Saturday, July 23, 2011

First chess game: Four Knights Spanish variation with a Halloween twist

Ok, I am mostly testing the javascript for the chess games, but this was also an interesting game for me. I am playing black and my trusty cellphone (running ChessGenius on an antiquated Nokia) is white. White starts with the Four Knights Spanish variation (bringing his light bishop to b5) and I am trying to do a Halloween gambit style move by sacrificing a knight for a center pawn in order to gain a positional advantage. Here is goes:
[Event "OpenChess"]
[Site ""]
[Date "2011.07.22"]
[Round ""]
[White "Computer"]
[Black "Player"]
[TimeControl "-"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO " "]


{Annotations by Chessmaster: Grandmaster Edition Auto-Annotator. 30 seconds per move.

White Black
Book Move 4 3
Leave
Book 0 1
CMX Agrees 19 21
CMX Disagrees 6 5
Agreement Pct. 76% 81%
Total Error 13.58 13.24
Relevant
Error 13.58 13.24
Missed Mate 0 0
Moved Into Mate 2 0

}
1.e4
{B00 King's Pawn Opening. The King's Pawn opening move is both popular and logical. It controls the center, opens lines
for both the Queen and the Bishop, and usually leads to an open game in which tactics, rather than slow maneuvering,
predominates.}
1...e5
{C20 King's Pawn Game. Black responds symmetrically, making a direct challenge to the central squares.}
2.Nf3
{C40 King's Knight Opening. With the possible exception of :2. f4, this is the most logical second move against Black's
symmetrical answer to the King's Pawn. The Knight attacks e5, clears the way for an eventual castle and rests on its best
defensive square.}
2...Nc6
{C44 Queen's Knight Variation. Now, when White plays 3.Nc3 (instead of the Ruy Lopez), it's the Three Knight's Game; a
leisurely system.}
3.Nc3
{C46 Three Knights Opening.}
3...Nf6
{C46 Four Knights Opening. With Black's final Knight development, the Four Knights Game results: Several imitations of
moves until Black must diverge and be content with a sound, but uninteresting game.}
4.Bb5
{C48 Four Knights Opening / Spanish Variation.}
4...Nxe4
{Out of Opening Book. Bb4 would have been in the Four Knights Opening / Double Spanish Variation 4.Bb5 Bb4 opening
line. Leads to 5.Nxe4 f5 6.Ng3 e4 7.Ng1 a6 8.Ba4 g6 9.N1e2 b5 10.Bb3 Bd6, which wins a pawn for a knight. Better is Bc5, leading
to 5.O-O a6 6.Bxc6 dxc6 7.Nxe5 O-O 8.d3 Bd4 9.Bf4 Be6, which wins a bishop for a knight and a
pawn.
}
5.Nxe4
{Blocks Black's pawn at e5.}
5...d5
{Attacks White's knight at e4.}
6.Bxc6+
{Partially pins Black's pawn at b7, removes the threat on White's knight at e4, forks Black's king and Black's pawn at
e5, and blocks Black's pawn at c7.}
6...bxc6
{Removes the threat on Black's king and attacks White's knight at e4. White wins two knights for a bishop and a pawn.}

