Chess960@home is a project doing research in a novel chess variant, Chess960, also called Fischer Random Chess. The difference with normal chess is that the order of the pieces is determined randomly, and very is little known about opening theory. Chess960@home is doing research to get some more structure in the opening.
Chess960@home project URL; http://www.chess960athome.org/alpha/
At the start of a Chess960 game, the rooks, knights, bishops, and the queen and king are positioned randomly. Note that the black and white pieces are positioned the same, so one player doesn't have an advantage over the other. There are certain restrictions to the position of the pieces: The king must be placed between the rooks, and the bishops must be placed on squares of different color. With these restrictions in mind one can calculate there are 960 different starting positions. Chess960 was developed by Bobby Fischer. Every year in August there are World Championships in Chess960. Grand Master Peter Svidler is the current world champion in Chess960.
More about Chess960@home
Chess960@home is using the BOINC framework to develop some opening theory for the game. The project is playing Chess960 games on your computer, so they can build a large database of Chess960 games. This database is then analysed to see if certain opening strategies can be applied to Chess960 so the start of the game gets a bit more stucture. The results are publicly available and played games can be viewed here. The goal of the project is to play at least 1000 games per starting positions.
Chess960 – Discover 960 possibilitiesChess 960 is a variant of orthodox chess. In classical chess the starting position of the game does never change. The idea of this variant goes back to the former World Champion Bobby Fischer, therefore it is also called Fischer chess or Fischer Random Chess. But only the randomized initial chess position is depending on chance not the result of the game.
In Chess 960, just before the start of every game, the initial configuration of the chess pieces is determined randomly, that means that the king, the queen, the rook, the bishop and the knight are not necessarily placed on the same home squares as in classical chess. There are 960 distinguishable starting positions, if we take into account some constraints: the king is placed somewhere between the two rooks to allow castling. Now try to memorize opening moves for 960 different initial configurations. Quite impossible!
That is why the aspect of a well memorized theory about chess opening move sequences is less important, what counts is the chess game itself, just in a different way. But, of course, those who are good players in classical chess have all their chances in chess 960, too, because the knowledge about position analysis, tactics and occupation strategy of the chess board applies here as well, just for different positions.
Chess 960 is also interesting for orthodox chess lovers because the initial configuration 518 is the starting position of classical chess. Mathematically, orthodox chess is only a (small) part of chess960.
In this video you can watch a Chess960 game
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