Chess engines list and download links

This page will be updated from time to time. Here you will find best chess engines and settings for different purposes: strongest play, human-like playstyle, fast engines for short time controls, etc.

We will try to provide direct download links for most programs without any crappy file-hosting websites.

For shareware chess engines, we will
only
provide links to official websites.

All links will be for Windows versions, because ChessBotX is available for Windows only.

If you would like to suggest good chess engine or specific config for it, please send us a message and it will appear on this page.
Stockfish
Stockfish 11  logo
Stockfish is a free and very strong chess
engine. It is well-rounded and good for
any purposes. However default versions of
Stockfish don't support books usage.

New! 18.04.22 - Stockfish 15 has been released!

Direct download Stockfish 15


Official website: https://stockfishchess.org/


More versions of Stockfish (bmi2, popcnt, etc.)

Latest Stockfish Dev                  Stockfish Polyglot
Brainfish
Brainfish is the clone of the
Stockfish with support of
polyglot (.bin) opening
books.

It is especially designed to
work with very good opening book called "Cerebellum".

Brainfish was a really good and strong chess engine. But now it is quite outdated.

Direct download Brainfish
Official website: zipproth.de
Brainfish logo
Houdini
Komodo
Houdini is a legendary chess engine by
Robert Houdart. Latest version (Houdini 6)
is pretty strong, however it is a bit weaker
than current versions of Stockfish.

But we recommend to try Houdini 4
along with the advisor mode. Houdini 4 Pro has unique style
and can provide good moves even at low depth. Try to use advisor at Depth = 8, you will get fast and pretty strong calculation. ELO: 3399

Official website

Direct download free Houdini 1.5 version
Komodo is another very strong engine.
However, instead of depth, it more relies
on evaluation.

That is why Komodo is known for its
positional style and human-like play.

This chess engine is also recommended to use with advisor mode. Also you can give it a try in solving puzzles.

ELO: 3623

Official website
         
Direct download Komodo 12
More downloads            Direct download Komodo 13
Fire
Fire is a free program with decent
evaluation and solid moves.

Fast as Stockfish, but slightly weaker.
However, it has different style. Always been in the top 5 of recent years at TCEC.

Maybe you will be interested in trying it at blitz and bullet games. Unfortunately, doesn't support opening books by itself.
Website
Direct download Fire NN.MC.3 (nnue eval)
Direct download Fire 8.2 (classic eval) chess engine
Also, this version is good for advisor mode: Fire_trap_32x
Clarabit
Surprised? Clarabit is not well known
indeed. It is also very weak in playing
against other engines.

However, this program is good, if your want to simulate 1500-1800 ELO player. Recommended to use along with advisor mode in blitz chess under 2000 rating at chess.com.

Optimal engine depth = 8.

Official website


Clarabit direct download
Rybka
Rybka is a legendary chess engine
created by Vasik Rajlich. In times past
it was the strongest program in the
world.

Today it is still pretty strong, maybe in top-20 rank. Rybka has many configurable parameters which allow to achieve different playstyles - from defensive to very aggressive.

ELO: 3148

Official website

Direct download Rybka 2.3.2
Gull
Gull is an open source engine from
Vadim Demichev.

The latest version of Gull 3 was released
in 2014, but it is always striking in its ability to fight to the end against modern engines.

It is like a honey badger in the world of computer chess.

ELO: 3181

Website

Gull 3 download
Ethereal
Ethereal is a very strong open source
chess engine written by Andrew Grant.

Although Ethereal is greatly influenced
from Crafty, Stockfish and Fruit, it has pretty unique style.

It is in the top-10 best programs at the
moment. If you would like to test some good alternatives for Stockfish, then Ethereal 13 is your choice.

ELO: 3550

Website        Direct download Ethereal
Github
WildCat
WildCat is a free UCI compliant chess
engine by Igor Korshunov.

It is very outdated, but can be
succesfully used for advisor mode at blitz 2000-2500 rating.

Better to use this engine instead of the default Stockfish, because it less strong, which make it more human-like.

Latest version is WildCat 8, it has 2629 ELO according to CCRL 40/15.

Website                   Download WildCat 8 chess engine

Recommended package:

Raubfisch

engine + Cerebellum opening book + Syzygy endgame tablebases!

