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Saturday, November 12, 2011

Ivanhoe Chess Engine

As I have pointed out in the past I don’t know a lot about chess engines (OK, I know what you're thinking...or chess itself for that matter), but I’ve heard some interesting things about the Ivanhoe B47e x64 engine.  However,  I haven't been able to discover much about it so any insight from readers would be appreciated! The engine does not seem to appear on most engine rating lists. I have been testing it out at Lechenicher SchachServer and in a quick blitz match (4 minutes per game) I ran this morning,  it beat Houdini 1.5x64 by +3 -0 =1, not that that tells you much.

Back in June, 2010 a poster conducted his own private tournament with the following results which he posted on Open Chess:
1 IvanHoe
2 Deep Rybka 4 x64
3 Houdini 1.01 x64
4 Fire 1.31 x64
5 Stockfish 1.7.1 JA 64bit
6 Naum 4.2
7 Deep Fritz 12
8 Deep Shredder 12 x64
9 Critter 0.70 64-bit
10 Protector 1.3.5 x64

In August, 2011 one match result I saw resulted in a decisive win for Houdini 1.5ax64 over Ivanhoe B47e x64 by +40 -14 =46 and on 9-12-11 chess2u listed a match where Houdini Pro (the latest, NOT free version) defeated Ivanhoe +19 -12 =19.

This rating list appearing on the Sedatchess website:
1 Houdini 2.0b Pro x64
2 Houdini 2.0 Pro x64
3 Houdini 2.0b Pro x64
4 Houdini 1.5a x64 %
5 Deep Rybka 4.1 x64
6 Critter 1.2 x64
7 IvanHoe 47c GH x64
8 Fire 2.2 xTreme x64
9 IvanHoe 0B.09.18 x64
10 IvanHoe B47d x64

The results seem to be a mixed bag and I can’t say which engine is truly best, but one thing I have noticed is that the suggested moves and evaluations are often significantly different. When this happens you have to really investigate to discover what the best move is. For all practical purposes, we average players are going to be left with no choice but to pick a move and see what happens...I have done that a few times when playing without engines.


  1. Ivanhoe should play similar to Fire, Deep Saros, Robbolito and the like. Nice part of it is it is being acticly tweaked and remaining free. My favoreite version oddly enough is an older one Ivanhoe-BetaWH_79-32. It found a couple of deep checkmates that some of the other version did not.

    Houdini may be on top but others like these are gunning for it. Looks like a version of Stockfish may beat it. I thought the recent version of Strelka would top it but not yet.

    As a fellow book fan I just ordered an old book by Edmar Mednis called "How to Beat A superior Opponent". I have two others of his books and enjoy them. If I had to pick he might be my favorite chess author. Some of his books are better than others but books by Soltis can be very enjoyable to read. One of his older books called "Karl Marx plays Chess" was fun to read.

  2. Oops typo alerts
    > actively
    > favorite

    Sorry about the "fat fingers" :(

  3. P.S.

    Ivanhoe is ranked almost the same as Fire on this list


  4. Another rating list


  5. P.S. 2 Mr. Tarajubow please do not be too hard on yourself like your first line. You are oen of the few who still enjoy the history of the game and the past masters. Engines are engines. Enjoying the art of the game is just as important and your playing chess is a lot stronger than myself.

    I have changed the way I study games because of a couple of your articles. I pay more attention to pattern recognition now than concentrating on just tactics.