It’s impossible to determine an exact number of people globally that play Chess. However, it is estimated that the number of Chess players is about 800 million globally. No one knows how many people enjoy playing Chess.
FIDE (Fédération Internationale des Échecs) proposed this estimate of the number of chess masters that had participated in the previous year in 2012. Other estimates put the number from a billion, which appears to be based on hearsay, to FIDE’s previous 200-350 million estimate. Although no one exactly knows the number of people that play chess, it is undeniably among the most popular sports known in the world now and in the past.
In its membership database, FIDE has approximately 360,000 active tournament participants, as stated by Chess. When chess players compete in globally graded events, they must register with FIDE.
Despite the fact that such competitions are typically open to all interested participants, only the most dedicated chess players usually advance to this level. FIDE has a member status of 185 countries and states. Several of these countries involved also maintain their listings of players who have registered for tournaments on a national level.
Most Popular Countries for Chess
The United States Chess Federation, for example, said in 2016 that it had more than 85,000 licensed championship competitors among its affiliation. Nevertheless, only a tiny proportion of them are FIDE-registered worldwide. According to FIDE data compiled by chess ratings in December, the number of players holding a basic rating exceeded 350,000. (To be exact, 352,234 people). The number of active players (those who competed in events in the previous 12 months) and inactive players was approximately equal.
The population of chess players rose by 2546 in a month, and nearly 30,000 new players were added in a year (29 517). If current trends continue, approximately half a million chess players will have a normal FIDE rating by 2024.
Russia is the most popular chess-playing country globally, based on the sheer quantity of chess players. Russia’s number of active chess title holders has surpassed 2,000, which is a significant achievement. Russia hosts several international events, and it is a country that takes pride in its skilled chess players.
The United States is ranked second globally, although only by a small margin in most categories. The United States is likewise ranked second in terms of the number of titles, with 813. This is almost a thousand fewer titles than Russia.
China makes our list for a variety of reasons, the most noteworthy of which is that it is a habitat to millions and millions of people. They have billions of people, unlike the bulk of the other nations here on the list. China has 176 titled players in chess, which is a significant amount. Although China might not always have as many championships or grandmasters as Russia or the U.S, they are in the top ten most skilled players in the world.
China won the third position in the rankings in this manner, but India is not far behind. When it comes to worldwide rankings, India is ranked fourth. While they have more grandmasters than China, their top 10 players have a somewhat lower average level of competence. That number is outstanding at 2,669, but it falls short of China and the rest of the world. There are 392 titleholders in India.
Ukraine is ranked fifth because the average skill level of their top 10 players is a little bit lower. Their total number is 2,661, which is not insignificant. It simply isn’t up to competing with a few of the top performers farther down the list.
Ukraine has a great number of experienced players, with 581 titleholders in the nation. Armenia has a lot of numbers all over the place, including 131 titled players. That is a remarkable result, particularly given the size of the population.
Armenia is ranked sixth in the world, just behind some of the world’s most powerful chess players. Azerbaijan offers some of the best lowest overall statistics, yet it can compete with the rest of the globe.
The mean level of skill is 2,648, and there are 157 titleholders in Azerbaijan. So, although Azerbaijan might not even have that many grandmasters as some other countries, it is capable of keeping up. Azerbaijan is ranked eighth in the world in terms of total chess talent.
While Hungary may have many world-class chess grandmasters, there is one area where it falls short. Despite having 494 titled chess players, their magic number is 2,646 when looking at the average of their top 10 players. While they have a sizable number of world grandmasters and the trophies to prove it, their skill level isn’t quite there yet. Poland has 440 titleholders, which is a significant number for such a tiny country. Poland is ranked 9th, with a skill number of 2644.
The French are ranked tenth because their average skill level of 2,636 is lower than that of several of the top countries. Despite the fact that the overall level of talent is lower, France boasts a large number of titleholders. There are 457 titleholders in France, believe it or not. While France is now rated tenth in the world, it is no slouch in the game of chess.
How Many Chess Grandmasters (GMs) Are There?
Obtaining a chess title, particularly the grandmaster title, is no easy task. The Grandmaster title is the greatest honor bestowed by the International Chess Federation in the game of Chess. There are 1721 grandmasters in the world as of September 2020, according to the FIDE rating list. Russia is the most popular chess-playing country globally, based on the sheer quantity of chess players. Russia now boasts more than 2,000 active chess championship holders, which is a remarkable achievement. In proportion to the chess grandmasters and how many they are, Russia leads the globe, and this is a popular statistic used to rank countries.
Russia has 255 grandmasters, which is 16% of all the grandmasters and the highest number in the world. The United States, with 101 grandmasters, is another country with a large number of chess masters.
China has about 48 grandmasters, and in comparison to Russia and the United States, the number is relatively low. The 48 grandmasters make roughly 3% of the global scale of grandmasters.
