Final Award in Quick Composing TT-166 | Окончательные итоги блицконкурса TT-166

All in N moves | Всё в N ходов

Theme | Тема

15 entries were received from 8 authors representing 7 countries | На конкурс поступило 15 композиций от 8 авторов из 7 стран

EN <-> RU

I received 15 problems (one of them in 2 versions) for this tourney, in anonymous form. The general quality of the entries was clearly above my expectations, and the amount of entries was also respectable considering that this was a quite difficult theme. So I would definitely class this tourney as successful!
A few words about my criterias for judging:
- Interesting content in all variants is very important – that is, all the different stipulations should make good sense. If, for example, the direct mate is very good, but the helpmate only seems to be included in order to fulfill the theme, and does not have any interesting content, the overall impression is not that good. Also, if the play is basically the same in several variants, it also lowers the overall impression;
- The economy is also very important. Preferably, all main pieces (especially the white ones) should be active in all variants. If a piece is completely inactive in one or several variants, it is a clear weakness. In the helpmate, also, all the white main pieces should preferably be active in the mating position;
- As this is a theme based on twinning through different stipulations, the amount of stipulations is also an important factor. However, as stated in the previous points, they should also make good sense in terms of economy, and make a good addition to the content from the mandatory stipulations. Otherwise, they may actually be a weakness rather than an improvement;
- Some good thematic connection between the different variants is a most welcome asset.

Also a few words about the problems not included in the award:
- No 5 (Kf1-Kh1). The only miniature in the tourney. Unfortunately, though, the play is a bit too mechanical, and also much too similar in all variants, for inclusion in the award;
- No 6 (Kf1-Kh2). Also very similar play in all variants;
- No 10 (Ke6-Kh7). Several pieces are inactive in all variants. I would have preferred, if the author had skipped the duplex helpmate, and the second helpmate solution, which also ends in a minor dual mate (Rook or Queen promotion). Then, several pieces could have been removed, and the economy had been much better;
- No 11 (Kf2-Kh1) and No 12 (Kf5-Kh4). Bad keys in the direct mate, which take vital flight squares from the black King. Also, the play in the direct mate and helpmate is very similar.

As mentioned above, the overall quality was very good, and it was not easy to find a clear winner. The fight for 1st place was hard between all the entries awarded a Prize. Anyway, I finally decided on the following (see below).
Finally, I would like to thank all participants for all their find entries, and last but not least, I want to thank the SuperProblem tourney director Aleksey Oganesjan for his excellent work, and for giving me the opportunity to judge this tourney.
Thank you all, and congratulations to all awarded composers!

Award is the following | Отличия распределились следующим образом

1st Prize, 1st Place - No 1
Igor Agapov
TT-166, SuperProblem, 20-05-2016
#4b) h#4(5+3)
2nd Prize, 2nd Place - No 2
Karol Mlynka
TT-166, SuperProblem, 20-05-2016
#3b) h#3; c) ser-#3 (2 sol.)(10+7)
3rd Prize, 3rd Place - No 14
Christer Jonsson
TT-166, SuperProblem, 20-05-2016
#3b) h#3 2.1..(6+2)

1st Prize, 1st Place - No 1, Igor Agapov (Russia) 8/8/2R4p/1P1k1K2/3p3P/3P4/8/8

a) #4: 1.Kf6! h5 2.Ke7 Ke5 3.Rf6 Kd5 4.Rf5#
b) h#4: 1.h5 b6 2.Kxc6 b7 3.Kc7 Ke6 4.Kd8 b8Q#
The first problem in the tourney was also my first choice for first place!
The individual variants are perhaps not too spectacular – but I definitely find it spectacular, that the author has managed to combine them in one single problem! The economy is excellent, both the direct mate and helpmate have nice and harmonical play, and both end in completely different model mates. It is also one of very few entries, where the black King does not stand at an edge of the board.
This was the only problem in the tourney where I could not find a single clear weakness, and this was the main reason why I chose to award it the 1st Prize. Congratulations!
EN <-> RU

2nd Prize, 2nd Place - No 2, Karol Mlynka (Slovakia) 8/2B5/1P2P3/2pB4/2P3pp/2P1p1Pp/4Pp1k/Q4K2

a) #3:
1.Qc1? (X) – 2.Qxe3 – 3.Qxf2#, 1...hxg3!
1.Qb1? (Y) – 2.Qe4 – 3.Qh1#, 1...hxg3!
1.Bg2? (B) zz hxg3 (a) 2.Qa8 (A) zz hxg2+ 3.Qxg2#, 1...hxg2+!
1.Qa8! (A) – 2.Qb8 zz hxg3 3.Bxg3#, 1...hxg3 (a) 2.Bg2 (B) zz hxg2+ 3.Qxg2#

b) h#3:
*1...Bd8 2.Kxg3 Bc7#
1.hxg3 Bh1! 2.Kxh1 Bxg3 3.h2 Qa8# (A)

