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Magnus Carlsen vs Hikaru Nakamura
Magnus Carlsen Invitational (2021) (rapid), INT, rd 15, Mar-15
King Pawn Game: General (C20)  ·  1/2-1/2



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Kibitzer's Corner
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: I wonder what the computer evals will be for this one.

They should have a played a 'normal' game from move 4 onwards, both sides cannot castle. That would have been good fun.

(Added to my favourites.)

Mar-16-21  pajaste: (17 ply) 2...Nf6 3.d3 d5 4.Nc3 d4 5.Nb1 Bd6 6.Nf3 O-O 7.Nbd2 h6 8.c3 Nc6 9.h3 Be6 10.Ke1 dxc3 11.bxc3

(18 ply) 3.Nc3 Nc6 4.f4 d6 5.Nf3 Ke8 6.d3 Nf6 7.Ke1 h6 8.Be2 g6 9.Bd2 Be6 10.g3 Bg7 11.fxe5 dxe5 12.Kf2

(18 ply) 3...Ke8 4.Nf3 Nc6 5.a3 Nf6 6.Nc3 d5 7.exd5 Nxd5 8.Bb5 Nxc3 9.dxc3 Qxd1+ 10.Kxd1 Bg4 11.h3 Bh5 12.Bd3 Rd8 13.Ke2 Kd7

(20 ply) 4.Nc3 Nc6 5.Nf3 Nf6 6.h4 h6 7.a3 d5 8.exd5 Nxd5 9.Bb5 Nxc3 10.Bxc6+ bxc6 11.dxc3 Qxd1+ 12.Kxd1 Bg4 13.Ke1 Rd8 14.Be3 Bxf3 15.gxf3

(18 ply) 4...Nf6 5.Nc3 d5 6.exd5 Nxd5 7.Nf3 Nc6 8.Ke1 a6 9.d3 Nxc3 10.bxc3 f6 11.d4 Be6 12.dxe5 Qxd1+ 13.Kxd1 Nxe5 14.Nxe5

Without evaluations since when did computers know anything about non-combative chess.

Mar-16-21  KimInGym: They did this as it was a ceremonial game and would not affect the standings. It was good to see GMs having some fun.
Mar-16-21  cro777: The Bongcloud Attack -- An "unorthodox chess opening" or "hallucination behind the opening"?

click for larger view

White blocks the diagonals for the bishop and queen and loses the ability to castle, putting the king in danger.

This bizarre opening has especially won chess enthusiasts' love once the internet appeared.

Be as high as a kite.

The name refers to the cloud produced by <smoking cannabis from a bong>, implying that the opening is a consequence of clouded thought characteristic of someone under the influence of cannabis.

Mar-16-21  cro777: Double Bongcloud forced to a draw .

click for larger view

The Double Bongcloud

At high level Nakamura has used the Bongcloud Attack in online blitz games. Today Magnus played the Bongcloud against Hikaru. Look at Hikaru's reaction:

Mar-16-21  cro777: Being on the receiving end of the Bongcloud - Caught somewhere between a nightmare and a dream

Hikaru Nakamura: "I was honored to be on the receiving end of the first ever Double Bongcloud in a major tournament thanks to Magnus Carlsen". Nakamura most probably thought <they'd play no castle [or Kramnik] chess>. (Vladimir Kramnik: "I am happy to play no-castle chess at world blitz if my opponent also wants to!")

Kelly Woodrow: "Playing the Bongcloud is the worst thing you can do if you're trying to draw ... because as soon as you play 2...Ke2 it's going to be extremely difficult for you to get a draw.

I think the reason Hikaru thought that's what was going to happen was because Magnus was interviewed when Hikaru played the Bongcloud against Jeffery Xiong and asked what he'd do, Magnus said he'd play 2...Ke7, move back and they'd play no castle chess." (In that game Nakamura won, but Xiong was winning until move 25).

Nakamura vs J Xiong, 2020

Premium Chessgames Member
  WannaBe: Someone stole my opening... 1. e4 & 2. Ke2 is the WannaBe Opening.
Mar-16-21  cro777: Winning with the Bongcloud - Tenth Anniversary

The underground Internet classic "Winning with the Bongcloud" is back in a 10th Anniversary Edition.