India, an upcoming nation in the chess world, has 62 grandmasters and has recently surpassed China. India’s percentage is also 3%, just like China.
Ukraine, despite its tiny size, has a lot of bite in the chess world. Ukraine has more grandmasters than China and India, with 93 grandmasters barely missing the top 100As contrasted to other parts of the globe, Ukraine accounts for a respectable 5% of all grandmasters. Many people put quite a lot of effort into their Chess, but their Elo rating remains stagnant.
Obtaining a chess championship takes a great deal of effort and devotion. Time management is one of the most important skills to have both on and off the job. When a player achieves the rank of grandmaster in Chess, they retain the title for the rest of their lives.
How Many International Masters (IMs) Are There?
International Masters are extremely skilled chess players, and even the most gifted players must compete in challenging tournaments to earn the title. The first IM titles were given out in 1950, and the requirements to become an IM have evolved.
The International Masters title, which ranks just behind world champion and grandmaster, is a prestigious honor that a chess player may achieve—once won, it is retained for life. The International Chess Federation, FIDE, bestows it.
There are around 3,800 current International Masters as of 2020, which is a small proportion of the millions of chess players worldwide. Each IM norm is exceedingly difficult to achieve, and there are several guidelines for determining what constitutes a standard.
For example, in a nine-round FIDE competition, you must have a quality performance of 2450 or more, and some of your adversaries must be from federations/countries different from your own, as well as titled. A player who earns a 2400 FIDE classical (or “standard”) rating and three IM norms are presently awarded the title of International Master by FIDE.
How Many FIDE Masters (FM) Are There?
Fide Masters was first used in 1978, and it ranks behind International Master but ahead of Candidate Master. It is the third-highest title that a player may obtain. Unless FIDE revokes FM designation for disciplinary grounds, a player’s Fide Master Status is permanent.
FM’s are among the world’s best chess players, consistently performing at a high level. Many of them may be found on Chess.com, where you can even watch them play live. To do so, go to the Live Chess website and select the Events option from the drop-down menu.
A player does not need to attain norms, unlike the Grandmaster and International Master titles. A player usually qualifies for the FIDE Master title by having an Elo rating of 2300 or above. The player must also have played at least 30 games. There are about 8,104 Fide Masters worldwide.
How Many Players Are There On Chess.com?
As it is a chess server, the site has more than 23 million registered users but has an active user coverage of 3 million users. Chess.com offers online games and hosts many thousands of members at the same time, allowing them to be matched with an adversary during any moment of day. The site also offers almost every time control there is. Furthermore, Chess.com offers the option to customize the time control and even enter an increment per move.
Chess.com offers several different online gaming styles. Aside from traditional chess games, there are eight additional chess variations to pick from. In addition, at various levels, one may play Chess against a computer, participate tournaments that start every few moments, and even play club matches against other squads. How many players are there on lichess.org?
Lichess.org provides users with the second greatest gaming experience. Around 28000 simultaneous active users utilize lichess around the clock. This makes finding an opponent at any moment simple. Players may pick from various time restrictions, including 1-minute bullets, 5-minute blitz, and 180-minute games, just as on chess.com. It’s also feasible to choose a different increment for each motion.
There’s also correspondence chess, which gives you up to 14 days to make advances. In addition, atomic Chess (pieces detonate when taken, destroying their neighbors with them), Antichess (win by losing all your pieces – captures are forced), Racing Kings (get your king to the other side of the board first), and many other chess variations are available.
Additionally, different tournaments are available, as well as the option of playing versus a computer on lichess. Despite the fact that lichess was celebrating its tenth birthday, they had to sprint to keep up with demand as their player database doubled in weeks. They added more servers and tried to simplify the code, and they were able to accommodate over 110,000 online gamers.
The most recent winter marathon on Lichess.com featured 27000 participants, setting a new record for player counts. There were 335,764 games played in the winter marathon, with white winning 49 per cent and black winning 46 per cent. There were 5% of drawings. Liches.com also hosts a monthly streamers fight that attracts over 5000 players on a regular basis. An average of 34,079 games is played in the streamers fight.
How Many Players Are There On Chess24.com?
In terms of playing experience, chess24 is ranked third. The website for Chess is offered in three languages: English, Spanish, and German making it a truly worldwide platform. On chess24, there is no way to know how many people play Chess on a regular basis, but you can always find an opponent in the Playzone. You can only pick from a restricted number of time restrictions, unlike chess.com and lichess.
Playing correspondence games is not possible. The longest time control available is 60 minutes, with a 30 second increment for each move. Furthermore, with chess24, you can only play conventional chess games. There are no more chess variations to choose from. Chess24, on the other hand, hosts a number of fantastic events. Opening-themed competitions, in particular, can help you enhance your chess opening abilities.
I hope this article clarified some curiosity on how many Chess players there are in the world. For more information on the three big chess websites, see the comparison guide on chess.com vs lichess.org vs chess24.