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Vladimir Kramnik's latest project - Chess Legends, a free chess app

by Himank Ghosh - 17/04/2023

Vladimir Kramnik is one of the legends of the Chess world. He was the one who took down the mighty Garry Kasparov, revolutionizing the Berlin defense! His opening ideas and depth of chess understanding are the reasons why he is so revered in the chess community, and exactly why he is a great chess trainer. Now the ex-world champion has started a new venture - a mobile chess app where you can get personal lessons from the maestro himself, and other World Champions! The App is called Chess Legends - get personal chess lessons from world champions using Artificial intelligence! Read more about this wonderful project in the article below.

Vladimir Kramnik's latest project - Chess Legends 

Learning from the World Champions - now combined with AI! Download the app for Android and iOS

Over the past few years, a lot of apps and websites have been created for chess playing and improvement. What is new in this application, which is a project by the legendary Vladimir Kramnik? We gave this app a go:

At the very start, The Chess goddess Kaissa welcomes you in your journey!

There are 3 different modes in which you can use the app - Campaign, Battle, and Video! The in-app AI decides on an individual training plan for you based your strengths and weaknesses.

The Campaign mode

Let's talk about the Campaign mode first. After creating an account called "ChessBase India", and selecting it's age as 7 years (we completed our 7-year anniversary earlier this year!), we jumped right in. The menu is exactly like a lot runner mobile games like Subway Surfer and Temple Run - you have to cross certain objectives to complete a level. Here, these will chess objectives like solving a certain number of puzzles without any mistakes, or winning a game against the App AI (Chess Goddess Caissa)! As you complete the objectives, the next, more advanced level unlocks.

This is what the campaign screen looks like - in the right, you can see the objectives for the current level!

Each level follows some chess concept and elucidates it with examples and questions - in this case, pins. You can't progress to the next level until you successfully complete this level, this ensures the user is actually paying attention!

Everyday, a new task is assigned for the user to keep it fresh and interesting! With the levels and the stars assigned (based on how smoothly you solved the puzzles and questions), you can also track your progress!

Battle mode

The Battle mode is exactly how it sounds - you engage in a game of chess with the app AI called Caissa. There are a lot of apps designed solely to play against the computer/engine, but this is quite different than that. First off, in most cases the computer is just too strong to compete against, and it becomes a boring endeavor getting crushed by it. But this AI is adaptive - as your playing level increases with each win, Caissa also grows in strength, making the games progressively difficult. She also chips in at times with certain comments about the ongoing game!

Each win adds to your rating, and each loss reduces it - just like all chess playing platforms!

Video mode

The campaign mode and the battle mode are both great for learning and enjoying chess. The video mode offers something different - video lectures from Grandmasters on different chess concepts, and 3D Animation videos for kids to learn chess! You can unlock the first 2/3 videos using the in-game currency, and you can enjoy the rest of the videos with by paying very nominal charges.

Legendary trainer Evgeny Vladimirov's instructional video on mating threats is available in the app!

Some amazing animated videos have been created with interesting dialogue, from where the kids can learn basic chess concepts!

Vladimir Kramnik on Chess Legends

"Chess Legends" is Kramnik's first project about a chess app!

IM Sagar Shah asked some questions about the "Chess Legends" mobile application to Vladimir Kramnik himself. Check out the Maestro's views on the app and how this project came to fruition:


IM Sagar Shah (SS): How did you decide to do the Chess Legends Project?

GM Vladimir Kramnik (VK): I know GM Darmen Sadvakassov (Co-founder and CEO) for more than twenty years. I am sure about his abilities, and have confidence in him as a person and a human. He had informed me about this project a couple of years ago, and since there is a very professional team doing it, I got interested and started to help with the chess part of it. Once the first draft appeared about a year ago, I liked it very much and entered the project already on full speed.

The full team which has created the Chess Legends App - there are 4 Grandmasters in the team and former World champions, which tells a lot about the quality!

SS: Can you tell us about your involvement in the app?

VR: I check every training position, and give advices in general on everything concerning chess material.


SS: I saw that there are video lessons and you have created some. Can you tell us the lectures that you have created? Some of the other lectures have been created by Vladimirov and Sadvakassov. Are there other trainers as well?

