when to resign?

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wbartier
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when to resign?

Post by wbartier » Fri May 06, 2005 11:25 am

Hello,

I'm playing some games that already is won for me, but my oponent don't want to resign. Or he let the time run out or he is playing on untill it's mat. It is frustrating but there is nothing I can do about it. Is resign not more honourable???

See Ye
Wieland

knightowl
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see below

Post by knightowl » Fri May 06, 2005 11:57 am

This issue has been addressed at length in a topic of the same name, "When to Resign," which appears below.

wulebgr
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Post by wulebgr » Sat May 07, 2005 9:52 am

This issue comes up every few months in every chess forum.

What is your hurry? If your opponent elects to stop moving, the game will time out, so just wait.

If your opponent elects to play until checkmate, then you need only find the quickest mate.

Courteous players resign when they are at a decisive disadvantage. Defining a decisive disadvantage, however, requires considerations beyond an objective analysis of the position on the board, and that objective analysis is not always possible, either.
Wulebgr

“From a fish’s point of view, a wulebgr is a leech.”

cohonas
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Post by cohonas » Mon May 09, 2005 11:12 am

wulebgr wrote:This issue comes up every few months in every chess forum.

What is your hurry? If your opponent elects to stop moving, the game will time out, so just wait.

If your opponent elects to play until checkmate, then you need only find the quickest mate.

Courteous players resign when they are at a decisive disadvantage. Defining a decisive disadvantage, however, requires considerations beyond an objective analysis of the position on the board, and that objective analysis is not always possible, either.
When you are hopelessly down material it is a decisive disadvantage and unless you realize that and resign you won't learn from it and develop a sound positional understanding.

wulebgr
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Post by wulebgr » Mon May 09, 2005 1:58 pm

cohonas wrote:
When you are hopelessly down material it is a decisive disadvantage and unless you realize that and resign you won't learn from it and develop a sound positional understanding.
Yes. but "hopeless" ultimately rests in the perception of the player with the disadvantage. Hopelessly down material could be anything from a pawn to a queen, and I've had opponents resign while still ahead material because I was about to win back the material and have a decisive advantage in pawn structure.
Wulebgr

“From a fish’s point of view, a wulebgr is a leech.”

cohonas
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Post by cohonas » Mon May 09, 2005 2:52 pm

wulebgr wrote:
cohonas wrote:
When you are hopelessly down material it is a decisive disadvantage and unless you realize that and resign you won't learn from it and develop a sound positional understanding.
Yes. but "hopeless" ultimately rests in the perception of the player with the disadvantage. Hopelessly down material could be anything from a pawn to a queen, and I've had opponents resign while still ahead material because I was about to win back the material and have a decisive advantage in pawn structure.
A lost position is a lost position whether you are up or down material, this is chess logic 101, but if you are lost even if you are up material, then the position is positionally lost and that can be harder to detect.

The question here is, why don't people resign when they are hopelessly down material, and that is assuming those people are not completely unaware that they will be mated within the next few moves or can't win when they are down a queen (or a knight or a bishop or a rook even one pawn in some cases) with no compensation.

It seems from previous discussions on this subject that some players view it as a question of "never giving up no matter what" and that attitude can win a game, well in odd cases your opponent will blunder back as bad as you did*, but unless you start thinking differently you will most likely face those same level players as your level will probably stay the same because if you keep yourself believing that chess is a game of chance then you have obviously missed a very important point.

This might seem a bit harsh, but if you don't see chess for what it is to begin with, chances are you will never improve. You should always assume that your opponent makes the strongest moves availabale to him as that will help you find the strongest moves available to you. If you find yourself a piece down you have a golden opportunity to learn a valuable lesson about chess, namely that you just discovered you didn't have a well thought out plan as i am sure no one (in their right mind) plans to lose a piece assuming there is no compensation for it, and playing on instead of resigning will give you a false sense of what the game is about.

Chess is not a game recognized for it's great opportunity to come from behind, like in football, tennis, golf etc. in these games you _have_ to have the "never quit" mentality, but in chess it will only keep you at a certain level and slow down your progress at best.
Yes. but "hopeless" ultimately rests in the perception of the player with the disadvantage.
Exactly!! and if your perception does not allow you to recognize when you are lost, then you have an opportunity to improve and the best place to start learning is to resign when you lose pieces with no compensation as you will be more alert before moving next time... eventually you will lose pieces more infrequently until it only happens when you are litterally falling alseep on the button :D

*If you win a lot of games that way, it says more about you than your opponent.

energy
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If you want to become good, don't give up too early.

Post by energy » Mon May 09, 2005 4:24 pm

I disagree with most of what cohonas said.

Almost all the really good players I've met has had this in common; They hate to lose. They will fight as long as they have a plan, unless they have to consider conserving their energy for the next game. As for myself, I have saved countless games after first blundering material, by fighting twice as hard afterwards. (Many players will relax after they notice they have gained an advantage.)

