I composed a reverse puzzle. Stockfish can't find the winning move at depth 50, but a 1000 ELO human can find it in 10 seconds. Black to play and win.

I analyzed the image and this is what I see. Open an appropriate link below and explore the position yourself or with the engine:

Black to play: chess.com | lichess.org

My solution:

Hints: piece: King, move: Kg5

Evaluation: White is winning +15.60

Best continuation: 1... Kg5 2. Ke4 Kg4 3. Bf8 Kg3 4. Bfg7 Kg4 5. Be7 Kg3 6. Bcd8 Kg4 7. Bef8 Kg5 8. Ke5 Kg4 9. Ba7

I'm a bot written by u/pkacprzak | get me as Chess eBook Reader |Chrome Extension |iOS App |Android App to scan and analyze positions | Website: Chessvision.ai


I analyzed the image and this is what I see. Open an appropriate link below and explore the position yourself or with the engine: > **Black to play**: [chess.com](https://chess.com/analysis?fen=1B1B3B/1pBpBp1p/1P1P1PpP/8/7k/4K3/8/8+b+-+-+0+1&flip=false&ref_id=23962172) | [lichess.org](https://lichess.org/analysis/1B1B3B/1pBpBp1p/1P1P1PpP/8/7k/4K3/8/8_b_-_-_0_1) **My solution:** > Hints: piece: >!King!<, move: >!Kg5!< > Evaluation: >!White is winning +15.60!< > Best continuation: >!1... Kg5 2. Ke4 Kg4 3. Bf8 Kg3 4. Bfg7 Kg4 5. Be7 Kg3 6. Bcd8 Kg4 7. Bef8 Kg5 8. Ke5 Kg4 9. Ba7!< --- ^(I'm a bot written by ) [^(u/pkacprzak )](https://www.reddit.com/u/pkacprzak) ^(| get me as ) [^(Chess eBook Reader )](https://ebook.chessvision.ai?utm_source=reddit&utm_medium=bot) ^(|) [^(Chrome Extension )](https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/chessvisionai-for-chrome/johejpedmdkeiffkdaodgoipdjodhlld) ^(|) [^(iOS App )](https://apps.apple.com/us/app/id1574933453) ^(|) [^(Android App )](https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=ai.chessvision.scanner) ^(to scan and analyze positions | Website: ) [^(Chessvision.ai)](https://chessvision.ai)


Lol. I admire the dedication of OP. 3 bishops was not enough to make the engine look badly, so he aded 2 more..


Also all on dark square's. 😁


So tell me. Does that mean white is weak on the light squares?


I think you are overestimating a 1000 player's endgame skills


Yup, 1500+ me can't see anything Well I can see the idea, but not how to force it


Opposition is always your friend




with all due respect this is a chess subreddit


Agreed. I'm 1500 and I treated this as a normal K+P vs K endgame. Big mistake, because it's slightly different than that, and would've cost me if I had only 10 seconds like OP said


I think Kg3 still works if it's a normal K+P vs K endgame. However, Kh3 doesn't anymore.


I'm 700, brand new to chess, but the way I see it the white bishops and pawns are completely trapped. The pawns can't move, the bishops can't get past the pawns and the white King can't get in to attack the black pawns. So what's stopping black from marching it's passed pawn down the board to promote, making sure to keep it in contact with their king so that the white king can't attack it? Then isn't it basically just a queen king vs. king endgame on a slightly smaller board. Have I missed anything?


The trick is that in a normal king and pawn endgame, the king has to move. Imagine a position where it's white to move, the white king is on g1, the black pawn is on g2, and the black king is on h3. White must play Kf2, black plays Kh2 and can force through g1=Q next move. In this scenario, however, the king can stay on g1 and white can move the bishops back and forth. That's the key difference


So in this position black can only win if they go Kg3. If the white king ever tries to go for g1, the black king needs to be able to get to g2 or h2 first, but black also needs to stop the white king from threatening the pawn. If white stops black from getting his king on the g file it isn't possible to protect g1, protect the pawn and push the pawn.


im rated 1050 in blitz and i saw it instantly, gothamchess videos op lol


I always get confused when people post the puzzle with the board reversed. This is why most compositions are white to move.


