If we suppose to have 2 powerful computer, that are able to calculate all moves in some seconds, who will win, the black or the white? Or the game will always be draw? (let say we have a unlimited number of moves in this case) Does the winner in this case depend from the strategy? We now chess game is very complex having 8x8 board with 32 peices.


3 Answers 3


The answer to "who wins between two perfect computers" depends on whether White or Black wins (or draws) with perfect play from both sides.

No one knows the answer to this question. If we did, Chess would be considered to be solved. That is, we would be able to define "perfect play". However, Chess is not generally considered likely to be solved anytime soon: the number of possible positions is simply far too great to even represent on any current machinery. If you could somehow store the correct move for any given position in a single bit (which you can't), you'd still need (approximately)...


...PETABYTES of storage space just to hold the tablebase. Obviously, this is so far beyond our current technical capabilities that it is, for the moment, impossible.

See here for more (with further links to a small fraction of the huge amount of research that exists on the topic).

  • I play chess often, and also I am a developer. Probably the chess game is NP problem or EXP. I was curios if there was any proven theorem about this.
    – albanx
    Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 18:57
  • Chess is EXP, probably. The DS explains it. I think that quantum computers will help us solve chess in about 100 years, but let us better wait.
    – MikhailTal
    Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 19:14
  • @albanx There is a vast amount of research on the topic, much more than would be appropriate to put in an answer on this site. As implied by my answer, the problem is certainly solvable in exponential space, and not proven (to my knowledge) to be solvable in any lesser categorization. Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 19:14
  • Such and old game and such a complex one. If chess is EXP probably even quantum computer will not help to solve it. As far as I remember quantum computer will help to solve some NP problems.
    – albanx
    Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 19:21
  • Actually, the game would then be considered ultra-weakly solved, which is the weakest notion of a solution, and still we're far away from an idea how to answer it.
    – chaosflaws
    Commented Aug 18, 2014 at 22:32

The two current strongest chess engines are Rybka 3 and Stockfish 5. An 8-game match was played between those two engines a month ago. Rybka 3 lost +0 =5 -3. Ofcourse, it all also heavily depends on how strong the chess engine is by itself, but I would hypothesise that if we were to take two absolutely equal engines in strengths, then the majority of games played would be draws, although wins could also be possible (specifically for the side playing white), since white has an extra tempo, which can be masterfully utilised by the engine.

You can find the match on YouTube, here's a link to the first game.

  • Interesting this approach "Two equal strength engines majority of games will draw". can this hypothesis be used to prove that two absolute strength engine always draw?
    – albanx
    Commented Aug 17, 2014 at 10:46
  • A few days ago I downloaded Stockfish 5 and out of pure curiosity I let it play against itself for 5 games. All 5 ended in a draw due to material insufficiency or draw end games. I don't know if that might be a coincidence, but I personally would imagine it to be logical that two same engines would play a very drawish and equal game against each other.
    – vs97
    Commented Aug 17, 2014 at 10:49
  • Answering your question, I would say yes.
    – vs97
    Commented Aug 17, 2014 at 10:54
  • Rybka 3 the strongest????
    – SmallChess
    Commented Aug 28, 2014 at 1:59

"Powerful computer" is a relative term. Different chess engines use different algorithms and strategies to weigh what would be considered the best moves in a given position, but no computer or chess program is able to calculate all the possible moves in a chess game in advance, except for when there's only a few pieces left on the board.

If you mean who would win when two perfect chess programs with unlimited computing power go head to head: noone knows the answer, since chess still hasn't been "solved". I'd assume the most likely outcome would be a draw though.

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