Computer Chess Club Archives




Subject: Re: The Crafty variation of the Ruy Lopez

Author: Robert Hyatt

Date: 12:19:44 08/12/00

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On August 12, 2000 at 12:42:13, Peter Hegger wrote:

>A friend of mine and I were discussing chess openings the other day and the
>subject got around to chess programs and their contribution to opening theory.
>He mentioned an opening in the Ruy Lopez that was supposedly named after the
>program Crafty.
>Has anyone else ever heard of this opening? If so does anyone know the move
>Thanks in advance for your help.

This was a joke, started by me.  At the WMCCC in Jakarta, I had the operator
use "book random 0" against strong opponents.  I had tested this prior to the
event, and posted a game in r.g.c.c where crafty had played e4 e5 Nf3 Nc6 Bb5 a6
Bc4, and then won against the opponent pretty easily.  We discussed the game
there and I criticized the move Bc4 myself.

However, as Paul Harvey would say, "and then there is the rest of the story."

It turns out that there were a couple of games in crafty's book for this
line, which is the only way it could have found Bc4 in "book random 0" mode.
And the next 20 moves are pretty obvious (not quite forced, but very logical
from a computer's perspective).  As a result, Crafty followed this line for
20-25 moves in the games where it played it, while the opponent was out of
book after 3 moves.  By move 25, the opponent would be down to a fraction of
the total time left while Crafty had not used any time at all.  This gave it
enough time to do really well against those opponents (sort of like a time
handicap match, in fact.)

I later posted some more details about this and called it the "Crafty variation
of the Ruy Lopez" in jest...

That is where the name came from...  I have no idea what the real name is, or
even if there is a real name for that opening...

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