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The Tatler Guide to Hosting a Luxury Virtual Birthday Party In the Time of Covid-19 – Tatler Singapore

By Helen Yu August 13, 2020

The birthday parties of 2020 in Singapore feature Zoom calls, social distancing and just five guests... but don't let that spoil your fun. We've got the best stay-home birthday party ideas and themes, so inventive that will feel just as special

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Just because were practising social distancing and can't have more than five guests visit, it doesnt mean we cant celebrate birthdays and miss out on all the fun. From curating your own home bar to planning a sumptuous feast and enjoy a relaxing spa session, heres a list of Tatler-approved luxe party ideas and resources to make your birthday celebrations in the time of Covid-19 extra memorable and special.

(Related: Social Dis-Dance: Clubbing Goes Online As Virus Shuts Nightspots All Over The World)

Who doesnt love themed parties? If youre looking to wow your guests and give them something to remember, a fun dress code for your party is essential. Let the birthday person choose the dressing theme based on his or her favourite movie, style, book or decade, and allow the guests to showcase their best looks. Have a small party at home, or get everyone to call in virtually.

Crazy Rich AsiansandThe Great Gatsby are always fail-safe options for a party filled with glitz and glamour, and if you want to make the event a little more Insta-worthy and unique, Hong Kong socialite Feiping Changs K-pop and Animal Crossing inspired celebration will offer some inspiration too.

Is it worth getting a year older without some balloons? We think not. Go all out with fancy decorations that match your theme to create the perfect party atmosphere and set up some beautiful photo booths. If you love Insta-worthy balloons, take a look at Party Days creations. Swoon Soires is another great option that offers a wide range of picture-perfect partyware for both kids and adults, including tableware, banners, lights, party crowns, and more.

For those with a rooftop or terrace, why not give your outdoor space a luxe makeover for a memorable al fresco party experience?

Whats a birthday without cake? A homemade cake is a thoughtful gift that will have the birthday person feeling extra special (try this burnt Basque cheesecake recipe!), but if you dont have the time or are not feeling confident enough to bake, there are still plenty of excellent bakeries offering gourmet cakes with pickup or delivery services providedjust be sure to make your order in advance. Take a look at our roundup of the best bespoke cake designers in Singapore to hunt for the most celebratory decadent sweet treats.

(Related: Chef Beppe De Vito Takes Food Delivery in Singapore to the Next Level With Online Restaurant, Grammi)

Support your favourite restaurant by indulging in a scrumptious birthday feast takeaway! Many of the citys most celebrated eateries are now offering delivery services, allowing you to enjoy restaurant-level food in the comfort of your home. Tatler Singapore's dining team has started an initiative to support local restaurants in this period, called United We Dine. Be it takeaway or dine-in from United We Dine's growing list of over 100 participating restaurants to win staycations.

(Related: United We Dine: How it Works)

Weve listed the best gourmet food takeout and delivery services available in town, as well as the must-order dishes that can be found on the most esteemed restaurants delivery menus.

Of course, your celebration wouldnt be complete without some quality wines and cocktails. We know you miss getting dressed up and going out to your favourite bar for a night of great drinks and conversation with friends, thats why weve rounded up the best cocktail delivery services to keep you satisfied at home. As a bonus, this will help support local shops through tough times too.You can also take the celebration as an opportunity to learn something new, creating your own party drinks with the help of our expert guide and these easy cocktail and mocktail recipes.

(Related: The Best Homegrown Ice Cream Brands That Offer Delivery in Singapore)

We all wish that we could physically celebrate with the people who mean the most to us. If you want to include far-flung family and friends who are not able to join an in-person gathering, hosting a virtual party on platforms such as Zoom, Facetime or Google Hangouts is a good idea that it can still bring you a memorable birthday experienceyou just have to be creative about it.First, send out beautiful e-invitations with this online tool to excite your guests and get them ready to enjoy the event. On the invitation, make sure you put the start time (with your time zone, if youre inviting people from other regions), and the detailed instructions for how to join the call. You can also drop your guests an extra note of the party theme, giving everyone a chance to play dress-up, even its just a celebration happening in front of the screen. Dont forget to decorate your room or set the party mood by creating a Spotify playlist and custom Zoom backgrounds for your guests to use during the party, too.You can even pack all the party essentials such as glassware, party hats, your favourite snacks and drinks and deliver them to the guests as party kits in advance, so that everyone will feel like they are at the same space to celebrate your big day together.

Here are some Tatler-approved in-house party activity ideas:

Whether you are celebrating the big day together with your special someone or girlfriends, theres nothing better than a blissful night of pampering. Put on some music and light a calming scented candle to set the mood, then treat yourself to spa-standard facials with these luxury high-tech beauty gadgets. Looking for more ideas to elevate your at-home spa experience? Weve got you covered with our ultimate home spa guide.

Besides ordering delivery delicacies and support the local businesses you love, why not liven up your birthday feast with one or several dishes crafted by you and your friends together? Not only will you be able to enjoy some quality time together while cooking, but you can also brush up on your kitchen skills and experience the joy of tasting your own delicious creations.

Read our favourite cookbooks or watch the most entertaining food shows on Netflix for some cooking inspiration. If its easy but impressive recipes youre after, look no further than our guides to crafting the latest Instagrammable quarantine food trendsdalgona coffee and sushi bake.

(Related: The Ultimate List Of Stay-Home Activities To Do During The Covid-19 Crisis In Singapore)

Toss your smartphone away and host a fun board game night to enjoy some quality time and create new memories with your loved ones. From poker to chess puzzles and classic Scrabble, weve found the most beautiful and fun game sets for you to celebrate the big day in style.

Not into board games? What about making a fort in your living room to cosy up for a night of movies, popcorn and some good conversations? Whether you want to watch some inspiring travel shows, gripping crime documentaries or comedy shows for a good belly laugh, Netflix has something for everyone. For those who want to wow the guests and enjoy movies at home even more, here are some great ideas to build your own luxurious home theatre. If you're celebrating virtually with your friends, make good use of the Netflix Party extension on Google Chrome to enjoy the same shows together in real-time.

