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Old March 28th 17, 07:49 AM posted to rec.games.chess.misc
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Default How to tackle the draw problem

The draw problem can be tackled with a small rule change. For instance,
the pawn can acquire a northward capture capability if positioned on the
seventh rank, provided that the friendly king is directly behind it.
Comparatively, in Chinese Chess the pawn gets additional capture
capabilities as soon as it has passed the middle. In this way, all
non-trivial K+P versus K endgames are won.
http://mlwi.magix.net/bg/sentrychess.htm

M. Winther
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Old March 28th 17, 03:55 PM posted to rec.games.chess.misc
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Default How to tackle the draw problem

There is no draw problem.
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Old March 28th 17, 06:28 PM posted to rec.games.chess.misc
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Default How to tackle the draw problem

On Tuesday, March 28, 2017 at 12:50:21 AM UTC-6, M Winther wrote:
The draw problem can be tackled with a small rule change. For instance,
the pawn can acquire a northward capture capability if positioned on the
seventh rank, provided that the friendly king is directly behind it.
Comparatively, in Chinese Chess the pawn gets additional capture
capabilities as soon as it has passed the middle. In this way, all
non-trivial K+P versus K endgames are won.


http://mlwi.magix.net/bg/sentrychess.htm


Hmm. This is interesting.

I have been developing my idea of Dynamic Scoring some more; in a recent
post, I described the latest iteration:

White checkmates Black: 100/0
White stalemates Black: 60/40
*White puts Black in perpetual check: 52/48
White wins by material superiority: 51/49
Draw: 50/50
Black wins by material superiority: 49/51
*Black puts White in perpetual check: 45/55
Black stalemates White: 40/60
Black checkmates White: 0/100

Stalemate is worth 1/5 as much as checkmate, so the game of Chess is not
changed too much; it's still very important not to make a blunder that turns
a possible checkmate into a mere stalemate.

Stalemate is almost as hard to achieve as checkmate, and so difficult for
Black to attain given the disadvantage of moving second. Material
superiority, initially, I had not even included as a way to put points on the
board, but I decided that without it, many games would still end as draws.

Thus, it is allowing a "win" from perpetual check, which requires a player to
gain an initiative, that seems to be the most important of the added victory
conditions, and so it is only for that one, now, to keep the formula as
simple as possible, that I give more credit to Black than to White for
achieving it.

The idea is to encourage Black to take risks, despite his disadvantage, to
achieve perpetual check - and to encourage White to take further risks, given
his advantage, to achieve something better than perpetual check.

It was criticized as I distinguished between the value of a Knight and a
Bishop: in some positions, it might be good to trade a Bishop for a Knight,
but if a player wasn't certain of turning that into a win (even something as
small as perpetual check) then this valid step might be avoided.

I considered multiplying the scores by 10, but making material superiority
into 501/499, to address this.

John Savard
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Old March 28th 17, 06:43 PM posted to rec.games.chess.misc
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Default How to tackle the draw problem

On Tuesday, March 28, 2017 at 8:55:40 AM UTC-6, Offramp wrote:
There is no draw problem.


There is a Chess problem.

Chess is not as popular as it was in the 18th Century. Chess players in the
industrialized world find it harder to earn a living through playing Chess
now than was the case for Chess players in the former Soviet Union.

Since having cheerleaders during major Chess events, the way they do for
football games, would only distract the players, and otherwise would be
viewed as artificial and inappropriate, other ways need to be sought to
make Chess a more popular spectator sport.

It seems to me, and, I believe, to many others, that there are three things
about Chess that are a cause for concern. Only two of them, however, are
relevant to the question of the popularity of Chess as a spectator sport.

1) There is a large body of opening knowledge for Chess, that needs to be
mastered in order to play really well.

This is the one that is irrelevant to Chess as a spectator sport, but it
discourages new players from taking up the game.

2) Chess play has tended to be defensive and positional, reducing the
amount of obvious tactical excitement, ever since Steinitz enhanced the
understanding of what it takes to win at Chess.

Too many people seem to think that this can be solved simply by asking players to play in a more exciting manner. But what drives their behavior is what _works_ - what in practice actually leads to winning.

This is why I think that it can only be addressed through changing the rules of Chess. And _komidashi_ in Go, addressing a similar problem created by the improvements in the standard of play brought about by Honinbo Shusaku, was very successful, so I think it's a precedent worth examining for Chess.

3) Defensive play, in addition to reducing the amount of over-the-board
fireworks, means that many games end in draws.

This dampens the interest of spectators, and it also has led to uncertainty about the length of World Championship matches - which, at the moment, has tended to be resolved in ways that have not met with universal enthusiasm.

One could have the incumbent champion automatically win in the case of a tie, as was the old rule, and the new rule involves the shortening of time controls.

John Savard
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Old March 29th 17, 06:36 AM posted to rec.games.chess.misc
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Default How to tackle the draw problem

On 28/03/2017 16:55, Offramp wrote:
There is no draw problem.


In the latest WCH match there were 8 draws and two wins. Then the match
was decided by playing some other kind of game which isn't chess proper.

Looking at the games it is evident that we have a draw problem, because
it is becoming more and more risky to play forceful chess so that one
may achieve a decisive advantage. You'll have to learn everything about
the Marshall attack, for instance, to be able to secure an advantage.
However, this is not possible if the opponent has also learnt the
opening variations. So opening play is becoming more and more insipid.
The consequence is that the popularity of chess will abate, because
people like combinative and imaginative play. But chess players are so
damn conservative that they refuse to do anything about it.

M. Winther
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