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Mephisto (Computer)
Number of games in database: 76
Years covered: 1983 to 1998
Overall record: +26 -38 =12 (42.1%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games.

Repertoire Explorer
Most played openings
D30 Queen's Gambit Declined (3 games)
A06 Reti Opening (3 games)
B22 Sicilian, Alapin (3 games)
A07 King's Indian Attack (3 games)
D93 Grunfeld, with Bf4 & e3 (2 games)
B13 Caro-Kann, Exchange (2 games)
D20 Queen's Gambit Accepted (2 games)
C43 Petrov, Modern Attack (2 games)
D16 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav (2 games)
C30 King's Gambit Declined (2 games)

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[what is this?]

It is related to the REBEL (Computer) & Pro Deo engines, but not Mephisto (Automaton). Richard Lang programmed parts of Chess Genius (Computer) before continuing on with the authorship of Mephisto.

References: (1) Wikipedia article: Mephisto (chess computer), (2) (current owner of the Mephisto brand), (3)

Last updated: 2019-07-02 08:04:48

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 page 1 of 4; games 1-25 of 76  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. Brucher vs Mephisto  0-1491983Biel opC34 King's Gambit Accepted
2. Karpov vs Mephisto ½-½251983Simul, 21bC67 Ruy Lopez
3. W Taeger vs Mephisto  1-0251984Berlin OpenA00 Uncommon Opening
4. Kasparov vs Mephisto 1-0331985Hamburg sim-32 (8)B05 Alekhine's Defense, Modern
5. Kasparov vs Mephisto 1-0211985Hamburg sim-32 (7)A07 King's Indian Attack
6. Kasparov vs Mephisto 1-0431985Hamburg sim-32 (1)B14 Caro-Kann, Panov-Botvinnik Attack
7. Kasparov vs Mephisto 1-0421985Hamburg sim-32 (2)B90 Sicilian, Najdorf
8. Kasparov vs Mephisto 1-0411985Hamburg sim-32 (3)C72 Ruy Lopez, Modern Steinitz Defense, 5.O-O
9. Kasparov vs Mephisto 1-0551985Hamburg sim-32 (4)C97 Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin
10. Kasparov vs Mephisto 1-0411985Hamburg sim-32 (5)D11 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
11. Kasparov vs Mephisto 1-0431985Hamburg sim-32 (6)E01 Catalan, Closed
12. Kasparov vs Mephisto 1-0361985Blindfold simul, 10bC97 Ruy Lopez, Closed, Chigorin
13. Mephisto vs K Spraggett  0-1381986Vienna op2B40 Sicilian
14. Benjamin vs Mephisto 1-0371987Simul, 31bD99 Grunfeld Defense, Smyslov
15. Mephisto vs A Bachmann 1-0111988BerlinD93 Grunfeld, with Bf4 & e3
16. Mephisto vs Deep Thought  0-1731988Orlando ACMA21 English
17. Mephisto vs I Ivanov  1-0421989Long Beach us-opA40 Queen's Pawn Game
18. Mephisto vs O Sarapu 1-0121989Computer GameC24 Bishop's Opening
19. Mephisto vs M Hampl  0-137198912th Waitakere Trust OpenE32 Nimzo-Indian, Classical
20. Mephisto vs Deep Thought  1-064198920th NACCCD25 Queen's Gambit Accepted
21. Karpov vs Mephisto 0-1831990/- MunichD16 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
22. Super Forte vs Mephisto  1-05819906+6C30 King's Gambit Declined
23. W Schmidt vs Mephisto  ½-½241990Dortmund opD30 Queen's Gambit Declined
24. P Buecker vs Mephisto  0-1371990Dortmund-CC34 King's Gambit Accepted
25. Mephisto vs Conchess 1-04419908+7C55 Two Knights Defense
 page 1 of 4; games 1-25 of 76  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Mephisto wins | Mephisto loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
Aug-16-04  tomh72000: OK, I've just found out that the 19th century Mephisto was actually an automaton for which Gunsberg is said to be responsible. The modern computer must be named after it.
Aug-16-04  Kaspy2: besides that Mephisto is a well known character form JW Goethe in FAUST, namely the devil like Joe Black or something...
Premium Chessgames Member
  cu8sfan: Gebraucht der Zeit, sie geht so schnell von hinnen,
Doch Ordnung lehrt Euch Zeit gewinnen.
Mein teurer Freund, ich rat Euch drum
Zuerst Collegium Logicum.
Dec-15-04  stenis3: Some information about "Mephisto":
It's a many many times computer champion,but what spetial about it,that it was from the beginning a comertial available stand-alone chess mini - computer,which never been upgrated,it played an extreamly strong chess and therefore survived untill 1998-1999 as one of the leading chess computers. ( it became champion by beating supercomputers along with PC-based chess programs)
Premium Chessgames Member The 19th century Mephisto is listed under Mephisto (Isador Gunsberg).
Premium Chessgames Member
  BishopBerkeley: From Bill Wall's Computer Chess History:

