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View Poll Results: What do you think of Apple Chess?
needs a facelift 32 82.05%
it still looks fine 7 17.95%
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Old Nov 11, 2011, 09:57 PM   #1
bjm2660
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Mac Chess very unApple

Why is the interface on Apple's Mac Chess so crummy? It's like they just slapped it together so they could offer an intellectual game on their computers. Surely, any serious player uses a different program. Thoughts?
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Old Nov 11, 2011, 09:59 PM   #2
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I just noticed that the white knights aren't even facing the right direction.
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Old Nov 11, 2011, 10:07 PM   #3
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I think its due for a makeover
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Old Nov 11, 2011, 10:52 PM   #4
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I just took a quick peak at the Mac App Store.

The Chess options there are quite limited--3 or 4 apps--clumsy GUI.

iPhone app store on the other hand has dozens and dozens--many of them
nicely made.

I wish the Mac App Store had more options sometimes.
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Old Nov 11, 2011, 11:39 PM   #5
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I guess Apple has more important things to work on. I don't think the chess.app has been changed much since at least 2003.
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Old Nov 12, 2011, 12:15 AM   #6
shyam09
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here is a comparison with Windows Vista.
i like the Windows Vista Chess design much more than OS X
windows 7 and windows 8 look quite similar i think
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Old Nov 12, 2011, 08:02 AM   #7
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Thanks for posting. Yes, those examples are much cleaner. I agree that Mac Chess must be pretty far down Apple's ToDo list. I just think that in it's current form, the game is not helping Apple's image at all. 3D pieces and board only works if done convincingly, but it's not mandatory. Apple just needs a simple, slick, stylish chess set.

What program are other chess players using on the Mac? Post screenshots!

Last edited by bjm2660; Nov 16, 2011 at 11:32 PM.
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Old Nov 12, 2011, 08:25 AM   #8
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It's like the connect to server dialog. Apple made it in 2001 and have pretty much forgotten about it since.
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Old Nov 12, 2011, 08:39 AM   #9
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There was a nice-looking dashboard widget chess here...

http://www.apple.com/downloads/dashb...mes/chess.html

Speaking of "cannot connect to server" dialogs! It appears to be no longer serviceable. I don't use dashboard anymore anyway.
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Old Nov 16, 2011, 11:26 PM   #10
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I must be the only person on earth tired of looking at "3D" content on a 2D medium.
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Old Dec 2, 2011, 10:24 AM   #11
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How about an update in time for Christmas?
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Old Dec 2, 2011, 10:35 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by bjm2660 View Post
How about an update in time for Christmas?
I kinda prefer good old Battle Chess.
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Old Dec 2, 2011, 10:59 AM   #13
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Apple Chess is a carry over from Rhapsody and NeXTStep. It hasn't been updated in several years, other than to perhaps keep it functional on the current operating systems.

It's not "unApple" (nothing is unApple, the definition of what Apple is constantly changes) and was certainly quite nice when it came out, it's just perhaps in need of some attention. Personally i've never found anything wrong with it, but whatever floats your boat.
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Old Dec 2, 2011, 01:12 PM   #14
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unApple = function without form

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Originally Posted by iMacC2D View Post
Apple Chess is a carry over from Rhapsody and NeXTStep. It hasn't been updated in several years, other than to perhaps keep it functional on the current operating systems.

It's not "unApple" (nothing is unApple, the definition of what Apple is constantly changes) and was certainly quite nice when it came out, it's just perhaps in need of some attention. Personally i've never found anything wrong with it, but whatever floats your boat.
I didn't mean to start a semantic debate. Of course an Apple product cannot be unApple by definition. I just find it unusual that Apple's chess program has persisted within OSX like a fossil from another time. It functions fine--and that would be good enough for other companies. Apple usually wants the components of their ecosystem to have functional and aesthetic value. Standards have changed in the last 10 years. Perhaps it was my hope to start an unofficial list of signatures with this thread. Maybe someone at Apple would take note.
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Old Dec 2, 2011, 02:01 PM   #15
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Old Dec 2, 2011, 03:12 PM   #16
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The Chess app in Mac OS X is merely an Open Source demo, nothing more.

