The Most Popular Time Control on Lichess: Revealing the Community's Choice

Choose the time control you think is the most popular!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Jun 16, 2023 10:18 (Updated on Nov 28, 2023 09:28)
Welcome to StrawPoll's latest and most exciting ranking, where you, the avid chess enthusiasts, get to determine the most popular time control on Lichess! With thousands of players engaging in mind-boggling matches every day, it's time to cast your vote and make your voice heard. Do you prefer the lightning-fast pace of Bullet, the calculated elegance of Classical, or the adrenaline rush of Blitz? Perhaps the strategic depth of Rapid is your cup of tea? Dive into this thrilling ranking, vote for your favorite time control, or even suggest one that we may have missed. Don't miss your chance to be part of this grand battle of wits and preferences – join us now and let the world know what truly defines the ultimate Lichess experience!

What Is the Most Popular Time Control on Lichess?

  1. 1
    The most popular time control on Lichess is Bullet, which is a game with one minute for each player. This time control is fast-paced and requires quick decision-making, making it a popular choice for players who enjoy rapid chess.
    Bullet (1+0) is a time control format commonly used on Lichess, an online chess platform. In this format, each player is allocated 1 minute for the entire game, with no additional time increment per move. It is known for its fast-paced and intense gameplay, requiring players to make quick decisions and apply their strategic thinking under extreme time pressure.
    • Time per player: 1 minute
    • Time increment per move: None
    • Total game time: 1 minute
    • Popular platform: Lichess
    • Intended audience: Chess players seeking fast-paced games
  2. 2
    Blitz is the second most popular time control on Lichess, with a time limit of three minutes per player. This time control is also fast-paced, but allows for slightly more strategic play than bullet.
    Blitz (3+0) is a popular time control on Lichess, a popular online chess platform. It is a fast-paced game mode that provides each player with 3 minutes and no additional time increments. The game ends when one player's time reaches zero, or when a player achieves checkmate, resignation, or a draw.
    • Time Control: 3 minutes for each player
    • Time Increments: No additional time increments
    • Game End Conditions: Time reaching zero, checkmate, resignation, or draw
    • Pace: Fast-paced
    • Strategy: Quick thinking, rapid decision-making
  3. 3
    Rapid chess is a time control with ten minutes for each player. This time control allows for more strategic play and is popular among players who want a longer game without committing to a full-length tournament game.
    Rapid (10+0) is a popular time control format on Lichess, designed for faster-paced gameplay. Each player starts with 10 minutes at the beginning of the game, without any increment. The time control was created to attract players looking for a balance between longer classical games and shorter blitz or bullet games.
    • Time per player: 10 minutes
    • Increment: 0 seconds
    • Total game time: 20 minutes
    • Game type: Standard time control
    • Average game duration: Around 15 minutes
  4. 4
    Classical chess is a time control with thirty minutes for each player. This time control is popular among players who want to play a longer game with more time to think and strategize.
    The Classical (30+0) time control is a popular option on Lichess for players who prefer a slower and more methodical pace. It provides each player with a baseline time of 30 minutes with no additional time increment or bonus. This time control allows for longer and more strategic games, giving players ample time to formulate their moves and consider different possibilities.
    • Time Control: 30+0
    • Baseline Time: 30 minutes
    • Time Increment: None
    • Time Bonus: None
    • Preferred Pace: Slower
  5. 5
    UltraBullet is a time control with fifteen seconds for each player. This time control is even faster than Bullet and requires lightning-fast decision-making skills.
    UltraBullet (15+0) is a time control variant on Lichess where each player starts with 15 seconds on the clock and there is no increment. It is an extremely fast-paced game mode that tests players' ability to make quick and accurate moves under severe time pressure.
    • Time Control: 15+0 (15 seconds initial time)
    • Increment: None
    • Game Speed: Extremely fast-paced
    • Time Pressure: Severe
    • Focus: Quick and accurate moves
  6. 6
    Crazyhouse is a chess variant that is popular on Lichess. The time control for Crazyhouse is three minutes per player with a two-second increment per move.
    Crazyhouse (3+2) is a popular time control on Lichess for playing Crazyhouse chess variant. It combines a 3-minute base time per player with a 2-second increment added after each move.
    • Base Time: 3 minutes
    • Increment: 2 seconds per move
  7. 7
    Chess960, also known as Fischer Random Chess, is a chess variant with a randomized starting position. The time control for Chess960 on Lichess is five minutes per player.
    Chess960 (5+0) is a variant of chess played on Lichess with a time control of 5 minutes per player. It is based on Fischerandom Chess, a variant created by Bobby Fischer in 1996. Chess960 rearranges the starting position of the pieces, ensuring that the back ranks are symmetrical but randomized within certain constraints. This creative twist adds excitement, encourages original thinking, and reduces the impact of opening theory. The time control of 5+0 means that each player has 5 minutes to complete the entire game without any additional time increments.
    • Time Control: 5+0
    • Variant Type: Chess960
    • Starting Position: Randomized
    • Symmetry: Back ranks
    • Reduction of Opening Theory Impact: High
  8. 8
    Horde is another chess variant that is popular on Lichess. This game involves a large number of pawns on the board, making it a unique and challenging experience. The time control for Horde is two minutes per player with a one-second increment per move.
    Horde (2+1) is a unique time control variant on Lichess where players face off against a swarm of pawns on a larger board. The objective is to capture all enemy pawns within the given time limit. It offers a fast-paced and challenging gameplay experience for both beginners and experienced players.
    • Time Control: 2+1
    • Board Size: Larger than standard
    • Initial Position: Pawns only
    • Objective: Capture all enemy pawns
    • Time Limit: 2 minutes per player + 1 second increment
  9. 9
    Antichess, also known as "Losing Chess," is a chess variant where the goal is to lose all of your pieces. The time control for Antichess on Lichess is three minutes per player with a two-second increment per move.
    Antichess (3+2) is a variant of chess on the popular online chess platform Lichess. It is a time control format where each player is given 3 minutes initially, with an increment of 2 seconds per move. The objective of the game is to lose all of your pieces or get stalemated.
    • Time Control: 3+2
    • Objective: To lose all pieces or get stalemated
    • Initial Time: 3 minutes
    • Time Increment: 2 seconds per move
    • Platform: Lichess
  10. 10
    Atomic chess is a chess variant where pieces explode when captured, taking out any pieces around them. The time control for Atomic on Lichess is three minutes per player.
    Atomic (3+0) is a popular time control option on Lichess for playing the Atomic Chess variant. In Atomic Chess, every captured piece causes a nuclear explosion, destroying all adjacent pieces and creating a unique strategic dynamic. The '3+0' specification refers to a time control of 3 minutes per player with no added increment.
    • Time control: 3+0 (3 minutes per player)
    • Chess Variant: Atomic Chess
    • Nuclear Explosions: Captured pieces cause explosions
    • Strategic Dynamic: Unique dynamics due to explosions
    • Increased Pace: Quick time control for faster gameplay

