Weak Mode Playing Styles

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mhull
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Weak Mode Playing Styles

Post by mhull » Wed Feb 06, 2013 10:05 am

I remember the days when the Novag Super Expert was among the top chess programs for humans to play. The Novag was known for its good playing style. Subsequent Kittinger programs, while stronger, were not considered to have a good playing style. So for players in that range of strength and below, those old Novags are much sought after.

Question: Are there modern chess programs that can play down (weaker) to the level of the Super Expert, but also with a "good" or otherwise desirable playing style?
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styx
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Re: Weak Mode Playing Styles

Post by styx » Wed Feb 06, 2013 1:47 pm

There are several Engines with weak levels.

Almost all modern commercial UCI Engines have an option to decrease their playing strength. Like Rybka, HIARCS, Houdini, Junior, Shredder etc.

And even free Engines got this feature nowadays (Ufim, Stockfish, Arasan, CuckooChess, Rybka 2.2.3, ...)

What "weak" playing style you prefer depends on you. I like Shredders Elo weakening.

A little note at the end: for really weak players, Rybka and HIARCS may be still too strong on the lowest level. For those players, Ufim and Arasan might be the right choice.

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mhull
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Re: Weak Mode Playing Styles

Post by mhull » Wed Feb 06, 2013 3:46 pm

styx wrote:A little note at the end: for really weak players, Rybka and HIARCS may be still too strong on the lowest level. For those players, Ufim and Arasan might be the right choice.
Looking for Elo of around 2039 with human-like or speculative playing style, like the Novag Super Forte C or Super Expert C.
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styx
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Re: Weak Mode Playing Styles

Post by styx » Wed Feb 06, 2013 5:11 pm

Have you tried Stockfish? I don't know its playing style compared to the Novag, but you can tweak several parameters:

Image

Try Skill level 10-15.

muxecoid
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Re: Weak Mode Playing Styles

Post by muxecoid » Wed Feb 06, 2013 8:31 pm

I like how Shredder plays around 1900. Stockfish is much more "artificial" at this level.

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mhull
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Re: Weak Mode Playing Styles

Post by mhull » Wed Feb 06, 2013 11:54 pm

muxecoid wrote:I like how Shredder plays around 1900. Stockfish is much more "artificial" at this level.
Thank you! That is the kind of answer I'm looking for. I'd be glad for opinions on other software, perhaps free ones that can also run on Linux? For instance, can Crafty play down to this level without too much "artificiality" in style? Gaviota?
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Adam Hair
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Re: Weak Mode Playing Styles

Post by Adam Hair » Thu Feb 07, 2013 1:08 am

Crafty can play down to this level (try around skill 35 to skill 40), but unfortunately I am a poor judge of how artificial Crafty plays at lower levels.

As far as I know (and I may be wrong), there is no way of changing Gaviota's strength unless you use time odds.

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Re: Weak Mode Playing Styles

Post by ThomasJMiller » Thu Feb 07, 2013 11:05 am

muxecoid wrote:I like how Shredder plays around 1900. Stockfish is much more "artificial" at this level.
i agree. I think Shredder has the best Elo weakening (though I've not tried all the engines with this feature)

Edmund
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Re: Weak Mode Playing Styles

Post by Edmund » Thu Feb 07, 2013 1:06 pm

You might want to give Glass Chess Engine a try. Pawel Koziol spent quite some time to create a set of different weakened personalities. It has some special algorithms to simulate tactical blindness in certain fields.

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Re: Weak Mode Playing Styles

Post by carldaman » Sat Feb 09, 2013 4:21 am

mhull wrote:I remember the days when the Novag Super Expert was among the top chess programs for humans to play. The Novag was known for its good playing style. Subsequent Kittinger programs, while stronger, were not considered to have a good playing style. So for players in that range of strength and below, those old Novags are much sought after.

Question: Are there modern chess programs that can play down (weaker) to the level of the Super Expert, but also with a "good" or otherwise desirable playing style?
I haven't tried it with Houdini 3 yet, but Houdini 2 has a very credible 2100-2300 rated (or somewhat lower) reduced strength level. It would likely satisfy your two criteria.

Regards,
CL

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