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REBEL TIGER at the Marshall Chess Club

By Larry S. Tamarkin

I received Rebel 11 on Tuesday, November 22, 2000, and tested it at in the Marshall Chess Club on November 24, in the Friday night 5 minute rapids tournament held there, on my CTX 200 MHz MMX Notebook computer with 24 meg of ram. By today's standards, this is considered an almost feeble platform, but Rebel installed easily, and runs with no problem in it.

Many other reviews have been written explaining the features of this wonderful chess program, the other suburb programs & data that comes on Rebel's loaded CD, as well as the extra free data that you can get with internet access, by subscribing to the rebel home page. In addition to this, the Rebel company is a responsive company, whose personal can easily be contacted for technical support and helpful advise.

Ed Schroder himself often goes the 'extra mile' for the people who purchase his program, not only by directly answering questions E-mailed to him (and his company), to his own page, but amazingly finds time (when not further improving his program), to contribute dialog and information to other chess computer programmers and chess software users on the excellent web place at ICD chess. - Access is free, but requires an E-mail registration. Here one can communicate their concerns, appreciation, love or even dislike to many of the chess worlds finest computer chess minds! Back to Rebel. I've decided to concentrate primarily on the programs practical results in games and ease (or lack of), in operation.

Only the minimum EOC, and other material was installed to the hard disk for space requirements. I used the Gambit tiger engine, and played the moves manually to the board for each 2 game match. There were 11 human players including Master Yurij Lapshun (2443), a great young talent (27 years Old). & Yefim Treger (2250). In addition, most of the other players were "A" players & experts. Here is the list of players and their Marshall Chess Club blitz ratings (closely based on the USCF rating formula as used by the pairing program) at the time of their participation in this event.

1.  Yurij Lapshun   (2422)

2.  Gambit Tiger    (2350) estimated rating for the event

3.  Yefim Treger    (2232)

4. Manian Nanejw   (2150)

5. Lev Zilbermintz (2087)

6. William Arluck  (2034)

7. Jeremy Graham   (1929)

8. Scott Chaiet    (1850)

9. Ralph Monda     (1775)

10. Lorenzo Davis   (1718)

11. Paul S Pressman  (1686)

12. Leif Pressman   (1438)

Gambit tiger scored about 17 points out of the 22 total rounds losing only to Lapshun in both games. And Yurij was on the ropes in both games against Gambit-Tiger, especially in the 2nd game as black.

The humans had additional incentive to play against Tiger because it contributed an entry fee to the prize fund, but was ineligible for any prize. After a couple of rounds I realized that it was best to set the standard mechanical clock for 7 minutes on each side in the games for which the computer was involved. (Now I think 10 minutes is a better setting for the clocks, both mechanical & on the computer, but time constraints in the tournament precluded this. Unfortunately, because of the rather large loss of time between the human operator's hand movements between computer and board, the humans always get a practical advantage in clock time on the board). Gambit Tiger was still set at 5 minutes in the software and was not in serious time pressure against anyone excepting Lapshun, Nanejw and Arluck, the 3 strongest blitz players in the event.

In 2 of the other games that the program lost, it was my inability to transfer moves over to the board that led to the humans victory - Usually the human was lost at that point anyway!

I'm sorry that I cannot give these games. Because of my relative inexperience with this program I made a mistake in the saving of them. It is important to create a new database and name it, then keep it open as the database in which you are saving games into. Since I own a lot of different chess programs I can't say that I don't have experience in the saving of a file or files. Perhaps in a patch or subsequent version of the program the saving of games could be automated to a default directory so as to make this process a little easier.

This tournament has also been rated, so that Gambit Tiger can be given an 'official' club speed rating. Gambit Tiger is now officially rated at 2331 after its inaugural event at the Marshall where it had a 'meager' 2156 performance rating. Again, I must emphasize that the delay in transferring moves from the computer screen to the chess board was costly to the program in several games.

No matter, I will test Rebel again in the coming weeks, both against the clubs many different strength players that regularly participate in club events and continue to send them along to the rebel company. In this way users of the program can get a 'real world' view of how the program does against everyday NY chess players, as well as (hopefully), some of the famous masters who play at our club. And next time up in the rapids tournament, I will use the default Rebel Tiger engine.