BM (Bongcloud Master) Andrew Fabbro: "Ten years ago, I was reading and came across the Bongcloud Opening, which had been played several times as a joke.  I'd recently read several chess opening manuals and the somewhat ponderous language of those tomes was fresh in my mind.  The combination of humorous commentary on and the purple language of chess books gave me an idea to write a parody, and hence ”Winning with the Bongcloud” was born.

I'm happy to report that the Tenth Anniversary Edition of Winning with the Bongcloud is available" :

Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Evening: Thanks to this game, can now state with total conviction that I have played chess on a World Championship level. And no one can disagree.
Premium Chessgames Member
  hoodrobin: The Pit and the Pendulum.
A horror game.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: I recall once doing a vid saying that 1.e4 was the best opening move because White can play Ke2 (a potential flight square!)

I found it! (lucky you)

and if you enjoyed that you can see this one with a yellow bear skating across the 5th rank and '...a duck has appeared on e5.'

I did these back in 2009 because back then some of the chess on YouTube was pitiful and I was having some fun making them look like amateur night out.

Sadly...some of the attempts I saw at serious attempts were hilarious...It's got better as technology has improved.

There is one out there, a serious one, where the lad's machine freezes, you hear him trying to fix it, he gives up and talks you through the game from a still diagram.

Then 5 minutes later it unfreezes so he quickly plays out the game telling us to remember his comments - absolutely brilliant!

Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: Frankly, I was somewhat disappointed by this game and view it as a lost opportunity to create a classic, particularly considering the fighting spirit of the contestants. I don't think that grandmaster draws are looked upon with favor by anyone.

Instead, I would have expected a fighting game with opposite side castling and the two players racing to get to each other's kings. But in a flash of inspiration I realized that it's not opposite side <castling> that makes such games so exciting, it's opposite side <king locations>.

So, given the typical fighting spirit of the contestants, Carlsen's propensity for q-side attacks and Nakamura's propensity for k-side attacks, after 2...Ke7 I would not have expected the meek 3.Ke1 but the aggressive 3.Kd3!! Black could have responded with the equally aggressive 3...Kf6!!

click for larger view

Now the battle lines would have been drawn. White can expand on the q-side by 4.Kc4!! and Black can expand on the k-side by 4.Kg5!!. The game could have continued 5.Kb5!! Kh4!! with each player showing its aggressiveness by invading each other's side of the board.

click for larger view

True, after 6.Ka5!! Black must retreat 6...Kg5 so White could be able to increase his commanding space advantage. But at d=34 Stockfish 13 evaluates the resulting positions at no better than [+0.76], no more than a slight advantage for White.

So, the game could have continued for another for another 44 moves with each side's kings marking its territory like wild lions in central and southern Africa. After all, the effects of testosterone are just as strong a behavioral motivation in the human kingdom as in the animal kingdom. True, the game's outcome would have been the same as in the actual game because of the 50-move rule, but no criticism of this game being just another short grandmaster draw would have been valid. And, since this was a Rapid game, it would not have taken all that much time to create another chess classic. A lost opportunity indeed.

Premium Chessgames Member
  0ZeR0: Boy would I have loved for them to have played this one out to the end. Could have been a great one.

<AylerKupp> pretty much posted my thoughts in a much more eloquent way than I could've post them myself (with some nice what-if analysis to boot).

Mar-18-21  savagerules: Hypothetically, what if they started playing for real at move at move 4 (neither can castle now) but later on someone forgets and castles anyway. What sort of penalty, if any, would happen during the game. Would time get taken away or something by the person who illegally castled?
Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: <<0ZeR0> <AylerKupp> pretty much posted my thoughts ...>

I'm sorry for your sake that your thoughts and mine were similar. :-) When I was taking a shower after posting my comments (posting them made me feel dirty) I had a further thought. I'm not sure that it's possible for White's king to meander about the q-side while Black's king meanders about on the k-side without duplicating a position 3 times and triggering a claim for a draw by repetition because of the restricted number of moves available to Black while keeping his king on the k-side.

So I thought of a way to ensure that the game is prolonged. It is very unusual that, after White castles q-side and Black castles k-side, that the White king ends up on the k-side and the Black king ends up on the q-side. In fact, I don't remember ever seeing it happen. But in this game it's possible for that to happen and ensure that a draw by repetition could not be claimed.