Raubfisch

Raubfisch, CFish and Blue Marlin are clones of the Stockfish chess engine.

These engines support up to 2 opening books (in .BIN format).

They are strong, fast and stable!

Raubfisch x48e download

Blue Marlin 15.1 download

Cfish direct download link
Kayra 1.4 download
Cerebellum
Strong opening book with many lines. Must have for bot-vs-bot games.

Put path to this book into the BookFile parameter at Engine Settings - see how to do it here.

Cerebellum direct download link
Syzygy
Syzygy is precalculated endgame tables (aka EGTB).

Chess engine with EGTB will play stronger than without it.

Put path to the unzipped folder with tablebases into the "Syzygy" parameter. See more info here.

5-men Syzygy tables download
Watch video example #1 (Ultrabullet) on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JPim0DiXNHk
Watch video example #2 (Bullet with crazy debuts) on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gb_WGSabEnM
Eman
Eman is a Stockfish based UCI chess
engine by Khalid Omar.

Eman playing style is both aggressive
and optimistic. The engine always
assumes that it will find something
(and it often does) in drawing or losing positions.

Interesting chess engine, worth trying.

ELO: 3573

Website      Direct download Eman 7.93 chess engine
Leela Chess Zero
Leela chess (aka "LcZero" or "lc0")
is an open source neural network
based chess engine.

6-times TCEC finalist. In April 2019, Leela won the Chess.com Computer Chess Championship 7: Blitz Bonanza, becoming the first neural-network project to take the title.

Very strong and very interesting engine. Must have.

Website    Download for newest NVidia GPUs
Download for Nvidia GPUs from 2014 to 2018
Download for Radeon and other GPUs
Download for modern CPUs              Download for old CPUs
Hakkapeliitta
Hakkapeliitta is an UCI chess engine
written in C++11/14 with support
for Syzygy tablebases.

Version 3.0 has a rating of around 2950 at CCRL and 2820 at CEGT, making it approximately the 20th strongest chess engine in the world on a single thread.

Website  Chess engine direct download
Igel
Igel is a free UCI chess engine forked
from GreKo 2018.01

In August 2020 Igel switched to NNUE
as a main evaluation function using Dietrich Kappe's NiNu network file and is currently approaching the top ten strongest chess engines on CCRL list.

Good engine with style.

Website    Direct download
Booot
Booot is an open source UCI compatible
chess program written in Delphi 6
by Alex Morozov.

Booot has played in many chess tournaments including TCEC. It showed good attacking chess and a good game in general.

If you like active and aggressive chess program - Booot is your engine.

Website    Direct download
Schooner
Schooner is a chess engine by
Dennis Sceviour running under
Windows.

The hobby project already started
in the late 70s and was revived using Magic Bitboards in 2015.

Absolutely awesome engine with unique style. Also, it's pretty strong for an old engine (can defeat Stockfish 8 LVL at lichess). Recommended to test!

Website   Direct download
Gaviota
Gaviota (Spanish word for Seagull) is a
chess engine available for Windows,
Linux, Android, FreeBSD, and Mac OS X.

When It was released in 2001, it was the first Argentinian engine available. Gaviota supports its own endgame tablebases, book, and can use several processors (SMP). It has the ability to learn by remembering book lines and positions that were not good. Gaviota avoids them in following games.

Website      Direct download
Laser
Laser is a UCI-compliant chess engine
written in C++11 by Jeffrey An
and Michael An.

Engine that started as a project from scratch in July 2015 as a hobby engine between two brothers, Jeffrey and Michael An. It had its first 1.0 release in December 2015

Laser is a participant of TCEC Season 9. It showed good performance with a good attacking chess. Give it a try.

Website     Direct download
RubiChess
RubiChess is a pretty strong UCI open
source chess engine by Andreas Matthies.
Latest version uses NNUE evaluation.
Rubi started in 2016 as a private hobby
project to practise programming in C++ and to see the engine improving compared to earlier releases.

Meanwhile some years later RubiChess got pretty competitive and is listed in most of the rankings and plays a lot of even big tournaments.

Website    Direct download 2022
GreKo
GreKo is a chess engine by Vladimir
Medvedev, written in C++.

First version was released in 2002.

