Questions tagged [problems]

Chess problems consist of board position and a task. Most ask for a line of play that mates black in a set amount of moves, or a combination that results in a winning position. Many other types exist, including, but not limited to, construction tasks for various positions and proof games that have numerous goals, selfmates, helpmates, and retrograde analysis. Tournaments and championships exist for composing of original problems and for speed-solving.

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2
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1answer
27 views

What is the maximum number of checked squares on a board that delivers checkmate without a draw?

I’ve long dreamt of delivering a “super checkmate”. Imagine that as his dying wish, when in checkmate, the king can magically transport himself to any open square on the board. What is the board ...
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1answer
31 views

Random Checkmate Question

Well, I looked at some long checkmates, and I wonder, what is the longest checkmate a human has composed?
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1answer
39 views

Which legal position has the smallest number of moves in a “forced loop”?

Consider this (illegal) position. [FEN "5n1k/3p1p1p/3PpPpP/4P1P1/1p1p4/pPpPp3/P1P1P3/K1N5 w - - 0 1"] If we do not consider the position's illegality, and the fact that it is clearly ...
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0answers
59 views

What is the theoretical maximal total of material for the insufficient material draw? [duplicate]

The insufficient mating material rule says that the game is immediately declared a draw if there is no way to end the game in checkmate. This usually happens in KB vs K or KN vs K endgames. However, ...
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0answers
20 views

Examples of Debunked Problems [duplicate]

Are there any problems that have solutions which have been debunked?
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1answer
77 views

Infinite sequence of consecutive checks allowing more pieces (say 9+ queens)

This is a task related to this question: Theoretical limit for the number of consecutive checks?. By a sequence of consecutive check, what we mean is white giving check, black replying with a check, ...
5
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1answer
74 views

How much material is needed to force the capture of a lone queen (for example in horde chess)?

In horde chess, the following starting position is used: [FEN "rnbqkbnr/pppppppp/8/1PP2PP1/PPPPPPPP/PPPPPPPP/PPPPPPPP/PPPPPPPP w - - 0 1"] The goal of White is to checkmate Black; the goal ...
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1answer
69 views

Calculating the precise number of combinations of possible moves from a given position

I was surprised Bobby Fischer couldn't find a mate in 3 within 30 minutes in this problem by Pal Benko. This made me wonder-how many actual moves are possible with so few pieces left in only 3 moves? [...
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3answers
407 views

Can White defend and possibly win?

[FEN "1nkr2nr/pppp2pp/2b2p2/3q4/3P4/1NQ5/P1P2PPP/R1B1R1K1 w KQkq - 0 1"] Can White possibly win in this position and avoid a queen mate on g2?
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1answer
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When was it possible for a player's king to be attacked by 3 of the opponent's pieces?

According to the current FIDE Laws of Chess: 3.9.1 The king is said to be 'in check' if it is attacked by one or more of the opponent's pieces, even if such pieces are constrained from moving to ...
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1answer
44 views

What’s the difference between Partial Retrograde Analysis and Retro Strategy?

What’s the difference between Partial Retrograde Analysis (PRA) and Retro Strategy (RS) which are different ways of interpreting retrograde analysis chess problems?
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1answer
62 views

Maximum number of quiet moves in a position

The question of how many captures a position can have has been asked in the past: Maximum number of captures in a position Without captures, and without promotion, which I define as “quiet” moves, ...
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1answer
264 views

How many queens can be on the board without neither forced mate nor forced stalemate (53?)?

I was wondering how many queens can be put on boards without the position being forced mate or forced stalemate. The best I came up with is 53 in position bellow: [FEN "QQQQQRK1/QQQQQPr1/QQQQQRNk/...
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0answers
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How are ratings determined for training puzzles on lichess.org? [duplicate]

On lichess.org, how are the ratings for the tactical puzzles computed? I am trying to understand how some puzzles I find challenging are as low as the 1400s, while others that seem obvious are at ...
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5answers
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Why is Ne2 better than Nf3?

I played Nf3 for attacking on king side which is about to castle having some plans to make a battery in future after castling but I feel Ne2 is making a block for Re1 at some point. Any suggestions? [...
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1answer
173 views

Positions that stump engines

Chess engines are so strong that it is becoming increasingly hard to find positions that they are demonstrably evaluating incorrectly. I'm interested in collecting examples—if there are any&...
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2answers
225 views

Which piece combinations can mate a lone king without being aided by the attacking king?

