Sunday, May 6, 2007

What are the Gothic Chess pieces worth?



I am sure most people would agree that a Queen (Rook + Bishop) is stronger than a Chancellor (Rook + Knight) which is stronger than an Archbishop (Bishop + Knight), but when exchanging a mix of pieces, how do you evaluate them? I know the standard reply "it depends" can be painted with a wide brush stroke here, but let's foresake that approach and come up with some opinions of what a list of generally accepted values could be.

For example, in 8x8 chess, we have...

pawn = 1.0
knight = 3.0
bishop = 3.0
rook = 5.0
queen = 9.0

...as a standard, with some other rules thrown in, such as:

Add 0.5 pawns to the side with a bishop pair.
Subtract 1 pawn if you trade an active Bishop + Knight in the opening for your opponent's Rook + Pawn

etc.

Here are some things to think about before you toss out some numbers of your own.

Is a Queen >, <, or = a Chancellor + Pawn?
Is a Chancellor >, <, or = an Archbishop + Pawn?
Is an Archbishop + Knight >, <, or = a Queen?

Is an Archbishop + Rook >, <, or = a Chancellor + Bishop?
Is an Archishop >, <, or = a Rook + Pawn?

Is a Queen + Pawn >, <, or = an Archbishop + Bishop?

Some tough questions to ponder!

16 comments:

Cartaphilus said...

We answered this before on the old site but I've changed my mind since then.

I think arch + knight is now stronger than a queen. It seems the two can overpower it in the mid game because the queen is attacked by both and has got to retreat if either can hit her.

Endgame's a different story and the situation's reversed. The arch or knight is usually a target of a tactic, like Q somewhere check then Qx piece.

The queen can usually mow their butts down in the endgame.

smirf said...

SMIRF on the 10x8 board currently sees it as:

C+P >= Q by 0.3085, depending on the positional context
C > A+P by 1.0174,
A+N >= Q by 0.3467, depending on the positional context
A+R == C+B by 0.0301,
A >= R+P by 0.1804, depending on the positional context
Q+P == A+B by 0.0452.

Cartaphilus said...

I'd rather have a queen then a chancellor + pawn in the opening but the chancellor + pawn is a greater threat in the endgame because the pawn has a chance to promote.

I think the archbishop + pawn outdo a chancellor since the chancellor is a clumsy piece and the archbishop is rather deadly.

The archbishop + rook and chancellor + bishop are made up of the same parts! 1 knight 1 bishop and 1 rook each! But, the chancellor + bishop combine to do a Chancellor's Vortex (see http://www.gothicchess.com/strategy.html at the bottom) which is better than anything you can do with a rook and archbishop, so I give the bonus to the chancellor and bishop.

I'd favor rook + pawn over archbishop.

I'd rather have the queen and pawn over archbishop + bishop.

geography_teacher said...

Tough choices! The Chancellor piece has to be almost as strong as the Queen I would think so isn't C + P > Q by almost a pawn?

I have a question. Archbishop + how many pawns = a Queen?

Cartaphilus said...

If you're trading archbishop + something for a queen you'd better try for a minor piece. I never saw arch + 3 pawns for a queen if that's what you asking, and I'd rather scoop up arch + 4 pawns if I was gonna let go of my queen. But picking up pawn after pawn like that is unlikely.

geography_teacher said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
geography_teacher said...

That was a quick reply cartaphilus thanks! We must both be on at the same time, lol! I was just rereading my post and bam!

Cartaphilus said...

We are, I just replied to another post too :)

DuelingBishops said...

So what is stronger when you compare the Queen with the Archbishop and Knight? Queen right?

LeanGurlSwimmer said...

QUUENS always kick everyone's @$$ since she's a gurl and gurlz rule!

Victor said...

I believe the Archbishop and minor to be preferred over just the Queen. The Queen is strong but she can't be in 2 places at once like the Archbishop and Knight.

geography_teacher said...

Well in chess a Queen can be traded for 3 minor pieces right? So an Archbishop is like 2 for the price of 1 and then another Knight thrown in for good measure makes 3 minor pieces so why not trade the Queen for Archbishop and Knight? Should be equal deal.

AxeGrinder said...

Yeah but the arch is 2 minor pieces on 1 square not 2 minor pieces on 2 squares so it's got more power. In chess on a board with a dense 64 squares, you trade 1 queen for 3 minors on 3 squares. In Gothic with a board less dense and spread over 80 squares, you're talking bout trading 1 queen for 3 minors on 2 squares. 2 of the minors are knights though, and knights are weaker on the board with 80 squares. So the big question is Is the weaker knight x 2 + 1 bishop of same or better strength stronger on 2 squares than the queen on an 80 square board is on 1 square? This made more sense when I was thinkin it before I typed it.

DuelingBishops said...

Oh I get it Archbishop + Knight on 2 squares > 3 chess minors on 3 squares on the 64 square board.

So by comparison Queen < Archbishop + Knight is this what you mean?

GothicChessInventor said...

I have some statistics from the 5-piece tablebases I computed. For example, King + Queen vs. King + Archbishop + Knight, maybe I should post those.

H.G.Muller said...

During my vacation I left my dual-core PC at home, playing 40/2' games with material imbalance (deleting different pieces from a fixed opening position (on 10x8) for both sides). From the nearly 8000 games that had been played after I got back, it turned out that A+P in the opening has a small edge over Q. A also had a small edge over R+B+P.

I find a suspiciously low value for the Rook, though: Q beats even R+R+P, B+P lightly beats R, and N+N beats R+P+P. This would lead to a Rook value of only 400 cP. That of course makes it less surprising that A > R+B+P.

I don't trust these results 100%, as it seems they have been obtained with an engine that did not get the castling rights correctly from the FEN describing the opening positions used. So the value of the Rook could have been degraded by the difficulty to develop it without castling.

Another explanation could be that the Rook really is worth this little in the early opening, but that its value increases towards the end-game. And that by the time you have developed it to such an extent that it can be traded against other pieces, it is worth a lot more.