I think you learn only by playing, not resigning. Personally I'll resign when I can't find a plan, with some chance of unclear play, any more. Note that setting up a fortress and moving the king back and forth can sometimes be a valid plan...

Nils

cohonas
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Re: If you want to become good, don't give up too early.

Post by cohonas » Mon May 09, 2005 8:41 pm

energy wrote:I disagree with most of what cohonas said.

Almost all the really good players I've met has had this in common; They hate to lose. They will fight as long as they have a plan, unless they have to consider conserving their energy for the next game. As for myself, I have saved countless games after first blundering material, by fighting twice as hard afterwards. (Many players will relax after they notice they have gained an advantage.)

I think you learn only by playing, not resigning. Personally I'll resign when I can't find a plan, with some chance of unclear play, any more. Note that setting up a fortress and moving the king back and forth can sometimes be a valid plan...

Nils
So say you are a queen down with no compensation and you come up with a great plan to prolong the game... ;)

The argument here is about why people don't resign when they are _hopelessly_ lost and choose not to resign, that is what i responded to, if you can come up with a reasonable plan you are obviously not hopelessly lost...

I am not arguing that you learn just from resigning, please re-read my post and just in case i didn't make myself clear, the learning you can get from this is to resign when you blunder badly and theoreticly there is nothing you can do to turn the game around, as the better you get as a chessplayer the margain of error becomes increasingly smaller.

Setting up a fortress is not a valid plan when you are hopelessly down material and you are completely lost.

wulebgr
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Post by wulebgr » Tue May 10, 2005 12:26 pm

cohonas wrote:It seems from previous discussions on this subject that some players view it as a question of "never giving up no matter what" and that attitude can win a game, well in odd cases your opponent will blunder back as bad as you did*, but unless you start thinking differently you will most likely face those same level players as your level will probably stay the same because if you keep yourself believing that chess is a game of chance then you have obviously missed a very important point.
I agree completely with cohonas here. Too many players think they will have a chance if the opponent doesn't see something. True improvement becomes possible when you believe that your opponent sees everything, and you have created a position in which such vision is of no value.

At the same time, when you are on the losing end of such a position, it is time to resign.
Wulebgr

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energy
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Re: If you want to become good, don't give up too early.

Post by energy » Tue May 10, 2005 4:33 pm

energy wrote:I disagree with most of what cohonas said.

Almost all the really good players I've met has had this in common; They hate to lose. They will fight as long as they have a plan, unless they have to consider conserving their energy for the next game. As for myself, I have saved countless games after first blundering material, by fighting twice as hard afterwards. (Many players will relax after they notice they have gained an advantage.)

I think you learn only by playing, not resigning. Personally I'll resign when I can't find a plan, with some chance of unclear play, any more. Note that setting up a fortress and moving the king back and forth can sometimes be a valid plan...

Nils
cohonas wrote:So say you are a queen down with no compensation and you come up with a great plan to prolong the game... ;)
That doesn't make sense at all. If you have a great plan you have compensation by definition, and the position must be considered unclear. You should play on to learn if your plan really is great, and if you actually evaluated the possibilities right. If it truly was great, you'd be sure to learn a lot even if ultimately losing.
cohonas wrote:The argument here is about why people don't resign when they are _hopelessly_ lost and choose not to resign, that is what i responded to, if you can come up with a reasonable plan you are obviously not hopelessly lost...
You are consistently arguing in foggy consepts like "hopelessly lost", "reasonable plan" and so on, that means different things to different people at different times. Then you draw absolute conclusions, like:
cohonas wrote: When you are hopelessly down material it is a decisive disadvantage and unless you realize that and resign you won't learn from it and develop a sound positional understanding.
This is just plain wrong, of course you can learn from it, of course you can develop a sound positional understanding by playing on. It's quite the opposite; It's when you resign too early that you risk missing valuable lessons.
cohonas wrote: I am not arguing that you learn just from resigning, please re-read my post
That's exactly what you argued, as you can see from the quote above. Here's another silly quote:
cohonas wrote: It seems from previous discussions on this subject that some players view it as a question of "never giving up no matter what" and that attitude can win a game, well in odd cases your opponent will blunder back as bad as you did*,
but unless you start thinking differently you will most likely face those same level players as your level will probably stay the same because if you keep yourself believing that chess is a game of chance then you have obviously missed a very important point.
The level of a player always playing to the bitter end will "probably stay the same"? Chess is a game of chance. It's also a sport. And a science of sorts. And a lot more.

I would not enjoy playing against somone never giving up, I consider it rude. But I'm not going to invent hillarious arguments for why people should do as I like.