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The Tatler Guide to Hosting a Luxury Virtual Birthday Party In the Time of Covid-19 - Tatler Singapore

Film-maker Amit Dutta talks ‘Wittgenstein’, chess, animation and art – Livemint

Duttas latest film, Wittgenstein Plays Chess With Marcel Duchamp, Or How Not To Do Philosophy (on MUBI), is a 17-minute animation that adapts an essay of the same name by Steven B. Gerrard. The essay examines how Wittgenstein and Duchamp, both keen chess players, used the game to question language and perception. The film has a winking style of animationby the directors wife, Ayswarya S. Duttathat involves the juxtaposition of cutout figures, objects and backgrounds. Its a sprightly investigation into the nature of surface appearances and how we perceive meaning, packed with allusions to art, linguistics, philosophy and chess.

Dutta, 42, who lives in Palampur in Himachal Pradeshs Kangra Valley, wanted to be a chess player before he decided to be a director. He was part of his college chess team in Jammu. Later, he started playing correspondence chess and won silver in the All India Correspondence Championship in 2017. He collects rare chess books, owns a Dubrovnik chess set and composes chess puzzles for children in his free time. Last year, a freewheeling conversation between him and International Chess Master Venkatachalam Saravanan, accompanied by a game of correspondence chess, was published in BOMB magazine. On email, Mint asked Dutta about the making of the film. Edited excerpts:

How did you come across Gerrard's essay, and why did you decide to adapt it?

One of my friends, Jaideep Unudurti, is a wonderful chess player/journalist and science-fiction author. We play chess once in a while. One day, while playing and chatting, he mentioned this article. The moment I read it, it immediately sparked a desire to make something around it. Having moved away from the path of competitive chess, the aesthetics of the game was becoming increasingly attractive and intriguing for me. And the way the essay had connected this aspect with chess players of the calibre of Duchamp and Wittgenstein and their main disciplines was extremely exciting.

After reading the essay, I wrote to Gerrard (who teaches philosophy at Williams College, US), explained the project to him and asked for his permission. He was really kind and readily gave me permission. It took us close to two years to finish the film, all this while he was interested in the project. Once the film was finished, I was nervous showing it to himto my delight, he was really happy with it and wrote back one of the most wonderful emails I have ever received.

From what angle were you approaching this materialas a chess player, as someone interested in Duchamp/Wittgensteins work?

Chess was my point of entry because I wanted to be a chess player when I was young. But, at the same time, I am equally drawn to the interdisciplinary woven-ness of the arts. That was what attracted me to this essay. It provided so many interlinked doorways and windows to ideas and aesthetics behind the facade of a simple chess puzzle. It exactly fits the description of the aphoristic Vishnudharmottara story, where a student seeking to learn image-making is prompted to study painting for a better understanding, and for knowing painting better, he is sent to learn dance and music and poetry and prosody and so on.

You had said in an interview that starting with Nainsukh (his 2010 film), you wanted to make research-based cinema. Was Wittgenstein born out of a similar impulse?

Definitely. I find cinema to be a very good tool for anveshan, to discover, for the archaeology of knowledge. At the same time, research is only the external aspect; no research is exciting unless it supports an inner exploration and a feeling of wonder.

Why did you opt for this style of animation?

It developed slowly, of course, with my wife and partner in this film, Ayswarya. We tried various styles and this seemed most resonant with the theme of the essay, where we mostly juxtapose as opposed to creating. So the sum proliferates into much more than the parts.

It felt like the animation has a touch of Karel Zeman and Terry Gilliam, and if we go back further, George Mlis. Were these or any other artists on your and Ayswaryas minds?

I did not have any style in mind except that I wanted a very rough, hand-made treatment; eventually, I went ahead with Ayswaryas instincts. Our main inspiration was the art of the Dadas and surrealists themselves. The animators I really like are Hans Richter, Viking Eggeling and Robert Breer. There is a reference to Hans Richters work in the film as well. The artwork we have used as motion collages is all connected with the essay; and they have trespassed genres even within their times. They provided the main inspiration for the look and feel. It is an extravagantly derivative work, any influence was welcomed without qualms.

Theres a density of information and reference that makes it difficult to take in everything in one go. For instance, in one frame you have a melted clock, Marcel Duchamps Trebuchet, Max Ernsts The Hat Makes The Man, and Duchamp playing chess. Is the hope that people will return to the film and notice more each time?

Ayswarya has a deep interest in art history and philosophy. She was very excited about finding innumerable details that fitted so well with the themes and ideas of the essay. She is also an illustrator, and I asked her to draw certain portions, so that added an element of exposition also. I also believe that an image must not exhaust itself quickly. Just the way we were returning to the themes and discovering more and more the web of ideas that motivated those turn of the century artists and thinkers, and the brilliant way in which Gerrard has opened up those hyperlinks, we wish the viewer can enjoy and expand those threads too. This is an entirely open-source, digital film.

'Wittgenstein Plays Chess With Marcel Duchamp, Or How Not To Do Philosophy' is streaming on MUBI, along with several other films by Dutta.

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Film-maker Amit Dutta talks 'Wittgenstein', chess, animation and art - Livemint

Indiewatch 5D Chess with Multiverse Time Travel is about as confusing as it sounds – GameCrate

5D Chess has become slang for thinking several steps ahead of someone else. But what would 5D chess actually look like? Well, now you can actually play a game of 5D chess with the release of this new indie game, 5D Chess with Multiverse Time Travel. Its about as confusing as it sounds, and its incredibly addictive.

So how do you play 5D Chess? Well, you start by playing, well, Chess. You get all the pieces you would normally get in a chess game and each time its your turn you can use them like you normally would.

The thing is, you can also move pieces forward and back through time, and this actually requires you to think about dimensions in a different way. For example, you have to think about chess moves as a combination of axes. What does that mean? Let me explain.