I must say apart from a little confusion in the operation of the program, I am having a tremendous amount of fun with it, and the players in the blitz tournament were very impressed with its human like play. One other note: I was using the Gambit engine, but it seems to me that the humans did not play games against it that led it to sacrifice anything - Mostly it did the attacking and capturing of more material! One human Expert (Lev D. Zilbermints, best known for popularizing the Zilbermints Gambit, 1.d4 e5 2.dxe5 Nc6 3.Nf3 Nge7), was yelling at the poor computer that he would not allow it any Chicken moves or computer cheating! Don't worry - That's how Lev plays against all the humans too! He did win the 2nd game in which he was White on time in a lost position). I have appended a pgn. & text file of Rebels games against Lev Zilbermintz and the famous NY Fide master Asa Hoffmann, as well as a few other generous volunteers at the club.

Please note that the below games were played at a time limit of 10 minutes per side both in the programs clock, and on the mechanical chess clock on the humans side of the board. As usual this tended to benefit the human more than the computer.

Asa Hoffman is a famous NY master who knew & played Bobby Fischer many times. He is the author of the excellent chess memoir "Chess Gladiator" (ICE 1996).

Asa Hoffmann (2450) - Chess Tiger 13.0 (2331)

Match Marshall, 02.12.2000

1.Nc3 Nf6 2.d4 d5 3.Bg5 Nbd7 4.Nf3 h6 5.Bf4 a6 6.e3 e6 7.a3 Nh5 8.Be5 Nxe5

9.Nxe5 Nf6 10.f4 c5 11.Be2 b5 12.0-0 Bb7 13.Bf3 Qc7 14.Ne2 cxd4 15.exd4 Bd6

16.c3 0-0 17.Ng3 Nd7 18.Qe2 Rfe8 19.Rae1 Nb6 20.Bh5 g6 21.Bf3 Nc4 22.Rf2 a5

23.h4 Qd8 24.h5 g5 25.b3 gxf4 26.bxc4 fxg3 27.Rff1 Bxe5 28.Bg4 Bd6 29.Qf3

Rf8 30.cxb5 Qh4 31.Bh3 a4 32.Re3 Ra5 33.c4 Qxd4 34.Rd1 Qxc4 35.Qf6 Bc5

36.Qxh6 Qc3 0-1

Chess Tiger 11 - Hoffmann

Match Marshall Chess Club (2), 03.12.2000

1.e4 c6 2.d4 d6 3.Nc3 a6 4.Nf3 Bg4 5.h3 Bh5 6.a3 Nd7 7.Bc4 e6 8.0-0 Ngf6

9.Bb3 Be7 10.Re1 0-0 11.g4 Bg6 12.Nh4 d5 13.Nxg6 hxg6 14.e5 Nh7 15.Kh2 g5

16.Ne2 Re8 17.c3 f5 18.gxf5 exf5 19.Qc2 g6 20.c4 Ndf8 21.cxd5 cxd5 22.Nc3

Rc8 23.Qd1 Kh8 24.Nxd5 Ne6 25.Nxe7 Qxe7 26.d5 Nc5 27.Kg1 Qg7 28.e6 Ne4 29.d6

Rcd8 30.d7 Re7 31.Be3 Nhf6 32.Bb6 Rdxd7 33.exd7 Rxd7 34.Bd4 Kh7 35.f3 Qh6

36.fxe4 Nxe4 37.Be6 Qh4 38.Bxd7 1-0

Lev Zilbermintz is a strong NY Expert, well know internationally for his contributions to Gambit openings like the Blackmar-Diemer Gambit, and his very own Zilbermintz Gambit. He has also beaten players as powerful as Yasser Seirawan over the Internet.

