Friday, February 25, 2011

Play Like Botvinnik Is Free

ChessOk has released "Play Like Botvinnik" (using the new Peshka interface) for free (for about a month now and I finally managed to get around to playing it).

So head on to their website and download it! :)

Play Like Botvinnik Download

For those of you who are unaccustomed the new Peshka interface, it is definitely very much improved from the old Convekta (users of the old CT-ART versions will know what I mean).

This is a 38 MB download but you'll get so much more in return.

Once you've installed and run it, you'll be greeted by the following screen.

Note that there is a notation window frame at the bottom right corner. In it, you will see notes, tournament tables, notations depending on what you click on the screen on the right above you.

The software contains a lot of test positions where you can give your hand at trying on how to play like the 6th World Chess Champion. These test positions range from tactical combinations to increasing your positional advantage.

To play them, simply click on the "Practice" button as shown above.

Besides the Practise sessions, you can also choose to test yourself by selecting the "Test" button on the button bar at the top and choose how many test positions you want to play at one given session. The Peshka interface also tracks your progress on how many you've gotten right or wrong.

By clicking on the "Theory" button, you will be presented with a tree list of games by Botvinnik. They include games from the early part of his career, to World Championship tournaments (shown above - completed with table and results). If you really want to improve your game (especially your middlegame), I suggest going through these annotated games. They are definitely worth the time and effort.

There is also one small caveat I find annoying. When playing through the games, there is no way to tell who is White and who is Black at first glance.

Nevertheless, this software is fantastic and I highly recommend it. After all, you can't beat free software, can you? :)

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