Longest Series Tournament
For the News and the Rankings, Please click here.
Introduction & History
Already almost a year since the last longest series tournament! High time for a new one :-) This one brings a different kind of idea that hopefully will bring interesting developments.
This is not really a new idea, although not used in the previous tournaments I organized. I can already say what it more or less is, without revealing the content. It will be based on points rather than sheer length. Although length will play a role. Thus for example a problem of just a few moves could rank higher than one with a thousand moves. More about this at the start.
It should bring many creative, beautiful, and even new ideas and concepts.
I hope many composers will be inspired to participate in it, it will be a somewhat "different" "longest" series tournament if I may say so, and should appeal to quite a wide audience.
I would of course encourage everyone to at least give it at try, those tournaments are the most fun one can imagine. Especially as the results are given almost real-time, and thus very interactive.
WinChloë (Full), or another equivalent prize, to the first in each category (four categories in total).
The tournament will last 2 months and a half.
Start: 23rd of May 2011 @ 00:00 (GMT+1)
End: 05 of August 2011 @ 23:59 (GMT+1)
Computers are only allowed in order to test the validity of a humanly found solution, that is to make it C+. Programs like Popeye and WinChloë are ok.
During the course of the tournament, computers are not allowed to be used for composing (that is, to "solve" or find good solutions). It is only allowed after the tournament. This needs a small clarification, of course, if one analyzes a specific position with a program, and finds other solutions (duals) which are good/better, this is ok to search further! It is the automatic search for solutions that is not allowed. Thus scripting in any way Popeye for example is also not allowed.
The condition: VerticalMirrorCirce, must be used, and no others. The solution must not work without it.
This condition is the same as Circe, except that the rebirth square is on the vertical mirror from the normal place. It changes quite a lot of things.
One can use any of five stipulations for categories A and B:
And any of five Parry series stipulations for category C, those are the same as above, except that Black can give checks before the end of the game, in which case White must parry those, either by moving the King, or intercepting the piece giving check:
The aim being to find the problems with the most points.
Points are defined as follow:
For categories A and B, it is the sum of the number of moves that each black piece moves, with 7 being the maximum for each.
For example, if the King plays 20 moves, a Knight 4 moves, another Knight 12 moves, and a Pawn 9 moves (the promoted piece is considered to be the same piece), then in total we would have: 7 + 4 + 7 + 7= 25 points.
For category C, white moves are also taken in account! And also with 7 maximum per piece. Thus if the white King moves 13 times, only 7 points are accredited. Nevertheless, the solution must be unique again in the number of black moves.
Castling is a special case. We would define it as follow for points: it is worth just one point, that one can decide to take in consideration for either the Rook, or the King.
Thus the maximum number of points for categories A and B is: 7x16=112. For category C theoretically it is 14x16, although that would be quite surely impossible in practice, at least for humans and non quantum computers.
The length of the problem is nevertheless the second criteria (more the better), and the number of pieces the third (less the better).
In the news page all the info about the records will be given, except the stipulation used. Thus this will remain a mystery until the very end.
Promotions are of course ok!
The black King is allowed to be in check in the initial position.
No fairy pieces allowed.
8x8 board only.
Here are the categories:
For all, only non-promoted pieces initially.
To decide the ranking of the different solutions, here is the order of preferences:
In order to ease the "logistic" side, I would like as much as possible the following template to be used for responding:
Subject: Series Tournament: [Category/Points/Number of Moves/Number of Pieces]
Position in FEN (English pieces):
First, which programs to use? I know of two such programs WinChloë and Popeye. WinChloë is very good, but it is not freeware. Popeye has the advantage of being free, it is very powerful and fast, but it has quite a complex syntax if one uses it through the command line (WinChloë has a GUI built in). The best would be to use a GUI program that interfaces with Popeye. I use Fancy, great tool. Its site is:
The latest Popeye (4.55) can be downloaded from the following site:
To use fancy is very simple, when you start it you have:
The condition will always be: VerticalMirrorCirce.
Once the position and the informations are set, one needs to click on "Popeye".
The following window appears:
Notice the MaxSolutions counter. This is very useful to stop Popeye from examining more variations than needed. Then one clicks on "Try Popeye", followed by "View solution". Which gives: