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I am planning to build an open source web based client for FICS. I enjoy playing at http://chess.com, but don't like the fact that it is a closed service. So, I need something similar, but for FICS.

What I am wondering about is, if something already exists for this. Wouldn't want to end up with duplicated effort.

Also, is it something that the chess community would use? What is the most popular way that people connect to FICS?

3 Answers 3

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There are already open-source clients for FICS. The default web client that you see when you open the FICS website is the Jin Chess Client. Jin is an open source Java implementation, so you can use it via Java Applet. There might be other open-source web platforms that I'm not aware of, but Jin is enough for you to get started.

I'm not so sure what you want to do with Jin. It's working and it's fully functional. However, it's not a web application and feel a bit old-school. If you're committed, you should consider creating a JavaScript/CSS/HTML5 FICS web application. It'll be more beautiful and modern. Look at lichess.org, it's absolutely stunning. It would've been better if it connects to the FICS server. Maybe you can do the job?

While I don't have statistics for FICS client usage, I believe web application is the way to go.

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    Actually, I tried Jin. Wouldn't really call it a browser client. Moreover, I am not comfortable running a Java Applets in my browser.
    – crodjer
    Commented Jul 12, 2015 at 14:18
  • BTW. Thanks for lichess.org, it looks great.
    – crodjer
    Commented Jul 12, 2015 at 14:22
  • Lichess is great. Unfortunately there aren't many players there who likes slower time controls. Even lichess interface is biased heavily towards blitz terming 10+0 games as classical. There is no tournament run by lichess that goes beyond 10+0. FICS still the best way to play classical chess since 15+15 is typical there.
    – rpattabi
    Commented Aug 19, 2017 at 19:30
  • Things have changed since then. lichess now terms 10+0 as rapid and slower games are termed classical. This is good. Yet tournaments even if termed as classical are actually rapids due to a feature called Berserk which enables players to half their times to gain more points upon winning. FICS is still the right place for slower games.
    – rpattabi
    Commented May 10, 2018 at 4:36
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Mobialia is a decent modern FICS client that works on the browser.

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    Nice one! Did not know this existed.
    – Keshav
    Commented Aug 20, 2017 at 3:08
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A nice looking FICS client can be accessed from the browser at : https://www.freechess.club/

You can also download a desktop application.

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