c) ser-#3 (2 solutions):
1.Qc1 (X) 2.Qxe3 3.Qxf2#
1.Qb1 (Y) 2.Qe4 3.Qh1#
This problem differs quite a lot in style from the 1st Prize. Here, we have a much heavier position – but also very rich content, with several different themes included: Salazar, switchback, corner to corner move, Bishop sacrifices on both h1 and g2, and Queen mates on 4 different fields. The author also stated the helpmate as Bristol theme, but that is not correct, as the Queen never moves along the Bishop's path.
A weakness is that the black-square Bishop is inactive in the mating position in the helpmate variant, and completely unused in one of the serial mate variants. But nevertheless, I am impressed by the large amount of content the author has managed to squeeze into this problem, and therefore present this problem with a well-deserved Prize!
EN <-> RU

3rd Prize, 3rd Place - No 14, Christer Jonsson (Sweden) 6R1/3K1p2/5P2/5P2/3P3k/8/4N3/8

a) #3: 1.Sg1! Kh5 2.Sf3 Kh6 3.Rh8#
b) h#3: 1.Kh3 Sg1+ 2.Kh2 Sf3+ 3.Kh1 Rg1#, 1.Kh5 Sf4+ 2.Kh6 Sg6 3.Kh7 Rh8#
A problem in similar style as the 1st Prize, that is, with excellent economy, and model mates in all variants – this time as much as 3 ones! This problem, however, has a flight-taking key in the direct mate solution, and I don't find the actual play quite as interesting as in the 1st Prize, partly because the black King is kept along the edge of the board throughout all variants here. But nevertheless, it is an excellent implementation of the theme, and another worthy Prize winner!
EN <-> RU
Special Prize - No 4
Karol Mlynka
TT-166, SuperProblem, 20-05-2016
#3b)-e) - see text(9+4)
1st Honorable mention - No 8
Gábor Tar
TT-166, SuperProblem, 20-05-2016
#3b) h#3; c) ser-h=3(7+6)
2nd Honorable mention - No 9
Dieter Müller & Mirko Degenkolbe
TT-166, SuperProblem, 20-05-2016
#3b) h#3; c) s#3(9+4)

Special Prize - No 4, Karol Mlynka (Slovakia) 8/1P6/8/5P2/4p1pp/4p1Np/4P2k/4BK2

a) #3: 1.b8Q! (A) zz hxg3 (a) 2.Qxg3+ (B) Kh1 (b) 3.Qg1#
b) h#3: 1.hxg3 (a) b8Q (A) 2.Kh1 (b) Qxg3 (B) 3.h2 Qg2# (C)
c) s#3: 1.b8Q! (A) hxg3 (a) 2.Qxg3+ (B) Kh1 (b) 3.Qg2+ (C) hxg2#
d) ser-r#3: 1.Sh5 2.Sf4 3.Sg2 hxg2#
e) ser-h=3: 1.hxg3 (a) 2.Kh1 (b) 3.h2 Bxg3=
The author has managed to reach the most impressive amount of 5 (!) stipulations!
Unfortunately, though, there are some clear weaknesses. The play in a), b) and c) include many repeated moves, and the white Bishop is completely inactive in the helpmate.
Anyway, the amazing achievement of reaching 5 different stipulations, in a relatively light position, is well worth a Special Prize!
EN <-> RU

1st Honorable mention - No 8, Gábor Tar (Hungary) 5kN1/5Bp1/5pP1/3p4/3P2p1/3P2p1/5NK1/8

a) #3: 1.Sxg4! f5 2.Se5 f4 3.Sd7#
b) h#3: 1.f5 Sh6 2.Ke7 Sh3 3.Kf6 Sg8#
c) ser-h=3: 1.f5 2.f4 3.f3+ Kxg3=
This problem has a quite simple direct mate, and a serial helpstalemate which almost solves automatically.
However, it also has a really interesting helpmate, with a nice switchback by the white Knight, and where the black King unexpectedly walks out on the middle of the board, and right into a nice model mate! This very interesting variant, plus the fact that the direct mate ends in a model mate as well, and that I can't find any clear constructional weaknesses, is enough to grant this entry an Honorable Mention!
EN <-> RU

