Die Schwalbe

6 problem(s) found in 3812 milliseconds (displaying 6 problem(s)). [COMMENTDATE>=20200919 AND NOT K='Hilfsrückzüger' AND G='Studies']

1 - P1368554
Andrew Buchanan
OzProblems.com 16/10/2019
(4+3) C+
1. Sd3! Kf8 2. Se3 Sg6+ 3. Kd4 Td8+ 4. Kc3 Tc8+ 5. Sc4 Kg7 6. Sf2 Sh8 7. Tf1 Sf7 8. Se4 Td8 9. Sf6 Sg5 10. Se3 Ta8 11. Kb4 Tb8+ 12. Kc4 Tc8+ 13. Kb5 Tb8+ 14. Kc6 Ta8 15. Sfd5 Ta3 16. Kb5 Se4 17. Te1 Sg5 18. Kb4 Ta2 19. Tf1 Kg6 20. Tf6+ Kh5 21. Kb3 Ta7 22. Sf4+ Kh4 23. Se2 Tb7+ 24. Kc4 Sf7 25. Tf1 Kg5 26. Sd4 Se5+ 27. Kd5 Sd3 28. Se6+ Kg6 29. Sf8+ Kg5 30. Ke4 Sc5+ 31. Kd4 Sd7 32. Se6+ Kg6 33. Sd5 Ta7 34. Se7+ Kh5 35. Tg1 Ta4+ 36. Ke3 Tg4 37. Ta1 Sb6 38. Kf2 Sd7 39. Ta8 Tc4 40. Tg8 Tc2+ 41. Ke3 Tc3+ 42. Kf4 Tc4+ 43. Kf5 Kh4 44. Sf4 Tc5+ 45. Sed5 Txd5+ 46. Sxd5 Kh3 47. Tc8 Kg3 48. Ke6 Sb6 49. Sxb6 Kf2 50. Sc4 Ke1 51. Td8 Ke2 52. Td2+ Ke1 53. Kd5 Kf1 54. Ke4 Kg1 55. Kf3 Kh1 56. Kg3 Kg1 57. Td1#
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According to the Syzygy tablebase, *any* move wins for White except the silly 1. Sa2??
However, the tablebase does not know about castling!
The quickest winning move 1. Sd3!? would be defeated by 1. ... 0-0-0!? which attacks Sd3 and threatens the skewer Re8+. After this, White can only draw - or even loses after 2. Sc1??
But by a simple retro argument, Black cannot castle.
Since this retro point is essential to the solution, we have a retro problem, and hence the 50 move rule, which by Codex default is disengaged, is switched on.
When working with the 50 move rule, the key concept is not the number of moves to mate, but the number of moves to the first capture, pawn move or checkmate, known as DTZ.
All the alternatives to 1. Sd3 take more than 50 moves to force the first capture. The closest are 1. Sc3 & Se3 which according to Syzygy require exactly 50.5 moves, so seem *just* too slow. (For positions close to the cut-off, one has to be careful about *rounding*, see https://syzygy-tables.info/metrics. The number of half-moves for DTZ can be n or n+1. In fact here, after 1. Sc3/Sf3, the zeroing move is at its earliest White's 52nd move, not 51st.)
By the retro property therefore *only* 1. Sd3!, which requires 45 moves to force the first capture, can win. So this removes all the cooks for the first White move.

Lomonosov DTM #59: 1. Nd3!! Kf8!! 2. Ne3! Ng6+! 3. Kd5 Rd8+ 4. Kc4 Rc8+ 5. Kb5 Rb8+ 6. Ka6 Kf7 7. Nc5 Ne5 8. Nd5 Re8 9. Kb7 Nc4 10. Rf1+ Kg7 11. Kc6 Re5 12. Nd3 Re6+ 13. Kc5 Ne5 14. N3f4 Nd7+ 15. Kb5 Rd6 16. Nc7 Kf7 17. Nfd5+ Kg6 18. Ne7+ Kg5 19. Ncd5 Kg4 20. Rf4+ Kg5 21. Rf2 Kg4 22. Ne3+ Kg5 23. N7d5 Kg6 24. Rf1 Nf6 25. Nf4+ Kf7 26. Nc4 Rd8 27. Ne5+ Kg8 28. Rg1+ Kh7 29. Kc6 Rc8+ 30. Kd6 Re8 31. Re1 Ra8 32. Rh1+ Kg8 33. Ke7 Ra4 34. Rg1+ Kh7 35. Ne6 Nd5+ 36. Kd6 Nf4 37. Nc5 Rd4+ 38. Ke7 Rd2 39. Rg4 Rf2 40. Ncd7 Nd5+ 41. Ke6 Nf4+ 42. Kd6 Rd2+ 43. Ke7 Nd5+ 44. Kf8 Kh6 45. Rh4+ Kg5 46. Nf3+ Kf5 47. Nxd2 (zeroing 50M) Nc7 48. Re4 Ne6+ 49. Ke7 Nf4 50. Nf6 Ng6+ 51. Kf7 Ne5+ 52. Kg7 Kg5 53. Nf1 Kf5 54. Ne3+ Ke6 55. Nc4 Ke7 56. Rxe5+ Kd8 57. Rc5 Ke7 58. Rd5 Ke6 59. Re5# 1-0.

