Saturday, 13 December 2008

playing hamshogi offline and fullscreen

Now you can play shogi without being online or even installing any shogi software!, all you have to do is play against hamshogi online first, then follow the instructions contained in my previous blog entry, in paragraphs 1 and 5.
Then when you're playing press F11 to play full screen.
Hamshogi is an online flash game where you can play shogi against a hamster!
This webpage will explain how to play a game against the hamster.
  For a quick game full screen, click here

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Basic guide to Kifu for Windows

Kifu for windows and kifubase is the best shogi game record management software there is,though as it's in Japanese it's difficult to decipher, though there is a webpage that refers to Kakinoki shogi VII , that can be used to explain how to use this software too, as it's very similar.Click here to view.
Incidentally,there is a sample version of Kakinoki Shogi VIII,that can be used to view your saved games in a pleasanter interface, and even in the sample edition will analyse a game position if you key in Ctrl+H.
An advantage that kifu for windows has over shogidokoro is that it will let you create branches to input into the kifu file to help in your analysis of a game,for example from the hint analysis that Kakinoki shogi VIII will provide you with.
Another free program that as well as providing good AI on many different levels to play against,will also analyse a game position is K-Shogi.It also has a tsume solver, as does Kakinoki VIII in the sample edition.
For K-shogi , just go to the 7th tab from the left, and click the first link down for game analysis, and second link down for tsume solver. You will need to learn kifu(shogi game score in japanese format) from a great site called shogi-shack to understand the analysis.To play a game against K-Shogi, it's the second tab from the left, and first link down.The default setting is human v human so just alter either sente or gote to the required level to play against it.K-shogi has been strong in the computer shogi championship, that's why I'm mentioning it in detail, and also it's free.

To optimise the functionality of these Japanese programs, on your computer go to:start,control panel,regional and language options(in classic view menu),then format everything there to japanese,otherwise you may find the programs don't work properly.Just remember to reset them back again to your default language, so that other programs you have like for instance Excel don't have the date format etc. affected.(I'm using windows 7 operating system at the moment and could only install kakinoki shogi VIII after changing the system locale to Japanese.After double clicking k801 demo,this should extract another folder, then simply double click the set up application icon within the extracted folder which should be 59kb.)
If you play a game on yahoo japan, you can have the kifu e-mailed to you, then copy and paste it from the e-mail into Kifu for Windows to save and replay.

Friday, 26 September 2008

how to replay your shogi games as shockwave flash animations on internet explorer

first of all you will need to download and install adobe shockwave player , then also the latest java release for windows
Then you will need to download a program called kif2swf which if you download the latest java version first should download as an executable jar file.
After installing these programs, run kif2swf, then open a game you've saved as a .kif file and convert it to a shockwave flash object.
Then all you need to do is right click the converted file, and open it with Internet explorer, and you should be able to view your game full screen.
incidentally if you want to save a game that you might come across for instance on takodori's site that's displayed as a shockwave flash object, just follow the insructions in this webpage

Friday, 12 September 2008

How to replay,save and convert shogi gamescores from internet games,and play against eight shogi game engines for free.

When you play a game of shogi on ShogiClub24 ,or indeed if you've viewed a game on the excellent site by Takodori ,on kifu for flash or kifu for java, you might want to save and replay the game, in which case, on ShogiClub24 click 'book', before you close the game window,on kifu for flash or kifu for java click the button that's right under the kifu gamescore, you should get a new browser page come up with the kifu text, then copy and paste the kifu text from either source into a notepad document.Then save the file as a text document with unicode encoding.
Then download the superb free programme called shogidokoro (right click the link, then left click 'save target as' or 'save link as' depending on your browser, the downloaded zipped folder should be 1.41mb, if not use internet explorer which is more reliable).Unzip the saved zipped folder using the fine free programme called 7-zip
Once you run shogidokoro, go to 'file','load game', then find the saved notepad document, and it should open it for you to replay. To save in a different format, simply go to 'file' and 'save game as', then you can replay the game in a shogi programme of your choice.My personal favourite at the moment is Bonanza Classic
Incidentally, there are 8 free engines that you can load into shogidokoro, to play against, or even make them play each other.Here are the links: Laramie, Spear, ssp, tj shogi, Bonanza,Blunder and GPSShogi.If any of the download links above don't work, simply right click them, then click 'save target as' or 'save link as', depending on your browser.
The 8th is shogidokoro's own called lesserkai
To get shogidokoro to work with the bonanza engine,, you will need a file called U2B, which you will find here.You just need to copy and paste that file into the unzipped Bonanza folder.(when adding the Bonanza engine to shogidokoro using the engine manager, you need to double click the U2B file)

Also, if you find shogidokoro doesn't run when you double click the application icon within the unzipped folder, you may need to install the .NET Framework.

Tuesday, 2 September 2008

Lots of free shogi software from the Land of the Rising Sun

Lately I've been like a kid in a sweetshop thanks to a great Japanese website with loads of free software,and lots of shareware and payware too.My particular interest at the moment is Shogi, so this is the web page I have in my favourites to browse at my leisure.
By using google translate I link here to get a basic understanding, though the translation isn't perfect.(when downloading, use the japanese page, otherwise the download link won't work).
One of the games that's a trial version that particularly caught my attention is called, wait for it!, :- kiokunonakanosansankakunari
I'm teaching myself Japanese at the moment, so eventually I'll work out what it's all about!
The best free program I've come across so far is Bonanza Classic.
If you go to control panel, then Regional and Language options, then install files from there for East Asian Languages, then subsequently set Japanese as the option language, you will get a Japanese lady reciting the moves made in Japanese.

Sunday, 10 August 2008

playing shogi on your pocket pc

I've been aching for a long time to be able to play shogi on my pocket pc, as pocket pc shogi games are non existent, especially for english language users.
Then I hit on a bright idea!, use an emulator and find shogi games designed for another format that's more popular!
So!,I downloaded Pocket GBA from this site here
Then I installed Morita shogi (GBA Rom), in pretty much the same way on to my device, and the rest is history.
Now i can happily play shogi anywhere, and believe me Morita for gameboy advance is an excellent programme, it's very powerful, has many different playing levels , and even has tsumeshogi problems,and game position problems, and many other features, though as it's in japanese it'll take a bit of deciphering to fully appreciate.You can even change the colour of the board, and the look of the pieces.(if only some of the windows pc games were as good)
In the past I think there was only one other shogi game for pocket pc that was called hellchess, and it had other games as well, but they're not around anymore, so can't send you the unlock code, and even if they did, the pieces are western style(yuk!)
So there you have it, shogi on your pocket pc.