Zilbermintz,L (2100) - Chess Tiger 13.0

Match Marshall, 03.12.2000

1.g4 d5 2.e4 dxe4 3.Nc3 Nc6 4.Nxe4 Nf6 5.Nxf6+ exf6 6.Bg2 Bc5 7.h3 0-0 8.Ne2

Be6 9.c3 Bd5 10.0-0 Bxg2 11.Kxg2 Qd5+ 12.f3 Rfe8 13.d4 Bd6 14.Nf4 Qa5 15.Bd2

Qb5 16.b3 Ne7 17.c4 Qd7 18.Nd3 c6 19.Nf2 Bc7 20.Be3 Qd6 21.Rh1 Nf5 22.gxf5

Qg3+ 23.Kf1 Rxe3 24.Rg1 Qf4 25.Rg4 Qxf5 26.Kg2 Rd8 27.Qd2 Qxf3+ 28.Kf1 Rde8

29.Qd1 Re2 30.Rg2 Rxf2+ 0-1

Rebel Tiger - Chess Tiger 13.0

Match Marshall (2), 03.12.2000

1.e4 g5 2.d4 h6 3.h4 g4 4.Qxg4 d5 5.Qg3 dxe4 6.Bf4 Qxd4 7.Be5 Qb4+ 8.Bc3 Qd6

9.Bxh8 Qxg3 10.fxg3 f6 11.Nc3 Bf5 12.Nd5 Kd7 [12...Kd8 13.Bc4 Nd7 14.Ne2 e6

15.Ne3 Ne5 16.0-0-0+ Ke7 17.Nxf5+ exf5 18.Bxg8 Ng6 19.Nd4 Nxh8 20.Nxf5+ Ke8

21.Bd5 c6 22.Bxe4 Kf7 23.Rd7+ Ke6 24.Rxb7 Ke5 25.Re1 Rd8 26.Bd3+ Kd5 27.c4+

Kc5 28.b4#] 13.Rd1 1-0

Lev Zilbermintz - Chess Tiger 13.0

Match Marshall, 03.12.2000

1.g4 e5 2.h3 Nc6 3.Bg2 h5 4.gxh5 d5 5.d3 Nf6 6.h6 g6 7.Nc3 d4 8.Ne4 Nxe4

9.Bxe4 Bxh6 10.Bxh6 Rxh6 11.Qd2 Rh5 12.0-0-0 Qf6 13.Bf3 Rh8 14.e3 Be6 15.Kb1

0-0-0 16.Bg2 Rh5 17.Bf3 Rf5 18.Qe2 Rh8 19.Rf1 Nb4 20.a3 Nc6 21.Bg4 Rg5

22.Bxe6+ Qxe6 23.Nf3 Rf5 24.e4 Rf4 25.Ng5 Qd7 26.Rfg1 f6 27.Nf3 Rxh3 28.Nd2

g5 29.Qf1 Rfh4 30.Rxh3 Qxh3 31.Qe1 Ne7 32.Nf1 Qf3 33.Ng3 Rh2 34.Rf1 b6

35.Ne2 Ng6 36.Ng1 Qg2 37.Ne2 Kb7 38.Ng3 Nf4 39.Nf5 Nh3 40.Ne7 Nxf2 41.Rg1

Qh3 42.Nd5 Qe6 0-1

Chess Tiger - Lev Zilbermintz

Match Marshall, 03.12.2000

1.d4 e5 2.dxe5 Nc6 3.Nf3 Nge7 4.Bg5 h6 5.Bh4 g5 6.Bg3 Bg7 7.e3 Ng6 8.Nc3

Ncxe5 9.Nxe5 Nxe5 10.h4 d6 11.hxg5 Qxg5 12.Nd5 Qd8 13.Bh4 Qd7 14.Bf6 Kf8

15.Be7+ Ke8 16.Bh4 c6 17.Nf6+ Bxf6 18.Bxf6 Rh7 19.Bd3 Ng6 20.c4 Qe6 21.Bc3

d5 22.b3 dxc4 23.bxc4 b6 24.c5 b5 25.Qf3 Bd7 26.Bxb5 Rb8 27.Be2 Qf5 28.Qxf5

Bxf5 29.Bf3 Kd7 30.0-0-0+ Kc7 31.Ba5+ Kb7 32.Rh5 Be6 33.Rd6 Rc8 34.a3 Ne7

35.Be4 Rg7 36.Bd8 Nd5 37.Rxh6 Rg8 38.Rh7 Ka6 39.Rxe6 Rcxd8 40.Bd3+ Ka5

41.Rxf7 Ra8 42.Rxc6 Rxg2 43.Ra6# 1-0

Lev Zilbermintz - Chess Tiger 13.0

Match Marshall, 03.12.2000

1.g4 e5 2.c4 d5 3.h3 h5 4.gxh5 dxc4 5.e3 Be6 6.Bg2 Nc6 7.Nc3 Qd7 8.Ne4 Nb4

9.Ng5 Bd5 10.e4 Nd3+ 11.Kf1 Bc6 12.b3 Qd4 13.Qf3 f6 14.Ne6 Qxa1 15.bxc4