Ohhhhh, now I understand why this didn't make sense to me lmao


Yea I found the best move if the pieces are going the other way too haha. Then I loaded the puzzle and was like ???


It's funny that the OP said it himself. He composed a reverse puzzle.


Is it reversed? Cause the numbers are from white perspective


Exactly, and it's black to move. Usually, puzzles show themselves from the perspective of the color playing them






Maybe anyone can find the first move randomly, even an engine. But a 1000 Elo finding the continuation? Let alone in 10s? Get outta here.


I don’t get it, Kg3 and black ushers the pawn up? Am I missing something? White king can’t guard the promotion squares.


Maybe 10 seconds is too short, but the basic concept is that as long as the white king can't make it to g1, the pawn promotes. If a 1000 can see that, they can just run to g1 as fast as possible.


10 seconds is too long I could spot it and premove it easily


But the King can make it to G1... And H1....


No, the white King can't.


Move to f3. And then you just play off blacks moves. If they push the pawn, f2, then G1 then just move the bishop until draw


It's black to move. Kg3 completely stops the white King from being able to block you.


It can threaten that and the pawn, making it possible for the white king to draw.


It's black to move. Kg3 completely stops the white King from being able to block you. White cannot draw.


As a 1000, i can confirm i wouldve played H5


You're below 1000 then


It's not even that complicated, just promote the pawn and don't let the enemy king get in front of it. I'm about 1600 and I found it easily.


1300 and it seemed obvious to me


what? the continuation is so easy you just have to move your king up and you're fine is it that difficult for you?




Any 500 will throw this game back and forth several times lol


Eh, Im 670 and I immediately realized its just a basic pawn endgame.


Yeah it’s not hard to look at the board and think “oh there’s pawns. This is pawn endgame.” Would you actually be able to win with it?


It is not the same as a basic pawn endgame, because white can effectively skip their turn whenever they want by moving a bishop. So if the white king manages to get in front of the black king, it's a draw even if you have the opposition. Still, it's not very hard to win.


There's no opposition because white can make bishop moves.


Cmon man let’s be real. Any 200 ELO player could premove this endgame to checkmate.


Hilariously stockfish still thinks it's 0.0 even after black promotes.


Not for me it doesn't. It announced forced mate for black as soon as the black king gets to g2 with the pawn on g3


I had the same experience in lichess. Quite interesting, I wonder how the evaluation really works...


Maybe I am an idiot, but I don’t see it.


I think all of the pieces are bogus except for the kings and the black pawn on g6. The board is White moves up, but the puzzle is for Black to win. So this is just a Black king + g-pawn versus a king. So a normal pawn endgame. Like you, I don't see the point of all these extra and largely immobile pieces. Maybe that's the point? It obfuscates from the engine that this is just a single-pawn ending, where Black can gain the opposition and queen. Edit: Ahh.. the bishops are there to prevent Black from using the opposition to force White to concede ground... Edit: Or possibly Black's winning attempt is a combination of capturing the h6-pawn, advancing the h&g pawns while restraining the White bishop on h8 by Kg6-h7, maybe using zugzwang to force the White king to conceded ground against the two black pawns.


Oh, I had the board reversed in my head. I thought Black was going up, I should have looked at the coordinates.


I did the same thing. When you post a puzzle, the norm is that you're looking from the perspective that you're playing as.


Same. Puzzles should be posted in the perspective of the colour to play. Saying black to play and it's from whites perspective is confusing, I thought Black was going up for a few mins.


Must be what they mean by reverse puzzle.


I'm pretty sure if black starts with Kg3, it can cover enough ground for the g file pawn to eventually promote. That should be enough to checkmate. Maybe if the white king ran away and snuck behind its bishops it could get a little more tricky... but in that case, unlocking the h file pawn to get two queens shouldn't be that complicated, and I'm too lazy to calculate out that specific sequence


It’s a K+P vs K endgame, but you can never use Zugzwang as they can waste tempi with moving the bishop. So you just have to shoulder the king away from the queening square.


