Fritz 9: Play Chess
- 3D-Worlds Chess with machines from the past and future
- New 3D boards with realistic physics
- New more powerful, intelligent engine
- New Coach and handicap functions
- 1 Year free access to playchess.com
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Top Customer Reviews
As others have written, the reason for chosing an older version of Fritz is that Fritz 9 crashes so often to hinder your playing experience.
Heck, I've been playing Fritz since 5.32, and 5.32 crashes less and was a lot funner to play. Unfortunately it doesn't work on all Windows XP machines.
Back to Fritz 9... the post-analysis mode of Fritz is worth noting. You can play a game and have a full analysis in anywhere from 15 minutes to several hours, depending on where you set it. One annoying feature of Fritz 9 is that sometimes you have to insert the CD to wake up the engine to do the analysis. Fritz 8 does not have this feature.
Also worth noting is the infinite analysis mode, where you can watch a grandmaster game (or any slow game), put in the moves live, and see what lines Fritz "likes", as it calculates and gives a score to each line.
There is also opening training, endgame training, or you can add a kibitzer to your games, get help from a coach, and/or put it in handicap mode after you feel like you're beating your head against the wall.
Fritz 8 also has all of this, but is the most stable of the two, and cheaper.
Chessbase 9 is the industry standard chess database package (very user-friendly) and Chess Assistant gives me a bit more technical options (as well as a huge openings tree with assessments) and allows me to play on the ICC.
The Rybka engine is the strongest engine in the opening and middle game (probably by 100 Elo) and Shredder is the best engine for analyzing endgames (Fritz 9 is also better than Fritz 8 in this respect).
Fruit is the engine with almost no weak points. It plays a steady game throughout and performs well in blitz games and at longer time controls.
Fritz 9 is a tenacious defender of slightly inferior positions and is probably the best positional engine of the bunch (Hiarcs 10 is the best program in this respect).
My favourite playing partners are Hiarcs and especially Chessmaster. Hiarcs plays the most human-like chess (feels like playing against a strong GM). The Chessmaster program's options is not nearly suitable for the serious chessplayer but the engine plays very creatively. The training lessons of Chessmaster are quite useful.
To conclude I can say that Fritz 9 offered me the best standalone chess playing program package.
Take the dates first. Fritz 8 was offered for sale in December 2002, and Fritz 9 in October 2005. A gap of almost 3 years - NOT 6 months! Hiarcs 9 first appeared in October 2003 and was followed by Hiarcs 10 in March 2006 - a gap of 2.5 years.
What of playing strength? Some reviewers assert - without any supporting evidence whatever - that Fritz 9 is little better than 8 but the rating lists show that Fritz 9 is between 70 and 90 Elo points stronger than Fritz 8, which is a major improvement. What about the claim that Hiarcs 10 is stronger? Well there are 7 major independent chess engine rating lists. Two (SSDF and PEJ) have Hiarcs just ahead but all the others (CCRL,CEGT,Koppel, Sedat and CSS) have Fritz 9 above Hiarcs 10. CSS is now the most respected rating list. Anyone can find out the strength of chess engines by typing "CSS chess rating" in their search engine to view the list.
In all respects other than the chess engine the two programs are identical. Hiarcs and Fritz both use the Fritz GUI, which some claim to find "buggy" but I have no problems with. Any problems that arise are likely to be in special circumstances in engine tournaments and are unlikely to affect the average user. I used to own both Fritz 8 and Hiarcs 9. I now own both Fritz 9 and Hiarcs 10. Fritz 9 is slightly stronger according to the rating lists but both engines are excellent and have own interesting and individual styles. I thoroughly recommend BOTH programs but ask that people are not fooled by ill-informed statements.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Fritz 9 helps you see what the best chess moves are. It consistently beats Chessmaster 10th Edition. But, even good software can be blind. Read morePublished on June 11, 2014 by W. Clement
The product I thought I was buying was not what I got. It was a come on. No information was included in the package. I can't register the produce because there is no code. Read morePublished on January 29, 2011 by Oswin Jackson
I got a nice package deal on Fritz 9 and Chessmaster 10th Edition. My last copy of Fritz was Fritz 7. I really don't see much difference between the two. Read morePublished on October 31, 2007 by Chess Nerd
I had heard so much about Fritz at my favorite chess web site and so, when I found Fritz 9 at a local store, I snapped it up. Read morePublished on October 16, 2007 by Joseph Lamar Greer
This game is highly interactive and has the ability to personalize in many ways. I have enjoyed many hours of playing.Published on August 9, 2006 by J Tucker
You want a simple chess program? Go search for WinBoard. If you want to play 3D Chess just for the look, then I am sure you can find all sorts of swanky looking 3D chess boards out... Read morePublished on July 5, 2006 by OverTheMoon
but...the interface needs serious work in the user-friendly department. I would much rather study chess, than how to take advantage of all of Fritz's many features - which the... Read morePublished on June 28, 2006 by Benjamin H.
I am going to tell you the truth behind all this confusion about which program is better. I know how frustrating it can be when you are about to invest a lot of money into an... Read morePublished on May 2, 2006 by top opening reviewer
I can't comment on how the Fritz 9 engine compares to other games out there, but what I can tell you is that if you are a casual player, it will whoop your butt every time. Read morePublished on March 13, 2006 by William McNeill