VR: We have joined our knowledge, forces and thoughts in order to deliver high quality educational material.That is important, because quality means everything to me, specially in projects concerning kids education.  Hopefully, the former trainer of Garry Kasparov, former 2600+ GM and two former World Champions should be enough to deliver the real quality. There are a couple of other guys helping us in technical matters, such as rechecking every position for refutations or another solution with engines.

The app is full of highly instructive exercises on various chess patterns!

SS: There is a very interesting place called animation. Can you tell us a bit about that?

VR: On top of everything, there is some exclusive chess animation for children, created by the tech developers of the application to make them enjoy the learning process more. Since children can start using the application from very early ages, it fits all ages and levels - from users who doesn't know the rules of chess yet to 2200+ level.

There are 32 animated videos of a beautifully made cartoon series "Adventures in the Chess Kingdom"!

SS: Can you tell us a bit about the playing feature in the app?

VR: You can play with the engine while advancing and learning new things about chess, which should assess your level depending on how you solve numerous tasks after each lesson, and adjust its strength in accordance. This and other AI parts of the application will be developed and advanced permanently. We have interesting new ideas on how and what to make using AI in order to make the process of education most efficient for each user, but everything will happen in it's own time :)


SS: Is there any other feature or anything about the app that you would like the people to know about?

VR: This app is mostly for ( but not limited to) kids who want to learn or (and) improve in chess. The major difference compared to some ( not many, by the way) similar applications is the exeptional quality of  interface graphics and pure chess material. It is not a playing zone, at least not yet (there are enough on internet, if kids like to play with each other) but a purely chess educational app with carefully chosen material and videos explaining those subjects. The amount of positions to solve will be constantly growing (even though there are actually already a lot). As for the lessons, we keep recording those permanently and certain adjustments are made based on feedback and ideas of users. It is a long term project that is going to grow and get better and better with more and more functions every time.

With such a competent team and excellent quality of material, we can definitely expect Chess Legends to be a popular app among chess players! 

Official press release at the World Championship match 2023, Astana

Grandmasters will teach millions of children to play chess!

A mobile application by the world chess champions Vladimir Kramnik and Yifan Hou was presented at the World Championship match in Astana.

The new mobile app Chess Legends has been unveiled during the World Chess Championship in Astana on 16th April 2023. The developers' mission is to provide children from all over the world with the opportunity to learn chess using the best techniques, utilizing cutting-edge artificial intelligence technology to personalize lessons and determine the players' skill levels.

Chess Legends offers video tutorials from the best chess trainers and grandmasters, including the fourteenth World Chess Champion Vladimir Kramnik and four-time Women's World Champion, world female ratings leader Yifan Hou, who will help players improve their skills and begin their journey to becoming grandmasters. The learning methodology, developed by a team led by Evgeny Vladimirov, senior FIDE trainer, and the head coach of the national teams of India, Spain, and Kazakhstan, guarantees that the lessons will be effective and suitable for all levels of players.

Vladimir Kramnik and Hou Yifan at the concluding ceremony of their battle of the sexes match in 2016. | Photo: Susan Polgar

"More than 100 million people around the world play chess regularly, and about 25,000 schools offer chess lessons as an extra-curricular activity, and this is just the beginning. Our project is on the verge of three rapidly growing industries: gaming, education, and fun. We've combined the trends in the development of these industries to provide the opportunity for as many people as possible to learn how to play chess," said company CEO Darman Sadvakasov, international grandmaster and first vice president of the Chess Federation of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

The Chess Legends app has already been approved by the FIDE "Chess in Education" Commission, underscoring its importance in teaching chess and promoting the development of this fascinating and intellectual sport around the world.

Chess Legends is a unique edutainment tool that will help millions of children improve their skills and achieve new results through the use of technology, quality content, gamification, a user-friendly interface, and immersion in the world of chess. To start your journey to becoming a grandmaster, download Chess Legends from the App Store or Google Play today!

Important links and info

Device requirements: Android 6.0 and up, available on both Android and iOS devices

App version: 1.0.2

Released on: 2nd November, 2022

Last update: 4th January, 2023

Offered by: Chess Legends Ltd.

Download the App in Google Playstore

Download the App in Apple Appstore


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