If you take h6 you release an endless stream of bishops


Oh, that's true, the other bishops can exit via f8 and push their way past the Black king.


Yeah, if you remove the bishops, Stockfish sees the win instantly.


One bishop can move so it prevents Zugzwang.


Why didn’t you post this from black POV like 99% of people?




Bold to assume a 1000 player: a) figures out in which directions the pawns move. b) figures out only the g-pawn and Kings matter. c) figures out opposition does not matter and he has to keep the white king away from the key squares.


Yeah, as a 1000 elo player I spent 5 seconds thinking it was white to move, then red the title properly, and thought for 10 seconds it's black to move, but didn't realize the position is from white's perspective. And then 30 seconds to understand what is going on here in the first place, then I decided to move Kg5 since surely it must be intuitively simple since the title claims it is to be solved within 10s. And my idea was to eat the white pawn and then move with the pawn in the side, but of course then bishop can block.


Huh? I’m at around 700 but I got those first two almost immediately. Maybe a stupid question, but how would that be overlooked?


The first one, because the OP posted a "black to play" puzzle from white's perspective. And the second isn't wholly true, the bishops DO matter- for wasting tempo


Ahh I see, thank you!


I'm 600 and figured out all of that


Wait wtff... Is Kg3 the only viable move or is g5 also possibe?


After g5 the white king runs to g1 and stays there forever


Oh you're right... did Leela catch on for this puzzle?


I didn't try it with Leela. Do you know where I can give Leela a try?


https://nextchessmove.com On this site you can try many different engines


Do you have the LC0 net? Just plug it in to your chess GUI and you'll be good


You realize 99% of chess players don't keep dedicated chess software on their PC's right?


No, not really. I've talked to plenty of people in this subreddit who have GUI's or made engines. Regardless, I don't think its that complicated to download a chess GUI...


I ran lc0 on my GPU cluster in Scid vs. PC and it gives white a slight edge for awhile. At depth 13-15 (which is far along for lc0 compared to Stockfish) it still thinks it is an equal endgame. I actually thought lc0 would do a better job in situations like this, but it seems that it does not. Very interesting puzzle.


Forgive me if I’m mistaken, but g5 should still be viable because black can play Kh3 no matter what white does: h3 would be a key square at that time


That would be true if this was a normal K+P v. K endgame. However, white's king can just go to g1 and move the bishops back and forth infinitely


Thank you! What an oversight.


But I gotta say, since you had a legitimate reason to get this wrong, this does debunk OP's title claiming that a "1000 can solve this in 10 seconds"


Dont 1000 elo players struggle with pawn endgames? Its not the first thing you learn exactly.


shit I'm loke 1600 in lichess and I still struggle with it lol


1800 still struggle, won’t get easier 😂


On top of that it's not even a normal king and pawn endgame. As OP stated elsewhere you can't even move the g pawn first because then white's king can go camp g1 because it has the bishop on h8 to go back and forth with. In other words: it's a clickbait title.


What is a normal king and pawn endgame? I can think of many situations where you have to move the king first, in what i call "normal king and pawn endgames".


A normal king and pawn endgame would allow for the threat of zugzwang.


yeah i feel like maybe 1400 fide? then basic pawn endgames should be able to be handled confidently


1000 elo's could be masters of the endgame, but suck at the middle so never reach these types of end games so never get to use it.


This! I know opening and many common endgames, and I know how to use all the tactics, but I don't seem to always be able to find a good combination in a game. I think it's likely that lower level players tend to play sharper games because they both don't know what they're doing, but then one ends up with a huge advantage at some point and so endgame theory doesn't really matter.


There's a difference between knowing how to use all the tactics and knowing when to use a tactic.


Hey! I just won his queen! Oh! I just blundered mate in 1.


I'm around 1000 ELO on lichess, and yes, I didn't get the move on the first try, but I did realize my error and put my king in front of my pawn on my second go.


Usually this is the third endgame you learn after King Queen and King Rook, that's about 1000 level.


