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Chessgames.com Holiday Present Hunt

2014 PRESENT HUNT PRIZES SPONSORED BY:

New in Chess   Impala Press   Impala Press   Chessgames.com

See previous contests:
The 2007 Present Hunt | The 2008 Present Hunt | The 2009 Present Hunt | The 2010 Present Hunt
The 2011 Present Hunt | The 2012 Present Hunt | The 2013 Present Hunt

RULES FOR THE 2014 HOLIDAY PRESENT HUNT: Each clue below refers to a chess game in our database, and these games contain a banner that you can click on to claim a present. Be the first to find the game and click the banner to claim your prize. We will be adding more clues to this page at random intervals until December 24th, 2014. See our Official Rules to view the prizes and for other important information.

NOTE: You are not currently signed into Chessgames.com. In order to claim a prize, you must have an account. Registration is easy, free, and confidential. If you don't have an account already, visit our Registration Page page to get a free account now! If you do have an account, sign-in so you can claim prizes.

Sorry, there are no unsolved clues right now. We will post several clues each day, so keep using Chessgames and you're bound to see a special top-of-page announcement when a clue is released. Good luck!

THESE CLUES HAVE BEEN RECENTLY SOLVED: [click here for full list]

clue #41: prize claimed by tpstar!
What's Next?

SOLUTION: S Rosenthal vs Zukertort, 1880
PRIZE: A $150 shopping spree at the Chessgames Store
COMMENT: The goal is to enter the next word in sequence, based on the number and name of the page you are on. For instance, when it says "one", you type "two". Most of the in-game tips were meant to be humorous, but a few were useful. The complete solutions and explanations are:
  1. one = two (spelled out numbers)
  2. ttwwoo = tthhrreeee (double each letter)
  3. III = IV (roman numerals)
  4. rouf = eivf (changing the letters in a specific order)
  5. Davison = Baker (the 5th and 6th doctors of the Doctor Who series)
  6. hexagon = heptagon (names for 6 and 7 sided polygons)
  7. hét = nyolc (7 and 8 in Hungarian)
  8. 21 = 34 (the 8th and 9th numbers in the Fibonacci sequence)
  9. LAMECH = NOAH (the 9th and 10th decendants from Adam in the Old Testament)
  10. NONE = ODIUMS (anagrams for the 10th and 11th elements, neon and sodium)
  11. KLOP = ROLYAT (the 11th and 12th US Presidents, backwards)
  12. UXFMWF = UIJSUFFO (Add one to each letter of TWELVE to get UXFMWF; add one in each letter of THIRTEEN to get UIJSUFFO)
  13. RI = VT (postal abbreviations of the 13th and 14th states to join the US)
  14. APBONITUSA = TROCOTUSTV (the initials of the first 10 words of the 14th and 15th amendments to the US Constitution)
  15. Zukertort's Ra7+!! = referring to Zukertort-Rosenthal, 1880 from the 15th round of the Rosenthal - Zukertort Match (1880), implying that the solution is the 16th game of the same match.
Congratulations to the winner!

clue #42: prize claimed by crawfb5!
Offer

MP3 CLUECLICK HERE TO LISTEN
MP3 playing ability required; if your browser cannot play MP3 files try downloading it
to your hard-drive (right click; Save As...) then play it in your favorite MP3 player.

SOLUTION: Stockfish vs Houdini, 2014
PRIZE: A Four Month Premium Subscription to Chessgames.com
COMMENT: The audio is a recording of Harry Houdini in 1914 using early Edison technology. He was offering $1000 to anybody who could prove that it was possible to draw air while trapped in his "water torture" apparatus.

clue #43: prize claimed by druid!
All Hands on Deck

*** TOP SECRET *** Missives will be sent at the following times: 6:22:30, 9:22:30, 9:00:00, 6:07:30 (x2), and 12:30:00. Good luck and godspeed.

SOLUTION: G Speed vs N Littlewood, 1968
PRIZE: A Four Month Premium Subscription to Chessgames.com
COMMENT: This is a clue that has to do with naval codes, which brings to mind semaphore flag code. Each of the clock times, if interpreted in semaphore (with the right arm representing the hour hand) spells out G (6:22:30), S (9:22:30), P (9:00:00), E (6:07:30), E (6:07:30), D (12:30:00). Godspeed—it's Graham Speed!

clue #44: prize claimed by shrdlu!
Touchstones

SOLUTION: V Berlinsky vs J Olsar, 2007
PRIZE: A Four Month Premium Subscription to Chessgames.com
COMMENT: This is simply Braille for the game ID, 1470732, taking you to an exciting and pivotal game from the IBCA European Individual Championship.

clue #45: prize claimed by pepellou!
Dial-a-Game

SOLUTION: M Szigeti vs Benko, 1945
PRIZE: The book Improve Your Chess Pattern Recognition from New in Chess
COMMENT: You can make many words by spinning the dials, but when you make the word "FIRST" the opposite side will read, when inverted, "BENKO"; and this is Benko's first game in our database.