A rook can move any number of spaces in one direction. In normal chess, this means up/down and left/right. However, in 5D chess, time is another axis. So your rook can also move any number of spaces forward and back in time. It would say where it is on the board when you move it, it just teleports from one point in time to a previous point in the match.

Knights can move two spaces in one direction and one in another. One of those directions can be time. Move two spaces right and one space back to the past. Bishops can move diagonally which means they can move the same amount of spaces on two axes. So you can move a bishop right three spaces and then three spaces back in time if you want to.

Following me so far?

Now, time is only one axis that you can move on. The other axis you can move on is through multiple dimensions. What does that mean? Well,5D chess resolved time-travel through many worlds. That is to say, if you send a piece back in time, it now spins off its own unique timeline where the future is different. Think about how Dragon Ball Z resolves its time travel paradoxes, and youll get an idea.

Once you have more than one timeline in play, you need to make moves in every single timeline the game exists in. One of the ways you can move is between timelines. So if your king is in check, you can move him one space through the timelines to a timeline where he isnt in check.

The thing is each timeline you create makes the game more complicated. Why is this? Because the rules of chess remain the same. All you need to do is checkmate the opponents king. Any king. In any timeline. Of course, kings can move back in time and across the timeline to avoid this checkmate. However, you can only ever move one king in one timeline at once. What happens if you threaten a king in more than one timeline? Well, you can move one to escape check, but the other remains in check. Checkmate. What if you manage to set up the same check throughout multiple timelines? Checkmate. What if your opponent keeps traveling back in time to avoid checkmate? Then eventually multiple instances of his king will be on one board. Threaten two at once and bam, checkmate.

This might sound complicated and thats because it is. Luckily, you dont have to jump into the full thing. There are a number of different modes that allow you to start learning how to think in five dimensions. For example, chess puzzles are about as classic as puzzles get, but now you can try out 5D chess puzzles, figuring out checkmates in just a few moves through time. Or perhaps you want to play a vastly reduced game on a smaller board with fewer pieces. Thats a great way to limit the number of moves you can make so that you can get used to moving in five dimensions. Theres a number of different tutorials to fool around with, matches against bots, basically a ton of different content you can experience before just jumping into a 5D Chess match with another human.

This is one of those games that is oddly addicting. If I need something to fill time before other major game releases, Ill boot up a game of 5D Chess with a bot and see how far I get. On boardgaming nights Ill play against my friends and have epic matches of trying to outthink each other. What makes it especially annoying are the gotcha moments that you experience. Moves in 5D Chess feel so incredibly intelligent, and even when you are beaten, you end up beaten by some strange multiverse time travel move. Its hard to even be angry.

For $12, its quite the value, and certainly one of Augusts more interesting yet minimalistic indie titles.

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Indiewatch 5D Chess with Multiverse Time Travel is about as confusing as it sounds - GameCrate

You Won’t Believe This Chess-Themed Puzzle – Chess.com

Most chess players can find beauty in chess puzzles, especially ones with clever tricks in the solution.

Check out this thrilling puzzle from our 2019 holiday quiz.

White to play and win:

That puzzle was tough, especially if you didn't catch the critical theme right away. But this next chess puzzle is not a chess puzzle at all.

Recently a video has been making the rounds in the gaming and math circles of the internet, and many who've watched it are shocked the puzzle is solvable with its stark and minimalist starting point.

It's a sudoku puzzle with some constraints based on chess rules.

If you're not familiar with sudoku, here are the rules:

To these standard conditions, the puzzle-maker Mitchell Lee has added two more restrictions that will make chess players feel right at home:

The expert solver is Simon Anthony, who quit his job at an investment bank to solve sudoku puzzles on YouTube.

He is initially flummoxed at the seeming inscrutability of the puzzle and believes he is being trolled by his YouTube partner. He even mentions stopping the video and calling his friend to berate him for the "impossible" challenge.

It's about this time we realize the old adage is true: There is nothing more exciting than watching a man solve a sudoku puzzle in real time.

The turning point could not have been scripted any better. The solver realizes the power of the chess-based rules and blurts out, "having said that," before getting started on the solution.

The rest of the video, which is absolutely worth watching for its full 25-minute runtime, becomes less about the mechanics of the puzzle and more about the solver's appreciation for the puzzle-maker's genius. The chess-based rules actually empower the solution to the minimalist starting puzzle.

The solver's YouTube channel, called "Cracking the Cryptic," has more of these sudoku puzzles with chess restrictions if you want to go down that rabbit hole. Here's another enjoyable real-time solving video of a chess-based sudoku.

If you'd rather stick to more traditional puzzles, many are available on Chess.com, including the quite addictive Puzzle Rush.

Give them a try, and let us know your favorite chess puzzles in the comments.

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You Won't Believe This Chess-Themed Puzzle - Chess.com

Chess Universe App The New Chess Experience, Now Available for iOS and Android – News Anyway

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Are you ready to take a dive into a completely new world of chess?

Chess Universe is not just an ordinary chess game. Its built by gaming experts and chess grandmasters with the idea of presenting the best of both worlds in a unique, gamified chess adventure. It boasts a design and User Experience for the modern generation, while remaining true to the essence of chess.

The days when chess was perceived as a hard and boring game are numbered, because Chess Universe is all about FUN!

Everyone can progress and thrive in Chess Universe. If you are a newbie or an experienced player, if you want to play online or offline, against real live players or against a computer and want to have tons of fun, you have come to the right place. Oh, you just want to solve chess puzzles? Visit the Chess Academy and raid the Checkmate Maze Fischers Kingdom, Sacrifice pit

Earn your own collection of avatars and use your favorite avatars in live games.

Have fun communicating with your opponents during the games with animated emoticons and cannons. And take your pets with you to the games! After all, everyone needs the support of loved ones!

This new mobile chess game will definitely make a chess player out of you. If youve ever wanted to try chess, now is the time.

The game is free and available for both stores iOS and Android!

