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Download Editors' Rating:
Average User Rating:
out of 9 votes

Quick Specs

  • Version:
  • Total Downloads:
  • Date Added:
    Sep. 29, 2011
  • Price:
  • File Size:
  • Downloads Last Week:
  • Platform:
  • Product ranking:
    #11 in Board Games

Editors' Review


Pawn is a basic chess game designed for beginners. It's nothing fancy, but that's exactly the point; it lets users hone their chess skills in a simple, easy-to-navigate environment.

The interface is clean, with a wood grain chess board and traditional, easy-to-recognize chess pieces. Gameplay is as easy as dragging and dropping the pieces into the appropriate spots. The program helpfully outlines the opponent's last move in yellow so that novice players can keep up with the action. The built-in Help file adequately explains the program's features, but does not provide any information on how chess is played; true beginners will need to look elsewhere to find the rules. While many chess games allow users to fuss around with different styles of boards and pieces, Pawn sticks to the basics, with a few extra features throw in specifically for beginners. Users can move the action backward and forward to analyze their and their opponent's strategy. The computer's error level can also be adjusted so that the game's difficulty is gradually increased as the player improves. We haven't played chess in years and appreciated being able to set the program to an enjoyably challenging level; we didn't win, but we were evenly matched against the computer.

Pawn is free with no limitations. The program comes as a ZIP file and does install a desktop icon without asking, but it uninstalls cleanly. We recommend this program for beginning and intermediate chess players, or anyone looking for a functional, no-frills chess game.

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Publisher's Description

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User Reviews

Results 1–2 of 2

1 stars

"Malware/Adware alert"

August 11, 2013  |  By Chicago-Mike

 |  Version: Pawn 4.01


Never got to try.


I downloaded "Pawn" today and infected my pc with the "" fake search engine virus. Ugh. Unusual for CNET and may have nothing to do with the application itself but there it is. Very stubborn to remove.

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4 stars

"it plays chess but never fools around"

August 04, 2013  |  By promytius

 |  Version: Pawn 4.01


Tiny, fast, no install, clear graphics; plays better than I do. I had older black and white versions. This color one is a single view, no frills at all chess opponent. It is precisely what I wanted, just a small program to practice chess with; no options, no "new" rules, no bells or whistles or anything but chess.


Some users may simply be used to more features in a program, so don't use it then. Otherwise there are no cons.


Brilliant, compact, complete basic chess game; did I mention brilliant?

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Results 1–2 of 2

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Full Specifications

What's new in version 4.01
Version 4.01 adds option for showing the intro message.
Publisher Thomas Starke
Publisher web site
Release Date September 29, 2011
Date Added September 29, 2011
Version 4.01
Category Games
Subcategory Board Games
Operating Systems
Operating Systems Windows 95/98/Me/2000/XP/2003/Vista/Server 2008/7
Additional Requirements None
Download Information
File Size 861.5KB
File Name
Total Downloads 84,827
Downloads Last Week 39
License Model Free
Limitations Not available
Price Free

Previous Versions:

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