Chess Freeware and Shareware Download Page
Currently hosting 39 programmes!
The programs are listed in alphabetical order. Each of them has been
given an overall rating (Chessweb's personal opinion of the programme)
and a rating which kind of player should download the programme:
star = Boring and really uninteresting programme
= Interesting and fun programme
= A great programme!
The rating does not depend on strength, but on
graphics, usability and options.
= Programme For Beginners (ELO < 1600)
= Programme For Medium/Club Players (ELO > 1600 ) <
= Programme For Experts (ELO > 2000)
About the points:
Strength on a Pentium 133
b) A programme may have more than 1 point.
I.e. a programme with 3 points is good for any kind of player.
Arasan (Win 3.11, Win 95)
.The graphics of this programme are not very good,
but it is alright,
though, because of its good range of options and
author states that it plays ELO 2000 - 2200 on
a Pentium. Arasan features a
clock, ply-control and game-saving in
the popular PGN format (standard Chess
game file format). Arasan seems
to like setting up traps like discovered
checks. The only thing that
worries me is that the Win95 version takes 3
Megabytes to download!
Arasan 2.2 for
Win 3.1 (287 KB) Arasan 5.2 (Win 95, 3.34 MB) Homepage
Bowili Schach 5.03 (Windows, German/Deutsch)
Ein deutsches Programm, das auf einem Demo-Set zur Borland-Programmierung
basiert. Das Demo-Programm wurde im grossen und ganzen nicht zu sehr
veraendert, ausser dass es ins Deutsche uebersetzt wurde und ein paar
kleine Fehler korrigiert wurden. Bowili-Schach besitzt die Standard-
optionen wie Suchtiefe, Zeit pro Zug/Spiel u.s.w. und ist recht stark.
Eine Funktion ist jedoch einzigartig: Man kann die Zeit per Zug auf
bis zu 0.01 Sekunden herabsetzen, so kann wirklich jeder eine fuer
geeignete Schwierigkeitsstufe finden!
Bowili Schach 5.03
runterladen (166 KB)
Der Bringer 1.4 (Win 32,
English or Deutsch)
The Bringer (the name is nonsensical) is a very good Windows programme with
functions. There are numberous options; hash tables, an analysis
function, import of EPN
and PGN files, saving games in PGN and the program's
own file format, 3 different board
sizes and 2 nice piece sets. It is also
possible to print positions. Unfortunately, the program
doesn't save things
you changed (for example if you switched 'language' to English).
the language is by the way done by clicking on "Ansicht" in the menu, and there
you go to select "Sprache" and then click on "Englisch".
Bringer 1.4 (997 KB)
Bugchess possede un interface typique de Windows avec un
normal. Il y a des choix standards comme recherche de profondeur
temps par coup, mais il me manque un horloge. Il est possible
d'enregistrer les jeux comme sous format des listes de coups.
Bugchess (115 KB)
Chessterfield is a Windows programme which plays rather weakly and has quite
range of options. The graphics are okay, but nothing special. The
options that there are
include editing the board and saving the game to a
file. There is no chess clock.
Chessterfield (200 KB)
Chess Fugue (Win
Chess Fugue is a rather old Windows 3.11 programme. The chess board and the
it uses are quite similar to those used by Owlchess and Bowili
Chess (all of them are
probably based on the same 'programming example' once
included with a compiler
or whatever), but there are some features which
distinguish Chess Fugue from these
For example the clock. If
you select a 5 min. game and play, the programme will announce
later that the player who was just contemplating about his/her move has lost.
This is usually not the computer but you. Quite unfair. A strange feature :)
At least the 'Match User's Time' feature works properly ...
Fugue (122 KB)
Chess Partner 4.1 (Win
The program you can download here is a 30-day trial version of Chess
Chess Partner is demo of a commercial prgramme and has a lot of
additionally it is a strong player. There are all those features
you only find in a real
commercial programme; clock, specific computer
strength settings, different boards etc.
There is also a stupid robot voice
which announces the moves; it sounds quite unpleasant.
Also, the graphics
aren't too nice (in comparison to other (expensive) commercial chess
Download Chess Partner 4.1 (3.73 MB)
Tiger Light (DOS, English or French)
Chess Tiger Light is a demo of the commercial programme Chess
runs under Windows as well as under DOS, but it looks
like a Windows
programme and has a very nice interface. There
are only few restrictions;
the board is a little too small, but
you cannot edit its size in the demo
version, as well as you
are not allowed to do any changes about the chess
ever that means). The rest of the programme is fully
works and plays well.
