Questions tagged [problems]

A chess problem consists of a board position and a task. Most often the problem asks to find a line of play that mates black in a given number of moves, or to find a combination that guarantees a winning position. There are many other kinds of problems, some far removed from standard chess play. Tournaments and championships exist for both the composition of original problems and for speed-solving.

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12
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6answers
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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3answers
266 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....
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2answers
189 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 ...
7
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1answer
242 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
202 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
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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 ...
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2answers
574 views

Most possible movement by the losing side in a zugzwang position

Usually, in a zugzwang, the idea is to limit the number of moves that the opponent can make so that they will have to make a bad move. But what if we decided to give them lots of freedom, given that ...
4
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3answers
295 views

Maximum number of ways to get out of check

What is the maximum number of legal moves in a legal position, given that the player is in check? It's easy to see that 43 is an upper bound. Let's suppose the white K is in check along a diagonal by ...
6
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2answers
186 views

Looking for an iPhone app for working out chess problems

I'm looking for an iPhone app that will allow me to set up a chess problem and work out its solution. I've seen apps that present me with a battery of chess problems but don't allow me to set up my ...
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2answers
236 views

Regarding The Horse Concoction-A Retrograde Analysis Question

Long ago in 2000, Tim Krabbe presented Harry Goldsteen’s “The Horse Concoction,” presented here on the Internet, which some of us know about. Take an empty board. Put white pawns on b3, b6, h4 and ...
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1answer
97 views

What is a “dual” in chess problems, such as the Babson task?

I’ve read up on Babson tasks, and they mention that all known tasks are not perfect because they are duals. I’m not sure what this means exactly. Does it mean that the problem takes place in two parts ...
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2answers
282 views

Longest series of mutual “!” moves

Normally I'd pester the/a computer chess forum, but I couldn't register yet... On the Matplus chess forum, the following construction task came up. Both White and Black are on the brink of ...
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2answers
402 views

An Interesting Idea: Pinned Pieces Stalemate

I had an idea for a type of stalemate: One side is stalemated with 8 pins in a legal position. I wondered how many units. for both sides, could be “nessecary” in such a position. I define this as ...
3
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1answer
107 views

Is there a chess AI that can force checkmate on a specified square?

I'm looking for a program that can force a lone king into checkmate on a specific square. Are there any programs out there that can do this?
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1answer
416 views

Searching for a “where is the black king” puzzle?

Sometimes ago, a friend showed me a position where he had the black king removed. The goal was to find where is the black king using some pretty weird reasoning. I tried to remember the puzzle but I ...
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2answers
622 views

Benko's three-mover that stumped Fischer

In Christian Hesse's book The Joy of Chess one reads about a mate-in-3 problem composed by Pál Benkö that stumped Bobby Fischer. Hesse gives the following diagram: [FEN "8/8/8/4k3/8/8/8/2BQKB2 w - - ...
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3answers
638 views

Using the king to prevent castling

What is a more difficult problem which involves using the king to prevent castling than the following problem? White to play and win: [FEN "r3k3/5p2/2K2P1P/b1N1P2P/8/8/4n3/8 w q - 0 1"]
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2answers
177 views

How does white mate in two?

In this problem, it’s White to move and mate in two. What is the solution?
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1answer
223 views

White gives checkmate in two moves

It’s White to move and checkmate Black in two moves. Can anyone find the solution?
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2answers
242 views

Is this selfmate solvable or fixable?

This is a kind of a repost of a fascinating chess problem that appeared yesterday. The original poster got shy or something, and bafflingly deleted his own post, which was beginning to attract some ...
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4answers
483 views

Can you mate with each of your 16 pieces on its original square?

An opinion poll conducted by problem composer Roberto Osorio over 10 master-level chess players in the Argentine Chess Club produced 100% wrong answers! :-) When the right answer is posted here, I ...
9
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2answers
309 views

E.Umnov's chess problem, 1944. Checkmate in two moves

White to play and checkmate in two moves. [title "E.Umnov's chess problem, 1944"] [FEN "k7/5QK1/3n1pb1/1R1p1r2/5p2/8/1p6/4R3 w KQkq - 0 1"]
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3answers
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Beautiful retrograde analysis problem by Alexsey A. Troitsky

I saw this beautiful, subtle & accessible problem a couple of days ago, and wanted to share it with you folks. (It's by the ground-breaking endgame theorist who e.g. invented the "Troitsky line" ...
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3answers
284 views

What was Black's last move?

White to move. What was Black's last move? And what could have happened before that?
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1answer
296 views

Prove color of pawn and position of knight

I was recently given a retrograde type of puzzle to solve, even though I've managed to at least intuitively get close to an answer, I don't know how to put it in the form of an acceptable proof. For ...
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4answers
13k views

Win the game by just moving king?

How short can a game be in which (after the first move) one player moves only his King, and yet checkmates their opponent? (Assume that the players co-operate: i.e. this is a kind of "helpmate". This ...
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3answers
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Euwe-Aljechin Amsterdam 1935 problem

I came across this puzzle that I couldn't solve and after looking at the solution I am still not sure what is going on here. [FEN "5k2/p5pp/r7/2pB2p1/b1P5/6P1/4PP1P/R5K1 w - - 0 1"] The best move ...
11
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3answers
764 views

Mutual Stalemate

You are required to find position such that: 1) Any move made by White or Black leads to stalemate for both sides immediately. 2) The position can be reached from the starting position of a chess ...
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2answers
345 views

Biggest Possible Material Advantage But Still Losing

Assuming: Queen=9, Rook=5, Bishop=3, Knight=3, Pawn=1 The below position is evaluated at +411 for White but he still loses by force (mate in 9, pawn promotes to a bishop just for the fun of it) Is ...
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5answers
608 views

How can I control my nerves during chess tournaments?

