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Up Topic The Rybka Lounge / Computer Chess / Engine Tournament Play - White vs Black, Blacks persepective
- - By leavenfish (***) [us] Date 2017-11-04 17:40 Edited 2017-11-04 17:46
I asked this during a TCEC game...and all anyone wanted to talk about was 'black holes and Tesla'...so...

If you are familiar with hockey you know that a power play (a man down) is bad for the defender: 5 on 4.
But a man down is not always the same. If both sides then get another penalty, play becomes 4 on 3.

4 on 3 is far worse than 5 on 4 for the defender - common sense and the math will tell you this.

As to how I am trying to relate this to chess...I am sort of equating having black with a mild form of being on the penalty kill. As Black reacts to White, if Black makes a slip (big or small) after the programmed opening, that initial disadvantage gets worse....worse than if White made a slightly inferior move - where a true eval might go from ever-so-slightly better for White  to equal.

When you are playing Black (lets say the openings given are not automatically leading to a better than normal edge for White) you start with a slight disadvantage. (a mild 5 on 4) but if you have two engines similar in the moves they generate during game play analysis...maybe they look about the same depth, have similar evals and the hardware is the same...on the times when Black (often just reacting to whites play) makes a move that gives him a slightly worse position....you start leaning more towards 4 on 3 (or 5 on 3 if that 'slip' is big enough). What you can then get is a bit of a downward spiral where Black could drift more towards inferior positions which make a loss more likely.

So, what I am wondering is if there is a way to program an engine so that it plays with more of an eye towards negating that first move edge (say steering play away from open positions...or exchanging a bit more when that eval is minutely 'worse' than keeping pieces on)...things humans might do to negate that first move disadvantage (given all those equalish parameters I mentioned) because...reacting as it is to White, it is more likely the position will go from every so slightly worse (playing second) to a little more worse...to more worse...etc to maybe where the position simply cannot be held ?

Could you basically  have the engine say from the first move out of book - 'I am black so...optimal play is likely to be slightly different than if I were white'.

I mean it is a bit silly to think the VERY SAME way of evaluating/playing/pruning, etc during Tournament GAME PLAY is going to work equally well as both White and Black. 

Thoughts?
Parent - By h.g.muller (****) [nl] Date 2017-11-05 21:17
There is no intrinsic difference between black and white. After 1. d3 d5 2. d4 black should play exactly like it would play with white after 1.d4 d5 . This is what engines do. They look at the position, and are optimized to make the best of it they can. If that requires a different strategy when they are behind than when they are ahead, then that is what they will do. Whether they are ahead or behind depends solely on the position. Not on the color they play.
Up Topic The Rybka Lounge / Computer Chess / Engine Tournament Play - White vs Black, Blacks persepective

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