HIARCS Chess Explorer

HIARCS Chess Explorer 1.9

Allows not only playing but also maintaining a database and analyzing games.
1.9.4 (See all)

HIARS Chess Explorer is intended for chess player, both beginners and experts. The application is powered by the popular HIARS Chess Engine and allows not only playing but also maintaining a database and analyzing games. Moreover, it can be adjusted for different difficulty levels, from Beginner to World Chess Championship. Even though it has a very straightforward interface, its in-depth user manual as well as various tutorial videos are most welcomed.

There are multiple benefits you can get from using this app. Good news is that it supports any UCI compatible Mac chess engine, which lets you analyze games, moves and positions from different perspectives. Moreover, it supports opening various databases, with the possibility to search, sort and filter data by multiple criteria, including game, openings and positions and ECO classification. Likewise, you can use it to study games by different players, in order to get acquainted with their strategies and favorite openings. Besides, you can keep statistics of your own performances.

As part of your practice, mainly if you are a beginner, you can benefit from an integrated coach, which provides feedback about your good moves and mistakes. In this respect, you can even get hints if you desire. Similarly, it is possible to practice with specific chess openings. Moreover, the application supports practically every type of game notation. For instance, you can view or edit variations, annotations and diagrams. What is more, you can easily print such material from within the app.

The virtual chess board looks quite realistic; however, I would understand if you preferred to enjoy the real experience instead. In this respect, it is excellent news that the app supports connecting to a real Millennium ChessLink chess board via USB.

All in all, HIARS Chess Explorer is undoubtedly among the best options for learning and practicing chess. The product is available in two versions. Regrettably, this one is not the most powerful mainly because it uses the single-core version of World Champion HIARCS 14. So, just in case you are interested in the other more sophisticated (and more expensive) version, its name its Deep HIARCS Chess Explorer. Unfortunately, neither of them is free.

Pedro Castro
Editor rating:

Review summary


  • Supports any UCI compatible Mac chess engine
  • Supports levels from beginner to grand master
  • Excellent help materials
  • Allows opening various databases
  • Integrated chess coach
  • Supports various notations
  • Allows direct printing
  • Supports connecting to USB chessboards


  • Uses the single-core version of World Champion HIARCS 14
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