Qxc1+ 16.Ke2 Rd8 17.Nxc7+ Kf7 18.Nd5 Ba4 19.Kxd3 Bc2+ 20.Ke2 Qd1+ 21.Ke3

Bc5+ 22.d4 Bxd4# 0-1

Chess Tiger - Lev Zilbermintz

Match Marshall , 03.12.2000

1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 d6 3.d4 g6 4.Nc3 Bg7 5.e4 Nc6 6.h3 0-0 7.Be3 e5 8.d5 Ne7 9.c5

Ne8 10.Bc4 dxc5 11.Bxc5 Nd6 12.Bd3 h6 13.0-0 f5 14.Re1 f4 15.Qc2 a6 16.Ba3

Bd7 17.Na4 b6 18.Nxb6 Bb5 19.Nxa8 Bxd3 20.Qxd3 Qxa8 21.Rac1 Qb7 22.Qc3 Rc8

23.b3 Nb5 24.Qb4 Re8 25.Bb2 Nc8 26.a4 Nbd6 27.Qxb7 Nxb7 28.Rxc7 Nbd6 29.Rc6

a5 30.Bc3 Nb7 31.Rxg6 Kh7 32.Rc6 Ncd6 33.b4 axb4 34.Bxb4 Rd8 35.a5 Nxa5

36.Rxd6 Ra8 37.Ra1 Rb8 38.Bxa5 Ra8 39.Bc3 Rc8 40.Bxe5 Kg8 41.Rg6 Kf8

42.Bxg7+ Kf7 43.Ne5+ Ke8 44.d6 Rd8 45.Re6# 1-0

And here are some more games played at the club by the program. Brennan Ward is our latest young star. Only 14 he participates almost every week in our club rapids. At his young age it is difficult to say how far Brennan will go with chess, however, if he continues his club involvement & tournament play, I predict a bright future for him in the future. His enthusiasm for each games battle is infectious!

Ward,B (1800) - Tiger 1.0,G (2331)

10 minute game Marshall CC, 30.11.2000

1.d4 Nf6 2.Bg5 Ne4 3.Bh4 g5 4.Bg3 Nxg3 5.hxg3 Bg7 6.e3 e5 7.c3 Qe7 8.Nf3 e4

9.Nfd2 d5 10.Be2 0-0 11.Na3 c6 12.Nc2 f5 13.0-0 Be6 14.f4 exf3 15.gxf3 f4

16.exf4 gxf4 17.g4 h5 18.Qe1 Qg5 19.Qf2 Nd7 20.Qg2 Nf6 21.gxh5 Qxh5 22.Qh2

Qg6+ 23.Kf2 Qxc2 0-1

Ward,B (1800) - Tiger 1.0,G (2331)

10 minute game Marshall CC, 30.11.2000

1.e4 c5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.f4 d6 4.Nf3 g6 5.Bb5 Bg7 6.Bxc6+ bxc6 7.0-0 Nf6 8.d3 0-0

9.Qe1 Bg4 10.Qg3 Qd7 11.e5 Nd5 12.Bd2 Rab8 13.b3 Nb4 14.Rfc1 Bxf3 15.gxf3

dxe5 16.fxe5 Qd4+ 17.Kg2 Qxe5 18.Ne4 Qxg3+ 19.hxg3 Bxa1 0-1

Ilya Figler is a very strong Senior Master, originally from Moldovia, a former province of the old Soviet Union, near Rumania. He has one IM norm to his credit in the 1997 NY Open. His Fide rating is around 2300, and I believe his chess knowledge to be of GM caliber. He is also now the author' s trainer.