Missing your favorite time control?


Ranking factors for popular time control

  1. Number of players participating in each time control
    A higher number of players participating in a time control indicates its popularity.
  2. Availability of time control
    Some time controls may only be available during specific tournaments or events, while others may be available year-round.
  3. Time per move
    Faster time controls, such as bullet and blitz, require quicker decision-making and faster reflexes, while slower time controls, such as classical, allow for more thoughtful play.
  4. Player skill level
    Certain time controls may be more popular among players of a certain skill level. For example, faster time controls may be more appealing to beginner and intermediate players.
  5. Preference
    Ultimately, player preference plays a significant role in determining the popularity of a time control. Some players may enjoy the fast-paced action of bullet and blitz, while others may prefer the more strategic and thoughtful play of classical time controls.

About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most popular time control on Lichess. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or time control is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 198 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Movers & Shakers

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each time control once every 24 hours. The rank of each time control is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

More information on most popular time control on lichess

Background Information: Time Control on Lichess Lichess is an online chess platform that offers a wide range of time controls to cater to the diverse needs of chess enthusiasts. Time control refers to the amount of time given to each player to make their moves during a game. Different time controls have varying effects on the gameplay and the players' strategies. Lichess offers several time controls, including bullet, blitz, rapid, classical, and correspondence. Bullet is the fastest time control, with each player allotted only one minute for the entire game. Blitz gives each player three to five minutes, while rapid offers 10 to 15 minutes per player. Classical time control is the slowest, with each player given at least 30 minutes per game. Finally, correspondence allows players to take as much time as they want to make their moves. Each time control has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. For instance, bullet and blitz favor players who can think and move quickly, while classical and correspondence give players more time to analyze and strategize. Rapid time control is a middle ground that allows players to balance speed and thoughtfulness. Overall, the most popular time control on Lichess varies depending on the player's preference and the game's context. However, blitz and rapid are generally the most commonly played time controls. Blitz is popular among casual players who want a fast-paced game, while rapid is preferred by more serious players who want to balance speed and strategy.

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