writes "Chess was invented around 1,500 years ago in India, and the game's lasting popularity is a pretty solid testament to its success. States rise and fall, real wars come and go, and still chess endures as a test of strategic thinking. Now, a young MIT-grad and game designer named David Sirlin says he's come up with something better. Chess is cool, he thinks, but there's room for improvement. In a blog post titled Announcing Chess 2, Sirlin reveals his master plan to call checkmate on the old game and introduce a set of rules that adds new thrills to the board, including, in some games, a teleporting queen. A new win condition (in addition to the old one) allows a victory if your king crosses the midline of the board. A double-blind bidding mechanic when you capture pieces allows for some 'yomi' or mind reading of the opponent's intentions. Additionally, players can chose from six 'armies', such as 'animals' and 'reaper' — five of which create twists on the classic set, by favoring pawns, for instance, or the king. Sirlin was motivated to improve upon the game because of its frustrating tendency to end in a draw because memorizing strategies often trumps other types of intelligence."