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|Feb-14-06|| ||Gypsy: Is stalemate a type of a very small fortress or a poor man's version of mate? It could be either if there was a "pass" option when on move. |
Anyway, zugzwang and stalemate make endgame more tactical and probably more interesting.
|Feb-14-06|| ||Marco65: <YouRang> <stalemate ISN'T clearly superior to say, drawing by perpetual check, or drawing by building a fortress, or drawing by lack of force (K vs K+2N)>|
I may agree with the last point only. To stalemate you need to control all squares around the enemy king, and in my opinion this is more difficult than giving perpetual check or building a fortress.
Now look at it in another way: if you put pressure on your opponent and forced him to move in a very restricted space, with many pieces pinned, blocked pawns etc. so that he has only one legal move left that leads to disaster, you would win and everybody would clap his hands at your nice zugzwang combination. But if you forced him in an even more restricted space so that he doesn't have any legal move left, surprise! It's a draw. Does it sound logical?
|Feb-14-06|| ||4daluvofchess: <...if chess were invented today ... the en passant would not exist ...>
Actually, what probably would not exist is the two square advance on the first move, the source inconsistency that is wonderful because it makes the game more dynamic|
|Feb-14-06|| ||YouRang: Hello <Marco65>.
<To stalemate you need to control all squares around the enemy king, and in my opinion this is more difficult than giving perpetual check or building a fortress.>
I disagree. If stalemate is a win, then every game that ends in K+P vs. K will be a win for the side with the pawn. This would be a very common ending. Drawing by perpetual check or building a fortress is relatively rare, and often difficult to arrange.
<if you put pressure on your opponent and forced him to move in a very restricted space, with many pieces pinned, blocked pawns etc. so that he has only one legal move left that leads to disaster, you would win and everybody would clap his hands at your nice zugzwang combination. But if you forced him in an even more restricted space so that he doesn't have any legal move left, surprise! It's a draw. Does it sound logical?>
To me, it does! :)
I assume that in each case, I have a superior position to my opponent.
In the first case, I use this superiority to force my opponent into a position where I will be able to (eventually) force checkMATE.
In the second case, I (presumably) have sufficient power to force checkmate (no legal move PLUS check), but I instead settled for something clearly inferior: stalemate (no legal move WITHOUT check). Why should this inferior stalemate be rewarded the same as checkmate? :)
|Feb-14-06|| ||Jim Bartle: You're right, YouRang.
Besides, I had to spend hours trying to understand the concept of the "opposition" (I'm still not sure), and I darn sure don't want future players to learn without enduring that tedium. Which calling stalemate a win would do.
|Feb-14-06|| ||4daluvofchess: < Marco65: <YouRang> <stalemate ISN'T clearly superior to say, drawing by perpetual check, or drawing by building a fortress, or drawing by lack of force (K vs K+2N)>
I may agree with the last point only. To stalemate you need to control all squares around the enemy king, and in my opinion this is more difficult than giving perpetual check or building a fortress.>
The "difficulty" that you speak of has no meaning in chess whatsoever. If it did, we could award more points for truly well played games rather than fools mate, etc. One of the great things about the game is that the end always justifies the means, and the sole end in chess is checkmate.|
Also, I am surprised few people have pointed out that it is impossible to "force stalemate" in a lost position. In other words, the stalemate must be "allowed" by the superior side. From that perspective, I agree compoletely with <You Rang>, as all these other types of draws must also be "allowed"- if one had a winning position to begin with.
Also <The only rule that wouldn't change would be the draw by repetition, there isn't simply any other solution because you can't decide who is guilty for the repetition.>
Who is "guilty for" a stalemate?
|Feb-14-06|| ||WannaBe: <Jim Bartle> If you want to see an example of keeping the opposition, go to Peter Alfred Fontaine (page number 5, the link will take you directly to it.) it's towards the bottom where <sueteus po 147> and I had a bit of lesson/discussion.|
|Feb-14-06|| ||4daluvofchess: And of course, the draw by repetition rule is actually the only one where you can determine who is "guilty"- it is the player who repeats the position three times.|
|Feb-14-06|| ||Gypsy: <... the draw by repetition rule is actually the only one where you can determine who is "guilty"- it is the player who repeats the position three times.> The 3x draw needs to be claimed by one of the players ..., otherwise the play legitimately continues onward.|
|Feb-15-06|| ||Marco65: This will be my last post here on the "stalemate" issue. I think I abused enough of the space that should be reserved to the analysis of Janowski-Gruenfeld game.|
I regret that some people can't think of it with fresh mind, imagining that the value of a stalemate hasn't been assessed in chess yet, and thinking of what would be more logical to decide.
