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Chessmaster is a chess-playing computer game series which is now owned and developed by Ubisoft. It is the best-selling chess franchise in history, with more than five million units sold as of 2002.
Since Chessmaster 3000 for Windows 3.x the moves are explained with voice output.
The Chessmaster chess engine is called The King, written by Johan de Koning of the Netherlands. It was introduced in Chessmaster 4000; the first edition featured a chess engine written by David Kittinger, who went on to develop the engines for Interplay's USCF Chess, WChess for the German company Millennium 2000, and Sierra Entertainment's Power Chess, Majestic Chess and Disney's Aladdin Chess Adventures. The second edition had an engine designed by Kate and Dan Spracklen of Sargon fame.
According to the September 2009 Swedish Chess Computer Association (SSDF) rating list, Chessmaster 9000 has an estimated Elo rating of 2718 on an Athlon-1200 PC. If multiple versions of other engines are stripped out of their list, Chessmaster 9000 ranks 14th among all engines tested. As of May 2008, Chessmaster 9000 remains the most recent version rated by the SSDF.
The latest version, Chessmaster 11th Edition, was released in 2007, and has lagged behind more current chess engines. CCRL places it 84th on its February 2017 list.
The King engine allows users to create new playing styles, also called "personalities", by manipulating several dozen different settings, such as King Safety, Pawn Weakness, Randomness, Mobility and others. Individual piece values can also be adjusted. Chessmaster 9000, for example, features over 150 different personalities ranging from International Grandmaster strength down to Stanley, a chimpanzee who, in most situations, plays completely random moves.
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Chessmaster System Requirements
- Operating System: Microsoft Windows XP / Vista
- Processor: 1 GHz
- RAM: 256 MB
- Video Card: any
- Hard disk space: 1 GB