Does anyone know who had the brain cramp responsible for producing the idea of an Armageddon Chess game? That must have been one hellofa seizure, with blood clots bursting like fireworks on the fourth of July. There has got to be a better way to determine a “winner” in Chess than the use of the abominable Armageddon game. The fact is that Armageddon Chess means one side can, and probably should, PLAY FOR A DRAW from the get go! In an attempt to decrease the percentage of draws the fools in power have actually INCREASED the chances of a draw! Makes one wonder why the general public considers Chess players to be “smart,” does it not?
The fact that the best human Chess players in the world acquiesce to being made to look clownish while denigrating themselves for money turns them into trained seals. Armageddon is only the symptom, not the disease. Having to resort to Armageddon is the beginning of the end for Chess. Anything would be preferential; even flipping a coin. It would be better to have the opening for each round chosen at random, thereby precluding players from being “booked-up” in their favorite opening as they would then need to know something about everything. MVL would look good when the Najdorf came up, but how would he fare if forced to play the Scandinavian? The players could play two games against an opponent, having white in one and black in the other, playing same opening. Sure, it might be difficult for a GM booked, err, programed up on Queen side type openings to be forced to play the move Bobby Fischer called, “Best by test,” 1 e4, but that is the point.
After that you will wonder why I am presenting the Armageddon game between Karjakin and Nepo played today. Answer is: It is a Bishop’s opening! “The truth as it was known in those long ago days.” If you still have a question punch and poke “Bishop’s Opening” into the box above and be amazed at the theory you will find that would have satiated SM Brian McCarthy, at least for an evening.
Karjakin, Sergey 2758 vs Nepomniachtchi, Ian 2792 Norway Chess Tournament C24 Bishop’s opening, Berlin defence
1. e4 e5 2. Bc4 Nf6 3. d3 c6 4. Nf3 (This is the main line of the venerable Bishop’s opening, an opening near and dear to my heart as everyone who has followed the AW knows. Nevertheless, if ever faced with the main line again the AW will play a seondary move (at least it’s in second place at 365Chess!) which again, will come as no surprise to regular readers, 4 Qe2! What can I say? I just love to see the look on my opponent’s face any and every time I move the Queen to e2! Insert excrement eatin’ grin here…) 4…d5 5. Bb3 a5 (The choice of StockFish, therefore, main line) 6. a4 6…Bb4+ (Again, the move of the Fish) 7. c3 Bd6 8. exd5 (SF 13 @depth 70(!) takes the pawn, but SF 14 @depth 41 castles) 8…cxd5 9. Bg5 Be6 10. Na3 Nbd7 (Although the most played, 14 games, move, and played by Houdini, SF 13 @depth 73(!) plays 10…Nc6; SF 14 @depth 37 plays 10…h6. There is only one game with this move shown the ChessBaseDataBase until one clicks on. Then digging deeper one finds five games in which both players were at least 2200+ and all were drawn. See Lu vs Yu from the 2020 Chinese Championship below. 10…Nbd7 has held white to 68%; White has brutilized 10…Nc6 to the tune of 75%) 11. Nb5 Bb8 12. O-O (SF plays 12 d4) 12…O-O 13. Bh4 (SF 13 plays 13 Re1; SF 290420 @depth 48 would play 13 Nd2, which would be a NEW MOVE!) 13…h6 14. Re1 Re8 (SF 13 plays 14…Ra6) 15. d4 (SF and Komodo agree that 15 Nd2 is the move)