"In 1990 World Champion Anatoly Karpov lost to MEPHISTO in a simultaneous exhibition in Munich. MEPHISTO also beat grandmasters Robert Huebner and David Bronstein. MEPHISTO won the German blitz championship and earned an International Master norm by scoring 7-4 in the Dortmund Open."

I guess it should come as no surprise then that Mephisto) was the 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, and 1990 World Microcomputer Chess Champion (see bottom of this page, second list):

A line of products bearing the Mephisto name (and perhaps similar to the original Mephisto?) are still sold (scroll down to see):

All rather interesting!

(: ♗ Bishop Berkeley ♗ :)

Sep-28-05  vonKrolock: The history of the Chess playing machine is fascinating, indeed... <MEPHISTO also beat grandmasters Robert Huebner and David Bronstein.> BofB, Dr. Hübner refused to play Computers as a principle, so maybe this defeat was by W0?! - Bronstein had a particular system for playing agaisnt the machine, so some times this could turn in he being defeated too...
Sep-28-05  Schwebbz: Mephisto's programmer, Ed Schröeder, later ported its software to the PC and renamed it Rebel. this program is as yet undefeated in match play human granmasters, despite facing players like Anand, van der Wiel, van Wely, and Yussupov. Schröeder's program was not a commercial success, however, and now he's giving his progam away for free(!) under the name of Pro Deo. The latest version can be downloaded from
Mar-08-10  rapidcitychess: Mephisto is not hyper strong as demonstrated by IM Jeremy Silman.It thinks that bishops are always superior knights. My source is Jeremy Silman's endgame course.
Apr-09-13  Abdel Irada: Mephisto is short for Mephistopheles (from Hebrew /mephitz/ [destroyer] + /tophel/ [liar]), the demonic tempter of the eponymous protagonist in Christopher Marlowe's _The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus_.

(A second etymology has also been suggested: from the Greek /me-/ [a negation] + /phos/ [light] + /philis/ [loving], inferably to suggest a creature of (moral or spiritual) darkness.)

Mar-02-15  whiteshark: "<Mephisto was a family of dedicated chess computers>, produced and traded by Hegener & Glaser since 1980, starting with Mephisto I-III by Elmar Henne and Thomas Nitsche. In 1985 Richard Lang became primary Mephisto programmer. All his Mephisto programs were written in 68000 Assembly.

They competed in various World- and World Microcomputer Chess Championships as well as Computer Olympiad and ACM North American Computer Chess Championship from 1985 until 1993, most often operated by Richard Lang himself and/or opening book author and chess advisor Ossi Weiner.

It was in 1994 when Eric Winkler, CEO of Saitek Ltd., acquired Hegener & Glaser to continue the Mephisto trademark, but no longer with programs of Richard Lang, who had developed Chess Genius for the PC market to persist his long term collaboration with Ossi Weiner until 2003."


Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: It would need only a few whistling cassettes of recent opening theory and in a few days it would be World Computer Chess Champion again.
Jan-02-18  thegoodanarchist: < whiteshark: "<Mephisto was a family of dedicated chess computers>, produced and traded by Hegener & Glaser since 1980, starting with Mephisto I-III by Elmar Henne and Thomas Nitsche. >

Why did they name it "Mephisto"?

They should have named it "Tickle Me Elmar"

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