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Chess Universe App The New Chess Experience, Now Available for iOS and Android - News Anyway

The Case of the Purloined Picture (Christopher Bush) – stopthefud

The purloined picture is by Zurbarn, and may hold a clue to the murder of a town councillor found bashed and buried in a woodpile. Travers, visiting a country cousin, spends most of his time playing bridge and buying antiques.

Bush produced a string of boring books after WWII: Missing Men, Second Chance (both 1946), Curious Client (1947), Housekeepers Hair (1948) and Seven Bells (1949). (From this period, only the lightweight Haven Hotel is moderately entertaining.) Purloined Picture is one of Bushs more tedious books: the first four chapters, Travers admits, are only a kind of prelude, and maybe a dull one at that, and the rest of the book is equally dull. The problem is pedestrian, the detection vague, the suspects faceless, and the solution more convoluted than clever. Skip it.

The book was indifferently received in the United States. While critics acknowledged Bushs ingenuity (as brilliant a solution to a devious alibi-breaking puzzle as we are likely to see for some time), they also complained of the slow pace: Readers for whom the serial reporting of each infinitesimal fragment of a forward move has no charms will slowly fall by the wayside as the maze progresses (New York Times); Sleuths speculations and endless anecdotal asides make cold-molasses pace. Fuddy-duddy, but O.K. (Saturday Review of Literature).

1949 Macdonald (UK)

When Ludovic Travers went to stay with his cousin Bernard Ampling, in the East Anglian village of Stepford, he forgot about crime in favour of golf, bridge and his hosts enthusiasm for antiques. As in all country places there seemed to be one or two curious local undercurrents the feud between Councillor Drew and old Corbit for instance but nothing to concern a mere visitor. Nothing to concern him until he made two discoveries on the same day. First, he found himself looking at a picture that should have been in a distant village church. Second, he was able to identify the sallow young man whose appearance about the district had seemed oddly familiar. It was a prelude both to murder and the timely arrival of Superintendent George Wharton. Our own readers label this new casebook as Vintage, and it is written in Major Bushs best manner.

Observer (Maurice Richardson, 13th December 1949): Ludovic Travers on a quiet holiday in East Anglia, catching the bus into Ipswich and going to bridge parties, runs into a neat little murder with strong vengeance motive.

Kirkus (1st January 1951, 60w)

New Yorker (20th January 1951, 110w): A superior puzzle, but a little unfair, perhaps, in that the reader couldnt possibly solve it himself.

NY Times (Elizabeth Bullock, 21st January 1951, 150w): Travers combines his talents in a mixture of about six parts of brilliant analysis and one part inspiration, and comes up with as brilliant a solution to a devious alibi-breaking puzzle as we are likely to see for some time. However, readers for whom the serial reporting of each infinitesimal fragment of a forward move has no charms will slowly fall by the wayside as the maze progresses.

San Francisco Chronicle (L.G. Offord, 100w)

Sat R of Lit (27th January 1951): Queer goings-on in British village involve vacationing Ludovic Travers in riddles re stolen antiques and church pilferings and finally murder. Chess-puzzle type plus some erudition and plausible characters; but sleuths speculations and endless anecdotal asides make cold-molasses pace. Fuddy-duddy, but O.K.

NY Herald Tribune Bk R (28th January 1951, 180w): Mr. Bush writes the sort of mystery which the publishers describe as chess puzzles. One reads them slowly, but they are likeable because they pose a good mental problem. This one, however, is more intricate than ingenious and not quite up to Bushs usual standard.

Bookmark (March 1951)

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The Case of the Purloined Picture (Christopher Bush) - stopthefud

Online Games to Keep Your Mind Active – Pulse Headlines

One of the best ways to ensure that westay mentally sound well into old ageis by keeping our minds active. Whether thats by fully engaging with our work, throwing ourselves into new hobbies, or simply learning new things, an active brain is a healthy one.

Something that were perhaps all a little guilty of is spending too much unproductive time in front of a screen; but what if you could procrastinate in a way that would be beneficial for your brain? These games prove that having fun can be a great way to keep your grey matter moving.

Poker is famous for being the strategic thinkers game of choice, so signing up to an online provider is a good way to keep your mind busy.

Some sites keep the competition ramped up by featuring players on their game leader boards. For new players, this challenge can seem a little daunting, but they refresh their leader boards weekly so that even new sign-ups get a chance to compete. If youre already familiar with the rules then you might get the chance to see your name up there on the leader board, but even if you dont manage it at first, youll still be getting the benefits of a bit of mental exercise.

Poker playing encourages us to think on our feet, which can help to make us remain calmer in stressful situations. As well as this, our brains need to be sharp to look for patterns and to try to anticipate the other players next move. Using our brains in this multi-faceted way can help us to think more clearly, both in the game and in the rest of our lives.

In our increasingly global world, a second language is becoming more and more important. If youre looking for a change of career, then a second language is one of the most useful assets you can have on your CV, but even if youre happy in your career or already retired its a brilliant wayto keepyour mind active.

Whilst its certainly effective learning from a book or a series of DVDs, online games are actually getting the upper hand when it comes to effective learning. Interactivity is one of the ways that the things we learn sink into our brains the best. So, being able to play mini-games and interact with the environment as naturally as possible, has proven to be the best way of learning a new language.

Sites and apps like Duolingo and Babbel provide totally free language tuition and are as fun to use as they are effective.

Although chess is dwindling in popularity, the competition at the upper echelons is as fierce as ever. Perhaps its because Millennials have masses of computer games to play, and so the humble board games have lost their appeal. Whatever the reason, its high time that chess made a comeback. Its full of great strategic thinking and depending on how you choose to play it can be surprisingly fast-paced.

If the endless pondering over moves is what has put you off learning, then a great way to get past that is with online chess puzzles.

Themost popular site for learning chessallows you to choose whether youd like to play standard games against a computer, against a random opponent, or against somebody you know. The chatbox means that even if you live far apart you can keep in touch with somebody in a moreinteractive way than just texting or emailing.

Of course, if youd like to bolster up your skills first then there are timed chess puzzles available on chess.com, which typically require you to reach checkmate in the quickest time possible. They encourage you to be logical, strategic and fast-developing critical ways of thinking that are brilliant for your brain.

