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View Full Version : What do you people think about the chessmaster engine?



khelben1979
15-05-2008, 08:39 PM
Hello people!

What do you people think about the ChessMaster engine? Is it a good way of learning chess? :hmm:

CameronD
15-05-2008, 09:04 PM
I learnt how to play chess from chessmaster.

The lessons are well worth the money and the reason I purchase upgrades of the engine.

Shark93
16-05-2008, 05:26 PM
Horrible, every year they update it and the new edition (for example comparing the new GM edition with chessmaster 10) costs like $80 and all you get for it is a little extra strength added to the chessmaster computer engine, which isn't very good comapred to rybka and fritz etc. anyway. The lessons remain the same and aren't that great anyway, unless you have just learnt the moves. I also don't like the way chessmaster provides inflated ratings for all its computer opponents on there. Generally the computer opponents on chessmaster play at a strength 800-900 points below the rating ubisoft says they are, and that is most likely just because ubisoft wants to make people buy their next version, as they make people think that they play much better then they actually do. Anyway it is not worth the money, a better idea would be to spend your money on fritz 11, which comes with a database of nearly 2 million games from 2200+ players, and is full of usefull features, including its main engine which is one of the strongest around, so perfect for analysing your games.

Miguel
16-05-2008, 06:27 PM
What do you people think about the ChessMaster engine? Is it a good way of learning chess? :hmm:
The engine itself is fine, but I think the GUI is rubbish. I'd go with Fritz but, if you're an absolute beginner, taking a few beginners' classes may be a better option.

WCL-Skwerly
17-05-2008, 08:32 AM
For the 10.00 you spend on CM 10, it's well worth the money if for nothing else the master lectures it contains. I say go for it, almost any software place has it for under 20 bucks, usually 10. :)

khelben1979
17-05-2008, 05:23 PM
The engine itself is fine, but I think the GUI is rubbish. I'd go with Fritz but, if you're an absolute beginner, taking a few beginners' classes may be a better option.

When you speak of Fritz, do you mean one of the AI players in the Chessmaster game? Or do you mean someone else? :hmm:

Miguel
17-05-2008, 05:46 PM
When you speak of Fritz, do you mean one of the AI players in the Chessmaster game? Or do you mean someone else? :hmm:
Fritz (http://www.chessbase.com/shop/product.asp?pid=358). Screenshots here (http://www.excalibur-publishing.com/fritz11scr.htm).

khelben1979
17-05-2008, 05:55 PM
Fritz (http://www.chessbase.com/shop/product.asp?pid=358). Screenshots here (http://www.excalibur-publishing.com/fritz11scr.htm).

Looks good, indeed! I'm going to test this out at a later time, definitely. Is the chess engine in Fritz smarter than then the Chessmaster engine?

Kevin Bonham
17-05-2008, 06:06 PM
Looks good, indeed! I'm going to test this out at a later time, definitely. Is the chess engine in Fritz smarter than then the Chessmaster engine?

Quite a bit stronger according to the rankings here (http://computerchess.org.uk/ccrl/4040/rating_list_all.html).

Rybka is stronger than either of them.

Miguel
17-05-2008, 06:11 PM
Is the chess engine in Fritz smarter than then the Chessmaster engine?
Probably (http://www.computerchess.org.uk/ccrl/4040/rating_list_pure_32_bit_single_cpu.html), but you won't notice it. They're both very strong.

(You beat me to it, Kevin :))

WCL-Skwerly
19-05-2008, 03:37 AM
Yea, Chessmaster at its toughest level is good enough to beat probaby 98% of the chess players out there anyhow. I just prefer Fritz for the aftermarket support (videos, upgrades, engines, access to Playchess.com, etc) and the interface is top-notch.

I loves me a little Chessmaster too, but these days I'm on Fritz 10 using the Shredder 11 engine. True, Rybka is the strongest out there, but when you are dealing with 2600+ strength for any of the top 20 engines, you are really nitpicking unless you plan on having engine vs engine tournaments.

If you are a class player as most of us are, almost any decent program will have the ability to teach us and entertain us. :)

Shark93
23-05-2008, 10:34 AM
Yea, Chessmaster at its toughest level is good enough to beat probaby 98% of the chess players out there anyhow. I just prefer Fritz for the aftermarket support (videos, upgrades, engines, access to Playchess.com, etc) and the interface is top-notch.