Clearly not a practical question since the king can and should be used in the endgame, but I was curious if anyone has done a comprehensive analysis of which combinations of pieces (including some ...
1
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1answer
98 views

What is the fastest possible stalemate by castling?

It is known what the fastest stalemate is. But what but is the fastest possbile stalemate in which castling must be the last move? 33 ply is my best result so far. [FEN ""] 1. e4 h5 2. Qxh5 d6 3. ...
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1answer
143 views

Gyula Breyer joke composition cooked?

I recently bought the delightful book Outrageous Chess Problems by Burt Hochberg, which among other things contains some interesting joke compositions. I have a question about Problem 102 (diagrammed ...
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2answers
3k views

What moves solve this mate in 2?

It’s White to move and mate in 2 moves. [FEN "7r/1p3Q1p/2q5/3bk3/1Q2p3/2P5/r2P2PP/2KR4 w - - 0 1"]
26
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4answers
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How can I prevent checkmate in this position?

It is White's turn to move. How can White avoid a checkmate? [FEN "8/1kpP2q1/1p2P1p1/1P3pP1/5p1K/5P2/6P1/R7 w - - 0 1"]
8
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2answers
281 views

Outside-the-box mate-in-one challenge

I've received an (I would say impossible) mate-in-one challenge and I have already checked all movements, but couldn't solve it yet. It came from a trustable source and they say you need to think ...
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2answers
186 views

Challenge: Create the longest set of moves where the game is able to be perfectly reproduced from only current board state and move number

The challenge is to create the longest list of half moves whereby an AI could re-create that list of moves perfectly only given the ending board state and the number of moves. As example I will first ...
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1answer
417 views

Problem with a shorter solution

I'm looking at this problem. [Title "White to move. Mate in three"] [StartFlipped "0"] [fen "5rb1/1p1P1pbr/1p5p/5N/PP2k/1Np3QB/6K/8 b - - 0 1"] It requires white to mate in three. The accepted ...
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3answers
288 views

Chess Problem: White to play and mate in two

White's turn, checkmate in two moves [FEN "r1b2k1r/1p2bppp/p1B2q2/8/8/8/PPPQ1P1P/2KRR3 w - - 0 1"] How does White deliver checkmate in 2 moves?
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1answer
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Please help solve this endgame problem posed by a friend

[FEN "5K2/k7/4P1p1/8/8/8/4b3/8 w - - 0 1"] A friend of mine is challenging me to find a solution. It’s White to play and DRAW.
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1answer
117 views

Seeking a particular problem

I recall seeing a problem in Games magazine, probably in the early 1990s, that required the solver to deduce that a capture en passant was possible (not just because that's the only way to get a ...
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1answer
80 views

Checkmate via en passant capture [duplicate]

I tried to get the smallest sequence of moves that would result in a checkmate*( or rather Helpmate)* with the last move being a en passant . This is the shortest I could get : [Title "Shortest En ...
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1answer
136 views

Chess Problem: Reset The 50-Move Rule!

While chess problems and such are usually meant for Puzzling Stack Exchange, I thought that this one should be an exception since it’s more relevant IMHO. Reseting the 50-move rule, i.e. restart the ...
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1answer
209 views

Looking for practical rulesets for when king promotion is allowed

One consistent feature of chess over the centuries if that there has only ever been one king for each side, and the rules of promotion were tightened to prevent promotion to a second king. However, ...
2
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1answer
182 views

What is an example of a very difficult one-move checkmate? [closed]

Usually one-move checkmate puzzles are easy. However, I am wondering if there is a relatively more difficult one-move checkmate puzzle. Here are a few thoughts: There are many legal moves. One or ...
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2answers
140 views

Is there a way to prove a checkmate in 3 problem is not solvable?

I have been working on a checkmate-in-3 problem for a long time. So long that I am becoming convinced it is not solvable. Is there a way to prove it is not solvable? I want to avoid putting the ...
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2answers
168 views

What rearrangent of the starting position's pieces, in any manner, has the fastest stalemate?

It is well known that the fastest stalemate is in 19 ply. But what is the fastest possible if all pieces, not pawns, may be shuffled at will on their first ranks? This task is difficult since there is ...
14
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3answers
5k views

Is the “Pawn Box” possible in standard chess?