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Online Games to Keep Your Mind Active - Pulse Headlines

5 Best Chess Games for Android and iOS – Techlomedia

Chess is a popular indoor game that several people like to play. It is a board game played between two people. Now this board game is also available to play on computers and smartphones where you can play it against a computer player or against friends. If you are bored at home and want to enjoy chess, you can download a good chess game on your smartphone to play. If you are not sure about a good chess app, this article is recommending a few. Here is the list of best chess games for Android and iOs devices. You can download any of these chess games on your phone and enjoy the game.

Also see: Best Ludo Games for Android and iOS

Have a look at the list of best chess games for smartphones. This list contains chess games for Android and Chess games for iOS. You can download any of the games to play. Read the description to know more about a game.

This Chess app for Android and iOS lets people enjoy Chess on their smartphone. The app not just lets you play Chess, but also teaches you so that you can improve your skills. You can use this chess app to play chess with online players around the world or with your friends. You can also play against computer players to improve your game. It also gives you an option to analyze your game and learn where you went wrong. It has thousands of videos and interactive lessons from top Grandmasters along with interactive tutorials.

The game comes with 20+ themes for boards, pieces, and backgrounds for customized play options.

Download: Android | iOS

Lichess brings free online chess on your phone. The app claims that there are more than 150000 individual users on the app to play with. You can find players and challenge them for a game. You can also take part in arena tournaments. The game comes with the bullet, blitz, classical, and correspondence chess. You can practice with chess puzzles. When you do not have an active internet connection, you can also play offline with computer players.

This app is open-source and free to download for all.

Download: Android | iOS

Also see: Best Carrom Games for Android

Really Bad Chess is a different kind of chess game you must try if you love playing chess. It lets you play with totally random pieces. When I say random, it doesnt mean pieces at random places. It means you could get 8 Knights, 4 Bishops, and 3 pawns. It may look weird initially but you will surely like playing this random chess thing. Try this game if you think you are good at chess. If you are still learning, try other chess games on this list.

Download: Android | iOS

Play Magnus is also an interesting chess game for iOS and Android. This game gives you an opportunity to challenge World Champion Magnus Carlsen. No, he will not be playing against you. You will be playing against a computer player trained by Magnus Carlsen. If you perform well, you also get a chance to qualify to Play Magnus Live.

Download: Android | iOS

Chess Free is also an interesting free Chess game for Android and iOS. It supports 1 player and 2 player gameplay. So, you can play against your friends or challenge a computer opponent. The game claims to have a good AI engine with the configurable difficulty level. It also features board rotation for two player games. When you get a call or exit the app, it saves your game so you can always resume.

Download: Android | iOS

Wrap Up

This was the list of best chess apps for Android and iOS. If you want to learn chess and theres no one to help you, you can try installing a good chess app on your phone. This list has some good chess games for Android and iOS. If you are an expert in chess, I recommend you to try Really Bad Chess. Other games are also good for playing a regular chess game.

If you have any recommendations that I can add to this list, let me know using the comment. I will update this list to add a few more good Chess games.

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5 Best Chess Games for Android and iOS - Techlomedia

SwitchArcade Round-Up: ‘Kemono Heroes’ Review, Mini-Views Featuring ‘Unlock The King’, Today’s New Releases, the Latest Sales, and More – Touch Arcade

Hello gentle readers, and welcome to the SwitchArcade Round-Up for March 9th, 2020. In todays article, weve got a review of the recently-released Kemono Heroes, Mini-Views of a couple of puzzle games, summaries of the latest releases, and as usual a nice big list of sales to check out. Not so much news, but thats perhaps understandable given the general state of affairs at the moment. Lets check it out!

Kemono Heroes is a side-scrolling action-platformer that allows up to four players to team up using a variety of animal characters, each with their own unique ability to differentiate them. Wow, that is an extremely clinical description. The truth is that I ran through this game by myself in a single sitting, then ran through it again in multiplayer, and while I had a good enough time in both modes I cant say the experience really stuck with me. Its a solidly-built albeit somewhat brief action game, the kind of thing that used to crop up on mobile devices every now and then.

The story involves some sort of evil moon god turning your friends into stone. You set out as one of four characters to defeat the wicked deity and set things right again. In terms of basic functions, all four characters are similar. At the outset, they can jump, perform a melee attack, throw a ranged weapon, and use a screen-clearing magic attack. As you progress through the game, youll gain access to new tools and abilities like a grappling hook and block-destroying bombs. Each character also has one ability that is entirely their own. One character can shimmy along vines strewn about the stages, another can climb walls, another can glide, and the last can transform into copies of the enemies.

As you defeat enemies and open treasure chests in each stage, youll earn coins that you can spend at shops to upgrade your weapons, life meter, and magic attack. If youre playing alone, youll earn more than enough coins to upgrade everything before the end of the game, but the economy can be a little tighter in multiplayer. The multiplayer mode is more difficult in general, as the game scales its challenge based on how many people are playing. Boss battles that were a breeze in one-player were sometimes quite nasty with other players joining in. On the whole, though, Kemono Heroes is quite manageable.

I did find myself wishing the game had just a bit more to it. The overall length from start to finish isnt bad, but theres a whole lot of recycling of content included in that. On top of that, the unique animal abilities feel like an afterthought most of the time. Sure, you technically have access to marginally different routes, but its not like the games stages are very complex in their design. Its more a choice of sticking to the upper half of the screen versus the bottom half. And once you get the grappling hook, even that becomes largely moot.

Nevertheless, I did enjoy playing through Kemono Heroes. The presentation is nice, with some really gorgeous spritework to take in, and the controls are very responsive. The overall brevity and somewhat plain nature of the action mean that its not exactly the most memorable of experiences, and those going the multiplayer route are going to find the game a bit nasty in its difficulty in places. For the price point its currently at, it feels just a little on the slight side. But if youre looking for an enjoyable side-scrolling romp that to play with friends, Kemono Heroes may well fit the bill.

