Wednesday, August 29, 2012

5-phasic KoBul tasks

The condition KoBul kings is a fairy condition, (that is with this condition the problem is not orthodox any more), proposed by the composer Diyan Kostadinov from Bulgaria. (KoBul = Kostadinov Bulgaria). With this condition, the kings change abilities of moving and capturing, acquiring the abilities of the friendly piece most recently captured. The kings return to the abilities of a simple King when a friendly pawn is captured.

The condition has got interesting strategic applications, which become apparent just as the kings acquire super-powers(!), but soon the time for the checkmate comes. In the present post we are interested only for compositions where the king is mated in five of his phases, (in the final pictures of the five checkmates appears as king, as queen, as rook, as bishop, as knight), which we have named as 5-phasic.

Let suppose that bK is going to be mated.
In the initial position he may be in king's phase (bK), or already in another phase (bQK or bRK or bBK or bSK), and we need one move less. We may have Forsberg twins, where for each twin the bK changes phase on its square.
The bK can change phase when a black piece, already present on the board, is captured or a black pawn might have previously been promoted to a black piece (and that means we need one more move). We may have Forsberg twins, where for each twin a black piece changes type (bQ or bR or bB or bS or bP) on its square.
The promoted piece can be captured on the promotion square or after it moves to another square, (and that means we need one more move).

Let us see now some 5-phasic problems by Greek composers.

(6 + 8)
Emmanuel Manolas
4th Honourable Mention, Thematic Tourney 1,, 2012

h#3, KoBul kings (wRKe7 + bKd4)
5 solutions

1.g1=Q h7 2.Qg8 hxg8=Q(bK=bQK) 3.QKa1 Qg7#
1.g1=R h7 2.Rg8 hxg8=Q(bK=bRK) 3.RKh4 Qg4#
1.e1=B RKxe1(bK=bBK) 2.BKa7 RKe8 3.b6 RKa8#
1.e1=S RKxe1(bK=bSK) 2.SKc2+ RKc1+ 3.SKb4 RKc4#
1.Kc5 d6 2.Kb6 d7 3.Kc7 d8=Q#

5-phasic task

(7 + 7)
Emmanuel Manolas
2nd Prize July 2012

h#2, KoBul kings (wKc8 + bKd4)
5 solutions

1.Qg2 Rxg2(bK=bQK) 2.QKh8 g7#
1.Bxe6+ Rxe6(bK=bBK) 2.BKa7 b6#
1.Rxc2+ Rxc2(bK=bRK) 2.RKa4 Rc4#
1.Kc5 gxh7(bK=bSK) 2.a4 Re5#
1.Kc5 Re5+ 2.Kb6 b8=Q#

5-phasic task

(8 + 9)
Ioannis Garoufalidis

h#2, KoBul kings (wKh3 + bKc6), 5 twins,

a) diagram : 1.Sc7 a6 2.Kb6 Rd6#
b) with bKQc6 : 1.QKg6 Rd6+ 2.QKh5 g4#
c) with bKRc6 : 1.cxd3 Rd5 2.RKc3 Rc5#
d) with bKBc6 : 1.Re7 a6 2.Re8 Rd6#
e) with bKSc6 : 1.SKe7 Re4+ 2.SKg8 Re8#

The phase-changing of bK takes place before the 1st black move.
5-phasic task

Monday, August 27, 2012

A Task from Nikos Pergialis

There are composers of chess problems in various countries of the world.
In some countries there is support from the state, there are schools with teachers and students, and they have production of nice compositions.
On the other hand, something odd has been observed in Greece : in various times there is lack of peace - comfort - good health - free time, and again some important composers appear.
An example was Demetrius Kapralos. In our era, an example is the last Rebetis (remember the rebetiko song!), the aged but productive Nikos Pergialis.

Below you see a direct two-mover of his, with white royal battery (the king is the front piece and when he moves, the rear piece delivers mate). For the royal battery, the maximum number of thematic variations in an orthodox two-mover is six. Nikos Pergialis achieves that, this is a Task, and he says

This Task, my urchin friends,
I bring to you with pride.
With only a dozen pieces
- I think it is first time!

(5+7) Meredith
Nikos Pergialis


{Try 1.Qh1? e5!}
Key : 1.Qg2! [2.Ke2#/Kg4#]
1...Sf2 2.Kxf2#
1...f5 2.Ke2#
1...Se3 2.Kxe3#
1...Sg3 2.Kxg3#
1...c1=S 2.Kg4#
1...Sf4 2.Kxf4#
1...e5 2.Qg8# (non thematic variation)

Task with royal battery.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

4+3 problems of fairy chess

In her well-known wep-page Julia Vysotska from Latvia had announced a Composition tourney for fairy chess problems.

It is quite interesting and there are already about 100 problems published, some of which were lucky enough to receive comments from excellent composers (teachers actually!).

I have also sent some problems and she have posted them in two nice pages. Many thanks again from here!

Four problems with KoBul kings (they take the properties of a captured friendly piece, they return to normality when a a friendly pawn is captured), that may be seen here :

Three problems with condition Black Maximummer (in which is easier to control the black pieces since the possible moves are few), that may be seen here :

Enjoy (and comment)!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Composition Tourneys, WCCC in Kobe

The first declarations of composition tourneys have started to appear, for the 55th WCCC (World Congress of Chess Composition) which is about to begin for 2012 in Kobe, Japan. Simultaneously, there will be held the 36th WCSC (World Chess Solving Championship).
Official web-page :

Friday, August 10, 2012

Meeting with IM Alexis Murillo Tsijli

Alexis Murillo Tsijli, an International Master from Costa Rica, during his presence in Greece for visiting relatives and playing chess in various summer tourneys, asked to meet me. I accepted and the appointment was set for Nea Smirni (Athens, Greece). For easy recognition, I was wearing a t-shirt with a chess-queen, a gift from the friendly Italian composers (see API, Associazione Problemistica Italiana) since last year in Jesi, where the WCCC was held.

(Thanks to ms. Caterina for the photo).

After the meeting, my friend Alexis posted in his blog ("the good Chess!") a description about the Greek chess situation, which can be seen here :