Wednesday, September 22, 2010

My "Chess Exam: You vs. Fischer" Half-time Score

I am half way through Igor Khmelnitsky's excellent "Chess Exam: You vs. Fischer". As a professional statistician I could not resist predicting my final scores in the different categories based on the half time score. I did not interpolate to the last decimal as I only wanted a feel for the overall picture.

The overall score (1329) is a bit depressing and some of the scores in the different categories somewhat surprising. The Big surprise was my crappy tactics score. My Chesstempo rating has been floating upwards and I am currently rated around 1830. My Chessmagnetschool (CMS) rating has reached a plateau at 1540 and I expected the Overall score and my CMS score to agree.

On the other hand, my ICC rating has been rather stable around 1225 based on a fairly low number of recent games. I suppose the overall score is a better approximation of my true playing strength.

My middlegame skills are just non-existing. That is no surprise. However, I expected my Strategy skill to be just as bad.

You are Better5852.7%1769
You are Worse2022.2%980
No Sacrifice6453.3%1581

Ergo: There is still a lot of hard work to do!


  1. What creates the space between the text and the table???

  2. Don't be depressed buddy!

    N.1 - I wouldn't take the number too seriously, in the end your value is what you get out of tournaments, all the rest are approximations

    N.2 - I feel for you when you say you feel like you suck in tactics - with all the tactics training I am doing I feel I should be much stronger, while in reality I keep missing simple tactics opportunities in everyday's play :(


  3. I have been going through his Tactics exam, struggling to stay around 1575, even though my USCF rating is around 1775.

    I look at your scores as low tactics and defense, and I would guess they are closely related as it seems he has a penchant for including defensive tactics that are extremely difficult to see for a Class player, particularly Class B and below.

  4. Linuxguy,

    Yes, the results are of course highly correlated and based on the first 30 (out of 60) problems in his book.

    Did you like the Tactics Exam?

  5. Farbror,

    I haven't finished taking it yet. Freaking thing was HARD, which on the one hand is exactly what I need to improve, hard tactical calculation type problems. OTH, it's not as much fun to try and do those kinds of problems and think I have found the answer when I usually hadn't. Majorly humbling experience.

    I think using this guy as a coach is really the way to improve, though. He is one of the very best out there, IMHO. It's not that his problems are necessarily all that practical, it's that they get a player to improve on calculating/chess-thinking skills.

  6. Tactics.. yeah. My Chesstempo rating is 1821, and the other day in a 15 min. game (with LOTS of time left) my opponent dropped one of his knights for nothing - except I neglected to take it. So... yeah.

    At least your endgames rock. :)

  7. I guess my crappy games might have hidden my endgame magic. Very few games reach something remotely similar to an endgame