SwitchArcade Score: 3.5/5

I like chess puzzles a lot, but I recognize that they can be a bit opaque for people who arent already familiar with the game of chess. Thats perhaps what makes Unlock The King such a clever little game. This is technically a batch of 100 chess puzzles, but theyre so bite-sized and abstract that I think the appeal here is much broader than usual. The idea in each puzzle is to move pieces to create a path for the king to reach the goal. Each board has a different shape and size to it, so youre not moving pieces around on a full board by any means. The pieces do follow standard chess rules of movement, but thats easy enough to pick up if you arent already familiar. As a big fan of logic puzzles I had a really good time completing this one, and for the price its a real steal.

SwitchArcade Score: 4/5

While Im not as big a fan of 3D Picross as I am of the regular variety, its safe to say that those who enjoy that particular subset are criminally under-served on the Switch. There are probably somewhere near twenty regular Picross games available on the platform, and unless Ive missed something along the way, I believe Voxelgram is the first 3D-style release. And its not bad at all. You get a good amount of puzzles for the price, and I like the way the game organizes them into little dioramas that get completed as you check off each puzzle. You get your choice of button controls or touch controls if youre playing handheld, with the latter generally working a lot better than the former. Unfortunately, those button controls take some real getting used to, and if youre playing on your TV youre stuck with them. Still, you can get used to them and if you do youll find this a rather pleasant whack at the 3D Picross concept.

SwitchArcade Score: 3.5/5

Lets hope Primrose Lake goes better than my visit to Jurassic Park. Anyway, sometimes a screenshot tells you almost everything you need to know about a game, and thats mostly the case here. You can easily see that this game is a Diner Dash-style time management deal where you need to serve customers the food they want before they get impatient and leave. You can also see by the text on the screenshot that this is a port of a mobile game. Indeed, you can play a bit of it for free on your mobile device, but the full game unlock IAP on the App Store is more expensive than what theyre charging here. Thats nice! And as for what the screenshot doesnt tell you? Theres a weird mystery story happening here that gets told as you complete the games 60 story stages. Well, its something.

Of all the mediocre top-down twin-stick shooters on the Switch, this is certainly one of the cheaper ones. It certainly looks the part. Anyway, battle endless waves until you finally succumb to the enemies, grab some weapon power-ups, customize your character, and above all try not to think of the better games in this genre you could be playing if you had only spent a few more dollars. There is support for a second player in local co-op if you want to drag a friend into this business.

(North American eShop, US Prices)

Tomorrow is Mario Day, or so were told these days. MAR10 and all that. In celebration, a handful of Mario-related games are enjoying some rare discounts at the moment, including the excellent Super Mario Maker 2. Aside from that bunch, lots of fresh sales sprung up over the weekend, with the coolest pick of the bunch being VA-11 Hall-A in my opinion. Horror fans will definitely want to check out the Amnesia Collection, as well. In the outbox, the Mega Man sale is coming to a close. It may be as many as four or five weeks before they go on sale again, so act now! Fans of the Hero Quest board game will want to check out Dark Quest 2 while its still cheap, as discounts on that one are a lot rarer than the average eShop title. Otherwise, feel free to save some money for whatever other fancy sales may come along later in the week.

Select New Games on Sale

Super Mario Maker 2 ($39.99 from $59.99 until 3/15)Yoshis Crafted World ($39.99 from $59.99 until 3/15)Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games ($39.99 from $59.99 until 3/15)Super Mario Party ($39.99 from $59.99 until 3/15)VA-11 Hall-A ($10.04 from $14.99 until 3/24)Deployment ($0.99 from $9.99 until 3/14)City of Brass ($6.99 from $19.99 until 3/16)Submerged ($1.99 from $9.99 until 3/16)Escape from the Universe ($0.99 from $9.99 until 3/22)Wuppo: Definitive ($9.99 from $14.99 until 3/20)Amnesia: Collection ($11.99 from $29.99 until 3/20)Troubleshooter ($2.39 from $2.99 until 3/26)Super Ping Pong Trick Shot ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/26)Ping Pong Trick Shot Evolution ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/26)Caveman Warriors ($3.24 from $12.99 until 3/26)Bingo ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/26)

Neonwall ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/26)Super Hyperactive Ninja ($2.24 from $8.99 until 3/26)Animal Hunter Z ($4.99 from $9.99 until 3/26)Guess the Character ($1.01 from $2.99 until 3/26)Caterpillar Royale ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/26)V.O.I.D. ($0.99 from $3.99 until 3/26)Sushi Time! ($3.74 from $4.99 until 3/27)Furwind ($5.99 from $9.99 until 3/26)Battle & Crash ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/26)Collide-a-Ball 2 ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/26)Ellen ($4.79 from $7.99 until 3/26)Island Maze ($1.49 from $2.99 until 3/16)Safari Pinball ($1.49 from $2.99 until 3/26)Dungeon Shooting ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/26)Adventure Pinball Bundle ($4.49 from $8.99 until 3/26)

Build a Bridge! ($2.99 from $14.99 until 3/23)Tardy ($1.99 from $9.99 until 3/17)Atomic Heist ($1.49 fromm $7.99 until 3/17)Pixel Gladiator ($1.74 from $6.99 until 3/16)Spirit Roots ($2.44 from $6.99 until 3/16)Tactical Mind 2 ($1.49 from $4.99 until 3/17)Drawngeon ($3.49 from $4.99 until 3/16)Funny Bunny Adventures ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/16)Swordbreaker ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/27)Welcome to Primrose Lake ($5.99 from $7.99 until 3/28)

Sales Ending Tomorrow, Tuesday, March 10th

AvoCuddle ($11.04 from $12.99 until 3/10)Dark Quest 2 ($5.49 from $10.99 until 3/10)Dead Dungeon ($0.99 from $4.99 until 3/10)Event Horizon ($1.49 from $5.99 until 3/10)Farabel ($1.99 from $9.99 until 3/10)Lines XL ($0.99 from $1.99 until 3/10)Mega Man 11 ($14.99 from $29.99 until 3/10)Mega Man Legacy Collection ($9.99 from $14.99 until 3/10)Mega Man Legacy Collection 2 ($9.99 from $19.99 until 3/10)Mega Man X Legacy Collection ($9.99 from $19.99 until 3/10)Mega Man X Legacy Collection 2 ($9.99 from $19.99 until 3/10)Sports Party ($4.99 from $39.99 until 3/10)

Thats all thats good for today, friends. Tomorrow has a couple of interesting new releases that well be checking out, and provided I have the time I do have a couple of reviews and Mini-Views Id like to post as well. Whatever news and new sales come along will be included as usual, of course. I hope you all have a solid Monday, and as always, thanks for reading!

