I’ve heard of this site and it got some decent reviews from people who played there so I decided to check it out. Their site blub advertises: Over 1 million members, Play live tournaments, Free live games, Challenge your friends, Improve your rating Play at your level. Chat with others using text, audio and video. Watch how the masters play and improve your game.
Free is only relative. You don’t get many “benefits” with a free membership. Monthly membership is $4.95 with 3 and 6 month discounts. For example you have to pay to get benefits like game stats and history and custom pieces. I clicked on the icon to play a game and after 2 minutes the game board was still loading. My computer is rather old and a bit slow, but really!
I read on another site forum that they offer prize tournaments and probably because of that they monitor games for cheating. According to the forum poster if you frequently switch tasks during a game you get a couple warnings before getting kicked off. He said they also monitor moves with an engine to check match up rates and keep an eye on members rating progress.
Monitoring your rating progress means if you win a lot of games and your rating climbs quickly it’s viewed as a possible sign of cheating. Of course you could just be a really strong player, but you will still be a person of interest and it’s likely your games will be subjected to “review.” This happened all the time on Red Hot Pawn. Individuals would lose a game, check out their opponent’s rating history and if it looked suspicious, they’d fire up their engines and start checking out that person’s games then report the finding to the game mods. The mods would investigate then boot the suspected cheat off the site. The list of banned players got so long and their were so many forum posts making accusations that they quit listing banned players. I suppose there’s something to be said for trying to ferret out engine users but to me it is howling at the moon.
Anyway, I didn’t care for Chesscube. I can get the same thing free elsewhere. Besides that, like I said, the site was way to slow loading for me. Short version: Not interested in playing there.
I understand people trying to make money at chess and if they can do it more power to them. But personally I admire guys like “Ste” at Plastic Bishop and “Miguel” at Queen Alice a whole lot more. Their sites are free and they are in it for the love of the game.
What’s here?...My comments about chess and my pdf booklets on players and tournaments. PLUS links to sites about chess history, scholastic help, chess books (on line and downloadable), places to play chess online (real time and correspondence), Soviet chess sites, chess instruction, recommended books, chess engines, endgame databases and other really great Blogs. You will find posts about chess engines, well-known and not-so-well-known historical figures, great games and a lot of other things about chess that I have found interesting or informative. There are also posts on improvement containing subject matters like pattern recognition and how chess masters think. Most improvement advice has been gleaned from the masters themselves and psychological studies which have attempted to understand the thought process of chess masters. Be sure to take time to browse the whole Blog for interesting material. Your comments and suggestions are always welcome.