The school shield which inspired the problem:
Henrik Juel: With White to move, last move was made with Ta8 or Ke8, so Black may not castle
An endgame connaisseur may supply the solution... (2019-10-25)
James Malcom: It is now supplied, Henrik. :) I worked through the Sygyzy tablebase, move by move, to get the computer recommended line. (2020-10-09)
A.Buchanan: Thanks James for this hard work to record a solution. Alas there is not just a single recommended line - White has a choice as early as W3. I wonder too if there is a DTM line which is faster than #57, and still clears the DTZ hurdle although maybe not as quickly as B45 as here. There is no DTM engines for 7 pieces yet.
What is certain is that the key works, and is unique. The exactly details of the best mating line remain to be revealed by improving technology. (2020-10-09)
A.Buchanan: For example, 2. Nc5 has DTZ 90, compared to the "superior" 2. Ne3 DTZ 88. However, if you keep picking the top move all the way through, then the final DTZ is in fact checkmate! I haven't all the Black choices though, but there aren't that many of them (2020-10-09)
A.Buchanan: The Lomonosov tablebase is DTM, and is available for free on Android. Today I found a PC app called Blue Stacks which emulates Android. According to Lomonosov, the position is #59, compared to Syzygy's DTZ offering #57 via zero at B45. When I run through the L. indicative solution (very quick to download and grab all of it), it is close to S.'s choices and all the mainline positions are safe from 50M. The zero is at W47, and the final mate is attractive in the middle of the board.
The real questions are:
(1) Is the #59 sound from 50M perspective? Or can Black force White to delay a few moves in order to avoid 50M trouble somewhere?
(2) How dualized is the solution? How does 50M play into pruning that?
What is clear is that both tablebases agree the solution begins 1. Nd3!! Kf8!! 2. Ne3! Ng6! (2020-10-10)
Keywords: Cant Castler, Aristocrat, 50 move rule, Miniature
Genre: Retro, Studies
Computer test: www.syzygy.com
FEN: r3k2n/8/8/4K3/8/8/8/2NNR3
Reprints: www.chess.com 17/10/2019
Input: A.Buchanan, 2019-10-25
Last update: A.Buchanan, 2020-10-10 more...
2 - P1368575
Stefan Wojcik
122 Szachy 11/1957
1. Kg5! b5 2. Kf4 Kf2 3. h4 Ke2 4. Ke4 Kd2 5. Kd4,Kd5 Kc2 6. Kc5 Kc3 7. h5! b4 8. h6 b3 9. h7 b2 10. h8=D+ gewinnt
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Autor: Stefan Wójcik, Bielsko-Biala, Polen
Diese Studie hat 14. Platz im Polnischen Championat 1957-1960 in der Abteilung Studien belegt.
Der Autor wurde mit 7 Punkten auf dem 6.-7. Rang platziert. Gewonnen hat Grzegorz Grzeban 82,5 P. vor Wlodzimierz Proskurowski 78 P. und Edward Pallasz 14 P.
(Quelle: "Szachy" 05/1962)
Pawel: Please correct the description. Namely:
I know this chess composition. The author is Stefan Wójcik, not Sylwester.
The author is my grandfather.

