Komodo 8: bringing creativity back to chess

by ChessBase
9/10/2014 – It is a different kind of chess engine. It makes extensive use of extensions, which leads to sounder positional play and the discovery of ideas that are much deeper and more subtle than other leading engines. In the process Komodo remains tactically sound and has achieved the top ranking in the computer rating lists. The latest version has now been released by ChessBase.

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Komodo Chess 8 now released

Brings creativity back to chess


Komodo is a chess program that is different from the rest. Its search makes greater use of extensions than any other top engine, which results in a slightly lower average depth, but helps the actual playing strength significantly. It also allows Komodo to see deeper than any other engine, even if it is displaying a lower search depth.

The evaluation of Komodo differs from its main rivals because, unlike the automated tuning generally employed, Komodo's evaluation represents a blend of both automated tuning and the judgment of a grandmaster and computer expert (Larry Kaufman). The programming team have avoided terms and weights that don't make sense to him, even if they happen to test a bit positively. Automated evaluations are subject to rather large sample error, and applying some chess judgment appears to be beneficial, both in results and in the reasonableness of reported evaluations.

Komodo is primarily known for superb positional play. Of course it also one of the top few engines in tactical strength as well, but the programmers have not been willing to sacrifice positional play just to score better on tactical problem sets. It is generally recognized that all good engines are far stronger tactically than any human player, but that when positional judgment is involved, top grandmasters are still superior in many positions to any engine. Therefore it makes sense to emphasize positional play rather than tactical skill: it is better to improve one's weakest point rather than just to further improve the strongest feature.

Komodo is especially useful for opening analysis, because as an opening specialist Larry Kaufman has always paid close attention to checking whether the program's evaluations in the opening agree in general with accepted theory. Another point in which Komodo excels is the play and evaluation of positions with material imbalance, which it handles more correctly than other top engines. The endgame of Komodo has been improved by the use of Syzygy Tablebases, which are considered the best for actual play and game analysis as they provide only the most essential information to save time and memory.

Another unique feature in Komodo is its superior handling of multiple processors, using a method that is quite different than the usual one. This is most noticeable when using eight or more cores. There is little doubt that Komodo 8 is and will remain the top rated commercial chess engine on most rating lists.

Komodo Chess 8 includes:

  • The Komodo 8 engine, which can support up to 64 processor cores and 16 GB of hash memory
  • The new Deep Fritz 64-bit program interface (+ 32 bit program interface)
  • Online access to the world’s largest analysis database “Let’s Check”, with over 200 million extensively analyzed positions (free access to “Let’s Check” until December 31, 2016)
  • Access to ChessBase engine cloud
  • Premium membership to Playchess.com for six months
  • Database with over 1.5 million games

System requirements

Minimum: Pentium III 1 GHz, 2 GB RAM, Windows Vista, XP (Service Pack 3), 7/8, DirectX9, 256 MB graphics card, DVD-ROM drive, Windows Media Player 9 and Internet access for program activation, access to Playchess.com, Let’s Check and program updates.

Recommended: PC Intel i7 (Quadcore), 4 GB RAM, Windows 8.1, DirectX10, 512 MB graphics card, 100% DirectX10-compatible sound card, Windows Media Player 11, DVD-ROM drive and Internet access for program activation, access to Playchess.com, Let's Check and program updates.

Price: €79.90 (€67.14 without VAT for customers outside the EU; $86.62 without VAT). Languages: English, German. ISBN: 978-3-86681-442-4; EAN: 9783866814424. Delivery: Download, Post

Order Komodo Chess 8 in the ChessBase shop now!

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