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SwitchArcade Round-Up: 'Kemono Heroes' Review, Mini-Views Featuring 'Unlock The King', Today's New Releases, the Latest Sales, and More - Touch Arcade

School’s out, but the learning needn’t stop: teach your kids a new skill this half-term – Telegraph.co.uk

Twenty hours. This, according to TED speaker Josh Kaufman, is all it takes to become proficient at a new skill which makes half term an ideal time to take up something new.

Forget 10,000 hours; people get good at things with just a little bit of focused and deliberate practice, says Kaufman, who became good at the ukulele in just 20 hours.

The benefit of intensive learning over a week or two is clear: Children really recognise an improvement by the end, says Simon Yeo of Ninja Kids, which runs marital arts camps in London. They try the same challenges multiple times until they succeed, and when they do, they walk away with heads held higher, he says.

Plus, the resources required to learn a new skill, match those required in the modern workplace: adaptability, communication, presentation and innerconfidence.

We call it invisible learning, says Walter Kerr of Oppidan Education, which runs one-to-one mentoring and group workshops for children. Theyre focusing on things theyre not learning at school and picking up new social skills and confidence.

He adds that if you can provide a positive educational experience outside school, youll make their school life better.

For Kaufman, the biggest question is not whether to learn a new skill, but which one to choose. Its working out what lights you up, he says.

At a half-term pony camp, your child will master the arts of holding the reins, mucking out and grooming, while improving their balance and motor co-ordination, hand-eye co-ordination and core strength. Check your local stables for half-term availability; in London, Pony Weeks at Stag Lodge Stables are open to children aged five to 12, with two rides a day, stable management lessons and a gymkhana with rosettes (350 or 95 per day). Hoof Camp at Echo Equestrian in Buckinghamshire follows a similar format, with both indoor and outdoor pony-related fun (225).

If children learn the basics of cooking and preparing meals, they are likely to be more adventurous in what they eat, says Ruth Chubb, founder of the Three Bears Cookery Club in Derbyshire. This half term, shes running two-hourcookery workshops for budding chefs on Feb 17 and 20 (15), while at Abbey School in Reading, eight- to 14-year-olds will spend the week learning to cook a variety of sweet and savoury dishes (199.20). For those with deep pockets, Raymond Blanc is hosting a half-day Young Chefs Academy for youngsters aged 10 to 16 years on Feb 18 (185 per person) at Le Manoir aux QuatSaisons in Oxfordshire, plus anadult and child cookery day on Feb22 for seven to 12 years (555 per adult and child).

Sewing has fallen off the curriculum atschool, yet its a sustainable and incredibly useful skill that might alsoinspire a career in fashion (or surgery).The Village Haberdashery in north London is running half-term classes (40 per session including materials) where children can learn tosew hair accessories and pencil cases and screen-print cushions, while the Fashion School in Chelsea has a range of classes for children and teens, from a four-day dressmaking course, to pattern cutting, pyjama making anda dolls clothes workshop.

First aid is an essential life skill that can also bump up your teens CV. St John Ambulance runs regular first aid courses for 12 and overs if your child is under 16 you will need to go along with them. The course covers emergency life support procedures for babies, children and adults, including CPR and dealing with bleeding. Meanwhile, Daisy First Aid, founded by former police officer JenniDunman, is running courses for families and teenagers in Northampton, Tyneside, Bromley, Elstree, Croydon and Dulwich during this half term.

Or at least a climbing wall.Climbing builds physical strength and confidence and is a great opportunity for children to socialise through sport outside school. The Pinnacle Centre in Northamptonshire is running a climbing, caving and abseiling campthis half term for children aged six and up (from 31.50 per day), and Boulders in Cardiff is hosting a holiday club from 29 per day including lunch. For keen climbers who want to take their skills to the next level, centres including Glasgow Climbing Centreand Quay Climbingin Exeter are running National Indoor Climbing Award Scheme courses during half term.

In five days, your child could be playing a new musical instrument in a concert. The Strings Club is running half-term camps for children from reception age to year six in Islington (ukulele), Leamington Spa (ukulele), Tooting (violin), and Harborne, Birmingham (violin). Each camp includes expert tuition and interactive workshops and ends with a grand concert. For older children keen on a career in music, the Roundhouse, in Camden, is running drop-in sessions throughout half term for those aged 11 to 25 looking to explore DJing, music production, and podcasting.

A French camp sounds a little swotty but, according to former lawyer Caroline Eugenie, who founded Et Patati Patata language school in Hammersmith, learning a second language encourages cognitive, physical and emotional development and builds self-esteem. At her week-long, half-term French school, four- to 15-year-olds are immersed in French for 30 hours of counting, reading, acting, singing and football (400). The Little Language Academy in Gerrards Cross is running a two-day French camp where children aged three to 10 take part in baking, forest school and kungfu with a French twist (Feb 19 and 20, from 42 per day).

Martial arts require agility, co-ordination, determination and strength, and promote anti-bullying skills and courage, according to Simon Yeo, the jiu jitsu and ninjutsu black belt who runs Ninja Kids half-term camps in south-west London (35 per session). Children are encouraged to be brave and take risks, he says. Outside London, Fighting Fitness Judo Camp in Pyrford, Surrey, combines technical instruction with games and other sporting activities (185 for five days), while Blaze Martial Arts near Windsor is running a three-day high-energy martial arts camp (35 per day or 70 for three).