I’m 950 and I struggle with endgames period. I’m pretty good at getting a favorable endgame…usually…but my god have I blundered away so many easy wins


I'm USCF ~1100 in rapid and was able to crush Lichess Fairy Stockfish Level 8 fairly easily on my first try. Engine doesn't even try to move the king to make it complicated. Interesting puzzle.


Why do you have this from white’s perspective? I struggled with this for a while before realizing the board was upside down. In puzzles, it’s normal to have it from the perspective of the player who is playing to win to solve the puzzle.


Yeah this messed me up too.


I was so confused when I saw kg5 as answer I was like that's an illegal move you're putting the king in check lmao


Stared at this for 2 minutes til I realised you said Black to play. I would assume >!Kg3!


Yeah engines struggle with completely blocked pieces they think they can get out of it and when you provide them with a shit ton of useless material advantage they get blind infact early computers valued material so much they fell for the simplest sacrifices which is why when deep blue didn't take garry's sacrifice in the game where he lost he accused the owners of deep blue saying they had Bobby fisher in the command room secretly feeding moves lol


Engines struggle with idiocy with 5 bishops of the same colour since this positions are not really chess anyway so no one gives a crap.


TIL either my ELO is below 1000 or I am Stockfish.


What exactly is a “reverse puzzle”?


This post has been parodied on r/AnarchyChess. Relevant r/AnarchyChess posts: [I composed a reverse puzzle. Stockfish can't find the winning move at depth 50, but ChatGPT can find it in 10 seconds. Black to play and win.](https://www.reddit.com/r/AnarchyChess/comments/113s36q/i_composed_a_reverse_puzzle_stockfish_cant_find/) by No-Athlete2113 [^(fmhall)](https://www.reddit.com/user/fmhall) ^| [^(github)](https://github.com/fmhall/relevant-post-bot)


Because of Bg7/Bf8, as soon as White's king sets foot on the g-file ahead of Black's pawn, all hopes of winning are dashed. Protect the g-file at all costs! >!1... Kg3 2. Ke2 Kg2 3. Ke3 g5 (cuts the king off of f4) 4. Ke4 g4 (now guarding f3 for later) 5. Kf4 Kh3 6. Ke3 (because Kf3 isn't possible) Kh2 7. Kf4 g3!< and it's 0-1 all day.


It took me a minute to realize White goes up


I am 2200 in lichess and 2000 in chess com and couldn't find it in 10 secs


>Stockfish can't find the winning move at depth 50, but a 1000 ELO human can find it in 10 seconds Troll


The move Kg3 is not that obvious, this post would make more sense if it started in the position after Kg3 Ba7, after which Stockfish still cannot find the winning continuation at high depth.


Very cool! I’m most impressed that you took the effort to make the starting position one that can be reached legally.


Stockfish finds it at depth 58, which takes 14 seconds on my machine. The mate is found at depth 59. ``` info depth 58 seldepth 65 multipv 1 score cp -681 nodes 1276672051 nps 87822250 hashfull 3 tbhits 0 time 14537 pv h4g4 b8a7 g4g3 e3e4 g3g4 h8g7 g4g3 e4d5 g3f4 g7f8 f4e3 c7b8 e3f4 d5d4 f4f3 d8c7 f3e2 d4c4 e2d2 c4b4 d2c1 b4c3 c1d1 c3d3 d1c1 c7d8 c1b2 b8c7 b2b3 f8g7 b3b4 d3e3 b4c3 e7f8 c3c4 e3e4 c4b4 e4d4 b4b3 d8e7 b3c2 d4c4 c2d2 a7b8 d2e3 c7d8 e3d2 c4d5 d2e2 b8c7 e2d2 d5c5 d2c3 c5b5 c3d3 g7h8 d3c2 f8g7 c2d2 b5a4 d2e3 a4a3 e3d4 e7f8 d4d3 info depth 59 currmove h4g4 currmovenumber 1 info depth 59 currmove h4g3 currmovenumber 2 info depth 59 seldepth 63 multipv 1 score cp -566 lowerbound nodes 2185059899 nps 89171559 hashfull 8 tbhits 0 time 24504 pv h4g3 ... info depth 59 seldepth 63 multipv 1 score cp -285 lowerbound nodes 6062020461 nps 86109468 hashfull 11 tbhits 0 time 70399 pv h4g3 ... info depth 59 seldepth 63 multipv 1 score cp -90 lowerbound nodes 104666954527 nps 83909841 hashfull 27 tbhits 0 time 1247374 pv h4g3 ... info depth 59 seldepth 75 multipv 1 score mate 16 nodes 113524503757 nps 85401846 hashfull 62 tbhits 0 time 1329298 pv h4g3 e7f8 g6g5 d8e7 g5g4 e3e2 g3h2 e2e1 g4g3 e1e2 g3g2 h8g7 h2g3 c7d8 g2g1q e2d2 g3f2 g7h8 g1b1 d2c3 f2e3 b8c7 b1c1 c3b3 e3d3 b3b4 c1b2 b4c5 b2b3 h8g7 b3c4 ```


