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Each player begins the game with sixteen pieces: one king, one queen, two rooks, two knights, two bishops, and eight pawns. Each of the six piece types moves differently. Pieces are used to attack and capture the opponent's pieces, with the object of the game being to 'checkmate' the opponent's king by placing it under an inescapable threat of capture. In addition to checkmate, the game can be won by the voluntary resignation of one's opponent, which typically occurs when too much material is lost, or if checkmate appears unavoidable. A game may also result in a draw in several ways, where neither player wins. The course of the game is divided into three phases: opening, middlegame and endgame.
To make a move in the game below, click on the piece you wish to move, then click again to the square you wish to move it to. To play the black pieces, choose "swap" before the game begins, or at any other time (and the computer will play the other side automatically).