I will write about a few useful chess resources (Applications, Databases, Engines) that can make you a better chess player in this July 2022 Newsletter blog!
Note to the readers: This blog is not an ad or a promoted feature. I just wanted to share with you the tools that I think would be the most helpful for players. I get 0 monetary gain through the links, as I am not an affiliate of any of these products.
Chessbase 16 is the most advanced chess database management application available on the market.
Using Chessbase, you can open multiple databases, save your games, run chess engines, sort through the databases and many more features!
Chessbase software is used by all chess professionals all over the world. You can ask any GrandMaster what the 1 absolute must software on their laptop is, and they will mention the Chessbase software.
The current paid version of Chessbase software is Chessbase 16. However, Chessbase generally releases a new version once in 2 years, which means in Nov/Dec 2022, we can expect the launch of Chessbase 17.
In my opinion, the paid version of the software is helpful for players above 1500. But, till then, I don’t see a clear need for you to buy the software.
Chessbase has a reader version, which is completely free, and in my opinion, is a handy tool for players rated under 1500. In the reader version, you can read the databases, but you are not allowed to save any games, and also, certain functionalities are limited compared to the Chessbase 16 version.
What about the databases?
Ask your Chess Gaja academy coach to share with you relevant game databases that can be opened with Chessbase software, and all our academy coaches would be glad to share with you the chess material.
Suppose you are looking to buy a database. In that case, the one database that I would recommend is the Mega Database 2022 as it has lots of historical chess games, annotated games, latest games, GrandMaster games and whatnot giving you access to a wealth of information.
A new version of Mega Database is released in Nov/Dec of each year, so that we will be getting the Mega Database 2023 version in a few months with recent up-to-date games!
You can buy Chessbase 16+ Mega Database together in a combo package. You can use the combo to get a better deal.
If you have an Indian credit card/Indian banking option, I would suggest you buy the software from the Chessbase India store, as they give you better pricing than the Chessbase.com Global store, where the prices are higher in comparison.
Tip – Generally, you get the best deals on software with digital download on Chessbase India shop over the Chessbase.com website, as the .com site is priced to the American and European audience.
I highly discourage students from using the engine to analyze their games, as I think of the computer engines like your math calculator. The more you use a calculator to do math problems, less you will be using your brain’s computational ability.
Similarly, the more you start depending on engine analysis, the less you use your brain during training, which leads to poorer calculational skills.
You should use the engine as a tool to verify your calculation and not the other way around, which is what many young players do and end up with poorer calculation skills in the long run.
There are a lot of free and paid engines available, and I suggest you download the free Stockfish engine. This link will take you to the open-source Stockfish development versions, where the engine is constantly tweaked to give better results.
As you can see, there would be various engine versions, and I generally download the one for “Modern Computers” in Stockfish.
In my next month’s newsletter blog, I will write about Youtube channels, podcasts, and websites that will help you get better at chess!
I hope you liked the article! If you do, please share it with your friends and also, in the comments box, let me know what topics would you be interested in reading in future blogs!
If you have a different opinion on anything mentioned on the blog, please share that in the comment section!
GrandMaster and FIDE Trainer Priyadharshan Kannappan