clue #46: prize claimed by druid!
Scrambled
  • IRGB
  • YKGT
  • SSSI
  • TEIA
  • HANM

SOLUTION: L Egholm vs P Skjoldager, 2014
PRIZE: A Four Month Premium Subscription to Chessgames.com
COMMENT: To unscramble the clue, order them like so:
TEIA
HANM
IRGB
SSSI
YKGT
the columns read "THIS YEAR'S KING'S GAMBIT."

clue #47: prize claimed by sleepyirv!
Over the Rainbow

b5 5e 98 45 04 7f 58 49 62 a6 72 08 b7 8d ed d0

SOLUTION: Fischer vs Fine, 1963
PRIZE: A Four Month Premium Subscription to Chessgames.com
COMMENT: Above is the password "bobby63" hashed for security with MD5 (as hinted by the YouTube link to the song Code MD.) Normally this would be almost impossible to crack, but a quick search on Google for the compressed string b55e9845047f584962a67208b78dedd0 reveals at least one site that cracked this password. This is why it's critical to pick random letters and numbers in your password.

clue #48: prize claimed by shoshonte!
Dancing on the End of a Rope
_   _   _   T   _   _   U   L      H W P

_ B _ _ U _ O T

_ I Z _ _ _ O S V

_ E _ G _ _ I O A U

_ M _ _ _ T T _ A

SOLUTION: P Ament vs C Gallo, 1974
PRIZE: A Four Month Premium Subscription to Chessgames.com
COMMENT: As the morbid title implies, this is a game of Hangman. Each line shows a partially filled word, along with letters that have already been guessed (which means they cannot be in the solution). Each line has one or two solutions: GRATEFUL/SPITEFUL, ABACUS, LIZARD/WIZARD, LENGTH, and OMELETTE/UMBRETTE. Choosing the right words, the initial letters spell the appropriate player name, Gallo. (Tip: there is an online tool called Hangman Solver which does all the work for you.)

clue #49: prize claimed by shrdlu!
Cryptos
F W F S Z U X F O U Z D I B S B D U F S U A Q W T Q V C V G D A
Q P G O Q T G V K D Q W K H S U H Y L R X V E O R F N X R X M P
C S Y K I X X S F P S G O J M Z J Y M J S D T Z X Y F W Y Y T I
J H W K S K T Z Z N K T A S H K X U L I N H Y H J A L Y Z W L Y
I S V J R B V B Q T G W C N Q V I T T G O M C C Q N B N L A N C
V N B B J Q O D R K D D O V V C I Y E E S L E E S P A C T K P T
E T U P P Q Z U Z A Z Q B S G U R I R E L R N F Z W S G H U O A
S H Q N I W T T X V X J X M E H B T T Y V J J T Y S E H A G F ✤

SOLUTION: J Klavins vs Tal, 1949
PRIZE: The book Fried Liver & Burning Pants by "Coach Jay" Stallings
COMMENT: This is a rotation cipher. At first it's as simple as subtracting one letter (e.g. "FWFSZ" becomes "EVERY") but it becomes tricky in that the cipher mutates as you go through it. The deciphered message describes how to solve itself. The entire deciphered message is: "EVERY TWENTY CHARACTERS YOU ROTATE BY ONE MORE THAN THE PREVIOUS BLOCK UNTIL YOU GET TO BLOCK FIVE THEN YOU START TO DECREMENT THE NUMBER OF CHARACTERS PER BLOCK UNTIL YOU FINALLY GET THE SECRET MESSAGE THAT TELLS YOU THAT THE PRIZE IS HIDDEN IN ONE OF THE VERY EARLIEST GAMES BY THE EIGHTH WORLD CHESS CHAMPION."

clue #50: prize claimed by pandemic!
Electronic Doodads

Either this thing is on the fritz, or the exclusive German manufacturer isn't as great as people say.

SOLUTION: H Brunthaler vs J Eiler, 1989
PRIZE: A Four Month Premium Subscription to Chessgames.com
COMMENT: The words exclusive and or were a hint to combine the two displays using exclusive-or (xor), i.e. only look at the bars which are activated in one or the other of the columns, but not both. That produces something that looks like "EILer" (see illustration).

clue #51: prize claimed by Sastre!
Double Meanings

Sports legend or layer__  __  ◯  __  __  __  
Baseball or battery__  __  ◯  
Steed or stinger◯  __  __  ◯  __  __  __  
Plunged or peacenik__  ◯  __  __  
Coiled or cause stitches  __  ◯  __  __  __  
Phish man or low card  __  ◯  __  __  
Aftermath or arouse__  __  __  ◯  

SOLUTION: D Studen vs N A Moore, 2011
PRIZE: A Four Month Premium Subscription to Chessgames.com
COMMENT: Every answer fits both of the provided clues, e.g. Mickey Mantle is a baseball legend and the earth's mantle is a layer. The answers are: MANTLE, AAA, MANOWAR, DOVE, WOUND, TREY, and WAKE. This spells "NAMOORE", or N. A. Moore.

clue #52: prize claimed by BVer!
Another Furshlugginer Clue

Convert 4mm into fp.

