I recently liaised with Bruno Bras
who is a French Othello & Chess programmer.
Above picture is the start page of his 2004 chess program 'Soft Jacqueline Bras
' which entered several computer chess tournaments in 2004/2005 (not doing so well as far as results are concerned).
Back in 2004 several CD-ROMs including this program (and also his Othello/Reversi one, named Inthello) were burnt, packaged and sold. But not sold out, a stock close to 300 remains available and offered at a fair price (20€). Found of vintage chess software, I decided to order one, and happy to share my first feeling about it!
It is a 16bits DOS program, thus you may need an emulator to run it. I do (Win 7 64bits), and used DosBox. Oracle Virtual Box is of course another option.
CD install may run natively, outside the emulator, it is simpler and faster to do so. I choosed the 'pro' install process which is carefully controled (file after file with certainly some checksum) and requires several hours (more than 3000 files for about 250Mo). My installation lasted 2, maybe 2 and a half hours.
A somewhat curious date check prevents the chess program to run past 2007
but this is easily worked around by setting the date (earlier than 2008) within the emulator session. This creates no side effect on your host computer. It can be automated with a small batch file:
A few snapshots:
Level setting (here I choosed English language):
The chessboard, one of the available color sets (English available as well here):
Another color set, and displayed data while computing:
The user interface is simple, it displays more or less funny messages (including some advertising), either randomly selected or related to the current chess position. One of them is: 'Bruno Bras, world champion. But not with chess.'
Regarding playing level of this software, this is absolutely true
World champion refers to his other software, Inthello, available as well (and I wanted it, being myself an Othello player and former programmer - back in the 80's) - this one is a beast.
Playing level of Soft Jacqueline Bras should raise with longer time control (I did not test up to date). Anyway this software is quite friendly and different!
Should you want to get it: get in touch with Bruno email@example.com
(This post initially written in French here