Friday, April 8, 2011

Running Neck and Neck, He's Breaking

Within 2 Bare Rating Points of Mr. Nemesis

The online site where we are playing these chess battles uses a rating system like the famous official federations, who themselves do not like to recognize one another, so likewise unless one pays money to them and jumps through hoops such as to commit to one or the other, these ratings do not count to them. There is FIDE, the PCA, and whatever happened to Bobby Fischer, and who knows what else. Khrgystan probably has other ideas, too. None of them would recognize the online ratings I am talking about.

It would be a fairly easy step to give them the money, if one were so inclined. It buys the right to be official.

But what counts to my Nemesis and I is that we can fight each other.

Four years ago, he beat me 10 out of 10 games in one night and I quit chess altogether. This phase lasted four years, with no chess whatsoever. When sometimes people would bring up the subject, I would at first show complete understanding of every detail and phase of the game, and then when they proposed we play a game, then I would look down at the ground and mumble that, oh, well, I quit. Because my nemesis beat me. Every game. Then I would endure their laughing, but dug in my heels. No.I...I can't...I quit. Sorry.

One month ago he persuaded me to join up to an online chess site, and there he beat me 9 out of 10. I was encouraged by that result. They start you off as an 1100 rating and then it goes up for wins and down for losses according to a certain mathematical formula. You get more for beating someone stronger, less for someone around the same or lower than you. There's a certain online Pool game that uses the same sort of rating system. So losing nine out of ten, my rating quickly fell below 1000, and then drooped as low as 917.

The minimum to be allowed to play in a tournament I had signed up for was 1000, but we were waiting for the tournament places to fill up, so it had not started yet. I began to win more games, and when I did the formula worked more in my favor as when such a low-rated 917 beats a 1463 (my nemesis) the 917 gets more points than the 1463 would, since he would be expected to win most of the time.

I got up to 1159 in time for the tournament start, so I was allowed in. In the first game I very nearly beat the top dog, a Dutch player, who was then a 1716 but now is an 1814. I had a Rook and Pawn advantage in material and was grinding him down, but he was able to trick me and win. I was quite exhausted at the time, and should have seen and prevented what he did.

The next best player is from Scotland and a very cautious player, and in that game I have a Knight advantage over him. It's not over yet because he plays slowly and cautiously. I could tell he made some desperate moves this past week, so I think he is starting to go for broke, still at a material disadvantage.

Then last week going berserk I threw away as many as three of the 23 games against my nemesis just to clear up the docket. It was too much to have 30 games going on at once, and I just wanted them over with, so I moved too fast and blew three of them, ending up losing the 23-game series 13-10 I think, although it is still too difficult to figure out if that is the correct exact final score. Too much else going on.

I threw away my queen in a tournament game after last week's article about not doing that, but had moved when I was tired. Luckily that is against the next weakest player and I may actually be able to survive the tremendous blunder in that one. Maybe.

But the most important development is that last night my surprise system defeated my nemesis in just 12 moves, when he saw I would get his Queen he resigned in just 12 moves.

His spirits are crumbling as I am now down to only ten active games, and he still has about fifty. It was his original idea to have one hundred simultaneous games, so he certainly deserves the strain. He got me into it.
After the defeat last night, I see our ratings are now like this:

Mr. Nemesis:  1395
me:                  1393

He said that if my rating goes above his, he's done.

That means he will quit chess, or so he says. We've come a long way to reach this position.

The game we are now playing is plus or minus 13 points, since our ratings are now almost the same based on dozens of games of results against other rated players. These numbers put us in the 71st percentile of the near 300, 000 players we are compared with. The 1800's in the tournament are not quite good enough to be masters, but they are in the top 7 or so percent of the compared group.

So the one game we are now playing could be enough to break him. Unfortunately I miscalculated an attack on his Queen, so that he was able to get my Light-Square Bishop, which I have just converted to a Knight advantage for him.. so he is ahead in this one. Still, I think I have almost got him ready to break down.


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  1. Excellent work my friend, chess can be a cruel bitch sometimes, keep us informed on how the final result goes.

  2. There's nothing like beating a mate, I do it to Fran all the time, I must admit it does get a little boring keep beating him though. Maybe Fran will retire from wargaming??

  3. Could be the new element of online Psy Ops that made the decisive difference.

    If we go by the ratings numbers now, I could conceivably lose to the Nemesis and lose 13 pts but beat the Scots guy and gain 50, thus
    still destroying his ego a different way, although it's easier to just beat him.

  4. Don't keep us hanging here! what a tension, it was like watching a movie, I picture mr. nemesis like a Bond villain, lol.

  5. wow, that is one grueling game!

  6. Yes it is a tremendous tension and that is the attraction of it I think, it is a sort of adrenaline or something.

    He would be happy to hear that he is like a Bond villain, but I predict he will not say so here because he lacks the attention span to sign in for a comment, even though he is a Follower and a Webmaster in his own right.

    Also he skims and misses the last sentence of each paragraph. That is how I will eventually get ahead.

    Right now I noticed I have 12 wins and 21 losses overall with him, since he was beating me all the time in the beginning.