Figler,I (2300) - Tiger 1.0,G (2331)

10 minute game Marshall Chess Club, 30.11.2000

1.d4 e6 2.c4 Bb4+ 3.Bd2 Bxd2+ 4.Qxd2 Nf6 5.Nc3 d6 6.g3 0-0 7.Bg2 c6 8.Nf3

Nbd7 9.0-0 d5 10.b3 Qe7 11.Rfe1 Rd8 12.Qc2 dxc4 13.bxc4 c5 14.d5 Nb6 15.e4

e5 16.Nd2 Ne8 17.a4 Nd6 18.Qb3 Nd7 19.a5 Nf6 20.Na4 Nd7 21.Qc3 b5 22.Nb2 b4

23.Qe3 Ba6 24.f4 Rac8 25.Bh3 Rc7 26.Bxd7 Rdxd7 27.Nd3 exf4 28.gxf4 Rc8

29.Nxc5 Nxc4 30.Nxc4 Qxc5 31.Qxc5 Rxc5 32.Ne5 Rd6 33.Rec1 Rxc1+ 34.Rxc1 f6

35.Nc6 b3 36.e5 fxe5 37.fxe5 Rg6+ 38.Kf2 b2 39.Rb1 Rh6 40.Kg3 Rg6+ 41.Kf3

Bc4 42.Ne7+ Kf7 43.Nxg6 Bxd5+ 44.Kf4 hxg6 45.Rxb2 a6 1-0

Gambit Tiger 1.0 (2350) - Figler,I (2300)

10 minute game Marshall Chess Club, 30.11.2000

1.Nf3 d5 2.b3 Nf6 3.Bb2 Bg4 4.e3 Nbd7 5.Be2 e6 6.h3 Bh5 7.0-0 Bd6 8.c4 c6

9.d4 0-0 10.Nbd2 Qe7 11.Ne5 Bxe2 12.Qxe2 Ba3 13.Bxa3 Qxa3 14.Ndf3 a5

[14...Nxe5 15.Nxe5 c5 16.cxd5 exd5 17.dxc5 Qxc5 18.Rfd1 Rfe8 19.Nd3 Qb6

20.Qb2 Rad8 21.Nf4 d4 22.Rxd4 Rxd4 23.exd4 Re4 24.Rc1 g6 25.Ne2 Nd5 26.Qc2

Qe6 27.Qc8+ Kg7 28.Qxe6 Rxe6 29.Rc2 Nb4 30.Rd2 a5 31.Kh2 Kf6 32.Kg3 Ra6

33.Kf3 Nd5 34.Nf4 Nxf4 35.Kxf4 a4 36.Ke4 axb3 37.axb3 Ke6 38.Re2 Ra1 39.Kd3+

Kd6 40.f3 Rb1 41.Kc3 Rc1+ 42.Rc2 Rd1 43.Kc4 h5 44.b4 h4 45.Ra2 Rc1+ 46.Kb5

Kc7 47.Re2 Kd7 48.Kb6 Rc6+ 49.Kxb7 Rc4 50.b5 Rxd4 51.b6 Rd1 52.Kb8 Rb1

(52...Ra1 53.b7 g5 54.Rd2+ Ke7 55.Rd5) 53.b7] 15.c5 a4 16.bxa4 Rxa4 17.Rab1

Ra7 18.Rb3 Qa4 19.Rfb1 Rb8 20.Rb4 Qxa2 21.Qxa2 Rxa2 22.Rxb7 Rxb7 23.Rxb7 Nf8

24.Nxc6 Ra8 25.Ne7+ Kh8 26.Ne5 g6 27.c6 1-0

Eric Dinallo is a prosecuting attorney with the U.S. Attorney's general's office in NY city. He is also one of the author's chess students. And the only player with a 1600 rating to have gotten a draw against the program.