Tiger Light (231 KB)
Chenard 1.039 (DOS,
There are several versions of Chenard available:
Windows, DOS VGA or DOS
CGA. This means you can even play it on a
very old laptop. The DOS version
of this programme seem to be boring
at first; you can select a ply depth and
then play. But the way it
plays is quite entertaining and human-alike. The
windows version has
cool graphics but does not feature ply-depth. Though, it
fun to play Chenard!
version (70 KB) Download Windows 95 version (128 KB) Homepage
Chess-It! is an interesting Windows programme with nice graphics
are 3 piece sets available and you can change the board colors).
It is quite
strong in the opening and middle game, but if you make it to
you will discover it is easy to win against Chess-It! in that
stage of the
3 different piece sets are available, the playing strength can only be
by selecting a ply depth. Chess-It can pronounce the moves using the
files of Chenard.
Chess-It! (499 KB)
Chess Marvel is a boring chess programme for windows. Actually, it does not
any options and it plays very weakly. Only one difficulty level is
The author charges moneyfor the registered version where
two more difficulty levels
are available. The programme has little
strategical knowledge and it barely knows all
the rules of the game of
Chess. For example, it doesn't the 3 move repeatition rule (=draw).
Marvel (44 KB)
Chessfiz 0.14 (DOS, English or
Chessfiz is still in a beta stage and the author is planning to make many
Even though, it can already play quite well and there is a
graphical interface. Yet, there are
only buttons like "new game", if you
want to use a clock (only sec/move is available) you
to type in some cryptic
command. The author is planning to change that (he wants to add
menu, saving & loading etc.). Nice programme, I am looking forward to the
Chessfiz (368 KB)
World's weakest Chess programme - on purpose! This is a programme
all those Chess beginners who just can't cope with the other
software. For a
total novice, all the other programmes on this page
are too strong. This
programme has 6 levels, the first 3 are totally
dumb, partially worse than
random - the next 3 use ply-depth, are
slow as hell (brute-force) and the
moves they make are not good,
either. A must-have for every novice!!!
There are two versions, I don't know which one is better but the second one
Clueless  (46 KB) Download
Clueless  (52 KB)
Comet B.00 (DOS, English OR
Comet is a very strong programme. At the micro-computer championship
late 1997, it scored 9th place, much better than many other programs
which some where using much better hardware (e.g. ALPHA 767's).
a very strong game, but the graphics are not quite
overwhelming and the
interface only works with keyboard commands
(the pieces are moved by mouse).
You cannot determine the ply depth.
This is not programme for beginners but
advanced players may like it.
version B.00 (1.91 MB)
Dabbaba, version November
6th 98 (DOS)
Dabbaba is a DOS programme with bad graphics, which is
outweighed by the
huge number of options and special
features it has. The interface doesn't
have mouse support,
and its playing style seems to be rather defensive.
But have a look at all those nice special features like:
If Dabbaba can check you, it looks if it can check
(or checkmate) again
afterwards, and if it can still check, it looks
one further move ahead etc.
This search method enables Dabbaba
to solve 12 (!!!) move checkmating
problems in less than a second.
Also, Dabbaba can play 10 different variants
Download Dabbaba (317 KB)
Rebel Decade is an excellent programme. Actually, Rebel Decade is
(freeware) demo of the famous (& strong) commercial programme Rebel.
course, Rebel Decade is also very strong and has many, many
although it is not as good as Rebel 9.0. Very strong and
many functions -
you HAVE to download this programme!
Go to the Rebel Decade page
Diep is an excellent chess programme for players of all classes.
graphics are beautiful and there are many options, of course
a clock and all
that stuff is included. The newest version of DIEP
plays still today in
tournaments, the version which is available here
is from 1994.
Download Diep (131
Diogenes 5.01 (DOS)
Diogenes is a DOS-programme with medium graphics and without mouse
support. The programme has medium strength, there is a clock and a
editor, but you can not determine the programme's ply depth.
