Remember Pokémon Go and all the frenzy it caused? While people got overly excited, enthusiasm subdued in a matter of months, proving that a sudden blast in popularity might easily prove a one-hit wonder. Instead, there are games that have been played by people across countries and ages – some have even been with us for centuries – that have already migrated online for years now. So if you are looking for something fun to do on the go, why not revisit the classics?
Chess: Strategy and Mind Skills at Play
Chess is widely considered the most popular game in the world and has been around for centuries, as its origins are lost deep in time somewhere in 7th-century India. It is played by two players occupying opposite ends of a chessboard, a checkered game board with 64 squares arranged in an 8×8 grid.
They each begin with 16 pieces that move and eliminate each other in various ways with the objective of reaching a checkmate, that is, to place the opponent’s king under an inescapable threat of capture – interestingly, the king is never actually eliminated in chess. Chess is acclaimed as probably the most strategic game man ever invented – and you can find a myriad of resources online on how to play chess on your mobile.
Poker: The Ultimate Card Game
Out of all card games, poker is probably the best known. While it is actually an umbrella term to describe numerous variations of the game, they all follow a similar play pattern based on a five-card hand that ranks lower or higher to the opponent’s hand and accordingly loses or wins the game.
In poker, elements of probability, strategic thinking and psychology feature heavily and it is the game most associated with bluffing – having also established the term “poker face” in pop culture. Nowadays poker has evolved from small clubs of enthusiasts to being played around the world by millions of players, available also on mobile apps and online platforms in various ways such as Sit ‘n’ Go or online tournaments.
Bridge: An Olympic “Sport”
If you haven’t heard of bridge, you should catch up quickly. Often compared to chess due to its complexity and the mental skills required, bridge along with chess is the only “mind sport” recognised by the International Olympic Committee. Played with a standard 52-card deck, bridge sits four players in two competing pairs with partners seated opposite each other.
During each round, the players first auction or bid to take a contract that varies according to the number of tricks they declare they will accomplish and the trump suit – communicating information about their hand to their partner in the process. The highest bidder then executes the contract, playing both their own cards and their partner’s, while the other pair tries to stop the declaring side from achieving the tricks required. Sounds complicated? It is even more elaborate than that, but bridge enthusiasts swear by it – and suggest which apps are the best if you’d like to learn their favourite game, too.
So next time you are looking for a mobile game, why not try one slightly more old-school? They enjoy immense popularity for a reason and learning how to play them will allow you to socialise both online and offline, as all three of these games enjoy vast and loyal fanbases around the world.