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REX 2.4

A streamlined take on chess

by Mike Williams

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License: Freeware
Operating Systems: Linux, Mac OS X, Windows 10, Windows 7 (32 bit), Windows 7 (64 bit), Windows 8
Requirements:
Languages: English
Software Cost: Free
Date Updated: 18 June 2017
Watchlist: Add download to my watchlist
Downloads To Date: 259
Developer: REPVBLIC
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REX
A streamlined take on chess

REX is what the developer calls a "streamlined take on chess": simpler, easier to learn and quicker to play (5-10 minutes), but still with some scope for strategic fun.

The board is a compact 5x5 squares. Each player starts with only 5 pieces of 3 different types, each of which has its own movement rules.

These rules are simple - essentially, they're able to move up to 1, 2 or 3 squares - and a built-in tutorial explains every point. Even if you forget, there are hotkeys to remind you which piece is which, and where it can move.

There's support for playing against the computer, with four levels of AI, or a friend.

REX has been developed using the Unity game engine, which means it's very well presented. An opening screen asks you to select screen resolution, graphics quality, target monitor and optionally set your hotkeys. The graphics are great, with the board and pieces displayed in a gorgeously rendered 3D view (even the wood of the surrounding table looks ultra-realistic).

Please note: we found REX sometimes paused on launch, perhaps for several seconds. At first we assumed it had locked up, so closed the program down and tried again, but eventually we realised there was just an odd delay. If the same thing happens to you, wait, it'll probably fire up after a few more seconds, and there are no more pauses once it's up and running.

Verdict:

REX isn't chess, but it's small, simple, easy to learn, quick and fun to play and entirely free, and that's good enough for us.

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Spotlight: Free Full Software

WhatsApp Messenger 2.17.31

Free Full Commercial Software

WhatsApp Messenger is the world's most popular instant messaging app for smartphones.

You can use it to send and receive text and voice messages, photos, videos, even call your friends in other countries, and because it uses your phone's internet connection it might not cost you anything at all (depending on whether you'll pay data charges).

It's easy to set up and use. There's no need to create and remember new account names or pins because it works with your phone number, and uses your regular address book to find and connect you with friends who use WhatsApp already.

You can talk one-to-one or in group chats, and because you're always logged in there's no way to miss messages. Even if your phone is turned off, WhatsApp will save your messages and display them as soon as you're back online.

There's plenty more (location sharing, contact exchange, message broadcasting) and the app is free for a year, currently $0.99/ year afterwards.

What's New in Version 2.17.31

• Add color filters to your media. Just capture or select a photo, video, or GIF, and swipe up to pick a filter.
• When you receive multiple photos from the same sender in a row, they'll now be grouped together as an album.
• New reply shortcut: simply swipe right in any message to quickly reply to it.

[...]
Value:
Free
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