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HIARCS 10 Chess Engine Parameters

The HIARCS chess engine has many parameter options which can be modified to change the playing style and strength of the chess engine. We believe the default options were the best known at release but maybe you can find a better set of parameters!

Since release there has been evidence that the Hypermodern setting when switched ON improves Hiarcs 10 by about 10 Elo.

Below you will find the options available in the HIARCS 10 chess engine and a description of their affect on the engine. Any defaults are in parentheses and explained in the text.
 

Hash

The hash table is typically large area of memory used by the HIARCS chess engine to record previous calculations to speed up future computations. You are recommended to use 50% of your machines physical RAM for Hash tables. Please check that your hash table size setting does not cause disk activity. If so HIARCS will run significantly slower - in this case please decrease the hash table size and try again.
 

Retain Hash (ON)

This option enables HIARCS to maintain its hash table between moves and this improves its play as well as its learning ability and analysis. The default is ON.
 

Playing Style (Normal)

HIARCS has three different playing styles, namely, Normal, Aggressive and Solid. The Normal style is the default and believed to be best.
 

Smart Search (ON)

This setting allows HIARCS to apply some smartness to its search selections. The default is ON and this is the best setting.
 

Selectivity (7)

The HIARCS search is selective - it tries to cut out irrelevant moves and variations. You can set the selectivity from 0 (no selectivity) to 7 (very selective). The default and strongest setting is 7.
 

Futility (ON)

This setting when ON allows Hiarcs to discard moves and variations which appear to be futile. This enables a slightly deeper search at the cost of a very small risk of overlooking something. Overall it appears to be a gain so the default is ON.
 

Steady Search (OFF)

This setting tells Hiarcs to keep its search steady and regular through its progressive deepening of search. At present this option has the default OFF as it appears this is slightly the stronger setting.
 

Forward Pruning (10)

This setting determines how aggressive Hiarcs 10 prunes the search tree to discard unnecessary variations and moves. The best setting and default for this parameter is 10.
 

Threat Depth (3)

Using this setting you can determine how deep HIARCS examines threats. The default is 3 and we believe this may be the best setting.
 

Swindle (OFF)

In positions which are normally drawn (for example K+R v K+B), the swindle setting tells HIARCS to keep pressing for the win if it is the stronger side. This is most applicable against human opponents. Default is OFF as a courtesy.
 

Position Learning (ON)

This setting allows HIARCS to learn from the games it plays. This can improve its play in future games. The default is ON.
 

Combinations (OFF)

This setting makes HIARCS look deeply at tactical combinations. This setting can help HIARCS find combinations sooner but at the cost of making the overall search less deep. When ON, this setting usually results in weaker play. The default is OFF.
 

Hyper-Modern Play (OFF - it now seems ON is an improvement)

This setting make HIARCS play in a more Hyper-Modern style. The default is OFF.
 

Use Tablebases (ON)

This setting allows you to turn access to Nalimov endgame tablebases ON or OFF. The default is ON.
 

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"It is exhilarating to play [HIARCS], more, a lot more than with any other strong program. It is a real pleasure to be defeated that way. Fast, lightning, unexpected death." - Fernando Villegas, April 2007
"HIARCS is much better positionally than Deep Blue." - Garry Kasparov 1997 (after game 5 of the rematch)

World Chess Champion, Vishy Anand, used "Powerful" HIARCS machine in preparations for his 2010 world title match with Super GM Veselin Topalov

"This level of service is one other big reason to buy HIARCS." - John Jackson, November 2009

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HIARCS Chess Software is designed and developed by Mark Uniacke in England.
HIARCS is a trademark of Applied Computer Concepts Ltd. All other product trademarks acknowledged.
Copyright 1991-2010 Applied Computer Concepts Ltd. All rights reserved. Last modified: Thursday September 16, 2010.
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