Three Long Time Control ChallengesAs a serious challenge for the new Houdini 3, last month three long matches between the Houdini 3 Beta version and other top engines (Houdini 2.0c, Stockfish 2.3.1 and Komodo 5) were played. Each match consisted of 120 games at 90 min + 30 sec/move, starting from 60 Noomen opening positions played from both sides.
Over-all result: Houdini 3 scored 62% (Perf: +81 Elo ± 24 Elo) against the average of Houdini 2.0c, Komodo 5 and Stockfish 2.3.1.
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The final Houdini 3 Release version is even slightly stronger than the Beta version used in these matches.
In the new Tactical Mode Houdini 3 will adapt its search strategy to prefer tactical solutions rather than positional moves in the root position. Some clever search tricks transform the engine into the most proficient tactical position solver ever. In tactical test suites the Tactical Mode will find more solutions and provide significantly faster solution times.
The Accelerated Principal Variation Search or “Smart Fail-High” is especially useful in very deep analysis when a different move becomes best at very high search depth. Houdini 3 will apply an automatic depth reduction that often speeds up finding the Principal Variation by a factor of 5 to 10.
Besides Nalimov and Gaviota End Game Table Bases, Houdini 3 now also supports Scorpio bitbases. These bitbases are loaded in memory when the program starts (requiring about 300 MB of memory) and are then readily available to the engine.
Hash usage has been optimized, improving back-tracking analysis. Houdini 3 Pro will now support hash tables up to 256 GB.
The engine evaluations have been carefully recalibrated so that +1.00 pawn advantage gives a 80% chance of winning the game against an equal opponent at blitz time control. At +2.00 the engine will win 95% of the time, and at +3.00 about 99% of the time. If the advantage is +0.50, expect to win nearly 50% of the time.
Fun fact: Over 10 million chess games were played for the development and tuning of Houdini 3!
Página oficial del programa : http://www.cruxis.com/chess/houdini.htm