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You hear so much about gaming on the Net these days - 'the biggest advance in gaming since 3D graphics'. And it is pretty good, if you neglect the effects lag and annoying people on the Net can cause you! But seriously, gaming on the Net is great, but people seem to think the only thing you can play on the Net is Quake and Unreal Tournament. What about the good old games? Chess? Dominoes? Othello? Well, they're there too, you just have to know where to look for them. And guess where they are? Yahoo, of all places!
I generally despise Yahoo - their search facilities are overshadowed by so many other search engines, and their pages are littered with links to their other facilities. For searching, Fast Search (www.alltheweb.com) or Google (www.google.com) will see you right. But Yahoo seems to have got their game options just right. The interfaces are well designed, and the community is thriving. So what's it all about?
Yahoo Games is a free service (that's a good start!), where you can go along and meet people to play some of the classic games. There's Chess, Dominoes, Othello (or Reversi as it is called), as well as a whole host of card games, and that's just the start. Each game has a series of 'rooms', where people meet, have a chat, and play a game or two. You can just play socially against anyone, or you can choose to go into one of the professional rated rooms - with skill levels ranging beginner to advanced. The room and games themselves are just Java applets, and very well designed they are too, if I may say so myself. Pick a 'table' (which is just a game) and play along. Each game is different obviously, but the structure remains the same - the game at the top, controls down the side, a chat window at the bottom, and ratings at the right. The better you are, the higher the number. You don't have to play rated games of course, you can just play for fun, and not lose or gain any points if you will or lose. But where the adventure in that? :)
The games are fun, the people are generally friendly (especially if they win!), and you end up playing people from all over the world. It's wonderful fun, and a great break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Dominoes is quite fun, as are Othello and Chess, but it depends what's you game of choice. Whatever it is, this is the place to play - there's always someone to play, whatever the time, and you'll really enjoy it. Recommended.