I’m a huge fan of chess. It was one of the first games I ever learned to play. Thanks to a Grand-Uncle who was extremely good at it, and world class at checkers, I fell in love with it. It has hurt a little bit to see so many people treat it as an almost obscure thing. As such, it makes me happy to see Chess.com and Twitch taking this new step in their efforts to promote the game, including its sporting side. They are both increasing their efforts to grow chess as an online spectator sport.
Chess.com will continue to stream games at their Twitch channel. This will include broadcasting the upcoming Speed Chess Championship on November 18. It’s a pretty big deal as Magnus Carlsen will be playing against Wesley So. Why is that a big deal? Carlsen is a Grandmaster, achieving that title at the age of 13 years old. He is also the current World Chess Champion. Wesley So is also a Grandmaster, he became the youngest player ever to pass 2600 Elo rating in October of 2008 and is the current U.S. Chess Champion. His Elo record has since been broken but So has also become one of only eleven people to break the 2800 Elo mark.
To put it in simple terms, you can sit down at your computer and watch two of the current top chess talents in the world go head to head on Twitch.
The partnership also promises to bring ways that Chess.com content creators can improve their monetization opportuinities. It’s all just good news if you like chess and want to see it grow and capture the imaginations of a new audience. And for all the horrible things it can get up to from time to time, the hive that is Twitch Chat has shown itself to be willing to embrace all kinds of new and interesting things, from cooking shows to Bob Ross, so why not chess?