A Correspondence Engine

Sherwood, Russell  Wednesday, December 13, 2017

I get asked with tiresome regularity “Which engine is best for CC?” My general answer to this is “none of them” as all the main engines are written and tested with fairly short time controls in mind. As I have written in the past some are better than others and most can be bent into playing better for CC.

 

These are a number of engines with modifications to aid CC players – CorChess and ThinksFish come to mind but these only tend to look at modifying the search rather than the many other areas which could be improved for CC players.

 

Recently I was working on my publication on Engine Analysis techniques (over 30 now!) and what struck me is that most of these methods have to be used to overcome the “Blitz” nature of Chess Engine Settings. So the next thought that popped into my head was “Why not write one for CC”? I mulled this one over for a while and considered the pro and cons.

 

Most things fell into place but one issue remains – which is testing. If I want an engine for CC, then it needs to be tested in CC Conditions as the engine will almost certainly be weaker in Blitz Conditions (as want a CC engine to find a better move in a slower way, rather than a good move quickly). This makes testing rather difficult unless a few people are involved.

 

My first objective is to create an ASMFish/ CorChess Hybrid prior to the development of a CC specialist engine.

 

Any player interested in getting involved (not just Welsh players for once!) please get in touch. You don’t need to be a programmer, Ideas and testing are just as important!

 

Updated Wednesday, December 13, 2017 by Russell Sherwood

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