Horses for Courses

Sherwood, Russell  Monday, December 11, 2017

Most CC players tend to be aware that engines don’t play certain types of positions very well and traditionally the King’s Indian Defence has been seen as an area where Engines are close to clueless!


Fewer players tend to also know which Openings/Positions engines tend to do well or not so well in but very few have a comprehensive view of this.


This does not have to be the case. Some very interesting research has been taking place at One that is of interest to ambitious CC players is his project to create a Openings rating list of sorts.


There is a great description of what has been done but in simple terms, various engines have been tested and the results then tabulated by ECO Code.  At the Summary level Stockfish/Houdini and Komodo are at the top but if you into individual ECO codes or groups of codes, it shows that all of these engines are perform well/badly in certain positions!  Now this information can be used in a number of ways…..

  • You can make sure your engine/opening combination matches up well (which one you change is your choice!)
  • If you know which engine your opponent uses as their primary analysis tool, then you could steer the game into an area that engine does badly.
  • If you use an analysis technique involving multiple engines, you will know which ones tend to be more accurate in which type of position.

Is this a game changer? No, but when you consider that the difference in performance between the “Big 3” Engines is 15% in certain positions it does appear to be a potential way to gain a nice “edge”

Updated Monday, December 11, 2017 by Russell Sherwood

Welsh Correspondence Chess FederationBritish Correspondence Chess AssociationClergy Correspondence Chess ClubSchemingMind Internet Correspondence Chess ClubSocial Correspondence Chess AssociationNational Correspondence Chess ClubWelsh Chess UnionInternational Correspondence Chess Association