3

I've been playing against Stockfish, and sometimes I promote a pawn to a piece that immediately puts the opposing king (the only piece on the board) into check, but the computer says at that point that the game is a draw. Why is that?

Edit: Note that I am asking if there is a specific rule in chess regarding stalemate after pawn promotion, other than "the opponent cannot make a move".

Here's an example: I just promoted a pawn to a knight, and Stockfish has said the game is a draw, even though the king in check has moves available.

[fen "5N2/7k/8/7K/8/8/8/8 w - - 1 1"]
2
  • I was really asking not about a specific situation, but if there was a general rule about stalemate after pawn promotion, other than "the opponent cannot make a move". In the several situations I've seen, the King has moves available after being put in check, but Stockfish has declared a draw.
    – AndrWeisR
    Jun 5 at 6:38
  • 3
    @AndrWeisR It is impossible to force mate with a just a K+N v. K - once that situation appears on the board it is an immediate draw. Similarly K+B v. K. If you had promoted to a Rook it would not have been a draw
    – Ian Bush
    Jun 5 at 7:12

2 Answers 2

10

I am asking if there is a specific rule in chess regarding stalemate after pawn promotion, other than "the opponent cannot make a move".

No, there are no special rules for stalemate after promotion, nor are there special rules for draws after promotion. The only reason promotion affects whether the game is a draw or not is that it changes the pieces on the board.

Article 5, "The completion of the game" in the FIDE Laws of Chess defines how the game is won and drawn. Stalemate is not the only way the game can end in a draw. This is what it says about drawing the game:

5.2.1 The game is drawn when the player to move has no legal move and his king is not in check. The game is said to end in ‘stalemate’. This immediately ends the game, provided that the move producing the stalemate position was in accordance with Article 3 and Articles 4.2 – 4.7.

5.2.2 The game is drawn when a position has arisen in which neither player can checkmate the opponent’s king with any series of legal moves. The game is said to end in a ‘dead position’. This immediately ends the game, provided that the move producing the position was in accordance with Article 3 and Articles 4.2 – 4.7.

5.2.3 The game is drawn upon agreement between the two players during the game , provided both players have made at least one move. This immediately ends the game.

In the position you give there is no way for either side to checkmate the opponent. Therefore the position is a "dead position" and the game immediately ends in a draw.

Better would have been to promote to a rook. Then the king would still have had a move, Kg7, but checkmate with K+R v K is possible so you could still have won if you knew how to checkmate with king and rook versus king.

0
6

This has nothing to do with promotion or check. Just the fact that there's no possible configuration which results in a king and knight checkmating a king. So the position you posted is declared drawn since neither side has any mating material.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.