Looking for a tool to create animated diagrams from a PGN file. The usual way that animated diagrams are created is through the animated GIF file which shows separate positions with a fixed time delay between the still frames. The better tools indicate the last move with an arrow (like here for example http://www.apronus.com/chess/diagram/animated/), but what I really need is a video file animation showing the actual continuous motion of the pieces across the board.

  • 1
    What video speed you want? Should the moves come immediately one after another, or with pauses? If pauses, how long do you want the pauses to be? How fast should the pieces slide around? Do you want sound too? What video length do you expect? Do you have a file size limitation? Do you need a freeware solution? (I think your question could be further improved if you added this kind of information). Also, perhaps another SE site would be better suited for this question (I am not sure which one though).
    – Pedro A
    Jun 5, 2016 at 3:07
  • @Hamsteriffic Why the details? The first thing is to find any answer to the question and then take a look at the capabilitities of the software solution. Jun 5, 2016 at 6:40
  • perhaps, someone will answer with a solution that turns out not to fit your needs, and your question will still be open... In my opinion the extra details won't hurt. They might or not help someone find a better answer. I'm not saying you have to specify though, just say that "the file size is no problem" would be already helpful, I mean, it can't hurt. By the way, if you don't find the answer you're looking for, you could probably try this SE site.
    – Pedro A
    Jun 5, 2016 at 13:32
  • @Hamsteriffic But I will give the bounty to anyone who answers the question as it stands. The file size shouldn't be a problem because in contrast to animated GIFs video files are compressed by comparing consecutive frames and encoding only the changes, while the size of an animated GIF is proportional to the number of frames. Jun 5, 2016 at 17:19

3 Answers 3


There seems to be php code for the apronus example you gave.

  • But this example does not animate continuously. It just uses separate positions with arrows to indicate the last move rather than animate the move with the all the intermediate positions. Jun 3, 2016 at 20:51

This program suggests a way to easily generate GIFs from PGNs.

  • I tried but it failed to generate the image. Any way, I am looking for continuous animation showing the movement across the board, not just consecutive positions as frames. Jun 7, 2016 at 9:26

I dont know any way to do this.
One workaround you can try is:

i) open the PGN in an analyzer. You can also use the chess.com game editor
ii) open a screen recorder
iii) most probably the analyzer shows animations when you click right/left. Record them.
iv) convert the video to a gif.(XD)

This method is not automatic(and is very slow), but it allows you to adjust the time shown per move.

If you could be a bit more specific as to where and how you wish to use it i may be able to give a better solution. The reason I am suggesting this method is that making a gif for a whole game is very impractical.

EDIT: You can use some programming knowledge to make it easier:

1) Open the page with the analyzer

2) Select the right arrow button. Inspect Element. Get its ID.

3) The Inspect editor allows you to change the code (just for yourself). Add a js command to autoclick the button after intervals.

4)Turn on a screen recorder and start recording.

5) Sit back, relax, and do other stuff while the game is being recorded automatically.

WARNING: Do The js thing at your own risk. It may violate some protocols.

  • This is a good idea for a one-time activity but I am thinking of a general tool that accepts any PGN file and returns a video file. Perhaps it doesn't exist yet. Jun 3, 2016 at 20:54
  • @user3456 with the help of some programming knowledge you can automate this. 1) go to the analysis page. 2) Right click on the right arrow button of the chess board and click on inspect element. 3) get its ID. 4) use js to automatically click it after x seconds. 5) Record it with animations. But let me remind you it is kind of hacking
    – JustAGuest
    Jun 4, 2016 at 6:36

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