29 April 2017

Caruana's Discussion Points

I ended my previous post Caruana on Chess960, saying, 'There's much material for further discussion here'. To be more specific, I noted four discussion points, which I numbered. The original question was, 'What about Chess960?'

1) Preparation plays a big role in classical chess, but in blitz and rapid it doesn’t play much of a role at all.

This was new to me. On the surface it makes some sense, but I'm not sure what the underlying reasons are. If it's true, does this mean that the traditional start position (SP518) is best played in fast games, and chess960 is for slow games?

2) Any player in the world -- even the best -- will immediately start making mistakes from the start.

I've discussed this before, in A Highbrow Dismissal of Chess960 (December 2010):-

The start of a game is two players following a known path for 'X' number of moves, after which they follow computer based preparation for 'Y' number of moves, after which they are on their own. At this point there are three possible outcomes: either they agree to a draw, or one of them blunders, or they continue playing as best they can.

In SP518, X+Y can take in 20 or 25 moves. In the other 959 chess960 positions, X+Y is a move or two. The sporting side of chess involves a player confronting the unknown, not repeating memorized moves. Is chess a sport or a rehearsed exhibition?

3) People will have a harder time following it because the position gets so chaotic early on.

People also have a hard time following a game starting with SP518, because they don't know when the players are following a known path and when they are on their own. It's easier to sacrifice a piece if you've analyzed it using an engine. Comparisons with professional wrestling -- which is not what it seems to be -- are appropriate.

4) Commentators have a hard time explaining what’s happening.

This is only true of the opening. Commentators can't use the same approach they use for SP518, because it requires experience with chess960. How many commentators have this experience?

In his recent match with GM Vachier-Lagrave, GM Caruana won the chess960 games +1-0=2, but lost the overall match. How would he have done if the match had been exclusively chess960?


HarryO said...

1) preparation doesn't play a big role in rapid or blitz?...
There is still a lot of memorisation that is subliminal. In Chess960 blitz, you can get some really crazy positions very quickly that just make you and everyone else laugh. It is a game and it is supposed to be fun even for elites.

2) players make mistakes immediately from the start...
May be true but there is no way of knowing that and that ignorance makes Chess960 a lot of fun even for elites.

3) Positions get too chaotic...
While it is true that some 960 positions are very difficult to interpret, if a computer can do it, so can humans, it just means a lot more practice in interpreting unfamiliar positions. Realise that when a computer analyses a position, it is not always considering tactical variations but static things like "piece mobility" etc which are all normal considerations.

4) Commentators have a hard time explaining it...
This is merely because they have not had enough experience with 960. Every move in 960 is principled except perhaps at an extremely high level unknown to humans, where a principled move could be considered a "mistake".

Thanks for blogging on Chess960 again Mark! Great to have some news coming in. Hope you are doing well. If only Bobby were still alive, he would have debunked all these false memes on Chess960 Fischer Random long ago.

Mark Weeks said...

Good to hear from you, Harry. Posting twice a month on chess960 seems to be a reasonable pace for me for the moment. You've also slowed down on your blogging! When was the last time you updated your database? - Take care, Mark

HarryO said...

Haven't touched the database in a long time Mark. I think I've missed that Russian over the board competition a few years ago and the two in St Louis. If you ever want to take over the database and keep it up to date yourself on this site please be my guest! :-)

Nic Bentulan said...

So Fabi was a traitor to 9LX / chess960 / FRC even then? LOL. But yeah you can tell Fabi, Vidit and even Hikaru are traitors to 9LX. Sam Shankland too. You can tell those 4 don't love 9LX the way we, Bobby Fischer, Wesley So & Levon Aronian do. Sam & Vidit are kinda ok since they are below 2750 peak FIDE classical, but I expected more from 2800's Fabi & Hikaru. Since they won the 2 chess960 tournaments in 2022 namely WFRCC & Chess9LX (which had huge problems eg single round robin, armageddon with no bidding / auction, WFRCC final 8 was unfair to Wesley So in lower time controls & lower championship privilege, etc), that makes them even bigger traitors. And I don't care if I'm being ex post facto. Hehe.

