Technology: He's Got You Cornered

The game of chess is actually easy enough to learn, but the finer aspects can take years to master. While there are no shortcuts to playing a better game, here are some high-tech chessboards that will help you sharpen your skills.

Fritz 9 Play Chess ($37.99; amazon.com ) is a PC game that teaches the fundamentals, with tips for opening, middle game and endgame moves.

Hoyle Chess Games ($19.95; amazon.com) offers 150 different opponents, from beginner to master.

Saitek Mephisto Chess Challenger ($99.95; saitekusa.com ) is a digital chessboard with LED lights and metallic pieces. It features error-free move entry, 50-move takeback (that's a do-over) and 64 playing levels, plus the ability to set up games in progress.

Medieval Kings Chess 2: Clash of Kings ($7.95; magmic.com ) allows you to turn your BlackBerry or mobile phone into a portable chessboard with six different themes based on the greatest conquerors of the Dark Ages. You can face the computer with six levels of difficulty or challenge your friends.

Karpov Chess (price varies by carrier; hudsonentertainment.com ) is a mobile chess game that features a 3-D board with five levels of computer intelligences for pass-and-play multiplayer mode. You'll be able to make a move, send it to your friend and get back to work while you wait to see if your gambit pays off. With any luck, the word "checkmate" will be yours.

Technology: He's Got You Cornered | News