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I'm trying to determine if I'm doing something wrong or if there might be a bug in the program.

One thing I was experimenting with was the search mask called "Good Games". The documentation describes it as follows:

"Using this parameter the results can be greatly be improved by considering the quality of the games in the list. For instance, this function only considers games in which at least one player has an Elo rating above 2350 or one player had an IM or GM title. This function excludes blitz, rapid and simultaneous games [emphasis added]. It also excludes games with less than seven moves and drawn games with less than 20 moves."

But I've found many instances of blitz and rapid games in my test searches. I've already created the good/bad game set as described in the documentation by clicking the "Create good/bad game set" button. I've also tested with different databases, including the Mega 2020 and the This Week In Chess DB with similar results. Additionally, while it excludes games with less than 7 moves, drawn games with less than 20 moves appear as well.

Am I just doing something wrong, or does anyone else have this problem too?

Here's what steps I took, if you want to try:

  1. Open a somewhat large database (this example is the Mega 2020, but I tried several others and experienced the same issue). A few thousand games, some including high level players (IMs or GMs) should be enough to illustrate the issue, especially if they are recent.
  2. In the "Games" tab on the Ribbon, click the "Create good/bad game set" button. After it finishes, go back to the Home tab on the Ribbon.
  3. While viewing the game list, click the "Filter List" button (icon with magnifying glass).
  4. Using the advanced dialog, check both the "Good Games" check box and the "Blitz" (or Rapid, whatever you prefer) radio button. You can also just check "Good Games" and then manually scan the result list for short games, but this works as well.

When I ran this on the Mega 2020, it returned over 101,000 blitz games. If I uncheck "Good Games", simply searching for every Blitz game in the database, I get around 199,000, so clearly it's doing some filtering. From what I can tell, it seems to do the following:

  1. Include games in which at least one player has an Elo rating above 2350 or one player had an IM or GM title (i.e., works as described).
  2. INCLUDE (not exclude) blitz, rapid and simul games, provided they meet condition 1 (not working as described).
  3. Exclude games with less than seven moves (works as described).
  4. INCLUDE (not exclude) drawn games with less than 20 moves, provided they meet conditions 1 and 3 (not working as described). However, I noticed a decent number of 10-move draws, so maybe this was implemented as "drawn games with less than 20 plies?"

Other things I tried:

  • Checking the database integrity
  • Deleting/re-creating search boosters
  • Updating to latest Service Pack (currently 15.27).

I'm on Windows 10, using 64-bit ChessBase. Any suggestions? If this happens for other people I'll feel less crazy. It's not a huge problem, as I can just create a clone of the existing database, call it the "Quality Games Database" (or whatever) and then delete the rapid games from it, it just seemed odd that the feature to do this doesn't seem to function for me.

  • I'll jump onto my chess base version (15) and have a run through. Haven't got the 2020 db though – David Bateman Sep 1 at 6:03
  • I don't really know enough about ChessBase to answer your question but I see no reason why a "good games" filter should leave out drawn games under 20 moves – David Sep 1 at 6:47
  • @David In this case I was just going off what the documentation stated, but I believe the intention is to filter out "grandmaster draws" that would be considered uninteresting to study, though I can see how there might sometimes be useful games at the upper end of that range. Maybe 10 moves is a better threshold. – jsr Sep 1 at 7:06
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The issue isn't with the software but more with the database itself. I rebuilt the Good Games Index, and that appeared to fix the issue you are facing for me.

That being said many of the Blitz Games that would often get captured in your scope are actually really pretty solid games and worth reviewing.

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