Dinallo,E (1600) - Gambit Tiger (2300)

10 minute game Marshall Chess Club, 30.11.2000

1.Nf3 d5 2.d3 c5 3.g3 Nc6 4.Bg2 e5 5.0-0 Nf6 6.Nbd2 Be7 7.c3 0-0 8.Qc2 Bg4

9.Re1 Qd7 10.e4 dxe4 11.dxe4 b5 12.Nf1 c4 13.Ne3 Bc5 14.Nd5 a6 15.Bg5 Bxf3

16.Bxf6 Bxg2 17.Kxg2 Qa7 18.Qc1 h6 19.Rf1 Rab8 20.f4 Kh7 21.fxe5 Qd7 22.Bxg7

Kxg7 23.Nf6 Qd3 24.Nh5+ Kh7 25.Nf6+ Kg7 26.Nh5+ Kh7 -

Joseph Weldone is a very experienced expert player who is also a 'long distance' friend of Robert Fischer's. Though in his 80's he is still very spry and knowledgeable on many topics, including the chess world.

Joe Weldone (2100) - Rebel Tiger (2331)

10 minute game Marshall Chess Club, 02.12.2000

1.e4 Nf6 2.e5 Nd5 3.c4 Nb6 4.c5 Nd5 5.Bc4 e6 6.d4 b6 7.Bxd5 exd5 8.b4 a5

9.Bd2 axb4 10.Bxb4 Qg5 11.Qf3 Qc1+ 12.Qd1 Qxd1+ 13.Kxd1 Nc6 14.Bc3 bxc5

15.Nf3 Ba6 16.Re1 Bb5 17.Kd2 Ra4 18.dxc5 Bxc5 19.e6 d4 20.exf7+ Kxf7 21.Bb2

Bb4+ 22.Kd1 Bxe1 23.Nxe1 Re8 24.Nd2 Re2 25.f3 Ne7 26.Nc2 Nf5 27.g4 Ne3+

28.Nxe3 dxe3 0-1

Expert Leon Zukoff is also a former acquaintance of Bobby Fischer and IM Bernard Zuckerman. He is more or less of the same generation as Fischer, Hoffmann and Bill Lombardy, among others.

Leon Zukoff (2100) - Chess Tiger 13.0 (2331)

10 minute game Marshall Chess Club, 02.12.2000

1.e4 e5 2.d4 exd4 3.c3 dxc3 4.Nxc3 Nc6 5.Bc4 Ne5 6.Bb3 d6 7.f4 Bg4 8.Qd5 c6

9.Qd4 Nd7 10.Be3 Ngf6 11.Nge2 Nc5 12.0-0 Nfxe4 13.Nxe4 Nxb3 14.axb3 Bxe2

15.Rf2 Ba6 16.Ng5 h6 17.Nh3 d5 18.f5 c5 19.Qg4 d4 20.Bf4 Qf6 21.Re1+ Kd7

22.Be5 Re8 23.Qg3 Bd6 0-1

Did the author of this article who is a USCF Life master, play the Rebel program? - You bet I did. I have lost game after game to it, and have not had anywhere near the patience of the above players not to take back moves and play something else. I found the different personalities and engines in Rebel tremendously challenging to play against, but because I'm playing more tournament chess against humans, I usually play against the program in typical openings, and without finishing, as a method of sparring.

Aside from just pure chess strength, the program facilitates opening researches with its large and finely tuned opening book by Jeroen Noomen. I have already had much better tournament results, but have to admit that I use a variety of chess programs & databases, as well as hundreds of chess books. Hiring a trainer and working at the worlds finest chess club doesn't hurt either!

I have found the program to be a bit easier on the eyes than Rebel for DOS, (which is also included on the CD), and it does indeed have every useful analytical function an advanced(!?) chess student needs in order to examine chess moves and improve ones game. You might ask if there are other great chess programs worth having, not necessarily from the Schroder company? The answer is certainly yes also. They are all well-known, and offer their own special features. And I would advise anyone purchasing a chess playing program to examine the respective companies Web page, on-line support, and of course to talk to other people (in person or through E-mail), who have these programs, and what they know about them. One thing is certain - If you need a great chess program that is capable of playing over the different Internet chess servers, and also has a large, integrated data-base at a very good price, than you can get it all with Rebel Tiger.

Larry S. Tamarkin