Looking for a tool for designing chess puzzles with an interface to test the user against all reasonable defenses (not just the single main line), to allow alternative solutions (without the usual bother of try again please), and which continues playing after a wrong move with the help of an engine rather than interrupting the chess experience with "wrong move try again".

The idea is to make the practice of solving problems a real chess experience like an analysis session with a trainer or partner. I am interested in this kind of software whether it is free or not, online or to be installed.

  • 3
    In case you fail to get a satisfying answer, try posting here... Jun 2, 2016 at 17:25
  • It seems to me like you're looking for some sort of virtual analysis partner. While I think such a thing could be useful, I do not know of such an application myself.
    – Scounged
    Jun 3, 2016 at 6:37
  • @Scounged It is not an analysis partner. It is supposed to be used by teachers who prepare problems to solve as online exercises. It should also improve on the ChessTempo.com tactics training routine, which only challenges the user to play one main line, and never allows to play out alternative solutions, and just stops the exercise when a wrong move is played. Jun 3, 2016 at 12:11

3 Answers 3


Being a programmer, I have created an answer to this burning question of mine. A puzzle designing and solving interface as described in the question is available online at https://www.apronus.com/chess/puzzle/editor.php. Anyone can create their own puzzle and make it public through a hyperlink. Free for amateur non-commercial use only.

A demonstration of this kind of puzzle solving experience is available as a large collection of mate-in-2 puzzles at https://www.apronus.com/chess/puzzles/mate-in-2/

There is a Facebook group dedicated to these interactive puzzles with hundreds of examples: https://www.facebook.com/groups/InteractiveChessPuzzles/


This sounds like just playing the original position against an engine normally, except maybe with a "correct move" message whenever the correct solution moves are played, and "you solved it" at the end?

I "play out" Shredder's puzzles sometimes this way by switching off puzzle mode and backing up a move. But yeah, it's clunky (a lot of extra clicking) and should be easier.

  • The engine chooses one line of defense. If the problem is to be grasped in its entirety then it is up to the user to come up with other defenses and how to counter them. I don't think that any kind of usual engine interface would provide this experience. And how will it now that the problem is solved? I need to beat the engine in all "relevant" lines, not just in the one line it considers best. Jun 3, 2016 at 12:03
  • @user3456 I see. You want to have the problem have a whole tree of (reasonable) responses for both sides pre-set, and sequence the user through every branch in the tree (or at least every branch for the "opponent"), at the user's pace. I.e. the user plays every line out as far as he wants until he sees for himself/herself that it's winning (or losing). Then says "next" to have the software take him/her to the next nearest pre-programmed "reasonable response" that hasn't already been covered. Interesting. The idea being to "guide" the user to "discover" the main line for himself/herself.
    – Jeff Y
    Jun 3, 2016 at 13:39
  • A demonstration of this kind of puzzle solving experience is available as a large collection of mate-in-2 puzzles at apronus.com/chess/puzzles/mate-in-2 Feb 12, 2020 at 15:01

The only tool I know of that would be useful here is Chessbase, but may not be exactly what you want. You can add variations along with training questions at any point in the main line or any sub-variation. This seems to be what you are looking for.

Chessbase Reader may support that as well, but not sure.

  • But will Chessbase prompt me to play out all the required lines of the solution in an interactive way? Or is it just a way of encoding the problem for manual review? Jun 2, 2016 at 20:41
  • Try it yourself. Trial versions
    – Priyome
    Jun 3, 2016 at 23:03
  • What I want is demonstrated here as a large collection of mate-in-2 puzzles at apronus.com/chess/puzzles/mate-in-2 Feb 12, 2020 at 15:01

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