Apple never intended for people to take it seriously.
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Old Dec 2, 2011, 11:48 PM   #17
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Alternatives?

I would like to have a chess program on my Mac that I don't mind looking at. I have heard about sophisticated engines, but usually the interfaces are poor. What are some recommendations?
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Old Mar 27, 2012, 05:34 PM   #18
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I am still not seeing any decent options on the app store. There appears to be a lack of interest in such a program. I just want a clean chess interface--not some jagged, low-res, cheesy, 3D, faux wood, faux leather set.

Last edited by bjm2660; Mar 27, 2012 at 11:21 PM.
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Old Apr 20, 2012, 06:01 AM   #19
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2D option?????

I'm a fairly strong chess player and I frequently manage at least a draw against strong programs (Fritz, Chessmaster ect) but I find it difficult to see the moves on the mac interface. This is because the 3D Pieces make it difficult to visualise moves clearly. Does anyone know how to change the interface to a simple 2D option? 'is there an app for that?'
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Old Apr 20, 2012, 07:13 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by buggsndirk View Post
I'm a fairly strong chess player and I frequently manage at least a draw against strong programs (Fritz, Chessmaster ect) but I find it difficult to see the moves on the mac interface. This is because the 3D Pieces make it difficult to visualise moves clearly. Does anyone know how to change the interface to a simple 2D option? 'is there an app for that?'
Unfortunately I could not find a way to. I thought it used to, but haven't used it in a while. I always prefer to play computer chess in 2D.

My Mac also came with Big Bang Board Games, including chess. I don't know if it is still bundled. It looks a little better, but not much.
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Old Apr 20, 2012, 09:32 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by buggsndirk View Post
I'm a fairly strong chess player and I frequently manage at least a draw against strong programs (Fritz, Chessmaster ect) but I find it difficult to see the moves on the mac interface. This is because the 3D Pieces make it difficult to visualise moves clearly. Does anyone know how to change the interface to a simple 2D option? 'is there an app for that?'
If you click the border of the board, you can move the board around in 3D. If you then move it to be coplanar with the screen, it kinda looks 2D, but not completely. Also, it doesn't quite exactly line up to be coplanar with the screen.
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Old Apr 20, 2012, 09:35 AM   #22
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You can get sort of a 2D view by dragging the border of the chessboard until it is almost parallel to the screen, so you get an aerial view of it, but the pieces don't look good because their appearance is not optimized for this angle. In particular, in this view you may mistake a bishop for a pawn if you are not looking very carefully.

I have taken a look at the source code (the Snow Leopard version) and it seems there is not a real 2D view option. Changing the shape of the pieces so that they look better in aerial view doesn't seem an option either unless you modify the source code and recompile the application, because the vertices for each type of piece are hard coded in C.
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Old Apr 21, 2012, 01:20 AM   #23
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Someone from Apple?????

Thanks re: moving the board axis but it's even worse now because you can't see the pieces very well at all. Thanks for looking at the source code (I'm going to pretend I know what you are talking about). Sounds like Apple has to change it? I wish it had an interface like the one attached. Nice and simple, nothing fancy. Well...maybe a few choices with colour....

I feel the computer is likely to be around 2600 but its destroying me easily because I can't get my head around the board.

Please, please, please, if anyone from Apple is out there reading this, please consider changing the interface.
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Old Apr 21, 2012, 01:24 AM   #24
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It's okay for a very basic game, and there are so many chess games out there that I doubt if Apple are all that concerned over a built in game. I sometimes use it, but prefer to play on a real board against a real opponent.
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Old Apr 21, 2012, 10:23 AM   #25
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I just noticed that the white knights aren't even facing the right direction.
That made me laugh
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