Chess PRO makes use of one simple principle: to teach the game through play and practice. You don't need to spend time deliberately memorizing moves and tactics. All you need to do is to begin playing and observing how the game progresses. Possible moves and counters are displayed every turn, which assists you on visual recall. If you choose the wrong thing, Chess PRO even gives you the chance to take back your move using variations. It doesn't matter if you're a regular at competitions or if you've never held a chess piece in your life. Chess PRO is aimed at helping you improve your game.
Better than Expected
Don't let its name fool you. Chess PRO has a number of advantages over run-in-the-mill chess apps. First and foremost, all of the chess rules are readily available to be used as quick reference. The layout makes it easy to find everything you need without having to wade through messy menus. Tapping on a piece displays all of its legal moves. If you easily get confused about the ins and outs of setting up a strategy, then you can take a look at the game's suggested moves. If you're not a fan of hand-holding, the game can also tell you when it is possible to mate an opponent. This way, you can brew your own strategy. Don't worry, Chess PRO will warn you if you're about to make a risky move. It also displays the AI's possible counter moves up to 20 turns ahead. There are a whopping 50 levels of increasing difficulty to train on and every single one applies all of the official chess rules.
Great for Expereinced Players Too
On the other hand, if you're an expert, there are several features that would help give you an edge when it comes to training. Chess PRO has a collection of over 6000 games, including famous matches of the all-time greats. Both the FIDE (Fédération internationale des échecs) and the US Chess Federation's rating systems are supported. More importantly, Chess PRO makes use of the Chess Tiger game engine which has been ranked as one of the strongest created for mobile devices. In fact, it has been recognized to be among the best by the SSDF. Want a real challenge? Well, the game reaches up to 2900 Elo which, if you're not familiar with rating system, is at the level of a world champion.
Now, aside from its impressive technical specs, Chess PRO is also visually stunning. From wood to marble, the game has 14 board styles to choose from. There are 9 types of chess pieces (ebony & ivory, glass, metal and more). Or, if you'd like to add your own visual style to the mix, there are 15 visual themes which can be customized. There are also plenty of options when it comes to engine output, game graphics and even sound. There are also no ads, unlike free-to-play, even other paid apps.
The Other Side of the Coin
As for cons, well Chess PRO has very little. Considering that it is still an app, its price may keep casual players from giving it a chance. Other than that, we only have good things to say about it. First and foremost, the developer has made everything convenient for Grandmaster hopefuls. The game allows you to save games into collections so you can resume them at any time. It is easy to exchange game collections through email and it allows you to use variations so you can test possible scenarios without needing to erase an on-going match. Want to ease through the challenges? Go for the easiest difficulty. On the other hand, if you're looking to learn things the hard way then be fearless and try the fourth, suicidal level difficulty.
Give it a Try
Basically, Chess PRO - With Coach is your best bet when it comes to expanding your tactical know-how for competitive chess. The game has everything you would want in a training app, without subjecting you to lengthy explanations and confusing menus. It is available for the iPod Touch, iPad and iPhone and it requires that you have at least iOS version 5.1.1 installed.