- Wednesday, 27 February 2019
- Written by Angelos Kesaris
As we explained in the teaching program, analyzing our games is one of the two most important things to do in chess in order to improve.
What the PGN is
Chess moves can be written in "machine language" or in computer language. Thus, chess games can be written in Portable Game Notation. If we get the initial letters from this sentence, then we have the original PGNs.
How Can I open PGN?
Since PGNs are written in computer language, it is logical to open them with a computer program. Technology has improved significantly and many different companies have developed various software to open up these games.
The best program to open and run games is the Chessbase program. Personally, I'm using this program. Similarly, I send games and examples to my pupils in PGN format; which I create with this program.
You can download the chessbase reader for free. It is the chessbase program with some limited capabilities. You can view games in PGN format but you can not save them. The file is 37MB and can be downloaded by clicking on the chessbase reader just below this text. The image will guide you to a folder on the Google Drive. Google Drive is a program from Google, I hope you know what Google is :-). This is a program with which we can store files on the Internet. These files can be used for personal use or shared with our acquaintances.
You could download the chessbase reader from the official Chessbase page but try to make it easier for you.
Note: The original chessbase program is quite expensive since it costs approximately 300 euros. But if you can ask for my opinion, you can contact me here; I think I can help you with some interesting information.
Generally, it's very easy to make PGN files. It is very easy if you know how to do it and which program to use.
Obviously, in order to create and save games on your computer, you need the appropriate program. Of course, you can look by yourself on the internet and you can find what you like. You will surely find plenty of interesting choices. This will cost you time to search, handwork and you may make the final decision by yourself.
I have already done this work for you and so I can assure you that the best PGN program is compochess. This is a free program which you can find on the internet.
Of course, you can search for it on Google and download it. Because there is a risk of confusing it I have uploaded to my Google Drive. So you can download the copmpochess by clicking on the image below - logo.
How to Use Chesscompo
Generally, chesscompo is an easy program to use. Its convenience makes it quite functional and you will not have much difficulty learning how to use it properly. In the figure below you see the starting image of the program.
Press the botton "New PGN" to create a new database. It will open a new small window which will ask you to enter a name. Please write your surname in English characters. In the example below, you see that I have written my own name.
It is important that your name is also a word in English because you will be able to send me this file with ease. If you put more words or write it differently, then there is a risk that you will not be able to send me your games.
I suggest that you save this file on your desktop so you can find it more easily.
Then click on the "file" button at the top left of the window. It will open a submenu with some options. From this submenu please click the first option "new game".
Alternatively, you can press the F4 key on your keyboard. If everything went well, you will see a chessboard, as in the picture below.
Reproduce the moves of the played game. Add the moves on the chessboard one after the other, as just they played in your game. In the right window, the program will automatically record the moves for you.
Since you've written your game, it's time to save it. Click the 'file' option again at the top left corner. From the popup menu, please select and click on "save as" option.
If everything went well then you will see the picture below. Here are many items you can fill in. Please fill out White, ie the name of the player with white pieces and Black, ie the name of the player with the black pieces. The rest are not that important. Of course, you can experiment if you like.
It is important to note the place which you saved this file. In the example image, you can see a red square with the file. It will logically open by itself if you made the step 2 correctly. Please save your game to the folder you created with your name.
Note: If you want to save more than one games, then repeat the procedure from step 3 to step 5.
If everything went well, you could see a new icon on your desktop as shown in the picture below. The icon in the example is red because I have chosen to open all the files with the Chessbase program. In any case, you will definitely see the name with which you saved the PGN file in step 2 at the bottom.
The file which you created in step 6 it is the file with your game; the file which you should send to me. So when your games are ready, then you can contact me and send me your games by e-mail.