An example is the assertion that you can't "force" stalemate in a lost position, this assertion assumes that you have already decided that stalemate is a draw, therefore of course if a position is lost there can't be a forced stalemate!
The "difficulty", i.e. the skill required, in achieving such situation does matter in such discussion. Of course, when the rules are settled, the "difficulty" doesn't mean anything any more, only the rules matter, but when you're still defining rules the skill required to achieve a goal is a good parameter to help decide what the "goal" of the game may be.
The very fact that in other games stalemate-like situations are treated differently helps understand how arbitrary such decision is.
<YouRang> made very good points in pointing out that checkmate is more difficult to achieve than stalemate, and stalemate=win would make the advantage of a single pawn decisive in many endgame.
I think that many games never get to the endgame, and positional sacrifice of pawns would still be popular. I keep my original opinion, that stalemate=win would be a more logical rule, but stalemate=draw makes the game more funny!
Although I like to think as Mr Spock, at least for once I'm happy that who decided the rule (who is it, btw?) was a terrestrian and not a Vulcanian.
Have fun everybody with this wonderful game (with all its crazy rules)!
|Feb-15-06|| ||YouRang: And this will (probably) be my last post on the <stalemate issue>. I just want to clarify my point.|
<<YouRang> made very good points in pointing out that checkmate is more difficult to achieve than stalemate, and stalemate=win would make the advantage of a single pawn decisive in many endgame.>
Actually, my point isn't really that checkmate is more "difficult" than stalemate. My point is that:
(1) Checkmate is the only ending that is clearly more "superior" than any other ending. Thus, it is uniquely the most forceful outcome.
(2) Stalemate is not only inferior to checkmate, but it is NOT clearly superior to other types of endings that are drawn.
From this, I disagree with the assertion that stalemate=win (or equivalently that stalemate=checkmate) is more "logical".
I agree that stalemate=draw makes the game more "funny", as you say. :)
But IMO, I would go further and say that stalemate=win would rob the game of much of its most interesting and beautiful subtleties.
|Dec-04-06|| ||JeLiFF7: LOL what a great forced-stalemate! i love that ending with the rook chasing the king in circles its absolutely beautiful|
|Dec-04-06|| ||soughzin: I think there's an interesting argument against stalemate. In chess you must move when it's your turn. If this holds true then the king will be taken which is basically what checkmate is. It would also make more decisive games especially at the gm level.|
|Dec-04-06|| ||JeLiFF7: <soughzin> well there's also the rule that you cannot put your own king in check. white must move in this situation but black has set up a win such that it is off by one step and thus a flawed victory that cannot be achieved so this is actually not checkmate because white's king is safe.|
|Dec-04-06|| ||Isolated Pawn: I think one possible alternative to the stalemate/draw conclusion that hasn't been discussed much here is to make the pinned player pass his turn. It seems like a logical and simple solution. Also, al wizar's clever K+N vs K argument is countered, as the game would still result in a draw. Of course, the rule should state that no player may ever choose to pass; the only time a player can pass is specifically when he's in a stalamate position.|
|Dec-04-06|| ||RookFile: Or, we could just leave the rules alone.|
|Dec-04-06|| ||GlennOliver: Apologies if this has been mentioned elsewhere within the long (but interesting) discussion of stalemate, but Black misses a forced win by -|
57. ... b5
- followed by e.g. -
58. Rd5 Rh3+
|Dec-04-06|| ||backyard pawn: What a comical dance at the end; the white rook offering itself repeatedly, "take me here, take me here....."|
Trouble with changing the rules for stalemate: so many historical games and published chess problems would cease to make sense. Of course, informal games often have their own ground rules: unbalanced clocks, piece and move, etc. Personally I like the stalemate rule
|Dec-04-06|| ||Total Blunder: That's funny and very clever: if black abandons the G-pawn, white may win, if not, must be draw!|
About stalemate: I agree with Marco65, that one must proof superiority in order to win.
