Chess is one of the most ubiquitous games in the world, and it's easy to get started.
All you need is a board and some pieces. There's no need for an app or robotics, and certainly no need for artificial intelligence baked into the board.
And yet... we're living in the age of digital everything, where AI is utilized to drive cars, write books and make cocktails. So it was only a matter of time before it came for chess.
GoChess is a new take on the classic game that's self-described as the world's first truly robotic chess board. So you can play anyone (real or machine) no matter their location, and the pieces will move right before your eyes. But it's not magic; it's magnetic robots.
The new invention is currently on Kickstarter, where it quickly exceeded its funding goal, so you can reserve yours now. And boards are slated to begin shipping out next spring.
GoChess looks like a normal chess board on the surface. But below the surface, robotic mechanisms automatically move the chess pieces to set up the board for a new game, and to reflect your opponent's moves. Your remote opponent can play with a GoChess board of their own, or they can play via certain platforms, like chess.com. Once they input their move, you'll see the pieces slide across the board in front of you. To make your own moves, use your hands—or live a little and move your pieces via the app or voice control.
When not playing an actual human being, you can play against the AI across 32 levels of difficulty to hone your skills. The AI learns from your playing style and adapts, just like a seasoned opponent would. The board will also set up challenging puzzles for you to solve or revisit historic games from grand masters. And if you enlist the color-coded coaching lights, the board will analyze game situations and light up squares to suggest the best possible moves.
Along the way, the app records and keeps track of all your games and moves, providing you with real-time analysis and insights to help you improve your game.
Just like the Soviets did it in the '50s.