The Chessmaster

a game by Hi-Tech, Mindscape, and The Software Toolworks


Genre: Strategy/War

See also:Chess Games, Chessmaster Games

Check mate!

Brace yourselves. The Chessmaster, the most challenging chess program ever created, is on its way to the Super Nintendo Entertainment System! The Chessmaster is the perfect title for the chess enthusiast. The Chessmaster is the perfect teacher and the most relentless opponent with over 150,000 classic openings, 16 levels of play (ranging from Newcomer to Grandmaster) and a special option that gives you hints in a tight situation. The Chessmaster will even let you watch while the computer computes each well-planned move! If you know nothing about chess, this is the way to learn. The Chessmaster will also play itself so you can get a feel for how a standard chess match progresses and matures. You can watch the action in either a 3D or 2D perspective, turn the board 90 degrees in any direction, and view the War Room, an area that displays the captured pieces and a thinking window! Hurry, The Chessmaster is waiting for your next move...

Two perspectives!

Only The Chessmaster has two different perspectives to choose from. Use 3D for the first person view, or choose the 2D perspective for the classical overhead view.

Use the war room!

The War Room will help you keep track of the moves you've made and let you see what your opponent is thinking. Here, the choices become simpler as you achieve a higher ranking.

Awesome graphics!

The Chessmaster takes advantage of the Super Nintendo's incredible 16-bit graphics to the fullest! Choose from numerous richly designed pieces. Rotate the board to fit your personal needs. View the game from two perspectives. The Chessmaster is full of rich, lively colors bursting from the screen! You can pick from either classical pieces or fantasy characters drawn vividly and clearly.


One of the most powerful strategies ever to cross the board is Blitzkrieg. Blitzkrieg is German for "short war" and it couldn't be more aptly named. No other strategy forces checkmate in four (that's right, count 'em) moves! Of course, seasoned players know how to avoid this subtle trap, but sometimes you can catch your opponent off guard. This strategy works best as the white player. Here's the basic moves in a nutshell:

  • First, open with the pawn above your King. Move it out two spaces. This creates an opening for the Queen and White Bishop. Your opponent will ideally move his pawn up two spaces to block your pawn.
  • Second, take your Bishop and move it diagonally 3 spaces. This will concentrate your Bishop on the weak King's pawn, just above the Black Bishop. This pawn is the key to your victory.
  • Third, move your queen diagonally either 2 or 4 spaces. The first choice sets the Queen just below the weak pawn. The second choice puts the Queen on a diagonal path to the pawn. The only way your opponent can protect the pawn is to block the Queen and Bishop.
  • Finally, use your Queen to take the pawn! Your Bishop protects you from being taken by the Black King. Since the Black King was the only piece protecting the weak pawn, the King is trapped with no avenue for no avenue for escape or rescue! Checkmate! The basic idea behind Blitzkrieg is to exploit your opponent's weaknesses whenever possible. Try other variations of this strategy at any point.

Multiple chess pieces to choose from!

Take control with the wonderful options menu! Choose either the fantasy piece set or the classic Staunton chess set. Pick your board perspective (2D, 3D, or the War Room), and decide which level of difficulty is ideal for you. You may even get advice from the Chessmaster when you get stuck!

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The Chessmaster Downloads

SNES The Chessmaster download

Wargames can take you onto the battlefield or into the back rooms where'Strategy and tactics reign.' Bullets fill the air like hail in a windstorm, and explosions rock the earth around you. War is full of personal heroism and tragedy.

On the other hand, one of the oldest and most challenging war games in history is chess. It's the ultimate test of strategy, and it comes from an era when political intrigues were as complex and tangled as a thousand snakes locked in a closet.

Hi-Tech Expressions puts a chessboard in your NES with The Chessmaster. Based on a powerful computer chess program called Chessmaster 2100, this game has it all. Play against a computer opponent at any level from absolute beginner to grand master. Set up chess problems, watch the computer "think," and ask for hints. Whatever your level of play, The Chessmaster delivers.

Chess For All Comers

Even if you've never played chess before, the Chessmaster helps you learn the basic moves in Teach mode. It won't let you do anything illegal, and it even lets you take back as many moves as you want. At the lowest level of play, even an inexperienced player can win. At higher levels, however, The Chessmaster proves who's boss.

ProTip: Anyone who isn't a master chess player can use this game as a learning tool. Take back or replace moves, and try different strategies. Start from the same point in the game, but do something different each time. Also, change sides at any time to see what The Chessmaster would do in your position. There are lots ol ways to use this program to learn or improve your game.

All The Right Moves

Promote pawns, castle, or capture En Passant-The Chessmaster has all the moves. Play a straight game or use the many options to enhance your experience. For instance, The Chessmaster will act as a referee in two-player games. Or switch sides' with the computer player at any time. At the higher levels of the game. The Chessmaster may take its time to make its move. Buy force it to move any time, if you get impatient.

Turn on the Deep Thinking mode to allow the computer to consider its moves while you think about yours. This gives the computer an advantage, but it may also speed up the game.