|Dec-04-06|| ||Honza Cervenka: <About stalemate: I agree with Marco65, that one must proof superiority in order to win.> The problem is that stalemate proves no superiority in chess where the only final object is to checkmate opponent's King (not capture more pieces nor make more pins etc.). A stalemate can be consequence of any flaw in play of stronger (or attacking) side or a product of good and precise defense which produces a situation where opponent cannot achieve the final object of play, i.e. checkmate. How ridiculous the idea of considering stalemate to be anything else than draw can be demonstrated on a small example.|
click for larger view
Look at the position on diagram with white to move and tell me who and what kind of superiority has proven there after 1.c4 Kc7 2.c5 Kc8 3.c6 Kc7 or 1.c3 Kc7 2.c4 Kc8 3.c5 Kc7 4.c6 Kc8 5.c7 Kxc7?
|Dec-04-06|| ||Moondoll: Stalemate means the opponent is unable to produce a winning line. The foundation of chess is it's rules, if I am unable to make a legal move and yet my King is not under direct attack, it's a draw. Sometimes it may seem unfair, but I personally think it's one of the many beauties of Chess. You always need to keep the stalemate in the back of your mind.|
|Dec-04-06|| ||Honza Cervenka: <Sometimes it may seem unfair> Why unfair? Stalemate is not unfair even if it is caused by blunder in won position. Mistake is a part of chess and only player who has made it is responsible and sanctioned for it. But stalemates are not always product of inferior play. For example, in a position on diagram after 69.Kc6-b7 from J Cervenka vs L Pospisil, 2002|
click for larger view
black could have "forced" stalemate by 69...Kc5 70.a6 (the only move) 70...Kb5 71.Kxa7 (once again the only move) 71...Kc6 72.c8=Q+ Rxc8 but why should he be awarded for that with full point if he is unable to force checkmate? Why should be this better outcome for black and worse for white (though I like this line) than text finish 69...Kxa5 70.Kxa7 Rf7 71.Kb8 Rxc7 72.Kxc7?
|Dec-04-06|| ||soughzin: Well in chess you must alternate moves and the goal is still basically to capture the king even if we stop a move earlier with checkmate. If you're only move breaks the rules of the game maybe it should be a loss? In a way checkmate is when after your the next move you're king will be captured no matter where you move. Stalemate sort of fits to that scenario and the current rule is somewhat of a technicality. No stalemates in checkers ; )|
It still makes some interesting games(like this one!) and is not all bad though.
|Dec-04-06|| ||kevin86: A brilliant ending!
In government,checks and balances is a system to balance power by allowing one segment of government to limit the powers of another. In the US-such powers as veto,impeachment,declaring a law unconstitutional,etc-are such checks.
In chess,the stalemate rule and the 50 move rule can allow a player with lesser material to possibly gain a draw.
In today's case,black had an obvious material advantage but allowed white to trap him into a position where black must stalemate him.
|Dec-04-06|| ||Peligroso Patzer: A great example of a "Crazy Rook" stalemate theme. BTW, in my opinion, both the stalemate and en passant rules are absolutely essential to the logic of the game. For a recent example of a game where the en passant rule was critical in determining the outcome, see: Shirov vs Aronian, 2006|
In the position after 48. ... Ke8 (in Shirov vs Aronian, 2006), Black is winning because an eventual b4 by White can be answered by ... cxb3. Without the en passant rule, the game would probably be drawn after the following continuation:
49.Kxh8 Kf7 50.d5 cxd5 51.b4 d4 (Rememebr, we are assuming the en passant rule does not exist, otherwise 51. ... cxb3 wins for Black.) 52.b5 dxc3 53.b6 c2 54.b7 c1Q 55.b8Q Qc3+ 56.Qe5 Qxe5+ 57.fxe5 c3 58.e6+ Kxe6 59.Kg8 c2 60.h8=Q c1=Q
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