It is a fun
Diogenes 5.01 (54 KB)
ExChess 2.51 (DOS)
This programme plays quite strong and has some kind of "universal" style
of play. It has a simple DOS interface with a small board which is
equipped with ugly pieces. It is operated by mouse, but if you are
running it under Windows, the mouse moves a little slower than usual.
There is nothing else to say about ExChess except it is really strong,
so watch out!
Download ExChess 2.51 (801 KB)
GNUChess was made in a group-project, where a lot of people could
contribute to it. This made it a strong programme which is available
many different platforms. The Windows version available here has
interface, good graphics and many features. And it is really
Green Light Chess 2.04
Green Light Chess is a Windows programme with some nice features,
especially the move-evalution window is well done, but the board
not look very nice. There is nothing more to be said about
it except it is a
usual windows Chess programme.
Download Green Light
Chess from its Homepage
Gromit Chess is also a very good Windows programme. Not very strong,
fun to play with, though. As most of the Windows programmes,
Gromit has a
large scale of functions and it has nice graphics.
I have heard that a new
version will be available soon which will
be much stronger.
Huuhkaja 6.8 (DOS, w/ English and Finnish
Huuhkaja was written in the beginner's programming language QBasic, which is
very strong (fast) when performing mathematical operations and generates
graphics. Despite this fact, the coder has managed to write a
(screen resolution only 320 * 200) which plays fairly
strong. There are not many
options and there is no mouse support.
newest version of Huuhkaja is freeware and plays a little stronger than the
Download Huuhkaja (264
Inmichess 2.17b (DOS)
Inmichess is a DOS programme with average graphics and a bad interface. To
tell the truth, it is operated by keyboard only. But under the bad
interface, a strong
chess engine is hiding. One (and probably the only)
reason to download Inmichess
is its strength and its playing style. Many
features are missing, e.g. you can only
define the program's strength by
specifying a number of seconds per move.
Download Inmichess 2.17b
Jester is a JAVA program, this means you can use it with different operating
You will need an internet browser which supports JAVA to use it
(most internet browsers do).
Jester is quite a strong program and has a
number of interesting features. It also plays some
chess variants you sure
haven't seen yet. To start Jester, the only thing you will have to do
opening the HTML file Jester_Eng.html with your internet browser.
KC Chess (DOS)
KC Chess was written in 1990, but this does not mean it is bad,
course. The graphics are typical for TURBOPascal (boring), but
style is quite funny - you can switch "positional
analysis" off, so the
programme will not know anything about that
and hence play very badly. Be
prepared - even if you switch "pos.
analysis" on and switch to ply 3
the programme will still play lousily!
Download KC Chess
K-Chess (-Elite) (DOS, Win 16, Win
This is a good, though a little complicated programme. Developed by
Australian programmer, this high-quality Windows programme has
you may want. One which beginners might miss in other
programmes is that all
possible moves and direct threats are shown
graphically. There is also a
nice Chess guide included in the help
file (how to play & some strategy
tips). Tip: You can normalize the
board (there's an ugly pattern on it) by
[Play.. Options.. Board..].
The programme can also speak, it announces the
moves, check, etc.
Go to K-Chess's Homepage
Mafis Chess 2000
(Win 32, Deutsch)
Mafis ist ein Shareware-Programm mit einer Reihe von Beschränkungen: Zuerst
muß man beim Programmstart einige Zeit warten ('Nag-Screen'), und
dann ist auch nur
ein Schwierigkeitsstufe vorhanden. Das Programm macht
insgesamt keinen sehr pro-
fessionellen Eindruck (so gäbe es z.B. auch in
der Vollversion nur 5 Schwierigkeitstufen
und nur eine recht geringe Anzahl
an Optionen),die Registrierungsgebühr beträgt jedoch
auch nur 25,- DM.
Mafis Chess 2000 (1.32 MB)
Hmm... I don't know if you can call this a chess program. It is very, very
weak BUT ...
it can move the pieces! Well, it's from 1987 and it's written
in GW-BASIC, the source
code is included - probably my only reason for
uploading the programme, the source
code is pretty short and shows you the
basics of chess programming (making an interface,
generate possible moves
Download Micro Chess (54 KB)
Successor of WinChess and Ziggurat - the author just changed the
programme a little and sold it to Microsoft to be part of a game
for Windows. Well ... it plays a weak game of Chess
(nice for beginners),
maybe (well, I don't know) it only uses
a plain brute force Chess engine.
