Chess Wiki

Named after Arpad Elo, the Elo rating system is a calculating skill level of players used in zero-sum games like chess, but its usage also extends to sports, card and board games, and video games.

A player's Elo rating is represented by a number which may change depending on the outcome of rated games played. After every game, the winning player takes points from the losing one. The difference between the ratings of the winner and loser determines the total number of points gained or lost after a game. It also determined their initial ELO before the calculating occurs. A very strong chess player will gain little to no points when playing against a weak chess player. And if vise versa, then the lower rank will gain LOTS of points. If draw, the player with higher rating will lose some points while the lower rating player will gain some points, but not as much as if one loses.

A player's ELO initially suggested as 1200 ELO, as the average player of strength. IN US the ELO rating is using USCF.


The United States Chess Federation (USCF) uses its own classification of players:

  • 26800+: World Championship
  • 2400 and 2800: Senior Master
  • 2200–2399: National Master
    • 2200–2399 plus 300 games above 2200: Original Life Master
  • 2000–2199: Expert or Candidate Master
  • 1800–1999: Class A
  • 1600–1799: Class B
  • 1400–1599: Class C
  • 1200–1399: Class D
  • 1000–1199: Class E
  • 800–999: Class F
  • 600–799: Class G
  • 400–599: Class H
  • 200–399: Class I
  • 100–199: Class J