Chess Terms
Game Of The Century

Game Of The Century

The Game of the Century—that must be a pretty awesome game, right? It most certainly is! Let's learn more about one of the greatest games ever played.  

Here is what you need to know about the Game of the Century:

What Is The Game Of The Century?

The Game of the Century is one of the most famous chess games of all time. It is also considered to be one of GM Bobby Fischer's best games, despite the fact that he played it when he was just 13 years old.

Game of the century
Bobby Fischer in 1972. Photo: Dutch National Archives, CC.

The game was played in the Rosenwald Memorial tournament at the famous Marshall Chess Club in 1956. IM Donald Byrne, one of the top American masters at the time, had the white pieces against the young Fischer, who was still a year or two away from being well-known.

Fischer would win the U.S. Championship in the following year at age 14, become a grandmaster two years later at age 15, and then become world champion in 1972. It was in the Game of the Century that the American legend announced his presence to the chess world.

Why Is The Game Of The Century Important?

The Game of the Century is important because it is a masterpiece of combinational play and creativity, two strengths that helped make Fischer one of the greatest players of all time. The game also displays a memorable queen sacrifice that does not lead to a direct checkmate but instead instructively shows the power of harmonious pieces in materially imbalanced positions.

The staff voted this game as the number-five greatest chess game of all time.

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The Game of the Century is considered one of the greatest games of all time.

The Game of the Century is widely accepted as the greatest game ever played by a junior player and one that should be studied by all chess players. After the game was played, it was published in chess literature around the world and marked the very beginning of the Fischer era.

The Game Of The Century

Now that you know what the Game of the Century is and why it is important, it is time to take a look at this classic. Pay special attention to the key moments after Fischer's 11...Na4!! and the queen sacrifice 17...Be6!!  Here it is with move-by-move explanations by NM Sam Copeland

Here is Copeland's fantastic video about the Game of the Century:


You now know what the Game of the Century is, why it is important, and more! Check out this video by IM Tiger Lilov or this article for more information about this famous game.

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