Chess students will be interested to know that The Chessmaster comes with a library of about 75,000 opening moves. Turn off the opening moves if you want to handicap the game. Or, if you want, explore specific chess problems, famous maneuvers, or end game strategies. Any time during a match, ask The Chessmaster if there's a forced mate within a certain number of moves. If The Chessmaster finds a solution, it implements it and you'll have the opportunity to retract each move one at a time to examine the strategy.

If you want the ultimate control over the Chessmaster, place him at the Infinite level of play. He will only move when you select Force Chessmaster to Move From the options.

View the chess board from different angles. Put White on the top or bottom at any time, even in the middle of a game. Turn board coordinates on if you need help locating a position, or off if you don't need them.

A Thinking Game

Switch to the War Room view where you see the last three moves in traditional chess notation (D2-D4). You'll also see the game "thinking" about its next move and the sequence it currently considers best. It's like reading your opponent's mind. The Chessmaster even lets you know what it thinks is your best move under a heading called "Hint."

Here's a game that teaches you a game. It's a new look for the original all-time classic. Make your move: try The Chessmaster.

reggie posted a review
  • Machine: Game Boy

Playing chess on the go has always been frustrating. Because travel-size chess sets have such a tiny board and pieces, it's often difficult to move one piece without upsetting others. Sooner or later, you always seem to lose one of the chessmen in a travel set. And unless your set is one of those computerized models, you need a chess partner.

Now there's a solution - if you own a Game Boy. With The Chessmaster, gone are the days of replacing a lost piece with a coin, or trying to remember the locations of pieces you accidentally knocked over. Best of all, you'll never again have to worry about finding a partner. The Chessmaster is always ready to play, and unless your chess skills are way above average, you can expect to have your hands full.

But if you're a beginner, don't get the idea that The Chessmaster is not for you. There are plenty of options that let you adjust the game to your playing level, and it's these options that make The Chessmaster such an enjoyable way to play chess - and improve your game.

For novices, there are two Newcomer levels. Even if you've just learned chess, you should be able to win at these levels. The other 14 levels are based on the number of moves The Chessmaster has to make in a certain amount of time. For example, the first level after Newcomer 2 is 60/5, which means The Chessmaster must think fast enough to make 60 moves in 5 minutes. The more time The Chessmaster has to think, the better its moves.

There are other ways to fine-tune the game, too. One option prevents The Chessmaster from thinking about its next move during your turn. Another lets you turn off The Chessmaster's opening book - a library of 75,000 opening moves.

More options let you save games to continue later, take back and replay any number of moves, and ask The Chessmaster to show you the quickest path to checkmate. If you play against a friend, you can flip the screen so each player sees the board from the correct point of view.

No matter how long you've been playing chess, The Chessmaster is a must-have. It's a winner in every respect.

reggie posted a review

The grandmaster...

Hey! Are you a Grandmaster at the game of chess? If you think so, challenge the The Chessmaster on the Super NES! If you really have what it takes, you should be able to beat the Grandmaster Level. Maybe. Even if you aren't a Grandmaster, The Chessmaster has 16 different levels of play, starting with the Newcomer level. The Chessmaster is a patient teacher and a ruthless enemy. Learn the game of chess through special tutorial sessions and by watching the computer think out its next strategy. Chess has long been an intimidating game for nice players, but no more! Even the worst player can learn the intense strategies and complex maneuvers at your disposal. The Chessmaster is available now, and should be a definite addition to any gamer's library of Super NES titles! Chess is a thinker's game to top all others, and only The Chessmaster can challenge the best of all Grandmasters.

reggie posted a review

If you want to challenge your mind rather than your reflexes, The Chessmaster from Software Toolworks. Game play takes place on a highly detailed three dimensional chess board. Hours of timeless strategy.

reggie posted a review

When you've been zapping video-warriors and techno-weenies out of the sky for weeks at a time, you tend to forget about those board games. Take, for instance, chess. The Chess-master, a ported-from-computer Super Nintendo game by Mindscape, is a battle of the brains for one or two players.

Board Wars

It would take gobs of space to detail the rules of chess, but here are the basics: each player commands a line-up of different characters, each with individual movement and offensive capabilities. By coordinating pieces such as Pawns, Knights, Rooks, and Bishops, your objective is to capture the opponent's head honcho, the King. Everything's by the book in Chessmaster, and you can select a regular 2-D view or the 3-D perspective. The music's pretty innocuous, so switch it off and just concentrate!

You can select the computer's skill level, decide how much time it's allowed to consider each move, force The Chessmaster to move, replace captured pieces anytime, add pieces, ask for advice, plot all "Check Mate" possibilities several moves in advance, alter the chess set's design, have The Chessmaster play against itself, or even switch sides in the middle of a game! Of course, you can always challenge a human player for head-to-head chess strategy. One particularly useful option for beginners is the Teaching Mode, which displays all legal moves for any piece.

ProTip: When you're first learning the game, use the "Take Back" feature as often as necessary. Just press Select and then L or R on the top of the controller.

reggie posted a review

Welcome to the Chessmaster... the most powerful micro computer chess game ever. The perfect chess program for the beginner or Grand Master. Use the teaching mode, play against a friend or analyze your game. The game has 71,000 opening moves, the finest chess algorithm in the world, 3D graphics, and ability to take back and replay moves or switch sides in mid-game. Chess never looked this good!

reggie posted a review
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