9LX talk by Fabi, Cristian, Vidit & Ganguly (2022Nov)


C-Squared Podcast #10 | Global Chess Championship, Fischer Random & more with Vidit & Ganguly

(I didn't clip this yet.)
Caruana: Three Intense, but Successful Games | Day 1

Hikaru says 'the opening decides everything' in 9LX? Really? (2022Sep)


Nakamura: The Opening Decides Everything | Day 2

(I didn't clip this yet.)
2021 Champions Showdown | Chess 9LX: Sam Shankland Interview | Day 1

Notice btw what huge HYPOCRITES Fabi & Vidit are.

They're complaining that there were too many wildcards in the 2022 WFRCC top 8 and in the 2022 WFRCC qualifiers, but they didn't complain when THEY were wildcards in the 2019 WFRCC: Vidit in qualifiers and FABI EVEN IN THE QUARTER-FINALS! Yet Fabi had no problem being a wildcard in the 2019 WFRCC for being the 2018 WCC runner-up.

Fabi even INCORRECTLY said that Magnus was was a wildcard in the 2022 WFRCC because Magnus is the 2021 WCC. That's wrong. Magnus was a wildcard for being the 2019 WFRCC runner-up, even if Magnus was the most pathetic runner-up in classical WCC / classical WFRCC history for losing 3 classical games in a row to Wesley So who got only 1 win the 2018 chess candidates. Similarly Nepo I'd like to believe was a wildcard for a similar reason. Nepo actually outscored Magnus in

1. all the classical 2019 WFRCC games played (which happened only in the quarter-finals, semi-finals & finals) --> https://mathematiciowned.wordpress.com/2023/03/28/571/
2. all the classical 2019 WFRCC games played in the top 4 only (semi-finals & finals)
3. all the rapid 2019 WFRCC games played in the top 4 only (semi-finals & finals)
4. all the rapid 2019 WFRCC games played in the quarter-finals, semi-finals & finals
5. all the classical & rapid 2019 WFRCC games (weighted accordingly) played in the quarter-finals, semi-finals & finals --> https://imgur.com/a/hyzJApE

And another thing, Wesley So after winning the 2019 WFRCC didn't get any kind of wildcard in the 2020-2021 or the 2022 chess candidates. LOL!!!! So the 2018 WCC runner-up gets a wildcard into what's essentially the 2019 FRC candidates yet the 2019 WFRCC winner gets 'NADA ZIP ZILCH THE BIG GOOSE EGG' (Xander from Buffy) in chess?!?! HAHAHAHAHA.


I wouldn't necessarily say Fabi & Hikaru are traitors to the US though like just because Bobby Fischer who created chess960 is American, but..........

.....Hikaru coincidentally is a traitor to the US for baselessly siding with Magnus Carlsen over Hans Niemann re Magnus' accusations that are both BASELESS and HYPOCRITICAL since Magnus cheated Alireza Firouzja, Daniel 'Danya' Naroditsky & Ian 'Nepo' Nepomniachtchi. Just like how Garry Kasparov cheated Judit Polgar.

Not only does chess suck but even its players like Magnus, Hikaru & Garry suck. Not only does chess960 rule but also do its players like Wesley So, Levon Aronian & Bobby Fischer rule.

Mark Weeks said...

Earth to Nic Bentulan: Your disrespectful attitude to the world's best players diminishes the impact of your other comments, which are often very good. Try sitting on your hands.

Nic Bentulan said...

Fabi started it. Lol. But don't mind me Mark. You're like Professor X. I'm like Magneto. Btw, it's funny you should say Earth. Magneto doesn't live on Earth exactly. E lives in Genosha. Lol.

