Nakamura, Seirawan To Play Bughouse Match Saturday
Nakamura and Seirawan will play a bughouse bonanza Saturday.

Nakamura, Seirawan To Play Bughouse Match Saturday

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Two of the best Bughouse players in the world will be teaming up with two legends of chess as Canadian Twitch streamer Grace Ferguson (@Helmsknight) heads to battle alongside Super-GM Hikaru Nakamura against 4x US Champion Yasser Seirawan and bughouse specialist (and 2018's zh champion) Justin Tan (@JannLeeCrazyhouse)  in a special bughouse chess match this Saturday.

You can watch the event this Saturday, March 2 at 8 a.m. PST (11 a.m. EST, 5 p.m. CET) on and on ChessTV. @helmsknight will also be hosting the matches from her point of view at

Nakamura will team with Ferguson, while Seirawan will partner with Tan. Nakamura and Seirawan will play across from each other while Tan and Ferguson face off on the other board. The time control for all games will be three minutes.

If you've never heard of bughouse chess or you need a refresher, here the rules. You can also find out about all chess variants we offer here.

Bughouse Chess Variant

Bughouse chess on

Bughouse is a variant of chess played by four players in teams of two on two separate chessboards. Each partner plays an opposing team member with the goal to win the game by normal means (checkmate or timeout). One partner plays Black, the other White. Partners help each other by capturing enemy pieces, which their partner may then place (drop) on an empty square on their turn. (Click here for tips for beginners.)

Things to know about bughouse:

  • When you capture one of your opponent's pieces, it is immediately passed to your teammate's piece bank for use when desired. 
  • On any turn, instead of making a move, a player can drop any piece from their bank to any open square on the board.
  • Pawns may not be dropped on the first or eighth ranks.
  • A pawn that is placed on the second rank may move two squares on its first move, as in standard chess.
  • Pawns that have promoted and are then captured go into the bank as pawns, not as the piece to which they promoted. Such promoted pieces are called "counterfeits."
  • A bughouse game is over when a game on either board ends in checkmate, resignation, timeout or draw by repetition. There are no draw offers in bughouse. 
Helmsknight's logo

And now, a little about the players!

Justin Tan (JannLee): 

  • Family man who occasionally streams crazyhouse chess when time permits
  • Represented Australia in World Junior Chess events four times
  • Started playing bughouse and crazyhouse online in 2000
  • Started streaming crazyhouse early in 2016 with a goal to inspire new players
  • Won the inaugural crazyhouse world championship in 2017

Grace Ferguson (Helmsknight): 

  • Creates bughouse content with a goal of bringing more action and players to the game
  • Has been playing since 2008 when she was just 11 years old
  • Reached fifth place in online rankings by age 13, with a rating over 2500
  • Loves the game's tactical nature and complexity
  • Finds the multitasking aspect thrilling and exciting

GM Yasser Seirawan:

  • Four-time U.S. chess champion
  • At age 21, served as a second for Victor Korchnoi for his 1981 world title match
  • Prolific chess author with more than 10 books
  • Creator of a chess variant named Seirawan chess
  • Regular commentator and guest on and Chessbrah Twitch channels

GM Hikaru Nakamura

  •  We think you all know the legend that is GM Hikaru.

Watch the bughouse match this Saturday at 8 a.m. PST (11 a.m. EST, 5 p.m. CET) on and on ChessTV.

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