I always get nervous during a chess match and that really affects my performance. I can easily beat a 1400-1500 in a friendly match but when it comes to a tournament, I can't even win against 1300s. I ...
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3answers
2k views

“Knight rebus”. Decipher an encoded chess position

Here is a rebus: Each letter represents a different type of piece. Uppercase is one colour, lowercase is the other. Determine the position. If possible, also determine the last moves ...
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3answers
446 views

Where to find specific endgame practice exercises/puzzles/practice bots?

I'm looking for a set of exercises (contained in a book, website, or chess engine) where I can practice what I know in regards to rook and pawn vs. rook endgames. I could find a friend to randomly ...
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2answers
148 views

Where to find Tactical Exercises on the Decoy

A decoy tactic is forcing an enemy piece to move to a square that prevents it from guarding an original square. For example, if the black queen is at c7 and the f7 square is being attacked, getting ...
3
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2answers
552 views

Checkmate in 6 moves

Can somebody tell me the right six moves, what has to be done? [FEN "n1N3br/2p1Bpkr/1pP2R1b/pP1p1PpR/Pp4P1/1P6/1K1P4/8 w - - 0 1"]
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2answers
192 views

“chess problem” software (free/paid) to download for PC?

I tried one a while back but it was quite elementary, it had a few thousand problems but did not give detailed answers, just one single move as correct and that's it! I do play Chesstempo sometimes ...
4
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1answer
382 views

Generate Simple Mate In 1 From Tablebases (for kids)

I was trying to find a kid's app for chess that has some incredibly simple problems. However, all the apps I found had rather tricky problems. So I thought I would download 3 piece table bases and use ...
3
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1answer
164 views

A chess problem (need help with analysis)

my question is about the position below. This is, if I copied it correctly, from a book called "How Good Is Your Chess" by Evans. I'm an amateur so pretty much every single problem is difficult and ...
3
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1answer
823 views

Is there a master list of FEN chess positions for advanced beginner/intermediate?

I'm an advanced beginner. I don't have internet access as much as I like to, so I'd much rather have a series of chess position FENs that I can put into some free chess engine and then try to play ...
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5answers
1k views

What is the longest known stalemate your opponent in x-moves problem?

What is the longest known stalemate your opponent in x-moves problem where the given stalemate is the fastest one from the initial position? A win is not possible, but stalemating your opponent so ...
4
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1answer
495 views

Where can I find collections of chess problems (ideally direct mate) with solutions?

I'm working on a chess program that gives the user various compositions for them to solve. So far I'm only including mate in n problems where 1 < n < 5, and I'd prefer to only deal with this ...
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4answers
619 views

Is the chess problem a dead form?

Or, to ask the question a bit less opinionatedly, "what new ideas have been introduced in chess problems over the last 20 years?" I imagine many problems have been composed in that time, but it seems ...
8
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3answers
420 views

Problems: record for most mates-in-2

Does anyone know what the record for most mates-in-2 is for a composed problem? Example: this one has 58 different moves that mate in 2. [FEN "6R1/8/8/8/3Q3B/5K2/7k/1R6 w - - 0 1"]
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2answers
2k views

Prove that white is not allowed to castle here

A friend recently gave me the following weird chess problem to solve, and I'm afraid I'm struggling to see the key ideas, that would ultimately count as proof. From the position, intuitively speaking ...
5
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1answer
383 views

How is this retrograde analysis position legal?

On his page on Harry Goldsteen's "horse concoction", Tim Krabbé gives this position by "N. Höeg, 1935": With the stipulation "add 10 white rooks; black mates in 1". He then claims that "Retrograde-...
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2answers
1k views

Standalone chess problem solver for Android

Which android app can: Solve chess problems without internet connection as well. Support manually edit board according to the problem. Ideally this app should allow a person to step back on any ...
10
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2answers
269 views

Source of this chess problem?

[FEN "8/8/8/6pp/6pk/R7/6KP/8 w - - 0 1"] 1. Rh3+ gxh3+ 2. Kf3 g4+ 3. Kf4 g3 4. hxg3# 1-0 What is the source of this simple chess problem (White to mate in four) which somebody showed me at a chess ...
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2answers
205 views

Does FIDE give titles to chess composers?

If so, do share more insight about the how-tos and other links to read. Thanks!
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6answers
1k views

Creative chess puzzles! [closed]

What are some of the creative chess problems that can never be solved by computers? Question changed to Creative chess puzzles! What are some of the creative chess problems that computers can never ...
11
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1answer
1k views

White to force the end of the game in two moves

I found this hilarious problem and hope people will have fun solving it: Niels Hoeg, Skakbladet 1907 [FEN "8/8/6p1/5pP1/5P1K/5PpP/4p2p/2Q2Bkr w - - 0 1"] White to end the game in two moves. In ...
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1answer
253 views

Chess challenge #10: A beautiful knightmare

This time I bring you a beautiful composition. White is down material but is about to queen the d7 pawn. The only problem is the knight fork on f7 and if he doesn't act very quickly Black is going to ...