OTB tournament is even more serious, since federation memberships and entry fees and a time commitment is also required.  Of course you treat the game differently then.