After 1.e4 e5 2.Ke2 Kd7 3.Kd3!! Kf6!! 4.Kc4!! Kg5!! 5.Kb5!! Kh4!! 6.Ka5!! Kg5 the White and Black kings can swap their spheres of influence: 7.Ka4!!! Kf6!! 8.Kb3!! Ke6!! 9.Kc4!! (maintaining the opposition) 9...Kd6!! 10.Kd3!! Kc5!! 11.Ke3!! Kb5!! 12.Kf3!! Ka4!! 13.Kg4!! Kb4!! 14.Kh5!! Kc5!!

click for larger view

Now the two kings have swapped their previous control of space, White's king controls the k-side and Black's king controls the q-side. But the process can be repeated again; the game could continue: 15.Kh4!! Kd6!! 16.Kg3!! Ke6!! 17.Kf3!! Kf6!! 18.Ke3!! Kg6!! 19.Kd3!! Kh6!! 20.Kc4!! Kg5!!

click for larger view

Now, once again, White's king controls the q-side and Black's king controls the k-side. It's easy to see that the process can be repeated again and again using different squares so that it would not be possible for either side to claim a draw by repetition. And it should also be simple for the White player to reach move 52 and claim a draw because after his 53rd move (with his king, of course) no pieces have been captured and no pawns have moved for the previous 50 moves.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Sally Simpson: Hi savagerules,

Hypothetically is be correct as this was a net game and the system would not allow it.

However in an OTB game where you have to touch your King first when castling. That is FIDE rule - if you move the Rook first you can be forced just to play the Rook to f8 or c8 and leave the King on e8.

I have never seen this enforced OTB though there will games online or v a computer where if a player plays h8-f8 intending Ke8-g8 they will see their move ends with Rf8. (OOPS!)

Penalty for illegal castle moving the king first.

In blitz or rapid the rules may state any illegal move losses the game. see Carlsen vs E Inarkiev, 2017 for the chaos this rule produced.

In a classical OTB game the player illegally trying to castle would be bound by touch move. see my post inFIDE Grand Prix Tashkent (2014) (kibitz #543) where I castled illegally (but not intentionally) and won.

I forgot (so did my opponent) that I had moved my King earlier in the game. If my opponent had spotted it I'd have to move my King and lose my h8 Rook. I would have resigned.

Which brings us on nicely to:

Heidenfeld - Kerins, Dublin 1973 (look at white's 10th and 33rd moves.)

1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Be3 Nf6 4.e5 Nfd7 5.f4 c5 6.c3 Nc6 7.Nf3 Qb6 8.Qd2 c4 9.Be2 Na5 10.O-O f5 11.Ng5 Be7 12.g4 Bxg5 13.fxg5 Nf8 14.gxf5 exf5 15.Bf3 Be6 16.Qg2 O-O-O 17.Na3 Ng6 18.Qd2 f4 19.Bf2 Bh3 20.Rfb1 Bf5 21.Nc2 h6 22.gxh6 Rxh6 23.Nb4 Qe6 24.Qe2 Ne7 25.b3 Qg6+ 26.Kf1 Bxb1 27.bxc4 dxc4 28.Qb2 Bd3+ 29.Ke1 Be4 30.Qe2 Bxf3 31.Qxf3 Rxh2 32.d5 Qf5 33.O-O-O Rh3 34.Qe2 Rxc3+ 35.Kb2 Rh3 36.d6 Nec6 37.Nxc6 Nxc6 38.e6 Qe5+ 39.Qxe5 Nxe5 40.d7+ Nxd7 0-1

White castled twice! Impossible to put on here but from here (white to play)

click for larger view

If we add a few moves and explain what happened.

33. Kd2 Rhh8 34. Rd1 Rh6 35. Kc1...

click for larger view

We can then play out what actually happened in the game.

35...Rh3 36. Qe2 Rxc3+ 37.Kb2 Rh3 38. d6 Nec6 39. Nxc6 Nxc6 40. e6 Qe5+ 41. Qxe5 Nxe5 42. d7+ Nxd7 0-1.

Premium Chessgames Member
  hoodrobin: <AylerKupp>
Mar-19-21  Z truth 000000001: The <<No-Castle, No-Hassle> game.
Mar-19-21  dehanne: The Twitch generation.
Nov-14-21  amadeus: Carlsen and Nakamura play the Immortal Bongcloud Draw:

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