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Computer Chess

Computer experts vastly underestimate the time required to beat the World Champion. Chess experts, on the other hand, vastly overestimate the time involved. - Dr. Hans Berliner, 1988

World Computer Chess Champions (WCCC)

# Year Place Winner Developer(s) Country
>>> ZIP files only <<<
22 2016 Leiden Komodo Dailey/Kaufman/Lefler USA
21 2015 Leiden Jonny Zwanzger Germany
20 2013 Yokohama Junior Ban/Bushinsky Israel
>>> Full pages <<<
19 2011 Tilburg Junior Ban/Bushinsky Israel
  2011 Rybka stripped of its titles (see below)
18 2010 Kanazawa Rybka Rajlich USA
17 2009 Pamplona Rybka Rajlich USA
16 2008 Beijing Rybka Rajlich USA
15 2007 Amsterdam Rybka Rajlich USA
14 2006 Turin Junior Ban/Bushinsky Israel
13 2005 Reykjavik Zappa Cozzie USA
12 2004 Ramat-Gan Junior Ban/Bushinsky Israel
11 2003 Graz Shredder Meyer-Kahlen Germany
10 2002 Maastricht Junior Ban/Bushinsky Israel
9 1999 Paderborn Shredder Meyer-Kahlen Germany
8 1995 Hong Kong Fritz Morsch/de Gorter/Feist Germany/Netherlands
7 1992 Madrid Chessmachine Schroeder Netherlands
6 1989 Edmonton Deep Thought Hsu USA
5 1986 Cologne Cray Blitz (tiebreak) Hyatt USA
4 1983 New York Cray Blitz Hyatt USA
3 1980 Linz Belle Thompson USA
2 1977 Toronto Chess 4.6 Slate/Atkins USA
1 1974 Stockholm Kaissa Donskoy USSR

World Microcomputer Chess Champions (WMCCC)

18 2001 Maastricht Deep Junior Ban/Bushinsky Israel
17 2000 London Shredder Meyer-Kahlen Germany
16 1999 (Same as 9th WCCC, Paderborn.)
15 1997 Paris Junior Ban/Bushinsky Israel
14 1996 Jakarta Shredder Meyer-Kahlen Germany
13 1995 Paderborn MChess-Pro 5.0 Hirsch USA
12 1993 Munich Hiarcs Uniacke UK
11 1991 Vancouver Gideon Schroeder Netherlands
10 1990 Lyon Mephisto Lang UK
9 1989 Portoroz Mephisto Lang UK
8 1988 Almeria Mephisto Lang UK
7 1987 Rome Mephisto Lang UK
6 1986 Dallas Mephisto Lang UK
5 1985 Amsterdam Mephisto Lang UK
4 1984 Glasgow Elite X Spracklen USA
3 1983 Budapest Elite A/S Spracklen USA
2 1981 Travemunde Fidelity X Spracklen USA
1 1980 London Chess Challenger Spracklen USA

International Computer Games Association

(formerly ICCA)

ICGA Tournament Archive


Rybka Disqualified and Banned from World Computer Chess Championships
David Levy – ICGA President
June 28th 2011

The International Computer Games Association (ICGA) has been conducting an investigation into allegations that, in the chess program Rybka, the programmer Vasik Rajlich plagiarized two other programs: Crafty and Fruit. The ICGA has considered and evaluated the evidence presented to the investigation panel and the report prepared by the panel’s Secretariat. (The report and evidence files are attached.) We would like to thank those members of the panel who contributed to this investigation and the Secretariat for the enormous amount of conscientious work they have put in to this matter.

By a unanimous 5-0 decision of executive members of the ICGA we find ourselves in agreement with the verdict of the Secretariat’s report. We are convinced that the evidence against Vasik Rajlich is both overwhelming in its volume and beyond reasonable question in its nature. Vasik Rajlich is guilty of plagiarizing the programs Crafty and Fruit, and has violated the ICGA’s tournament rules with respect to the World Computer Chess Championships in the years 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010. Specifically, Vasik Rajlich, on all five occasions, violated Tournament Rule 2 which requires that:

Each program must be the original work of the entering developers. Programming teams whose code is derived from or including game-playing code written by others must name all other authors, or the source of such code, in their submission details. Programs which are discovered to be close derivatives of others (e.g., by playing nearly all moves the same), may be declared invalid by the Tournament Director after seeking expert advice. For this purpose a listing of all game-related code running on the system must be available on demand to the Tournament Director.

By claiming other programmers’ work as his own, and failing to comply with the abovementioned rule, Vasik Rajlich has unfairly been awarded one shared 2nd-3rd place (in 2006) and four World Computer Chess Championship titles (in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010). Furthermore, it seems to the ICGA that Vasik Rajlich clearly knew that he was in the wrong in doing so, since he has repeatedly denied plagiarizing the work of other programmers.

The ICGA regards Vasik Rajlich’s violation of the abovementioned rule as the most serious offence that a chess programmer and ICGA member can commit with respect to his peers and to the ICGA. During the course of the investigation and upon presentation of the Secretariat’s report Vasik Rajlich did not offer, despite repeated invitations from the ICGA to do so, any kind of defence to the allegations, or to the evidence, or to the Secretariat’s report, other than to claim in an e-mail to myself on May 13th 2011 that:   

Rybka has does not "include game-playing code written by others", aside from  standard exceptions which wouldn't count as 'game-playing'.   

The vague phrase "derived from game-playing code written by others" also does  not in my view apply to Rybka.

The ICGA is of the view that such a serious offence deserves to be met with correspondingly serious sanctions against the perpetrator. In deciding on appropriate sanctions the ICGA has borne in mind the approach of the International Olympic Committee for dealing with the most serious cases of the violations of its rules.

The ICGA has therefore decided as follows:

[1] Vasik Rajlich is hereby disqualified from the World Computer Chess Championships (WCCC) of 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010.

[2] The 2nd-3rd place awarded to the program called “Rajlich” in the 2006 WCCC is hereby annulled, sole 2nd place is awarded to the program Shredder, and 3rd place in that event is awarded to the program Zappa.

[3] The 1st places and World Computer Chess Champion titles awarded to the program Rybka in the 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010 WCCCs are hereby annulled, and all the other programs that competed in those events are moved up in the final tournament standings by one place. Thus the revised tournament standings and titles for those events will now be as follows.  


[4] In due course those programmers whose programs have been elevated to World Champion (or joint World Champion) status will receive from the ICGA replicas of the Shannon trophy for the appropriate years.

[5] The plaques on the Shannon trophy that currently bear the name Rybka (for the years 2007-2010) will be removed from the trophy and new plaques will be engraved with the names of the revised winners of the title.

[6] Similarly, the titles of World Computer Speed (Blitz) Chess Champion that were awarded to Rybka in 2009 and 2010 are hereby annulled. The revised winners of the speed chess title for those years are therefore:


[7] Vasik Rajlich is banned for life from competing in the World Computer Chess Championship or any other event organized by or sanctioned by the ICGA.

[8] The ICGA demands that Vasik Rajlich return to the ICGA the four replicas of the Shannon Trophy presented at the World Computer Chess Championships in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010, and to return to the ICGA all prize money awarded for Rybka’s performances in those events.

David Levy [President - ICGA]
June 28th 2011

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