Estimated playing strength of GreKo is about 2600-2700 points, depending on hardware and time control.

You will find 2 versions in the downloaded archive: GreKo 9 (2011 year) and the latest Greko (2021).

Website     Direct download
Tornado
Tornado is an UCI compliant chess
engine by Engin Ustun.

First released in 2004.

Latest Tornado uses NNUE with the Stockfish net. You will find both Tornado_NNUE and classic Tornado_8 versions in the downloaded file.

Use Tornado_8 to feel unique style of the engine.

Website    Direct download
Hermann
Hermann is a UCI engine by Volker
Annuss. Hermann is Arena GUI partner
engine.

Program participated in many chess tournaments in the past. Pretty legendary engine, try it someday. Elo: 2528 (ccrl).

Website

Direct download Hermann 2.8
Pedone
Pedone is UCI chess engine by Fabio
Gobbato. It progressed rapidly,
and already won the IGT 2014 and
the IGT 2015.

With the release of its commercial successor Revenge in July 2021, Pedone is no longer under development.

Latest release is 25/04/2021 version.

ELO: 3327

Website    Download the latest 3.1.7z version
Nemorino
Nemorino is a UCI chess engine written
by Christian Guenther. First released
in September 2016 under the GPLv3
license.

Nemorino's board representation and move structure are taken from Stockfish. Latest Nemorino uses NNUE evaluation. Engine participated in TCEC tournament.

ELO: 3346 (ccrl)

Website     Direct download (NNUE)

Latest version with classic evaluation
NirvanaChess
Nirvana is a chess engine by Thomas
Kolarik, written in C++, first released
in April 2013.

Latest version (2.5) was released on
December 6, 2020.

ELO: 3225 (ccrl).

Pretty good, well-known and respected engine.

TCEC participant.

Website      Download NirvanaChess 2.5
Crystal
Crystal is a UCI chess engine derived
from Stockfish. Crystal seeks to address
the following issues where engines
often have trouble:

1) Positional or tactical blindness due to over reductions or over pruning.
2) Draw blindess due to the move horizon (50 move rule).

Example: classic Stockfish cannot correctly evaluate this position. Crystal quickly finds a draw.

Website            Direct download Crystal 4.0 chess engine
                        Download Crystallite 1.1
SugaR
SugaR - Stockfish clone by
Marco Zerbinati.

First released in 2014. Very strong.

Supports up to 2 opening books in BIN (polyglot) format.

Unfortunately, this project is no longer active.


Direct download the last version Sugar 2.50 + Net
Zevra
Zevra - UCI open source chess engine
by Oleg Smirnov, written in C++.
Interesting hobby project with own
style.

ELO: 2300

Play against Zevra on lichess


Website      Direct download Zevra chess engine
Maia
Maia is a human-like neural
network chess engine.

The main goal of this net is to
play the human move - not
necessarily the best one.

Maia is trained on millions of games, and tries to predict the human move played in each position seen.

Website      GitHub with more Nets (from 1100 to 1900 ELO)

Download Ready-To-Use 1800 ELO Maia chess engine
[Important: always use Engine Depth = 1 with this engine]
Koivisto
Koivisto is a very interesting chess
engine made primarily by Kim Kåhre
and Finn Eggers in C++ language.

One of the strongest non-neural engines by this moment.

Try it in bullet, blitz and rapid time controls.

Website

Direct download Koivisto 8.6
Open this page on your PC.

There are a lot of chess engines here.

But all of them - for PC Windows.

If you need Android, MacOS, iOS or Linux chess engines - check this page.
Simplex
Simplex - UCI open source chess
engine by Antonio Torrecillas,
written in C++ and licensed under
the GNU General Public License.

Simplex was first published with sources in 2010, while its development already started at least in 2007.

ELO: around 2300 (equal to Stockfish Level 6 at lichess).

Website

Direct download Simplex 0.9.8
Fairy Stockfish
Fairy-Stockfish is an engine that can
play chess variants like Crazyhouse,
Antichess, Atomic, Horde, Three
Checks, Racing Kings and many others.

Fairy-Stockfish is free, and distributed under the GNU General Public License version 3 (GPL v3).

Website

Example: ChessBotX + FairyStockfish playing Atomic

Direct download Fairy-Stockfish-14
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