In the following position, Stockfish 14 says the move 1...Be6 is weak, with the score going from -0.4 to +0.7.

[Title "Black to move"]
[FEN "r1b1kb1r/p4ppp/2p5/1p2P3/8/1BP5/P4PPP/R1BK3R b kq - 1 12"]

1...Be6 2.Bxe6 fxe6

What's wrong with it? 1...Be6 2.Bxe6 fxe6 and White's e-pawn is now fixed, and it's fixed on a dark square, the same color as the remaining Bishops.

  • 2
    Honestly, I don't see why fixing white's e-pawn is relevant at all in this position. The pawn can be defended, and it wasn't like it could advance to e6 anyway. So it seems to me like ...Be6 is more like trading for trading's sake, at the cost of damaging one's own pawn structure for seemingly no good reason. Before considering ...Be6 as a serious candidate, I would ask myself why other more natural candidate moves, like ...Bc5 or ...Bf5 are so obviously terrible. Because right now I'm not sure that they are...
    – Scounged
    Aug 16, 2022 at 9:30
  • 3
    @Scounged That sounds like an answer.
    – D M
    Aug 16, 2022 at 9:46
  • @DM I don't know, I think I'd probably elaborate a bit if I were to turn it into a proper answer. Just felt like giving my two cents without having to spend too much time analyzing everything too deeply...
    – Scounged
    Aug 16, 2022 at 13:29
  • Because engines aren't great and flawed. If you let the engine sit on the position long enough (eg Depth 30 ) yes the Bxe6 is the best move.
    – Dheebs
    Aug 17, 2022 at 8:35

1 Answer 1


What's wrong with it? 1...Be6 2.Bxe6 fxe6?

Probably nothing. At the end of your line white has slightly more active rooks and some space advantage, but the fact that black's pawns are on better squares and his queen side majority will give black good counterplay.

Stockfish wants to move the Bc8 to a6 in his preferred line 1...a5 2.a4 b4 3.cxb4 Bxb4. The bishops then support the c-pawn, but this will lead to nothing against sensible defense.

Both moves can be analyzed to 0.00, so in absolute terms, Stockfish tells wonderful stories.

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