MacChess Belofte

Dedicated to chess on Mac

Information for Chess players, Chess programmers and Apple users

Updated on : 12/07/2017
Version 1.45
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Mac OS X (intel)

Following software is designed for and runs on Mac OS X. Please refer to links page for more information about the individual programs. Since Mac OS X for Intel, the classic environment is no longer supported. None of the programs have been tested on Mac OS X for intel.

Users of older Apple computers can also use the other Aqua programs.

Please refer to the links page for more information where to find them.

  • Chessmaster 9000. A commercial application. Very well designed and adapted to Mac OS X. Very strong and very rich featureset. If you are addicted to chess, definitely a must have program.
  • Sigma chess pro. A commercial (15€) chess application. Integrated games collections. Master strength. Very nice application. Supports changing engines. Integrates with the top notch Hiarcs engine, with Fruit, with Gothmog and Glaurung.
  • Sigma chess lite. Amateur strength. Supports replacable engines. Very nice application.
  • ExaChess Lite. A free chess application with demo database functions. Allows support for external chess engines. Amateur strength but upgradable through the use of additional free engines.
  • ExaChess Pro. A commercial (€ 100) application with integrated database functions. Same as the lite version but with bigger database and opening books.
  • Kasparov Chessmate. A commercial (€ 45) but only 800x600 based application with the Ruffian 2.0 chess engine. Believed to be among the strongest available at the moment. Poor graphics and disturbing music.
  • Mac Chess version 2.0. Included in Mac OS X. The included Sjeng engine has a GNU License. The OpenGL based front end is covered by the much less restrictive Apple Sample Code License. Source code can be downloaded.
  • Big Bang Chess. Freeware and visually the nicest chess application. Does not play chess very well but is a very good game for people that want to learn and enjoy chess.
  • Vector 3. Commercial (€ 20) chess application.
  • Jose chess database. Has an interface towards MySQL. Also supports XBoard and UCI protocol compatible engines. Packaged with Crafty, other engines can be added manually.
  • Jin 2.12. Allows to play a game over the internet using a FICS server.
  • FixationC 2.12. Allows to play a game over the internet using a FICS server.
  • Chess Deluxe 2.0.2. Chess game. Allows to play over a dedicated chess server.
  • Remaining Mac OS X chess applications: ...
  • Terminal Mac OS X chess applications, must of them also run under UCI or XBoard: Ruffian, Crafty, GNUChess, Sjeng, ZZZZZZ, ...


PS: Developers might be interested to visit the Mac OS X - X11 section. This section contains additional software that can be installed on Mac OS X but still requires some advanced configuration.