I loves me a little Chessmaster too, but these days I'm on Fritz 10 using the Shredder 11 engine. True, Rybka is the strongest out there, but when you are dealing with 2600+ strength for any of the top 20 engines, you are really nitpicking unless you plan on having engine vs engine tournaments.

If you are a class player as most of us are, almost any decent program will have the ability to teach us and entertain us. :)

Chessmaster would have to get very lucky to beat any player over 2000, which certainly is alot more then 2% of the players out there.

DarkHorse
23-05-2008, 06:50 PM
Whose cares about the difference between Fritz and CM... A diff between 2700 and 3000 wont make a difference to your "learning" of chess anyway.
ChessMaster IMO is 10x better for learning chess with its many tutorial and coaching features combined with a massive library of piece sets (some animated) which would keep a learner immersed longer too.
Only the truely dedicated learners will stay on Fritz for more than an hour
as it is designed more for serious tournament players...yet I know of kids who are beginners and have stayed on ChessMaster all night because what is needed at first is interactivity and entertainment, If learning is not fun people lose interest...Therefore I say CM is much better for learning... Fritz/ChessBase is of course in a field of its own for serious training though.

DarkHorse
23-05-2008, 06:53 PM
Chessmaster would have to get very lucky to beat any player over 2000, which certainly is alot more then 2% of the players out there.

http://forums.gamershell.com/gamershell-com-forum/239-chessmaster-9000-defeats-larry-christiansen.html

Kevin Bonham
23-05-2008, 07:45 PM
ChessMaster is also good in that it has (or at least the early version that I've played against had) a range of pre-made weak opponents down to very low strength for the beginning player to beat. Fritz has nothing quite like that. It does have handicap levels but they are not as good, and for "rated games" the weakest engine on its lowest setting will still easily beat most players. DarkHorse is quite correct - the two things are designed for different purposes.

Probably the reason for the focus on the strength of the program in this thread is the use of the term "engine" in the opening post. The Chessmaster engine is mediocre compared with others out there but it is really the program's training options that give it its appeal.

Angelina01
06-08-2008, 01:54 PM
I think it has provided us with a better platform to proove ourselves.It has created altogether a different world for the chess lovers like us.It's great & I really admire it a lot.

I think for a beginners, it's a best option to start with. It provides you with a better platform & inculcates in you much more confidence.

Angelina01

http://guidetopoker.com/Full-Tilt-Poker.php

[posts merged - mod]

MichaelBaron
07-08-2008, 12:23 AM
Nothing special about this poker "platform" :doh:

Redmond Barry
26-08-2008, 09:20 AM
there seems to be plenty of tutorials to learn bits and pieces from.

im interested to know from anyone - when players have certainly tendencies stated in this program such as - weak opening, prefers bishops, strong endings etc, should the rating derived from this computer program be wholly accurate. i mention this because in real life players never state what there best and worst traits are and obviously with this imformation you will instinctively play according to each players stated preferences without developing ones game any further.

so my point is since this program gives clues to all the players 1000-2400 (excluded GM's as far i can recall) is it fair to feel the results against these players would be an accurate indication of results against human players of the same ratings since there is no chance a human opponent would give away his secrets.
also is the style of thinking the computer exibits accurate for the whole spectrum of ratings from 1000 all the way up to 2800. by this i mean is the software programmed to correlate as strongly in the early 2000's as it is at 2800. i mention this because ive noticed a few games OTB by people ranked 1900 - 2000 ~ that seem to be without flaws yet some of chessmasters opponents in the 2000-2100 range are guilty of some pretty poor moves. is this an experiences other people have been witness to?

by the way, the interface for this program needs a lot of work.

ace vancura

Kevin Bonham
26-08-2008, 03:10 PM
im interested to know from anyone - when players have certainly tendencies stated in this program such as - weak opening, prefers bishops, strong endings etc, should the rating derived from this computer program be wholly accurate. i mention this because in real life players never state what there best and worst traits are and obviously with this imformation you will instinctively play according to each players stated preferences without developing ones game any further.

In real life you often know your opponents' strengths and weaknesses to a degree from having played them before, or you can often surmise things about them anyway (Webb's "Chess For Tigers" discusses this well).

What is a big barrier is that in a program like Chessmaster, if you find you are very good at playing against the so-called 2000 player whose endings are bad (for example) then you can manipulate your own rating upwards by repeatedly beating that player.