7.Nc3
{Moves it to safety.}
7...d4
{Threatens White's knight at c3.}
8.Ne2
{Moves it to safety.}
8...c5 9.d3 Bb7 10.Ng3 g6
{Slightly better is Bd6.}
11.O-O Bd6
{Protects Black's pawn at e5 and makes way for a castle to the kingside.}
12.Re1 Qe7
{Slightly better is f6.}
13.Ne4
{Slightly better is Nxe5.}
13...f5
{Leads to 14.Bg5 Qf7 15.Nxc5 Bxf3 16.Qxf3 O-O 17.Qc6 Rab8 18.Nd7 Rxb2 19.Nxf8 Qxf8 20.a4, which wins two knights and a
pawn for a rook, a bishop, and a pawn. Better is f6, leading to 14.Bh6 O-O-O 15.c4 Kb8 16.Nfd2 Ka8 17.Nb3 Rb8 18.Qe2 g5, which
results in no exchange of material.}
14.Bg5
{Attacks Black's queen and blocks Black's pawn at g6.}
14...Qe6
{Moves it to safety.}
15.Nf6+
{Leads to 15...Kf7 16.Bh4 h6 17.b4 Rab8 18.a4 Bxf3 19.Qxf3 Be7 20.Ng4 Bxh4 21.Nxe5+ Kg7 22.bxc5, which wins a bishop
and two pawns for a bishop and a knight. Better is Nxc5, leading to 15...Qd5 16.Nxb7 Qxb7 17.Nxe5 O-O 18.Qf3 Qxf3 19.Nxf3 Rfb8
20.Rab1 c5 21.Re6 Rb6, which wins a queen, a bishop, and two pawns for a queen and a knight.}
15...Kf7
{Moves it out of check.}
16.a3 h6
{Threatens White's bishop.}
17.Bh4
{Moves it to safety.}
17...g5
{Forks White's knight at f6 and White's bishop.}
18.Nxg5+
{Leads to 18...hxg5 19.Bxg5 Be7 20.f4 Bxf6 21.Bxf6 Qxf6 22.Rxe5 Bxg2 23.Rxc5 Bc6 24.Qe2 Rag8+ 25.Kf1, which wins a
bishop and four pawns for a bishop, two knights, and a pawn. Better is Nh5, leading to 18...gxh4 19.Nxh4 Rag8 20.Ng3 f4 21.Qh5+
Kf8 22.Ne4 Qf7 23.Qf5 Be7 24.Qh3, which wins a pawn for a bishop.}
18...hxg5
{Removes the threat on Black's king and Black's queen and double-attacks White's bishop.}
19.Bxg5
{Protects White's knight and creates a passed pawn on h2. Black wins a knight for two pawns.}
19...Be7
{Pins White's knight with a partial pin.}
20.f4
{Partially pins Black's pawn at e5 and frees White's knight from the pin.}
20...Bxf6 21.Bxf6
{Attacks Black's rook at h8.}
21...Qxf6
{Disengages the pin on Black's pawn at e5 and removes the threat on Black's rook at h8.}
22.Rxe5
{Uh-oh! Leads to 22...Rag8 23.Qd2 Rxg2+ 24.Qxg2 Bxg2 25.Rae1 Bf3 26.Re7+ Qxe7 27.Rxe7+ Kxe7 28.a4 Bd1 29.c3 Bxa4
30.Kg2, which wins a queen, a rook, and a pawn for a queen, two rooks, and two pawns. Much better is c3, leading to 22...Bxg2
23.Qb3+ Kg7 24.Qc2 Bb7 25.cxd4 Qc6 26.d5 Qxd5, which wins a pawn for two pawns.}
22...Qg6
{Yikes! Leads to 23.Qe2 Rae8 24.g3 Qh7 25.Re1 Rxe5 26.fxe5 Ke6 27.c4 Qh5 28.Qxh5 Rxh5, which wins a queen and a rook
for a queen and a rook. Much better is Rag8, leading to 23.Qd2 Rxg2+ 24.Qxg2 Bxg2 25.Rae1 Bf3 26.Re7+ Qxe7 27.Rxe7+ Kxe7 28.a4
Bd1 29.c3 Bxa4 30.Kg2, which wins a queen, two rooks, and two pawns for a queen and a rook. Black had a won game before this
error, but it was not costly; black was able to eventually
mate.
}
23.g3
{White moves into a forced mate. Much better is Qe2. g3 leads to 23...Rxh2 24.Qe1 Rh1+ 25.Kf2 Qxg3+ 26.Ke2 Bf3+ 27.Kd2
Qxf4+ 28.Qe3 dxe3+ 29.Rxe3 Rh2+ 30.Kc1 Qxe3+ 31.Kb1 Qe2 32.Ka2 Bd5+ 33.b3 Qxc2# and checkmate. This was white's most crucial
mistake. Black didn't carry the mate through just yet, but was later able to
mate.
}
23...Rxh2
{Black has a mate in 10. Attacks White's pawn at g3. Leads to 24.Qe1 Rh1+ 25.Kf2 Qxg3+ 26.Ke2 Bf3+ 27.Kd2 Qxf4+
28.Qe3 dxe3+ 29.Rxe3 Rh2+ 30.Kc1 Qxe3+ 31.Kb1 Qe2 32.Ka2 Bd5+ 33.b3 Qxc2# and checkmate.}
24.Re7+
{Pins Black's pawn at c7, protects White's pawn at g3, and forks Black's king and Black's pawn at c7.}
24...Kxe7
{Black has a mate in 7. Frees Black's pawn at c7 from the pin, protects Black's pawn at c7, and threatens White's
pawn at g3. Leads to 25.Qe1+ Kf7 26.Kf1 Rh1+ 27.Ke2 Re8+ 28.Kd2 Rh2+ 29.Qf2 Rxf2+ 30.Kd1 Bf3+ 31.Kc1 Re1# and checkmate.}
25.Qe1+
{Removes the threat on White's pawn at g3 and checks Black's king.}
25...Kf7
{Black has a mate in 6. Moves it out of check and threatens White's pawn at c2. Leads to 26.Kf1 Rh1+ 27.Ke2 Re8+
28.Kd2 Rh2+ 29.Kd1 Qg4+ 30.Qe2 Qxe2+ 31.Kc1 Qxc2# and checkmate.}
26.Rc1
{White moves into a forced mate. Much better is Qe7+. Rc1 leads to 26...Rh1+ 27.Kf2 Qxg3+ 28.Kxg3 Rg8+ 29.Kf2 Rg2# and
checkmate.}
26...Rh1+
{Black has a mate in 3. Moves it to safety, skewers White's king, and checks White's king. Leads to 27.Kf2 Qxg3+
28.Kxg3 Rg8+ 29.Kf2 Rg2# and checkmate.}
27.Kf2
{Forced. Moves it out of check.}
27...Qxg3+
{Black has a mate in 2. Forks White's king and White's pawn at f4 and isolates White's pawn at f4. Leads to 28.Kxg3
Rg8+ 29.Kf2 Rg2# and checkmate.}
28.Kxg3
{Removes the threat on White's pawn at f4. White wins a queen for a pawn.}
28...Rg8+
{Black is one move from mate. Checks White's king. Leads to 29.Kf2 Rg2# and checkmate.}
29.Kf2
{Forced. Moves it out of check.}
29...Rg2#
{Checkmates White's king.
}
0-1


Unfortunately, the script I am using doesn't have support for adnotations. I've analysed this game with ChessMaster XI and it added some interesting comments. I will try to add the relevant ones to the post. Silly me, it does have support for adnotations, but can't read the PGN correctly. After a few fixes to the code, I present you the game.

You can see here that neither of the players are particularly good (Uhh!). The Halloween Gambit is usually employed by white in the Four Knights opening and it is one that I like simply because it looks cool:
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Nxe5 *
If black doesn't know about it, it will be a shock - What the hell is he doing? - and at least psychologically it is a very good tool. Of course, exchanging a knight for a pawn is not the smartest of moves unless you have good reason. In this case, white gambles material for immediate attack opportunities.

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