2nd Honorable mention - No 9, Dieter Müller & Mirko Degenkolbe (Germany) 8/P2p4/3P4/p7/PN2RP2/Kpk2P2/1R6/8

a) #3: 1.Rxb3+! Kd2 2.Rd3+ Kc1 3.Re1#
b) h#3: 1.axb4+ Rxb4 2.Kd3 a8Q 3.Ke3 Qe4#
c) s#3: 1.Sa6! Kd3 2.Sc5+ Kc3 3.Rb4 axb4#
This is one of the few problems with more than two stipulations, where the extra stipulation is the best variant. The selfmate variant here is really good, with change of sacrificed piece on b4. A fine problem, with three very different variants, which all make good sense. And like the 1st Prize, one of very few entries where the black King does not stand at one of the edges of the board.
Unfortunately, the problem also has some clear weaknesses. The direct mate is quite simple, with checks all the way, and in the helpmate, the white Rook on b4 is inactive in the mating position. This last weakness could also have been fixed quite easily, by replacing the Pawns on f3 and f4 with a white Pawn on g3 and a black Pawn on g4. Now, unfortunately, there is at least one weakness too many for a Prize, but I still think that the problem is a fine achievement, and definitely good enough for an Honorable Mention.
EN <-> RU
Special Honorable mention - No 15
Pietro Pitton
TT-166, SuperProblem, 20-05-2016
#3b) h#3(5+5)
1st Commendation - No 3B
Karol Mlynka
TT-166, SuperProblem, 20-05-2016
#3b) h#3*(8+4)
2nd Commendation - No 13
Vladimir Koci
TT-166, SuperProblem, 20-05-2016
#4b) h#4; c) ser-=4(12+6)

Special Honorable mention - No 15, Pietro Pitton (Italy) 8/1pp5/8/8/1p6/kPp5/P1P5/R3K3

a) #3: castling is legal
1.0-0-0! ~ 2.Rd8 ~ 3.Ra8#

b) h#3: castling is not legal – the previous white move was made by wK or wR.
1.c5 Kd1 2.c4 Kc1 3.cxb3 axb3#
Very clever use of castling! Really nice!
Unfortunately, though, the problem has very forced play in the direct mate, where the key also takes the vital flight-route via b2 from the black King. Therefore, I decided to give this problem only a special distinction.
EN <-> RU

1st Commendation - No 3B, Karol Mlynka (Slovakia) 8/1P6/8/PPP5/3Pp3/4Pp1p/5K1P/7k

a) #3:
1.b8Q/B? pat
1.b8S? Kxh2!
1.b8R! zz Kxh2 2.Rh8 zz Kh1 3.Rxh3#

b) h#3*:
*1...b8R 2.Kxh2 Rh8 3.Kh1 Rxh3#
1.Kxh2 b8Q+ 2.Kh1 Qg8 3.Kh2 Qg1#
Change of promotions between direct mate and helpmate. Nice, but it feels like this play has been used in several problems before...
EN <-> RU

2nd Commendation - No 13, Vladimir Koci (Czech Republic) B7/2p1p3/2P1Pp2/4pK2/4p2k/P1P1P2P/4P2P/B5N1

a) #4: 1.Kg6! f5 2.c4 f4 3.Bxe5 f3/fxe3 4.Bg3#
b) h#4: 1.Kh5 c4 2.Kh4 Kg6 3.f5 Bc3 4.f4 Be1#
c) ser-=4: 1.Bb7 2.Bc8 3.Bd7 4.Be8=
Very nice dual avoidance on move 3!
However, I would definitely have preferred if the author had skipped the serial stalemate variant, as that one completely breaks the fine pattern from a) and b), and also forces adding of some pieces, which are completely inactive in the other variants – that is, Ba8 and Pc6, c7 and e2.
The flight-taking key in the direct mate is also a weakness.
Anyway, the fine dual avoidance play, which no other entry in the tourney has, is good enough to at least grant this entry a Commendation.
EN <-> RU
3rd Commendation - No 7
Gábor Tar
TT-166, SuperProblem, 20-05-2016
#4b) h#4*(8+6)

3rd Commendation - No 7, Gábor Tar (Hungary) k1K5/p2p4/Pp1p4/3P2p1/PP4P1/8/P7/5B2

a) #4: 1.Bd3! b5 2.Bf5 bxa4 3.Bxd7 a3 4.Bc6#
b) h#4: 1.b5 Bc4 2.bxc4 b5 3.c3 b6 4.c2 b7#
Rather simple play, especially in the direct mate variant.
However, it has a good common element in both variants – stalemate avoidance. In a), white must guide his Bishop to the right path in order to avoid stalemate, as the shortest path does not work: 1.Bb5? (2.Bxd7 – 3 Bc6#) =. And in b), white must sacrifice his Bishop to guide the black Pawn to the right path, as 2.bxa4? once again leads to stalemate. This adds some consistency to the problem, and is good enough for granting it a Commendation.
EN <-> RU

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Sections | Разделы

#3 (threemovers | трёхходовки)
#N (moremovers | многоходовки)
H# (helpmates | коопматы)
S# (selfmates | самоматы)

Participants | Участники

Agapov I. – No 1
Degenkolbe M. – No 9*
Jonsson C. – No 14
Koci V. – No 10, 11, 12, 13
Mlynka K. – No 2, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6
Pitton P. – No 15
Müller D. – No 9*
Tar G. – No 7, 8

The Winner Is | Победитель

Igor Agapov
Congrats! | Поздравляем!

Judge | Арбитр

Ingemar Lind

Director and editor
Директор и редактор

Aleksey Oganesjan

Comments | Комментарии

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