There's at least thre more quotes from previous posts I consider superficial and silly, but I'm sure this is getting as boring for you as it is for me.
cohonas wrote: and just in case i didn't make myself clear, the learning you can get from this is to resign when you blunder badly and theoreticly there is nothing you can do to turn the game around, as the better you get as a chessplayer the margain of error becomes increasingly smaller.
"Theoretically" lost positions are such a small subset of all lost positions, to make this argument almost uninteresting. Aditionally, you have to learn positions known in theory (books/databases) too, and most people learn the best by playing.
cohonas wrote: Setting up a fortress is not a valid plan when you are hopelessly down material and you are completely lost.
There you go again with your "hopelessly" and "completely". Most times you can't know if it was hopeless unless you try to play, chess is a complex game and individual peoples knowledge is finite.

In the end, I still disagree with almost all you said, but maybe not with the idea that made you say it. A player playing on just to be an . is contemptible, but only that player can truly know why (s)he plays on.

Nils

cohonas
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Post by cohonas » Tue May 10, 2005 4:51 pm

That doesn't make sense at all. If you have a great plan you have compensation by definition, and the position must be considered unclear. You should play on to learn if your plan really is great, and if you actually evaluated the possibilities right. If it truly was great, you'd be sure to learn a lot even if ultimately losing.
I was being tongue in cheek to illustrate how ridiculous it is to not resign when there is no chance to turn the game around.

You seem to have completely misunderstood this debate, the question asked in this thread is conserning why people don't resign in lost positions.
You are consistently arguing in foggy consepts like "hopelessly lost", "reasonable plan" and so on, that means different things to different people at different times.
Well why do you think GM's resign in a game?

Let's make sure we are debating the same issue here.

energy
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Post by energy » Tue May 10, 2005 6:10 pm

cohonas wrote: You seem to have completely misunderstood this debate, the question asked in this thread is conserning why people don't resign in lost positions.
Sorry, I believe I have misunderstood nothing. I comment on your spurious arguments, a valid thing to do in any thread. Maybe you misunderstood, as you keep ignoring my points, instead harping on about the very limited original issue that I did not question.
cohonas wrote: Well why do you think GM's resign in a game?
That's easy. Most often they do a calculation of the chances of making something out of keeping up the fight, compared with the chances it will influence their playing ability in their next games. I assure you most do not resign to be polite, and I'll give you high odds none resign to help with their continued chess education...

Nils

cohonas
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Post by cohonas » Tue May 10, 2005 8:04 pm

energy wrote:
cohonas wrote: You seem to have completely misunderstood this debate, the question asked in this thread is conserning why people don't resign in lost positions.
Sorry, I believe I have misunderstood nothing. I comment on your spurious arguments, a valid thing to do in any thread. Maybe you misunderstood, as you keep ignoring my points, instead harping on about the very limited original issue that I did not question.
cohonas wrote: Well why do you think GM's resign in a game?
That's easy. Most often they do a calculation of the chances of making something out of keeping up the fight, compared with the chances it will influence their playing ability in their next games. I assure you most do not resign to be polite, and I'll give you high odds none resign to help with their continued chess education...

Nils
You really have misunderstood my points, try and re-read them.
Maybe you misunderstood, as you keep ignoring my points
Well when you are assuming i mean one thing when infact it is another, it is impossible to reply to them.

mberggren
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Don´t resign to early.

Post by mberggren » Thu Jun 02, 2005 8:00 am

I hate it when people resign early. It makes the win feel cheap.
Many many games have been resigned (some by me) when the game is not lost at all, and sometimes it even happens that people resign in winning positions.

pe
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Post by pe » Thu Jun 02, 2005 5:40 pm

just an example of resigning too soon (without wanting to make a statement about earlier arguments) : game g1069314340.

i learned from that though :wink:

peter aka pe

cornstalk
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resigning too soon

Post by cornstalk » Fri Jun 03, 2005 10:05 am

Once in a rated OTB game, I played 1. d4 and my opponent immediate resigned. A player standing by remarked, "I knew that 1. d4 was a strong move, but I didn't realize how strong!"

But really, who cares when the opponent resigns? All you can do is play the chess and try hard to score. If your opponent wants to drag it out, so what? That's his right. If he wants to resign early (often a very rational strategy in correspondence chess, by the way, since one thereby increases the time available for one's remaining games) where is the harm?

The last time I checked the rules, a game of chess was won by delivering mate -- not by building up a "winning advantage" or even by winning the opponent's queen.

hermanogris
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Post by hermanogris » Mon Jun 13, 2005 9:32 am

Just check Anand-Vallejo in this last Linares. Anand was ABSOLUTELY lost. I could see the winning line and my ELO is about 1300, however Vallejo blundered and they drew that game.

Chess is a psychological game as much as any other thing (specially when played OTB) and fighting till the end is perfectly acceptable from my point of view.

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