Saturday, July 21, 2012

Non-Random Chess960 Trial

Here is the database of our computer assisted games so far, including comments:

Mark Weeks our main blogger on Chess960, posted an idea for selecting Chess960 start positions non-randomly by player agreement. Here is his post Fischer-Bronstein Chess960. Here is a proposal to Mark Weeks or indeed any other fan of Chess960:
  1. We play through a number Chess960 openings up to move 10 (was 15) and stop the game then
  2. We play through the games via comments on this blog computer assisted or not, swapping colors each game and I will publish the start position and the moves here on this website.
Interested Mark or anyone? 

The benefit of doing this is we get to see how diverse the Chess960 positions are, and play through any particular start positions that interest us. I am trying to find out what opening ideas black has in some difficult starts that can redress any imbalance there might be. We cherry pick particular SP's to trial as we continue to explore Chess960.

We play the SP like we are playing a real game and we use computers where necessary. We stop the game as soon as it has evolved into a situation where we feel that black's chances are sufficient to conclude that the SP is reasonably well balanced. So games usually don't go for more than twenty moves.

If something goes wrong and black looks loosing, afterwards we will try to understand what went wrong. Since we are not playing to win a game, we freely disclose our plans to our opponent and the broader community as we go. This has the benefit of also being useful as move comments for future reference.

So the more people to help all the better! There are no move time limits and sometimes it takes days before we play the next move.We are building a database of these trial runs as we go and I try to summarize what happened for each trial in my blog, depending on how much time I have.

What I personally have noticed is that playing detailed Chess960 openings as we do here and sharing our ideas, helps improve my play more generally.