Self-motivation can be learnt, according to Walter Kerr and Henry Faber, the co-founders of mentoring organisation Oppidan Education. This half term theyre running a workshop series for children aged eight to 13 in London to help them understand how their brains work and develop pro-social skills, positive self-belief, cognitive creativity and flexibility of mind. If they learn these things now, they wont sleepwalk through school, points out Kerr. Workshops by sport stars and Cambridge academics focus on time management practice, debating, interview practice, podcast making and a Dragons Den. The company also offers one-to-one mentoring and summer residential courses in Henley and Hertfordshire.

Parents might not see skating as the most useful of skills, but it improves balance and fitness, builds confidence and takes a childs mind away from the pressures of school. Core Skate in Hereford is running a quad skate camp (quads are old-style roller skates) where kids aged seven and over will learn artistic, speed, hockey, jam and recreational skating and take part in a roller derby and roller disco each day (Feb 18-19 from 23, beginners welcome). In London, Baysixty6 is hosting a five-day skateboarding camp for beginners and intermediates aged seven and over (from 30 per day).

If your children are anything like mine, they will be obsessed with Bear Grylls and the idea of surviving on bugs in the wild. There are plenty of opportunities for young survivalists this half term; Bear Grylls Survival Academy, where children learn the basics to survive in the wild, is open to those eight and over staying at Park Dean resorts (12 for one session or 40 for four). Wild Thyme & Embers is hosting holiday bushcraft clubs at Milton Country Park and Wandlebury Nature Reserve in Cambridgeshire (38 per day). In Staffordshire, Trueways Survival is running a two-day Young Survivalist course for children aged seven and over with an adult (Feb 29, 195).

Playing chess is thought to improve childrens concentration, memory, creative thinking and problem-solving abilities and make them better at maths. Chess Entries for All is running a three-day holiday chess course with a chess master in Esher, Surrey, for players aged six to 15 years of any ability (30 per day). Wallace Chess is hosting four-day chess camps in Pimlico and Swiss Cottage for four- to 16-year-olds (230). The children will solve chess puzzles, listen to short lectures, learn about end games, strategies and tactics and explore clocks and notations.

For an animal-loving child, few things are more memorable than going behind the scenes at a local safari park. Close-up VIP experiences are now available at many parks and zoos. Woburn Safari Park is running half-day junior keeper experiences where youngsters aged eight to 15 help the keeperswith their daily routines, including mucking out, feeding and caring for the animals (229), and Edinburgh Zoo has some spaces available for its zookeeper experience. Longleat in Wiltshire also has a number of VIP opportunities for children to get closer to the animals, including a new koala experience, where they get to feed the bears breakfast (195,children aged eight to 15 must be accompanied by an adult).

Half term is the perfect time to ditch the stabilisers and learn to ride independently. Pop Cycle is running beginner courses across London (150 for four sessions), as is Betteshanger Park in Kent (17.50 per session), while Pop Cycle and Watford Cycle Hubare also running improver courses to teach more advanced riders to follow safely, negotiate obstacles and commute safely. Meanwhile, Cycle Experience inBerkshireand Better by Bike in Bristolare running the Bikeability training programme for olderchildren.

Alas, the National Youth Theatres celebrated start-up course for 11- to 14-year-olds is already sold out for thishalf term (hurry and book it up for May half term instead). Likewise, Globe Theatres As You Like It and A Midsummer Nights Dream workshops for five- to 12-year-olds, where children will learn about the characters through participation and play, are sold out so look for future dates, too. Sylvia Young Theatre School still has some places on its half-term camp. Young actors aged seven to 18 will work on audition techniques, singing, street dance, and drama (250). Perform, which runs camps across the country for children aged from four, is running three- to five-day courses culminating in a show on the final day (from 225).

If your child cant yet swim, a half-term crash course is a great use of time. Better Leisure Centresand Virgin Active gyms both run beginner and improver courses. Better Leisure Centres are also running week-long gymnastics and tennis camps for five- to 16-year-olds, while a five-day Paul Delgado tennis camp for six- to 12-year-olds is being held at The Royal Masonic School forGirls in Hertfordshire (204) and Power League is hosting week-long footballcamps across the country, with FA-accredited coaches, for children aged five to 14 (from 10 per day).

Paint Box Studios in Ravenscourt Park is hosting a week-long art camp for seven-and-overs, where children will work on their own projects, expanding their range of artistic techniques using acrylics, oils, charcoal, graphite pencils, pastels and collage (from 65 per day). In Cambridge, St Albans and Tonbridge, Central St Martins is running Future Creatives, a five-day course covering painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, printmaking and book arts (from 200).

Everyone should learn to program, as it teaches you how to think, Steve Jobs once reasoned. Code Kids courses teach children aged seven and over key programming and engineering concepts through Lego robotics, stop-motion animation, Minecraft coding and augmented/ virtual reality. No prior coding is necessary; the course takes place in Blackheath, Sevenoaks, Canterbury, and Wimbledon (from 49.50 per day). Meanwhile, in north-west London, Code Today is running three half days to five full days for those aged seven to 17 (from170).

Its not the best time of year to plant out your own garden, but all four RHS gardens are running Whatever the Weather half-term gardening clubs, with forest school sessions, tomato planting, and making weather wheels and wind socks. Dobbies Garden Centres are also running free workshops for children aged four to 10 at 67 branches across the country. Young gardeners will learn basic gardening skills and take part in games and activities.

Children are natural builders, which is why family workshops at the Royal Institute of British Architects (Riba) in Marylebone have proved a hit. This half term there is a Space Base workshop, where children aged six to 10 will research, design and build a place to live on the moon, plus a Home of Architecture workshop, where they will be asked to design a new Riba building. Both have sold out, but plan ahead for future events, including creative architecture workshops for secondary school children.

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School's out, but the learning needn't stop: teach your kids a new skill this half-term - Telegraph.co.uk


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