Best wishes,
Pawel Wójcik (2020-11-25)
more ...
Keywords: Kindergarten Problem, Promotion
Genre: Studies
FEN: 8/8/1p5K/8/8/7P/8/6k1
Reprints: 538 Problemista 10/1963
Input: Marcin Banaszek, 2019-10-27
Last update: Marcin Banaszek, 2020-11-30 more...
3 - P1377604
John Derek Beasley
14 Variant Chess 20, p. 215, 1996
White to play and win
Grashopper Chess
b) wBa7->b7
a) 1. a8=G#
b) 1. b8=sG! Gh8 2. Kf1 Gf8 3. Ge8 Gd8 4. Gc8 Gb8 5. Ga8#
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A.Buchanan: Why not sBh3 on h2, removing sTh2? (2020-10-21)
Arnold Beine: Then there is a solution in b) without joke: 1.Kf1 Ga8 2.bxa8=L#. (2020-10-21)
A.Buchanan: Thanks Arnold - I had a blind spot there, but knew there had to be a reason. In a), 1. a8=sG! also wins but not so quickly. More interestingly, I think b) 1. Kf1 Ga8 2. b8=Q! Gc8 3. Qxc8! wins the pawn or 2. ... Rg7 3. Gxa8+! R~ 4. Qb7++! Maybe someone can check this indeed win for White. (2020-10-22)
Arnold Beine: There is no need for checking 2.b8=Q!??, because Q-promotions are not allowed in Grashopper Chess. (2020-10-23)
A.Buchanan: Thanks so now we’ve found an explanation of why it is defined to be grasshopper chess! A lot of time and effort can be saved in chess composition if the default format is “no-cook chess” - a fairy format in which all unintended solutions and defences are by definition illegal! :) (2020-10-24)
more ...
Keywords: Grasshopper Chess, Joke, Joke promotion (sG)
Pieces: du = Grasshopper (G)
Genre: Fairies, Studies
FEN: 6*2Q1/P7/8/8/8/7p/6*2qr/4K2k
Reprints: 6.2 51 Flights Of Chess Fancy 2009
Input: James Malcom, 2020-07-06
Last update: James Malcom, 2020-10-22 more...
4 - P1380313
Michal Hlinka
Lubos Kekely

19141 Schach 01/2020
1. Tf2+! Kh1 2. Tf1 Sf5+! 3. Texf5 exf5 4. Lf3+! exf3 5. Kxf3 Dxb3+ 6. Le3+ Kh2 7. Tf2+ Kg1 8. Tb2+ Kf1 9. Tf2+! Ke1 10. Te2+! Kd1 11. Td2+ Ke1 12. Te2+ Sxe2 patt
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more ...
Keywords: Checking key
Genre: Studies
FEN: 8/6n1/p3p3/P3R3/4p3/qP2K2p/6k1/2nB1RB1
Input: Marcin Banaszek, 2020-09-26
Last update: Marcin Banaszek, 2020-10-05 more...
5 - P1380551
James Malcom
Mat Plus 192.2020
"The KIng's Dilemma"
1. 0-0-0xd1+! g1=D 2. Txg1+ Kxg1 3. a6 f2 4. Ld4 Lb8 5. b5
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James Malcom: P1380523 is the only predecessor I know with the idea of castling with capture. (2020-10-02)
Keywords: Joke, Castling as key
Genre: Studies
FEN: 8/7B/8/P7/1Pp5/3p1p1n/1B1P2pb/R2nK2k
Input: James Malcom, 2020-10-02
Last update: Alfred Pfeiffer, 2020-10-04 more...
6 - P1380746
C. P. Carpenter
The Pittsburgh Gazette 25/12/1910
White to play and win
1. g8=D! Gewinn!-See the attached story.
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Reprint: 1911: https://www.newspapers.com/clip/25254295/the-royal-game-of-chess/ "Christmas Problems"

1910: http://www.chessarch.com/excavations/item.php?=a=1&source=Pittsburgh_Gazette_Times&date=1910.12.25

"The First Christmas Problem"

