While it is the complex strategies and dynamic gameplay that have made chess one of the world's most popular pastimes for several centuries, the evolution of the home computer has allowed the experience to offer even more. Professional commentary, specific in-game hints, suitable opponents, and even attractive game pieces and soothing background music can all enhance enjoyment of the basic game of chess.
Mindscape provides all of these enhancements in Chessmaster 5500, the 1998 addition to their esteemed series of Chessmaster games. This edition is built on the latest version of the proven Chessmaster engine and completes the computer chess experience with the skillful implementation of excellent graphics and digital sound.
The player is offered a choice of opponents from a vast selection of past and present players, as well as the capability to create a new rival with a specific style and skill level.
Chessmaster 5500 offers hundreds of combinations of chess pieces and boards from which to choose. Each of the many boards has a list of compatible piece styles, ranging from Chinese to cherry wood and marble to mechanical nuts and bolts. There is even a surreal landscape set, which is particularly interesting. Overall, the graphics are smooth and colorful and they help make it a pleasure to play the game.
The sound choice and quality deserve special mention. If classical music is one of your pleasures, the mix of Beethoven, Mozart, Chopin, Scalatti and Vivaldi selections should delight you. As for the less aesthetically intentioned audio, the "InfoVoice" commentary and advice feature is particularly welcome and offers enough well directed tips to keep anyone up to par with their game.
What about the game itself? Do you need to be told how well designed and chock full of tactical surprises and strategic content it is? Of course you don't. The Chessmaster series is a perennial bestseller with solid gameplay and a rich historical past, in line with the venerable game of chess itself.
Graphics: Great 3D graphics and choices of board & pieces
Sound: Wide choice of classical background music and verbal tutorials really make the game interesting, even when you're losing!
Enjoyment: Always accessible and fun
Replay Value: Innumerable combinations of board, pieces, sound effects, music, and game skill levels mean that everyone will return to the game.
People who downloaded Chessmaster 5500 have also downloaded:
Chessmaster 4000, Chessmaster 3000, The, Chessmaster 5000, Monopoly (1999), Battle Chess for Windows, Risk 2, Fritz 9: Play Chess, Battleship: The Classic Naval Warfare Game
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