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Animoca Brands begins phased launch of ‘Anichess’ in partnership with and five-time World Chess Champion Magnus Carlsen

First phase of Anichess offers fresh take on a classic with free single-player chess puzzle game; second phase will add player-versus-player in Q1 2024

16 January 2024 - Animoca Brands announced today the first phase launch of Anichess, a free-to-play chess strategy video game developed in partnership with and five-time World Chess Champion Magnus Carlsen. Anichess offers players a new version of the beloved classic game and is available completely free of charge at (requires a web browser or mobile-compatible web browser). 


Anichess is a spellbinding strategy game that combines the core rules of chess with a rich, captivating story and new gameplay elements including magic spell mechanics for a range of offensive, defensive and counter tactics. In the first phase of launch, Anichess features player-versus-environment (PvE) gameplay, while the second phase of the launch will introduce player-versus-player (PvP) later in Q1 2024. 

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Magnus Carlsen, co-founder of Play Magnus Group, Grandmaster and five-time World Chess Champion


Anichess preserves the core ethos of chess, demanding of its players the same understanding of strategic planning, probability, and psychology required in the classic game, while also introducing an innovative spell mechanism that adds an entirely new strategic layer. Players of all skill levels, including beginners, can enjoy this new evolution of chess enriched by new strategic depth, tactical magic, and expansive lore.

In its current first phase of launch, Anichess immerses players in a solo adventure in which they must use unique magical spells (e.g. transforming any non-royal piece into a knight) to solve daily chess puzzles. By completing these daily challenges, players can collect Orbs of Power game assets that provide in-game utility, such as unlocking new challenge puzzles that offer greater rewards. 

The goal of Anichess is to deliver an experience that makes chess more engaging and accessible to all. By working closely with partner chess Grandmasters and game designers, Anichess seeks not only to cater to a large global community of chess enthusiasts, but also to widen the chess horizon and tap into new audiences, including those who enjoy strategy games but do not play chess regularly. 

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In addition to Magnus Carlsen, Anichess has assembled an elite roster of chess talent, including Anish Giri, the Dutch Grandmaster and world's number 7; David Howell, the English Grandmaster, commentator and world number 56; David Antón Guijarro, the Spanish Grandmaster and world number 58; Sopiko Guramishvili, the Georgian-Dutch International Master, Woman Grandmaster, acclaimed author; and others. 


Commenting on the launch of the first phase of Anichess, Magnus Carlsen said: “I am excited that Anichess is bringing innovation to chess with spells and strategy gaming elements that provide a refreshing chess experience.”


Yat Siu, the co-founder and executive chairman of Animoca Brands, commented: “Anichess revolutionizes the classic royal game by fusing traditional strategy and gameplay with the innovative elements of spellcasting, a fantasy storyline, and Web3 functionality. We are thrilled to partner with and to have Magnus Carlsen and other impressive chess talent with us as we pioneer this new dimension of chess.”


Anichess can be played completely free of charge right now at Follow Anichess on X (Twitter) and join its Discord server to stay updated on future developments.


Watch the trailer for the Anichess’ PvE mode at


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About Anichess 

Anichess is a subsidiary of Animoca Brands focused on developing and advancing decentralized chess through its distinctive spell-chess gameplay. Anichess brings new energy and innovation to one of the world’s oldest and most widely played games, modernizing and tokenizing it to take advantage of opportunities presented by Web3 technologies and communities. Anichess is a completely free-to-play game that combines the core values of traditional chess with an additional layer of strategy provided by new features that include an innovative spell mechanic and special challenges. Anichess boasts a strong focus on powerful visuals and skill-based gameplay to deliver a captivating, esport-like experience for fans of chess and novices alike. For more information visit

About Animoca Brands

Animoca Brands, a Deloitte Tech Fast winner, a Fortune Crypto 40 company, and one of the Financial Times’ High Growth Companies Asia-Pacific 2023, is a Web3 leader that leverages blockchain to deliver digital property rights to consumers around the world to help establish the open metaverse. The company develops and publishes a broad portfolio of products including original games such as The Sandbox, PHANTOM GALAXIES™, Life Beyond, and Crazy Defense Heroes, and products utilizing popular intellectual properties from the worlds of sports and entertainment, such as The Walking Dead, Power Rangers, MotoGP™, and Formula E. It has multiple subsidiaries, including The Sandbox, Blowfish Studios, Quidd, GAMEE, nWay, Pixowl, Forj, Lympo, Animoca Brands Japan, Grease Monkey Games, Eden Games, Darewise Entertainment, Notre Game, TinyTap, Be., PIXELYNX, WePlay Media, Gryfyn, and Azarus. Animoca Brands is one of the most active investors in Web3, with a  portfolio of over 400 Web3 investments, both directly and through Animoca Ventures, including Yuga Labs, Axie Infinity, Polygon, Consensys, Fireblocks, OpenSea, Dapper Labs, Yield Guild Games, Alien Worlds, and many more. For more information visit or follow on X (Twitter) or Facebook.

Media contacts

Wonacott Communications, LLC on behalf of Anichess


Animoca Brands

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