Updated: Jan 26
A chess engine ranked in the respected Swedish Rating list, which is an honor in itself. Its origins date back to 2000, when its author Mr. Martin Danielsson published its first versions as closed source code.
Development of the Marvin engine continued until 2005, when there was a hiatus until 2015. Marvin returned in version 2.0.0 released as open source engine under the terms of the GNU General Public License (GPL3). And... stronger by as much as 450 Elo.
Such a comeback was a beautiful surprise for computer chess fans!
Since then, the author has been vigorously strengthening his creation, resulting in the latest Marvin 6.1.0 using a neural network o playing with a strength over 3300 Elo.
Nice jump :)
Marvin is one of the strongest "golden oldies", whose strength increases significantly when given several CPUs.
It is an engine that often opts for a sharp and impressive style of play. He sees far and wide. He does not hesitate to sacrifice pawns and figures to gain the initiative and take control of the game. Very consistent in his pursuit of his goal, unafraid to take risks.
When playing, it can surprise. And its game can be enjoyed.
* Let's see a sample of the skills of the Marvin chess engine.
White is commanded by Komodo 12.1.1, which was one of the strongest engines in its time. Black has the Marvin 6.1.0.
Novelty. And what a one!
Marvin reveals his ambitions - attacking the white king despite a very strong fortification.
Black sacrifices a pawn to open a diagonal for their Bishop which is intended to take control of the game.
Marvin has been consistent in his strategic thinking as he prepares his figures for the assault.
Komodo, although somewhat passive is playing correctly, not allowing itself to make major mistakes. The situation on the chessboard is escalating.
Marvin takes advantage of his opponent's weak move by offering the sacrifice of Rook.
Komodo does not accept the sacrifice, correctly calculating that it would lead to a very quick defeat.
38 a6 ? Komodo's losing move.
At this point, with super accurate play, Marvin would have won the game.
Unfortunately for Marvin, he did not play the best move in this position and chose a 38... Rh8, which led to a draw.
After 38. a6 ? the strongest and most impressive move would be 38.... d4 !! with the idea of sacrificing the two black pawns so that the black Bishop would have an open path towards the key square e4.
For the first time in the Oldie goldie series, I presented an excerpt from a game that ended in a draw. Komodo - as befits a class opponent - bravely defended itself. And Marvin showed his best side, showing what he could afford to do to tip the balance of victory to his side.
This time Marvin's opponent is Arasan 23.4 - a challenging player that boasts a beautiful development history. Marvin has white.
Let's take a look at the situation on the chessboard. The position arose after the Spanish opening, the kind of position we've probably seen many times before. Black is looking for its chance on the Queen's wing, white is looking out for opportunities on the King's wing.
Arasan didn't play his best in this opening, as he buckled with black-field Bishop instead of bringing his white-field counterpart into play.
22. Qd3 !
Marvin decides to sacrificing Rook for Bishop in order to take the initiative and open diagonals.
Was it worth it?
After just a few moves, white has a strategically winning position: all their figures are engaged and active, the white-field Bishop is very strong and located near the black King; the black Knight is practically non-existent, the H-line is open to a possible direct attack by the white Rook on the black King's position.
Arasan seeing it tries to save the game by trying to evacuate his King from the danger zone. But it is too late.
The White Rook although far away, is extremely operative and able to immediately integrate into the center of events.
After several exchanges and reduction of material, black is almost paralyzed, although they have 1 more pawn and Rook instead of Bishop.
Absolute domination of the whites. In a few moves Marvin will win the game by matting black's King.
A remarkable demonstration of Marvin's execution of good strategy, how instructive that in chess, material advantage does not translate into advantage - even in engine games at the 3300 Elo level.
Marvin is a chess engine that plays inspirational chess.
Strategic knowledge allows this engine to find exciting ideas, lines and tactics that make the game interesting and bring favorable results.
Feel free to download Marvin chess engine.
Android – Compiled by Archimedes
Linux ARM – Compiled by Darius
Linux x64 – Compiled by Martin Danielsson
Mac Apple Silicon & Intel – Compiled by Darius
Windows – Compiled by Martin Danielsson
* The diagrams and annotations were generated using Chess Assistant 22 and Koivisto 8.16.