It’s just a pawn escort.


Ass puzzle lol


I don’t get why an engine can’t see it? You’re telling me engines can’t recognize trapped pieces? Or is it because you’re giving an engine a bunch of black squares bishops in a practically impossible position for a real game so the engines just don’t understand it?


This is a type of position called a fortress. Most engines fail to handle fortresses and get lost in an endless tree of shuffling pieces around, finally giving up and evaluating the analysed position using just the static evaluation function, which mostly counts material. And 5 bishops seem to be better than a queen. It's usually not considered an important problem, because fortresses are rare and trying to detect them slows the engine too much, so it plays better on average when it ignores them. https://www.chessprogramming.org/Fortress


Being bass ackwards doesn't help


It's a cool puzzle.


You sure the computer doesnt see it? I doubt that is true.


I'm so lost. I went through it with the engine saying it's a blow out win for white, but isn't it just a draw coz noone of the pieces can really move?


Black is moving down the board so it has a pawn that can promote if the king protects it


That is super cool. It takes stockfish a looong time to find it. Nice!




My favorite part was that the computer couldn’t figure it out till it was like m3.


Stockfish 11 on my phone did start with a 0.0 evaluation for a few seconds but then found … Kg3 and a win for black pretty quickly.


I ran it in my engine and black promoted to a queen but got threefold repetition lol


[Hunstman](https://github.com/joergoster/Stockfish-old/tree/huntsman) with default settings (1 thread and 16MB hash) Finds the winning move (>!Kg3!<) in 0.052 seconds Finds a forced mate in 2.9 seconds Finds a mate in 16 (the shortest I let him find) in 1 min and 24 seconds


One of the few endgame rules I know is >!with your king on the sixth in front of your pawn, you always win. So Kg3, Kg2 if Ke2, and push the pawn etc.!<


How are we even supposed to determine which direction the board is facing? Edit: nvm, this board has the coordinates on it.


En Passant


It seems like a lot of people underrate 1000 players in the comments


Why would you make a puzzle that’s black to play from whites perspective?




Stockfish running on my phone found mate in 16 in about 45 seconds.


Why is kg5 the best move i dont understand


Very bold to assume it would take me less than a minute to realize that blacks pawns were going down not up


King on G line, than G5 pawn go down with King, become Queen, than checkmate white King


Black pushes pawn get queen and mates simple


So I understand black is to move downwards? I learned that when any puzzle is presented, the side your playing is moving up. Can tell you I was seriously puzzled by all the proposed moves.




Oh, the board is reversed




I don't play chess online but I'd like to think I'm closer to 1500 than 1000 and I could not find the winning idea here after 1 minute. Bad title. You clearly did not test this empirically with a reasonable sample size of players actually rated 1000. EDIT: Just realised black is moving down not up. This has to be the worst perspective composition, as the other comments have noted.


I think it's kh3 with the idea to shoulder the enemy king and advance your g pawn to g1 but can't say I know for certain but that looks right to me


kh3 doesn’t work because of kf4, then to push pawn you have to go kh4, white replies with kf3. At this point if you push g5 white goes kg2 and shuffles bishop to force draw or if you kh3 repeats kf4


I'm pretty sure 1000s don't have full end game knowledge even of opposition


I didn't see black to play at first so I got do fucking confused lol


Is it a possible position in classical chess at all?