1st thing

Anyway, I can't imagine a superGM would actually criticise 9LX (rather than its application)...unless the superGM is highly reliant on opening preparation?

1.1 - Fabiano: "this all prep thing is like a meme at this point: every time I win a game, it's prep"
He said in the last C-Squared podcast. He also probably read some post of chess uneducated here and somewhere else in the web, that claim he win or even is at the level he is, just because of his opening preparation


1.2 - 'Play the opening like Caruana, the middlegame like Dubov and the endgame like Carlsen.' --> an update to 'Play the opening like Kasparov, the middlegame like Tal, and the endgame like Capablanca.' What do you think? Got it from some agadmator youtube comment.


I mean what's the other explanation? Well maybe middlegames but Magnus who sucks at middlegames still likes 9LX, so I don't think superGMs not so strong in middlegames will not love 9LX. I think it's superGMs who are really strong in openings that will not love 9LX.

Note - I say 'not love 9LX' instead of 'hate 9LX' because obviously they won't hate it, but I can't believe they are still like on-the-fence or whatever like Sam Shankland https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nhAJl5zldeE , Hikaru https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2rmYE6TX1AQ , Fabi https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UxjehVA6tgg , et al as opposed to Magnus https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PTJ100arAbw and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DmHrZ2mT6bM , Wesley So https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=awnFTUCACeM , Levon https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wnl-j6gNSiU (I can't even believe I'm putting Magnus on the same side as Wesley So! https://mathematiciowned.wordpress.com/?p=1453 )

And Wesley So I'm told is top 3 in opening preparation w/ Anish & Fabi. So what's Fabi's excuse? Fabi must be HIGHLY reliant on opening prep to talk like this then? Lol idk.

Nic Bentulan said...

2nd thing

MARK & HARRY O I HAVE A HUGE UPDATE. I actually knew this before, but I totally forgot it.


a user named chesscrastination said 2021Dec

'Currently the opening is played by computers, not humans, which is part of the problem. When you have the top players in the world giong, “I have no idea what Kf1 does, it must be the computer” that is no fun for a spectator.'


'To me it’s obvious, not an insight. I just found it absurd when I was watching former world champ Vishy commenting on the game going, “I have no idea what Kf1 does, it must be the computer” 38:41 here: https://youtu.be/q1XFLBJmd0Y?t=2305' - This is when Vishy Anand & Anna Muzychuk were commentating on Game 1 of the 2021 classical WCC between Magnus vs Nepo ( where Magnus cheats Nepo in Game 9 https://mathematiciowned.wordpress.com/?p=1205 )

So that means 'Commentators have a hard time explaining what’s happening' is wrong? Or maybe it's not hard ... it's just different?

In chess - Commentators can't explain the computer moves.

In 9LX - Commentators have no prep.

Actually no I think it's really the opposite - when a player makes a move, they are doing it based on their understanding of a new position ... similar to as if they're making a move in a puzzle. This way the 9LX opening phase is like a 'strategy version' of puzzles, which are all about tactics. A player isn't going to make a move based on some fancy computer prep...

...They can do sorta prep w/c the commentators wouldn't understand like Peter Leko maybe didn't quite understand the same level as Wesley So & Hikaru in the INAUGURAL 2022 rapid not classical WFRCC finals - see this video '9LX WCs Wesley & traitor Hikaru PREDICT the 1st 3 moves of the final armageddon game. (2022Oct)' https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U3J5SsYVAyk

But like ... it's the same opening principles like control centre, prepare to castle, open a diagonal, etc ...

I think there are many only like a few new concepts here

1 - target a hanging pawn since no pawns are hanging at the start in SP 518

2 - chess90 vs chess870 - The commentators might miss that in chess90 you have to give up castling rights on 1 side to castle on the other side and hence the commentators might miss that 'oh that's why X moved a rook early. -It was to clear space to castle on the other side.'


So yeah idk Mark & Harry ... I think I kinda disagree w/ both of you guys & Fabi. What do you think?