Press the "force move" button
just after you've moved - the moves it makes
Summarization: Interesting, but if you got this one, do not
WinChess and Ziggurat.
Chess (166 KB)
Minimax is actually part of a programming package (book?) for people
want to become chess programmers. It is just meant to show you the
chess programming. Well, somebody ported it to Windows, and if
interested, you can try it out.
Nero 5 (DOS)
Version 5 of Nero comes with an improved interface and increased
strength. Though, Nero is still one of the weakest freeware programmes.
You can have a lot of fun with Nero though, and its playing style is quite
Download Nero 5 (45 KB)
Nova Chess (DOS,
English OR Deutsch)
Nova Chess is quite a strong freeware programme, though it is not
expert. It runs in DOS but it has mouse support and a windows-like
with some but not many function. There is no clock, you can
only select a
ply-depth or a time-limit for the computer's moves.
It prefers rather
Download Nova (64 KB)
NOW was made in 1991, probably one of the strongest shareware-
programmes of its time. It even scored well in recent computer-chess
tournaments, in AEGON '97 it scored equal with COMET and DIEP.
unbelievable fast and plays unusual openings. You move the
pieces by mouse
or keyboard, all commands have to be given in by
keyboard. It also runs in
lower graphics modes, so it is (also because
of its speed) a good programme
for slower computers and laptops.
Download NOW (97
OwlChess (Windows 3.11)
Actually, OwlChess is based on the same programming-demo as Bowili
Schach, but I have put this one here because it is English. OwlChess
a lot of options, has a clock, determination of ply-depth... but
one of its
features is unique; you can limit the time per move to 0.01
seconds - this
makes the programme play very weakly!
OwlChess (209 KB)
This programme also seems to be quite old. The graphics are not very
good and there are almost no options at all. You
have to give in your
moves by hand. The programme takes about 5-10
seconds for each move. This
depends. It plays a good game, perhaps
it looks about 3 to 5 moves ahead. I
guess Philidor would turn around
in his grave if he knew what kind of a
programme wears his name!
Philidor (85 KB)
PowerChess V.6 (DOS)
Yes there is a commercial product called Power Chess - but this one
from 1989/90. It is a very good programme for the time it was made.
Everything is arranged like in a Windows programme, the graphics are
okay and the programme plays well. The only bad thing is that the
programme does not have a clock, you can only limit it to a time per
move. This may not be smaller than 10 seconds ...
PowerChess v.6 (142 KB)
Rabbit 1.4 (Windows
Rabbit is a programme for Windows 95 which runs in a DOS window! The
graphics are quite ugly and there are not many features. Even though,
the programme plays quite strong, please inform me if I have overrated
its strength but I think it is stronger than 2000 elo. In the newest version
the programme, various chess clock settings are available. Some more help
screens have also been added. Another thing I'd like to mention is that the
programme has a very big opening library.
1.4 (1.00 MB)
Rebel 10 Trial Version
There is a trial version of the commercial programme Rebel 10 available for
You can use it for 30 days. It's basically the same as Rebel
Decade (which was full freeware)
but it has more features and it plays much
Download it from the Rebel
Rival 1.5f (DOS)
Exceptionally cool graphics! This is a, though not very strong,
play programme - it also plays other styles of chess. It
works only with
mouse, has the usual options - clock, playing level ...
and of course really
cool graphics - you can even select different
Rival Chess for Windows version 1.8.12
Rival for Win has even better graphics than Rival for DOS and it is
Windows95 application. It is also much stronger than Rival for DOS.
it is really fun - it does not only have time controls but
difficulty levels. A ply-depth can not be specified.
There are many options
about the graphics and piece-sets - although
this programme's graphics are
not as good as those of a commercial
like Chessmaster, they are the best you
can get in shareware!
The newest version has its own installation programme
so you don't
have to install the WinG.DLL file manually anymore (this caused
Download Rival for Win (754 KB)
Rookie is a good shareware programme. The only functions which are
disabled are saving & loading games and the shareware version plays
a little weaker than the full version. There are four different piece sets
available, although none of them is particularly nice. There is a clock,
the option to determine ply depth and much more. Though, Rookie was
awarded one star by me because the interface is a little confusing
advanced features are missing (hash tables, for example).