Is it possible to create a "pawn box" as shown below (using legal moves and the help of black) in standard chess? The positions don't need to be exactly as shown, and there can be more pieces on the ...
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1answer
2k views

Why does the black king evade to f8, and not to h7?

I'm trying to practice with the app https://f-droid.org/en/packages/jwtc.android.chess Why does the black king go to f8, and not Kh7 instead? [FEN "r2rb3/1p2RBk1/2pP1ppR/p7/P7/7P/1q3PP1/3Q2K1 w - - ...
2
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1answer
127 views

What effects would being able to capture while castling have?

Capturing an enemy piece while castling has been illegal for many decades, and the concept has been solidified in chess history. But what effects would it have if it were allowed? First, some ground ...
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3answers
149 views

What is the highest value of pieces on this particular 6x6 board, without any of them attacking each other?

I got a question in school in which I have to get the highest score possible by adding pieces on a 6x6 board like this: The rules are that they are the same color and may never attack each other, and ...
4
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1answer
103 views

Longest sequence before a certain capture

Inspired by a recent question, what is the longest possible sequence before White can make a certain capture? Basically, White is trying to capture a chosen piece, and Black optimally defends that ...
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3answers
1k views

Longest Sequence For Any Piece To Reach A Certain Square

What is the longest sequence of moves (by both White and Black) wherein White attempts to move one of their pieces from one square to another? Assume Black makes every move optimal towards the purpose ...
2
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1answer
105 views

What is the highest mobility score of a board without a checkmate, stalemate, or draw?

I consider the mobility score of a board to be the number of legal moves one player could make less the number of legal moves the other player could make. 8/7k/2Q2K2/8/6b1/8/8/8 w - - 0 1 Using the ...
14
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7answers
3k views

Arrange 5 non-attacking knights on a 5x5 toroidal board

The celebrated British mathematician and lover of public transport, Simon Norton, was one of those who passed in 2019. He was the subject of a wonderful biography and one of my favourite human beings: ...
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2answers
412 views

Uniquely Satisfying Puzzle

Here is a fun puzzle I found some time ago. It was created by Karl Fabel in 1952 and published in Rätselstunde. Goal [title "White to move and NOT checkmate in one!"] [fen "B5KR/1r5B/6R1/2b1p1p1/...
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3answers
409 views

Useful solving composed mate-in-2 problems?

I'm solving mate-in-2 puzzles from the Polgar 5334 problems book. Many of these are composed problems, and are hard (for me) to solve. Often I have to spend 10-15 minutes before finding the solution....
28
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4answers
5k views

Stalemate situation with all pieces on the board

Suppose all the pieces are on the board. Does there exist a position such that A) one of the players can't make any move (a stalemate)? B) neither player can make any move (a double stalemate)?
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2answers
329 views

List of famous, but incorrect, chess problems

Surely it has happened, that a famous chess problem turned out to be incorrect because some move was overlooked. Maybe a chess engine found out that a classic problem was bad! Is there a collection of ...
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3answers
256 views

How is the threat Qxh7 relevant here?

According to chess.com, "White threatens both Qxh7 and Qxf8 checkmate-Black cannot defend against both threats." Would the threat the white Queen has towards h7 be enough to have a checkmate? How is ...
8
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1answer
295 views

Pal Benko's final problem

EDIT: Link added One of my chess heroes, Hungarian GM Pal Benko, is no longer with us. He overcame many difficulties in his early life to live one which was rich and full, and reached the age of 91 ...
4
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2answers
237 views

Does anyone have a version of the 50x50 article by Nikita Plaksin?

In 1979, Nikita M. Plaksin published a reportedly fascinating article containing 50 problems all related to the 50 moves rule. Unfortunately I can't find it anywhere, the only links that I could find ...
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2answers
2k views

Identify a problem where a potentially winning move draws because of the 50 move rule

I'm trying to recall a particular chess problem. It's related to retrograde analysis. All what I can remember is this: it's an endgame where there is only one way to reach the position, and during ...
2
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2answers
167 views

Attempting to create a retraction problem

I'm trying to create a retraction problem, but I'm not sure whether or not it is sound. I'm not sure where to find resources on how to make a retraction puzzle. I have two related questions- 1-Is my ...

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