SOLUTION: M Bittaye vs M Maccapani, 2014
PRIZE: A Four Month Premium Subscription to Chessgames.com
COMMENT: The Potrzebie is a running gag in the early issues of Mad, in which 1 potrzebie = the thickness of Mad #26 = 2.263348517438173216473 mm. A farshimmelt potrzebie (fp) is .000001 potrzebies. (See diagram.) This bit of fun was invented by famed computer scientist Donald Knuth (you can see a video of Knuth discussing the history of this joke.) Do the math (using the original measurements, and not the standardized length based on cadmium wavelengths) and you'll get the game ID, almost exactly 1767293.

SOME GENERAL TIPS AND HINTS:

  1. This list is designed to provide some helpful hints and tips to win the contest. See the Official Rules for complete information.
  2. Bookmark this page and check back frequently. You never know when the next clue might appear, and as soon as it does, the race is on.
  3. Each clue has a title. Occasionally the title is critical to solving the clue, most of the time it's intended to be a hint, and sometimes it's utterly meaningless.
  4. Some clues involve initials. E.g., the clue "B.F. vs B.S." might refer to Bobby Fischer vs Boris Spassky. But don't expect the obvious: we like to be intentionally misleading, too.
  5. If you are trying to solve a clue, keep your eye out for a seven-digit game ID number, for that is the index to all games in our database. For example, to see game number 1234567 you just go to http://www.chessgames.com/1234567. (Alternately, you can enter the 7-digit number into our EZ Search on the homepage.) Be aware that the valid range of game ID's goes from 1,000,000 to (approx.) 1,780,000. So you don't have to examine all 10 million numbers, "only" about 780 thousand.
  6. Because every valid game ID begins with the numeral "1", if you see a sequence of 7 items try to figure out how the first item could possibly be interpreted as a "1"--once you've got that, the rest may follow.
  7. Starting in 2012, all clues will have titles. These titles may provide additional hints to help solve the problem, although some are red herrings.
  8. Some clues draw upon popular chess literature and anecdotes.
  9. Not all clues will narrow the field down to a single game; some clues may refer to more than one possible game. Some clues are very hard exactly because they are very vague. For clues like these, you'll simply have to search through the possible games and hope that you get lucky. We're not cruel: we try to keep the number of possibilities down to a manageable number.
  10. Some clues involve anagrams. For example, if a clue was "Apply Humor 1850" then you might want to look at Paul Morphy games from 1850. ("Apply Humor" is an anagram of "Paul Morphy".)
  11. We like to pick games from collections, so don't rule out the Chess Game Collection Search as a solving method.
  12. Some clues are puns, similar to what you might find on our Game of the Day. The Game of the Day Archive might come in handy, even though it only goes back one year.
  13. For some clues, a knowledge of chess players and chess history is helpful--but there are also references to literature, language, pop culture, mathematics, and the arts.
  14. Many clues are intentionally misleading, in the spirit of crossword puzzles.
  15. Some clues look easy and truly are. We call these "race clues" because once it's released, the race is on to get to the right game page and claim the prize.
  16. Sometimes a clue will be very hard, and then a subsequent clue will make a reference designed to act as a hint for the earlier very hard clue. So if everybody is stuck on a real stumper, pay careful attention to the new clues being released.
  17. We promise that we will never insert hints into the HTML of the pages. This includes the filenames (e.g. what the clue graphic file is named in our web server) as well as "alt text" that we use for our graphics. In other words, there's no point in viewing the hidden elements of the HTML page, because we assure you that it will never help.
  18. Don't ask the chessgames administrators for any clarification of the meanings of clues. Some of them are designed to be confusing and ambiguous; we will refuse to clarify their meaning. However, we sometimes offer additional hints to clues which go unsolved for a long period of time.
  19. To give everybody a fair chance, there is a limit of five (5) prizes per member. If you are skilled enough to win 5 prizes you'll have to stop playing until next year.
  20. It is possible to design software that downloads thousands of games in bulk to scan the HTML pages for prize graphics. This is regarded as cheating. We have measures in place designed to detect and prevent this. Anybody caught using these methods will be disqualified, and the prizes will not be awarded but instead returned to the prize pool.
  21. Chessgames.com will be the most important site to use for all clues, but being skilled with Google.com can also help a lot. Some of the clues will involve anagrams, for which the Internet Anagram Server is an indispensable resource. Cryptograms are easily cracked with an online tool such as QuipQuip. For questions of history, art, mathematics, or a number of other subjects that our clues reference, Wikipedia will surely come in handy. Having a good dictionary will also be an asset.
  22. There is no rule against discussing clues in progress. Traditionally, this is done at the Kibitzer's Café.
  23. Since many clues refer to player names, our Player Directory will be a valuable tool. When searching for players by name, it's probably best to use the Advanced Search on the homepage.

    and finally:

  24. This contest would not exist were it not for the generous contributions of our sponsors. Whether or not you win, you should take a minute to visit their websites and see the fine publications and merchandise they have to offer.


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