Redmond Barry
27-08-2008, 06:51 AM
In real life you often know your opponents' strengths and weaknesses to a degree from having played them before, or you can often surmise things about them anyway (Webb's "Chess For Tigers" discusses this well).

What is a big barrier is that in a program like Chessmaster, if you find you are very good at playing against the so-called 2000 player whose endings are bad (for example) then you can manipulate your own rating upwards by repeatedly beating that player.

thankyou, this is exactly what i was interested in knowing. i have a feeling that although ive played most players in the program up to a 2000 rating and a few in the 2100 region, i could be subconsciously drawn towards playing those with noticeable deficiencys. ive found the opening skills of 1800 rated players more solid than some of the 1900 rated players for instance and their resistance in the latter part of the game to be meagre (if my memory serves me well).
the program doesnt seem to accurately reflect the playing strengths with the players skill base on occasions. lower ranked players seem to be more difficult opponents at time to players 100 - 150 points above them.

surely human players have a more rounded game without a glaring deficiency in one part of their game (or am i off the beaten track with that assumption ?)

chess for tigers sound interesting, ill go check it out on amazon

cheers

Kevin Bonham
27-08-2008, 09:29 PM
surely human players have a more rounded game without a glaring deficiency in one part of their game (or am i off the beaten track with that assumption ?)

Many humans have glaring deficiencies in particular parts of their game. I know many players whose openings are truly awful but who play reasonably if they reach an even middlegame. The problem for them is that if you jump on their awful openings early enough, particularly when you are white, you can be positionally +2 on about move 8, and their middlegame skills won't save them.

At the other end I know players whose openings are excellent and who have a great knack for gaining space with their pieces, but who have absolutely no clue about even quite simple endgames. (This is commonest among juniors but far from rare among adults.)

There are others, mostly adults, whose game is solid in all aspects but whose time management skills are abysmal (either too fast or too slow, but in either case almost compulsively so, so that they don't switch tempo even when they have to.)

The Chessmaster personalities have a grain of truth to them in that way, except that humans tend to learn why they are losing and change that behaviour, although some learn much slower than others.

Something I found to be a useful exercise with an earlier version of Chessmaster was this: keep playing the opponent closest to your own rating (randomise it by +/- 50 points so you're not always playing the same personality) and see what sort of level you stabilise at. This seemed to lead to less severe overrating than cherry-picking opponents.

Another thing worth knowing about some computer ratings is that some of them (including Fritz) use a simplified form of ELO where your rating is just based on your average score and the average rating of the opposing computer versions. This leads to very inaccurate ratings if you play against a wide range of strength settings.

Redmond Barry
28-08-2008, 04:20 AM
humans tend to learn why they are losing and change that behaviour, although some learn much slower than others.

sounds good. i think this is the aspect of this program which leaves me a little spectical. i completely agree that computer players lacking the capacity to remember their own games against me and adapt to my style is an important part of the game.

for instance, as a glaring example, i bought a small handheld chess game off ebay that was supposedly rated at 1700 about a month or two ago to play when im on the bus at work etc, but found i could beat it quite easily, consistently. this was due to me usually playing what i now know as the sicilian (a barstadised version of it at least) - since the computer would 90% of the time answer e4 with c5, and i would play this same way generally.

The way i was winning was pushing the h pawn to h4 after castling and continuing to push it towards the kingside pawns. every time i did this SELDOM WAS THEIR RESISTANCE (trying this on chessmaster almost always receives a h5 response from the 1700ish players) and i consistently went on to mate after messing up the kingside pawns and somehow getting a few pieces down in that area and trapping the king. the defence simply stunk.

1700 rated human players would undoubtedly learn from experience, unlike my simple friend - the handheld dunce.

Kevin Bonham
28-08-2008, 09:36 PM
Some computer programs have automatic learning facilities, but they tend not to work very well. Fritz, for instance, will often allow me to play the same drawing line a number of times and then will suddenly overreact to its fate (eg a few draws in some obscure French sideline and suddenly it stops playing 1.e4 for six months).

As far as I could tell, Chessmaster 10 demo had no learn function whatsoever. Once I got a draw against it, it allowed me to repeat that same draw over and over.

Some programs allow you to set them so that they will randomise the play more even at the expense of playing more weakly. These are harder to beat with set lines but still have troubles if you aim for the same kind of general strategy that has worked before (eg tripping the program over its event horizon with a diversionary sacrifice.)