Anichess, Animoca Brands’ chess-centered subsidiary, has on Thursday announced the completion of a funding round of $1.8 million.

The round was led by Sfermion and Amber Group, with participation from Fenbushi Capital, Aspen Digital, SNZ Capital, and others, Anichess said in a statement.

The firm will use the funds raised to fund game development, marketing initiatives, and team expansion.

“With its popularity, accessibility, and incredible strategic depth, chess is a classic game that has stood the test of time,

“One of the benefits of a game whose appeal is measured in centuries is the sophistication and passion of its community, and we are thrilled for Anichess to showcase our new and updated interpretation of the game of kings in partnership with,” said Yat Siu, Co-founder and Executive Chairman of Animoca Brands.

Anichess is a Web3 gaming project developed in a collaboration between Animoca Brands and, a global online chess platform.

It provides a novel tactical twist on the classic game of chess by implementing spells that open up new strategies and gameplay, and that require players to rethink the rules of traditional chess as they uncover the expansive lore within the world of the gameboard.

In 2023, Anichess closed an oversubscribed $1.5 million seed round to develop an experience that makes chess more engaging and accessible to all.

In January 2024, Anichess launched its player-versus-environment (PvE) daily chess puzzles, and has since secured over 1 million registered players while maintaining an active user base of 150,000 daily active users who have collectively solved over 50 million chess puzzles.

Anichess’s Season 1 leaderboard was launched on 11 March 2024, ranking players based on points accumulated from solving daily puzzles and collecting Orbs of Power obtained through gameplay and participation in social events.

Its online player-versus-player (PvP) game mode is expected to launch in the second quarter 2024.

“We’re excited to support Animoca Brands and with the roll-out of Anichess, which represents an exciting foray into Web3 gaming for the timeless and global classical game,” said Dan Patterson, general partner of Sfermion.

He said the future of gaming is community-driven and player-owned, and he believes that, with’s existing community of 150m+ players and Web3 communities such as Mocaverse, Anichess has the potential to onboard tens of millions of players into that future.

“With the added strategic components and esports-like elements, Anichess aims to keep things fresh by building for the gamers who yearn for the hardest challenges,

“We’re looking forward to working closely with the team and onboarding countless more into Web3 gaming,” he added.

Annabelle Huang, managing partner of Amber Group, said that Anichess represents a refreshing take on one of the most classic games cherished by many generations and they are proud to support the team in realizing their vision of delivering an engaging, community-centric and decentralized player experience.

“The enthusiastic response to the debut of spell chess puzzles is a testament to the team’s execution capability and we look forward to the release of the main game later this year,” she added.

Animoca Brands begins phased launch of ‘Anichess’ in partnership with and five-time World Chess Champion Magnus Carlsen