In recording a game, one typically does not record offering draws (if yes, how and is it required?) while one does indicate that a particular move gives a check by using + (or ++ for double checks).

I am wondering if this is logical. In fact, it is not difficult to tell whether a move gives a check (or a double check) or not but once a draw offer is not recorded, it is virtually impossible to know it by reading the moves.

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    I remember when I first started playing chess (I was around 12 or 13 at the time) I would not only mark check and checkmate, but also add "!", "?", etc. in real time as moves were made!
    – Michael
    Commented Feb 18, 2020 at 22:38
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    @Michael, see the answer below: it seems adding "!" and "?" violates FIDE rules 8.1b.
    – Zuriel
    Commented Feb 18, 2020 at 22:45
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    Thanks, no doubt middle-school rules were a bit different from FIDE... not to mention I quickly correctly my mistake after a bit of teasing and learning about the correct application of these notations upon careful analysis after the fact.
    – Michael
    Commented Feb 18, 2020 at 22:55

2 Answers 2


According to the FIDE Laws of Chess:

Appendix C. Algebraic notation

C.12 The offer of a draw shall be marked as (=)

As with a number of the laws regarding recording of the moves this is not strictly enforced by arbiters. I did once play in a tournament in which a very junior arbiter delivered a short harangue to us players telling us to record draw offers. I'm not sure anyone paid much attention.

The serious point about recording draw offers is what do you do if an opponent disturbs you by repeatedly offering draws? If you complain to the arbiter then the first thing the arbiter is going to do (if he or she is any good) is ask you to point out on your scoresheet the moves where the draw offers were made. If you haven't recorded any draw offers on your scoresheet then you will be wasting your time.


Both recording checks and draw offers are personal preference, and neither is required in your notation.

I actually do record both checks as "+" or "++", and draw offers as "(d)". I know I am not the only one to note draw offers as I have friends, who do the same. I also record times.

The purpose of the notation is so you, or the arbiter, can play back over the game, and neither notation addition is really relevant for that purpose. I just like to know for my own edification if I go back later.

FIDE rules actually reference draw offers.

8.1b The scoresheet shall be used only for recording the moves, the times of the clocks, offers of a draw, matters relating to a claim and other relevant data.

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    Thanks! One observation: when I read professional game records, I frequently see check notation +'s but never any draw offers recorded.
    – Zuriel
    Commented Feb 18, 2020 at 1:55
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    It seems FIDE only permits recording draw offers but never requires it.
    – Zuriel
    Commented Feb 18, 2020 at 1:56
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    @Zuriel Correct. They do not require that, or noting times...they just allow it if a player wants to. As far as not seeing in on professional scoresheets, that could just be the player (maybe not OCD enough), or there were no draw offers in the game. Most games that I have seen the scoresheets have been wins, otherwise why publish it, so there was probably an advantage, and thus, less chance of a draw offer to begin with. Commented Feb 18, 2020 at 1:59
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    No, I cannot say that I do have such an example. I am just saying that they surely do exist, but more likely we, the public, would not see such a scoresheet because the game would be equal if there had been a draw offer (sure, it could have been turned down) and the public likes decisive games, and decisive games make it into magazines, etc. Commented Feb 18, 2020 at 2:04
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    I love how they throw the caveat on the end "and other relevant data" - it's like passive aggressively saying "please don't doodle or write insults on the scoresheet."
    – corsiKa
    Commented Feb 19, 2020 at 0:01

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