Sachy (Dos & Windows,
Sachy is a weak though interesting chess program. While the Dos version
has very little options and a bad user interface and not too many features,
the Windows version comes with a nice interface and rather many features.
A special one that I'd like to mention is that you can change
program's internal algorhythm variables to a certain extent, not only the
piece's values but also positional variables etc. Unfortunately, the program
has no chess clock; it is only possible to specify a fixed time per move.
Otherwise, I really recommend downloading this program, also because of
its rather human-like style of play.
Download Sachy for
Dos (78 KB) Download Sachy for Windows (343 KB) Sachy homepage
Siberian Chess (Dos)
A Chess programme from Siberia, Russia. I do not think that this is
surprising, I rather think it is surprising there is only one
Chess programme from Russia, as it is the country of Chess.
is quite strong I think, its playing style reminds me
of YChess for some
reason, though it is not comparable. At the first
glance, the graphics look
a little cheap but I think they only had
16 colours available. Siberian
Chess's menue system looks like that
of a windows programme and it has a lot
of features. It is a really
interesting programme which should be in every
collection, so download it!
Siberian Chess (93 KB)
Springer is an old chess program (1989). There is no mouse support, and
Springer also lacks a real menu system. It has a handful of features,
including the possibility to load and to save games and to print the current
position on the board (you'll need a printer, of course). When I tried to
position, it did not work, however (the page was full of random
What I like about Springer is not only that it is a rather weak
player and is,
with its 9 different difficulty levels, a fun opponent for
beginners, but also
that it plays quite human-like (well, like a typical
beginner) so it is also fine for
stronger players who want to try out new
openings, strategies etc.
Springer (24 KB)
Techno Chess (Windows
Techno Chess is a shareware programme which has the annoying limitation that
make only 30 moves once you've started the program. Otherwise the
quite well and there are also a handfull of options (the
savegame and print position
functions are also disabled in the shareware
Download Techno Chess (927 KB)
Waxman is a usual Windows Chess programme. The board is about as big
a stamp (well... a little bigger) and can not be enlarged in any
the graphics are okay. No ply-depth can be defined, only a
game/number of moves. You can also select "easy", which will
programme blunder from time to time. Try out playing 1
minute games with
Waxman - it is fun.
WinChess 2.53f (by Phe Meas)
A good windows programme with fine graphics. This is the only
Chess programme I know that really has restrictions, which
are: Saving games
not available, no "defensive mode". It has to be
said that the programme's
time restrictions do not work properly. And
the option "match time to user's
time" does not work properly at all.
I also cannot understand why the
programme calculates up to a depth of
5 half-moves when I select the
difficulty level "novice".
WinChess (by David Norris)
WinChess is an old Windows Chess programme David Norris managed to
(not really sell) under 2 other names. This one has the advantage
can specify a ply-depth. If you want to know more about it,
please have a
look at the description of "Microsoft Chess".
WinChess (151 KB)
A DOS programme with a good interface and fine graphics. It seems to
quite strong, though I would not call it an expert. It has a chess
ply-limited search-depth, hash tables - I'd say it is about as
good as Diep.
Playing with it, especially in timed games, is really
fun because the
programme is no aggressive attacker (but in the end
it always wins - do not
ask me why).
Download YChess (87 KB)
This programme is very similar to Winchess and Microsoft Chess.
special thing about this version is that it can speak.
Well it announces the
moves .. boring .. don't download :)
Ziggurat (293 KB)
Zzzzzz 5 (Windows 95)
Zzzzzz is a usual Windows chess programme. The board is quite nice
you always have a good view at the programme's current calculations
other chess programmes, the calculations are shown for a second, as
a new calculation is made, they disappear) because they are
stored in a list
which can even be viewed after the game. The programme
plays quite well and
there are various options to adjust its strength (ply
depth, chess clock,
time per move).
Download Zzzzzz 5.0 (439 KB)
All programmes on this page have been checked for viruses. I can't
guarantee anything, if you find a virus in any of the files tell me
even better, clean the file yourself and send it to me.
If any programme or
a link doesn't work tell me too. And yes... if
you have (a newer version of)
a programme which is not on this page,
tell me. I want to keep this page
up-to-date. Also tell me if I was
wrong with my rating of a programme's
strength ... I'm no expert ...
Just e-mail me.
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