The first steps in learning to play chess include understanding how to properly set up the chess board and learning which pieces are allowed to move where. The object of the game is to capture the other player's king piece.
To start, players are on opposing sides of the chess board, and pieces of the same color are set up in order. The order of the first row contains a rook in each corner, a knight in each space to the inside of the rook and a bishop to the inside of each of the knights. The two middle spaces contain the king and queen. The queen is placed on her matching color and the king goes in the left over space. The entire second row consists of pawns.
Game play begins by one player moving a pawn forward. In an initial move of a pawn, two spaces are permitted, a second move of the same pawn allows only one. Pawns may only move forward, except when capturing another piece, in which case they move diagonally. Pieces may not ever move through or share a space with another piece. Rooks may only move in a straight line. Knights may only move in an L-shape within three spaces, for example up two, over one. Bishops may only move diagonally. The queen may move in any direction, any number of spaces. The king may move one space in any direction. Checkmate is achieved when the king does not have a space to move to in which he cannot be captured.