[Retros] Illegal moves by grandmasters
Daniel Alfredo Sottile
daniel.sota at gmail.com
Wed May 11 10:33:42 EDT 2011
Sorry guys, I think I misunderstood the statement of Andrew's problem. It is
a Retro one, and a nice one to help understand such FIDE rules.
On Wed, May 11, 2011 at 10:59, Daniel Alfredo Sottile <daniel.sota at gmail.com
> Francois Labelle wrote:
>> I don't follow your logic. Andrew's chess page shows a problem with 2
>> kings and the caption "Who moved last?". The answer is supposed to be
>> White, but here's a game
>> Hermansson Emil (2432) vs Nilssen John Arni (2372), Tvoroyri, 2005
>> which shows that it's possible for Black to have moved last. So either
>> that game is illegal or Andrew's problem is flawed. I don't see how you
>> can have it both ways.
> Under the same rules applied by Andrew Buchanan, in your game the move 78.
> Kxh1 is illegal. Then, Andrew`s problem does have a point. The only
> (fatal) flaw I see is that the position in Andrew`s problem cannot be
> reached by a game of chess (I agree with Guus Rol). It's kind of a
> contradiction itself. Doesn't it mean that the problem cannot be considered
> a Retro one?
> On Wed, May 11, 2011 at 07:16, Kevin Begley <kevinjbegley at gmail.com>wrote:
>> Interesting argument... in that the entire matter is absurd.
>> At first, I was prepared to agree that games should be published exactly
>> as they were played (leave it to editor/annotator/program to note the
>> illegality of continuing in dead positions).
>> After all, there is some history of illegal moves, and it would seem wrong
>> not to annotate the full story of the game.
>> But, upon further reflection, I had to abandon this completely absurd
>> position (and the unfortunate terms it generated -- such as "fundamental
>> The main flaws are:
>> 1) the full story of a game need not necessarily be told in annotation
>> (there are comments!), and,
>> 2) rules are rules, after all.
>> Most chess programs today opt to allow movement beyond "dead" positions,
>> because it requires an added programming effort to detect dead positions
>> (which may -- unnecessarily -- slow the alpha-beta search).
>> Besides, there are alternative forms of this game (FIDE has no monopoly on
>> However, when it comes to games in a FIDE tourney, I find no merit for
>> this "fundamental rules" argument.
>> Suppose my opponent moves after I have delivered checkmate, and I capture
>> his King -- should we include the capturing of the enemy King as part of the
>> official game score?
>> It was played after all, and my opponent and I might easily claim that
>> capture of the enemy King is the true form of official termination (the
>> "fundamental rule").
>> Thus, the extra (illegal) moves (his into check + my capture of his King)
>> should be part of the game's annotation.
>> This is no less absurd than the argument for allowing extra moves (from
>> dead positions) to creep into the game score. Even if two super-GMs record
>> such moves on their score sheet, it does not make them legal moves.
>> In my view, such "illegal" moves should be welcomed in comments (as they
>> may relay interesting information about the full story of a game); however,
>> they should be excluded (at least in FIDE tourneys, played after the rule
>> became official) from the official game score.
>> That said, I must also admit, I find this argument both misplaced (in a
>> problem forum -- and, a retro forum at that!) and misguided (full agreement
>> here, either way, would have little impact on published chess games).
>> Long before we problemists go preaching to chess players about extremely
>> trivial matters in their game scores, we are responsible to tend carefully
>> to flaws in our own rules.
>> There are titled problemists who can not even agree about the definition
>> of an aim/stipulation/fairy condition (to say nothing of the countless
>> disagreements which stem from our ambiguous fairy rules). We can not even
>> agree what constistutes a dual (especially in selfmates)!
>> What gall we problemists have: we lecture the super-GMs about a lose
>> shoestring, while our pants are all ablaze.
>> Good show,
>> On Tue, May 10, 2011 at 11:29 PM, Francois Labelle <flab at wismuth.com>wrote:
>>> I agree that my title is provocative, but I think that the logic behind
>>> it is sound, so why not? :)
>>> Yefim Treger wrote:
>>> > IMO: an illegal move is a move, which breaks fundamental rules of
>>> > chess (piece movement, etc.)
>>> So according to you, some rules are "fundamental" and others are not,
>>> and breaking a fundamental rule would be illegal, but breaking a
>>> non-fundamental rule would be called something else (called what?). The
>>> FIDE rules make no such distinction.
>>> > Mathematically: Imagine the tree of all positions (including dead
>>> > ones, etc.). Each position is a vertex, edges between them are the
>>> > legal moves. The Illegal moves do not correspond to any edges.
>>> Rephrasing the rules of chess as a graph doesn't change anything.
>>> Actually I like it because it forces a black-and-white interpretation of
>>> the rules. In that graph, Article 5.2b says that dead positions have no
>>> outgoing edges, so playing a move from a dead position does not
>>> correspond to an edge and so according to your logic it is illegal.
>>> Noam Elkies wrote:
>>> > This kind of "illegality" is a fun addition to the arsenal of a
>>> > problemist, but doesn't change the outcome of over-the-board games,
>>> > as long as "dead" draws are still not affected by the clock.
>>> It's true that A1.3/A5.2b/A9.6 don't change the outcome (win/draw/loss)
>>> of over-the-board games much, but that's irrelevant. The rules are there
>>> so Mamedyarov's 69.Kd4 is illegal. If FIDE had wanted 69.Kd4 to be
>>> legal, then those rules would not be there or they would have been
>>> written differently.
>>> Guus Rol wrote:
>>> > The reverse however is not true. The (composed) dead positions
>>> > published by Andrew Buchanan are indeed illegal as no legal game
>>> > can be construed to arrive at them. The "law" does not allways look
>>> > the same in forward and backward direction.
>>> I don't follow your logic. Andrew's chess page shows a problem with 2
>>> kings and the caption "Who moved last?". The answer is supposed to be
>>> White, but here's a game
>>> Hermansson Emil (2432) vs Nilssen John Arni (2372), Tvoroyri, 2005
>>> which shows that it's possible for Black to have moved last. So either
>>> that game is illegal or Andrew's problem is flawed. I don't see how you
>>> can have it both ways.
>>> Retros mailing list
>>> Retros at janko.at
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