To play as Black, simply flip the board before starting a game.
The clocks may be hidden by pressing the 'x' on the White clock.
Phalanx is an old xboard engine written by Dusan Dobes.
With it one may play a game of Normal, Fischer (castling not supported), or Random Pawns Chess.
Recently, Dusan has updated Phalanx to be a stronger engine, with more sophisticated code for playing at different ELO.
It's level can be adjusted roughly between 1400 (a novice club member), to 2400.
There is also a computer coach (Toga II) watching, which will indicate when Phalanx has made a blunder.
Coach's analysis timeis the allowable time for the
coach to check the players moves for errors. If this time is not
limited the coach is allowed to think in the background.
Stronger opponents can be found against any installed
By default, this only includes Toga - but users may wish to install others.
Stockfish is a good alternative, as it has an adjustable "Skill Level" feature.
Engine parameters may be configured - to tune performance or utilize engine features.
Opening Books and Specific Openings to follow can also be selected.
Other configuration items are straight forward except:
Fixed depth does not set the time per game but
the depth the engine will calculate in half moves. As this
disables the ability to calculate deeper if necessary, the
computer will not see certain mates and combinations, the engine
may play weaker and thus offer a better partner for training
Nodes is similar to limiting the search depth,
but here the engine has to move after the evaluation of a certain
number of positions. (The default is 10,000.)
Permanent thinking (sometimes also called ponder)
allows the engine to calculate on the players time. If unchecked, the
engine will stop analysing the position if the player has the move.
If the game is set for a fixed time per move, this will weaken the
engine. On the other hand, the engine might move immediately, if the
player made the move it was analysing on the players time.
Coach is Watching will open a dialogue offering to take
back a move if the player made a blunder (due to the engines
evaluation of his last move).