Fritz 19: Pick your sparring partner!

by Stefan Liebig
11/14/2023 – Fritz 19 comes with six sparring partners, each representing a completely different type of player. There is the aggressive attacker (Bull), the swindler (Fox) or the endgame crack (Turtle) and a few more. And those who train well will be rewarded. Stefen Liebig took a look at the brand new Fritz.

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Pick your sparring partner!

Bobby Fischer is considered a pragmatist, Wilhelm Steinitz a theoretician, Mikhail Tal a hyperactive player - much has been written about different types of players in recent years. (e.g. There is also a lot of talk about how to optimise your approach to these special playing styles. That sounds convincing in theory, but turns out to be not so easy in practice. "So how about we teach our Fritz to slip into the different roles?" This (or at least something similar) is what the makers of Fritz 19 must have thought some time ago. The result is the latest version of Fritz, which plays aggressively, positionally or cautiously - as the user wishes. In Fritz 19, the six different characters are called "Allrounder", "Attacker", "Swindler", "Positional Player", "Fearful" and "Endgame Crack". Funny animal icons are waiting to be challenged by beginners, recreational players, club players, strong club players, master candidates or grandmasters.

The opponent you want is always ready

Let's take a closer look at the player roles Fritz takes on:

Allrounder (Dog):

If you are familiar with Fritz 18, the predecessor of Fritz 19, which was released two years ago, you will be familiar with the Allrounder - well, almost. Of course, the Allrounder has been further developed to play more natural moves and, like the other player types, it now uses neural networks.

Aggressive (Bull):

The main new feature in Fritz 18 was the ability to create your own immortal attacking games - with technical support. When playing against the attacker in Fritz 19, it is advisable to switch to defence. Hardly anyone likes to do this, but if it's necessary in 'real life', it's good to have practised.

Be careful with the bull ...

Swindler (Fox):

This cunning opponent plays crazy gambits and makes sacrifices come hell or high water. He doesn't care if he has more or less material. He just wants to outwit his opponents - the meaner the better...

Positional player (Owl):

He, on the other hand, has no understanding of the fox. He just wants to play a neat game, with all the pieces in place and in perfect harmony. He will agree to a draw, but only after a game of the highest quality.

Fearful (Mouse):

The mouse is most comfortable where it is at first. He prefers to be left alone. But that's the challenge: it's better to have a scary ending than scares that never end.

Endgame crack (Turtle):

Slooowww is the motto for the tortoise. If you let it get into the endgame, you'll be facing a true master: a challenging training opponent against whom you better have a material advantage.

Once you have selected these two categories and chosen your colour, you are ready to get started. In addition to the tried and tested analysis and help functions, Fritz fans will immediately notice two new menu items: "Trophies and Trading Cards. There are 136 trophies to be won in Fritz 19. They are awarded for particularly impressive moves or manoeuvres. After successfully mastering each theme one to ten times, you will receive the bronze, then the silver and finally the gold trophy. Your own ChessBase account will give you a quick overview of the level of knowledge you have acquired or repeated.

It gets even better for all collectors of trading cards: the trophies are accompanied by digital trading cards, which can be collected in the ChessBase account and also exchanged with other members. Motifs include historical players, chess stamps, logos, flags and much more. There is one trading card for every ten trophies. Cards can also be exchanged for ducats at a market (coming soon). There are also leaderboards to compare yourself with other users.


The creators of Fritz are relying on the principle of reward, which is known to be motivating. And yes, when after almost every not-so-absurd move a praise in the form of a small collectible picture flashes up, telling you how far (or not) it is to the next collectible card, this definitely appeals to the addiction centre.

However, if you prefer to concentrate on concrete variations, you can have your opening repertoire tested and refined by the different player types in Fritz 19 (also in combination with ChessBase). Existing databases can be loaded and integrated. The openings can be specifically perfected using the drill function.

Fritz 19, the 2023 ICGA Computer Software World Champion, constantly determines and updates the user's current playing strength. A feature that should also activate the 'chess player search centre', which is usually always ready to compare numbers. But while these aspects are rather peripheral, it is probably far more interesting how precisely the curiosity is addressed: How do different types of players, each at different levels, react to their own style of play and, in particular, to their hard-won individual opening repertoire? Although it can sometimes be surprising to play in small combinations and then find that pieces are simply not captured by your digital opponent, Fritz 19 has taken up a highly topical subject with the player types and implemented it in a way that is not only imaginative but also much more user-friendly than in the previous version.

Finally, we would like to point out some technical innovations in Fritz 19:

The notation folding is even more user-friendly and clearer. In addition, the animations of the chess moves added in the previous version have been supplemented by the laying down of the king after it was mated, and there is a new 3D board in an elegant room on which you can play.

Buy Fritz 19 in the shop...

Data about Fritz 19:

ISBN: 978-3-86681-911-5
System: Windows 7 or newer
RRP: UVP 89,90 Euro

On Discount Day today you can get this new program for a special price:

Order Fritz 19 now for €67.43

(Inluding 6 months premium account for mobile training with the 10 ChessBase-WebApps).

Stefan Liebig, born in 1974, is a journalist and co-owner of a marketing agency. He now lives in Barterode near Göttingen. At the age of five, strange pieces on his neighbor's shelf aroused his curiosity. Since then, the game of chess has cast a spell over him. Flying high in the NRW youth league with his home club SV Bad Laasphe and several appearances in the second division team of Tempo Göttingen were highlights for the former youth South Westphalia champion.