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What The Heck Is Bullet Chess?

Updated on September 30, 2015

So about a year ago I stumbled upon a site called Chess.Com and became hooked on the game of chess.

A weird subset of chess is called Bullet Chess. Bullet Chess is just like normal chess except with ridiculous time limits. The truest form of Bullet Chess is one minute chess where each player gets only one minute to play an entire game. Although it is possible to checkmate your opponent in a minute or less its more common to simply "flag" them.

To flag someone in chess means you win on time. Simply put you play faster than your opponent and if they can't checkmate you before their time runs out you win, even if they have far more pieces still on the board than you.

There are great bullet chess players who are Grand Masters. And then there are the normal hacks like me. I find bullet chess very entertaining, and it's perfect for our ADD culture, I mean who has 5, 20 or god forbid 60 minutes to devote to a chess game when it can be completed in a minute!

The fun a Bullet Chess is that due to the insane time limitations both sides are going to make a comedy of errors. It's not uncommon for a player to blunder their Queen away early in the game but still win on time. The beauty of Bullet Chess is even if your position is hopelessly lost you can still win on time.

So the first rule of Bullet Chess Club is don't give up! Keep fighting to the end and go for a win on time.

Many chess purists poo poo Bullet Chess but that's OK even if Bullet Chess is not really Chess it's incredibly fun.

To give Bullet Chess a try you can sign up on Chess.Com for free. There are players from around the world 24/7 willing to give you a game. And you are automatically matched up to play against someone of similar ability so theoretically the games should always be competitive. All new players start at a rating of 1200 and it's then adjusted from there, win some games and it goes up, lose a lot of games and you fall to the 850 range like I have.

OK, it likely took you longer to read this than it would have to play a Bullet Chess match so hop on over to and play a game or two of the fastest game in town, Bullet Chess.

If you want to check it out first below is a video of me hacking my way to victory by simply playing faster than my opponent. Notice I didn't say playing better than my opponent, just faster. But a win is a win is a win!

The Immortal Game Not

Bullet Brawl

If you want to see some real Bullet Chess matches check out Bullet Brawl with International Master Daniel Rensch.

Daniel produces a weekly video showing his bullet chess games with some insightful lessons on chess as well as entertaining banter throughout.

Daniel is one of the better Bullet Chess players on line and his weekly show is always entertaining and well worth watching.

If you try Bullet Chess and become hooked you will want to pick up tips and tricks by watching Daniel's excellent play.

Bullet Brawl


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    • Happy Moment profile image

      James 2 years ago from The Eastern Bypass

      Chess is a good mental game. It enhances one's reasoning capacity. Thank you for this very educative article.