22 April 2017

Caruana on Chess960

The cover story for this month's Chess Life is an eight page feature titled 'Caruana on the Move, But Here to Stay; The defending U.S. Champion plans to make St. Louis home'. The centerpiece of the story is an interview of GM Fabiano Caruana by Macauley Peterson. The centerpiece of the interview (for this blog, at least) is the following Q&A paragraph.
MP: What about Chess960? • FC: The thing is I don’t see the need for it. I guess it’s a fun alternative, but when -- maybe preparation plays a big role in classical chess, but in blitz and rapid it doesn’t play much of a role at all. If you’re playing Fischer Random at rapid time controls the position is just so unfamiliar and so complicated from the very beginning and the time is too little. Any player in the world -- even the best -- will immediately start making mistakes from the start, and I don’t see why that makes it more interesting. I think also people will have a harder time following it because the position gets so chaotic so early on. Commentators also probably have a hard time explaining what’s happening.

There's much material for further discussion here, but the bottom line is: chess is a hard game, but chess960 is even harder.


Nic Bentulan said...

re 'maybe preparation plays a big role in classical chess, but in blitz and rapid it doesn’t play much of a role at all'

yeah mark I notice sam shankland says something similar both for chess960 of any time control and for rapid & blitz of chess

Sam talks about 'talent' vs 'hard work'

- in chess960 in 2:00 - 3:02 in https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nhAJl5zldeE

- in rapid & blitz chess in 1:50 onwards in https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TzrLZ1ym8Ic

I guess hard work = prep and that Sam is using the same definition of talent as what Bobby Fischer said eg in https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A52UXLpplTw (clipped from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-S4BU_AYJEs )

Nic Bentulan said...

re 'chess is a hard game, but chess960 is even harder.'

How is chess960 harder than chess? hans niemann says here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZ_5LBvH6Do&t=3700s e has to pay 68k USD a year on renting cloud for engines. Lol. No more preparation. Just fun and enjoyment! Vidit says chess960 is just like most physical sports https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JxIdCEj6_E8

And other games even like poker. They don't really STUDY. They just TRAIN. I think it's a little different in a few 'physical' sports such as esports like csgo & valorant where you do indeed have to 'study' the maps. The equivalent of 'seconds' there are support players who throw grenades to prepare for the entry attackers.

I don't think csgo or valorant were ever thought to have an 'opening' problem like whoever knows the map better wins or something though since of course the physical element is a huge part of it.

I guess you mean it's harder in that it's like lower rated players cannot upset higher rated players as much by studying opening theory instead of actually getting better kinda like what sam shankland says re talent vs 'hard work' (yeah it's hard work to study openings. but it's also hard work to get good at tactics, middlegames & endgames...)

for chess960 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nhAJl5zldeE

and even for rapid chess & blitz chess https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TzrLZ1ym8Ic