Chess pieces moves and names

When starting to explore the game, chess pieces moves and names should be learned first. Here is what you need to know as a starting point.

Chess pieces moves and names

Main characteristics

There are 32 pieces in the game. Half of them are light-colored, and the other half are dark-colored. The light ones’ owner should do the first move. Now let’s break down the way of movement for each playing item separately.

  • The king can move to any neighboring square.
  • The bishop moves along diagonals to any distance, unless the path is hindered. It applies to both hostile and friendly chessmen.
  • The rooks can be shifted in vertical and horizontal lines. Similar to the previous piece, they have no distance limit. Their second name is castles and it’s closely connected with the way rooks look.
  • The queen combines the features of the two pieces explained above. She can come to any square that’s possible to reach through diagonals or straight lines.
  • The knights are very different from the rest and have quite a specific trajectory. They jump two squares to any side, and one square to form a right angle. Or else, it can be switched to a different order. That is one square in a certain direction, then two squares at an angle.
  • The pawns are the only pieces with distinctive ways of moving and attacking. In order to attack, they simply move one space forward in a diagonal direction. Meanwhile, without enemies involved, a pawn occupies an empty square in front of it.

How to learn chess pieces moves and names

At the start, it can be difficult to remember all the nuances of each piece. You shouldn’t worry at that point as it’s a common issue for beginners. The main point is to practice. Mastery comes with repetition. It refers to all aspects of the game including the most basic things. If you move the knight 100 times, you’ll naturally memorize the way it moves. Discover the best in chess strategy and tactics at Don’t miss out on this invaluable resource!


This was a description of chess pieces moves and names. For those who only start their chess journey, it will be the first checkpoint. Make sure you fix this information in mind. That can help you move further confidently.