By C.P. Carpenter

The majority of chess players, familiar as they are with that form of chess joke called "Christmas Problems," may not know until they have read the following beautiful legend just how and when the custom originated nor, for that matter, may they be certain of it then, so cursed is this romantic age with belief.
In the Palace of the World, under the pagan line for December 25, was held the great feast of Brumalia. Upon an occasion of this festival, in the reign of the great King Eshamat, that monarch, his guests and vezers were assembled in the readiness for the festival and whilling away the interval at chess when a regged fakir approached the palace gates and craved admission from Elkanoj Bey, the sentry. That official surveyed him grimly.
"Have you got a card?" he asked with elaborate politness.
"I am a poor man, your excellency," replied the fak. "and the only card I ever had was the two-spot out of my pinochle deck,, but I am fearfully keen for my lunch and no harm, but only good. shall come to you see if you allow me to enter. I swear it as Allah sees it."
"Better beat it while Allah still see you." replied the sentry wearily. "He won't be able to see you if you stick around here long."
"I have traveled far, Effendi," replied the fakir, "and am weary. If the king phrase. I may be able to show him a wonderful play at chess. If he cannot solve it perhaps he may reward his slave with a seat at the banquet."
"In that case." said the sentry,"enter, and be your own usher. If you can get away with it, peace o you: and if noy peace to you."
Now the king fancied himself as a solver. and the fakir was well recieved when he had made known his mission.
"Know. Oh. King," said the fakir. as he set up the pieces, "that this position occured in a game between the great King Mahmud and my friend. Ali Bi, who had the white pieces, and it ran into this puzzling position with white to play, andd though it appears impossbile, netherless my friend Ali Bi did may and win this with one move. Now if his gracious majesty csn tell me how. I forfeit my lucnh: if not, I kick in at the festal board. Is it a bet?"
"You are somewhat shy on collateral,"" replied the kin: "netherless we will at least call it a bargain."


White to play and win

Long time did King Eshamat pore over the position without avail, while his company shifted about uneasily and the head cook cursed softly, but fluently in his mother tongue. Finally the king arose with a grunt of disgust.
"I pass," he said. 'What's the answer?"
'It was not in the bargain, your majesty," replied the fakir, "thay I should tell. only that your majesty should fail to find."
"Netherless?" said the king, "since we cannot solve, the problem it is our privlege to look in the appendix for answer. Selim, bring an ax."
"Pardon your majesty," cried the faki. "I will explain the mystery."
"I should be charmed," said the king drily. "What was the movr?"
"My friend Ali BI," replied the fakir, "pushed the pawm."
"But what did he call for?"
"He called for a drink but it didn't come," said the fakir, with a smile which didn't fit his face. "I hope it doesn't happen again."
"Quick fool." cried the kinh. "What piece did you call fo>"
"A queen, your majesty"
"But that woulld give stalemate."
"Even so, your majesty, "but it is also won. My frien, Ali Bi, is a weaker player and King Mahmad graciously offered odds of a draw."
King Eshamat sank into a chair and gezed at the faker. He shook himself, unable to rouse. He shook himslef again, but failed to fill. The fakir moistened his lips and glanced at the feast.
'You bargain, your majesty," he suggested timidly.
"True." said he king. "Salim, find this fakir a place at the feast."
"Very good, yout majesty," said the servant, "but the places are full. Where would it please your majesty I should put him/"
'Ah," said the king grimly, "just crack his skull and put him with the rest of the nuts."
James Malcom: In my view, since this has a story about a majesty, and give the board state, that 1. g8=K! would be a far better solution as I thought before I stumbled upon the source today. Sygyzy declares this a draw, even if -bPh2. =Q/R is stale, and =B/S+ is too weak and Black can fortress. =P does nothing of course, so king promotion is just right here it was for Goldilocks. (2020-10-17)
A.Buchanan: Thanks for typing this in, James, although I don’t really understand the joke. And if 1. g8=K how does Wh dislodge bK from g6/h6? (2020-10-18)
Henrik Juel: The joke seems to be that Black has agreed to accept stalemate as a win for White
If we disregard this, I agree that White cannot win with an extra king; it is easy to dislodge black king from g6/h6, but later White cannot dislodge him from g8/h8 (2020-10-18)
A.Buchanan: If the convention is dynasty, then promotion to a king turns both wKs into erlkings until one is captured. I think these can mate bK, no? (2020-10-19)
Keywords: Joke, Kindergarten Problem, Miniature, Promotion in the key (K), Joke promotion
Genre: Studies
FEN: 8/6Pp/7k/7p/7P/8/7p/7K
Reprints: Hartford Courant , p. 15, 6/2/1911
Input: James Malcom, 2020-10-07
Last update: James Malcom, 2020-10-17 more...
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The problems of this query have been registered by the following contributors:

A.Buchanan (1)
Marcin Banaszek (2)
James Malcom (3)