What's new on lichess


What exactly has the chess community been up to?

lichess gets better every day with new features and improvements. Did you spot these?

Stronger and faster computer analysis

  • Thanks to our fantastic community, our army of stockfish servers is growing fast. And now it is time to increase the analysis depth! It used to be 3.5 meganodes; now stockfish computes exactly 4 meganodes per move. This buff can make the difference in complicated positions.

Millions of chess positions analysed by each stockfish contributor, over time.

  • We also continuously upgrade to the latest development version of stockfish (which is stronger than stable stockfish 8) on both servers and browsers, so you get the absolute best analysis experience.
  • Additionally to ASMJS and PNACL, our in-browser stockfish is now available as Web Assembly, bringing near-native performances to Firefox users.

Power user play tools

  • Ever wish you could talk to your spectators, while playing a game? It's now possible using the /whisper or /w chat command!

This message will be visible to the game kibitzers, not to your opponent.

  • Play with the keyboard, using SAN (Nc3) or UCI (b1c3) notation

This has to be the best way to improve your move notation skills! Enable it from your game behavior preferences.

  • Finally arrows and circles are available in 3D mode! Use right click to draw, Ctrl/Shift/Alt combinations to alternate colors.

  • The A.I. player is now aware of the clock situation. Give level 8 a try at hyperbullet, if you dare. It can be flagged, but... not easily.

Performance improvements

Truth be told, we are a bit obsessed with performances. We want lichess to be lightning fast!

  • Entirely new chessboard code, with likely unbeatable performance. Piece dragging and animations are as close to the metal as they can possibly be.
  • Better page load time. lichess was always lean and swift, but we brought it to yet another level. By trimming down dependencies, and loading only what you, the player, needs, we were able cut down the page load time to 0.5 seconds.
  • Upgraded database (to latest mongodb, 3.4), better load distribution, and smarter in-memory caching, ensure a lag free experience, even during huge events like the 2017 Spring marathon.
  • To celebrate the speed, a new UltraBullet rating category was created: 15 seconds games for hardcore chess gamers.

New board editor

  • Drag new pieces in, or select a piece type to add several of them quickly
  • Right click to toggle the selected piece color
  • Selectable "trash" icon to mass-delete pieces from the board
  • Common openings selector with ECO codes

Better studies integration

lichess studies are a fantastic and versatile tool. We made it easier to create a study from a game, or from the board editor:

It's now possible to either create a new study, or add a chapter to a study you own or contribute to. Right from the game analysis page, in two clicks.

Tournaments and pools

Not everyone is a chess beast yet, so we recently introduced rating limited tournaments. Only players with a rating lower than 1600, or lower than 2000, may join them. Because these tournaments became very popular, we doubled their frequency. Now there is always an ongoing tournament that you may join - and win!

Furthermore, we improved the tournament matching algorithms to ensure faster and fairer pairings. The lobby pools also benefit from this update.

Date support for insights - finally!

This feature has been long requested, and is now available, thanks to the new database servers.

You can now select "Date" as the insights dimension, and also filter the results by date.

Use it to measure your precision over time, or the evolution of your results, or any question you would like to ask lichess insights, really.

The list goes on

This post is getting way too long, so let's only mention a few more upgrades.

  • See who is studying in your friends list:

  • Faster crazyhouse pockets - you can now premove drops of pieces you just took, even from Australia (shoutout to JannLee ;)
  • Recently mentioned in other blog posts: practice mode & high precision move times
  • Better moderation tools, antispam defenses, and antiflood defenses - unfortunately required!
  • More APIs for integration with other websites and chess applications
  • Countless bugfixes and UI tweaks

Enjoy free chess

When we say free, we mean it. There are no paywalls or so called "premium" features. We refuse ads. All is free for everyone, forever. And the entire source code is available.

Because we believe chess deserves that. And more. We'll update you shortly!

May your pieces always find their way to your opponent's king.