This game has sass – somewhat unexpected for a chess game. When you open Really Bad Chess for the first time it asks, “How are you at chess?” Dare to let on that you “don’t know how to play chess” and it replies “Err...hm. You should probably at least know the basics of normal chess” and then directs you away: “Come back when you’re ready”.
Well, we’re not sure we really were ready, but we decided to give it a go anyway. And since rule number one of Really Bad Chess is essentially that you must set aside most of what you know about ‘normal’ chess, this game suddenly becomes super accessible even if you are utterly rubbish at the original game. Or, if you're a chess master, get ready for an exciting new challenge.
Aside from sticking with the set moves that each piece can make, Really Bad Chess is irreverent of convention. By giving you a board set-up that could include any mix of pieces (three queens for you and seven bishops for your AI opponent, for example) with random start positions, it completely does away with rote opening moves and shatters the traditions of the true game.
The only piece you can guarantee will be in its normal place (and in every game) is the king. So, by playing Really Bad Chess you can feel like you’re sticking it to the man (sort of).
For newbies, this is great, because it it breaks down the learning barriers – you no longer need to go away and study set piece moves before you start playing. For chess fanatics, it takes away the repetition of the normal game. As you begin to win, the balance of the board set up will tip in favour of the AI. If you lose, you'll get the better pieces to help you back on track. This makes the game great fun, no matter how quickly you progress.