I’m 1500 and would definitely rush g5 and resign




It took me way more than 10 seconds to find out the board was from white’s perspective. Once I found that out then yes, under 10 seconds


Wow, with whatever the defaults are on chess.com and up to 44 depth on lichess, even after queening it still sees it as 0.00. It took a while at 44 depth on lichess and then when it got to 45 depth it finally recognized a forced mate.


Mfs who don’t promote to a queen be like


I think that many people got confused as it's black to play, so they didn't checked the board's orientation and expected the board to be oriented from the black's perspective. In other words, most of people doesn't get the puzzle, as they think that black pawns are all close to promotion!


why did you prmote to a bishop, a knight would have won the game


I was staring at this for a solid minute before I realized it was black to play


Why are you posting black to play with the board from white POV


Wait not Kg3??


Most 1000s are pushing h5 here but it's the harder line to play.


Nice puzzle. Black to play! Whew.


The first move is really about a basic endgame principle - opposition. But I'm doubtful that a 1000 ELO doesn't just play something like Kh5, Kg5, or Kg4 as black. But after you play Kg3, it just plays itself.


If black is to play, the board should have the perspective of the black player... right?


A 1000 elo would play g5 and draw the game.


Why doesn't Kh5, trying to win the pawn on h6 work?


I want there to be a rule when posting puzzles that whoever is to play, that the board be oriented to that side. That's how most puzzles are presented, and I spent way to long analyzing this thinking that black's f pawn was one square away from promotion. Anyone else feel this way? I'm still a nub, but have been playing/studying long enough to be annoyed by this


I'm 1600 and I couldn't even figure out which way the pieces were supposed to move, you're overestimating humans.


This took me a lot longer than 10 seconds and I'm still not sure if I'm right.


bruh the black king can't stop the white king. Thw black king can get to g1 but the white king gets to g5


Stockfish calls it a +7 until it hits depth 35, then says it’s -6. no 1000 ELO could find the idea here, try changing the title.




Where this problem is insightful is that you can fool AIs by giving them a lot of shuffling opportunities with bishops. So much to calculate, but leading nowhere. Is this how humankind has to beat AI in the end?!


Well I’m not sure which way the pawns are going 😂


Push g7


Oh dam black to play and win I thought it was white and didn't get it stared at it for like 10 minutes


OP what’s your rating? Coz claiming a 1000 ELO player could do this in 10 seconds is not only wrong, it’s demotivating to players at that level and higher who wouldn’t get this. Kh5, Kg5, g5 would all lead to a draw and I know for a fact most beginners would play one of those. Kg3 is a move you either find from luck, experience or knowledge of the “key squares” endgame concept which isn’t trivial below even 1600


My first thought would be just pushing the g pawn down and just defending it the whole way queening and winning


Yeah, a 1000 isn't going to see this in 10 seconds. I'm 1400, and I completely missed the fact that White can run straight to g1, and then waste tempi by shuffling bishops backwards and forwards (a strategy that isn't available in a normal king and pawn endgame). It was only when I realised this that I finally found the winning move (Kg3). (In fairness, endgames are probably my weakest area - but still, a lot of 1000s haven't studied endgames \*at all\* :P )


I feel like a 1000 that hasn't studied endgames probably would see this more quickly. Someone who has studied endgames might play Kh3 and rely on zugzwang. I think someone who hasn't studied endgames would just run for g1 as fast as possible


> Black to play I totally missed this and was staring at this for 5 minutes like, “how in the heck can white do anything about this?”


Still blows me away that people do not rotate the board for blacks PoV in a black to play puzzle.


I started at this for 2 minutes trying to figure out what I was missing and how I could be missing it before going back and realizing that it's black to play, not white...


Nice...! Did take me a minute, haha.


If you know how the opposition works, this is an easy win for B.


WK to G1 and a little patience or pettiness = a game changer.