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1min_grandmaster
14-12-2004, 12:44 PM
This is not an anouncement for an upcoming Fischer Random Tournament. However, I am seriously considering running one. I'm Jason Chan representing the Sydney University Chess Club and would like to run a Fischer Random Open Tournament in 2005. I would stage the event on a weekend, or perhaps one Sunday (one in which we would not clash with other events in nearby NSW or Canberra), and would set 'typical' tournament entry fees and prizemoney seen in such competitions. Perhaps slightly cheaper entry fees depending upon the amount of support I can get from the Sydney Uni Union.

I am posting this because I would like to know what people think of the idea. Would you likely play in it? If you don't live in/travel to Sydney, would you seriously play in one if it were nearby? Any ideas that you can suggest? Any comments would be appreciated.

In case you don't know what Fischer Random Chess is (aka Chess 960, Shuffle Chess, True Chess, etc.), basically it's the same as normal chess except that the starting position is randomly created, with the backrow pieces randomly set up by the arbiter. There are only some restrictions, like bishops on opposite colours and king between rooks (to allow for castling, which is a bit more complicated). The idea is to eliminate the need for opening preparation, meaning that you can simply enjoy the game without getting the same positions over and over again. Calculation, planning, and creativity are the skills necessary in this game, not memorisation. But some people don't like the game because they are unfamiliar from move one, and feel uncomfortable.

arosar
14-12-2004, 01:05 PM
Yeah, I'll play. Would we have it at the uni?

I've been meaning to play this as it seems quite fascinating.

AR

1min_grandmaster
14-12-2004, 01:10 PM
It would be run at the University of Sydney. For those that don't know, it is less than 5 minutes away from Central station by bus, and between Parramatta Rd and City Road (King St, Newtown). Most buses that go to Railway Square (Central Station) go to the University as well.

Paul S
14-12-2004, 01:17 PM
Hi Jason

I've never been into reading chessbooks (the last one I read from cover to cover would have been about 10 years ago), which is partly the reason/excuse why my rating is around 1450 (other reasons/excuses being that I usually have a nice meal with wine before a chessgame and getting involved in chess admin!). Mind you, I have about 10 chessbooks at home that I will "get around to reading someday"!

So, this sounds like something I would be interested in trying. Would be interesting to see how some of these "by the book" players would cope with Fisher Random!

Much like with normal chess weekenders, I probably wouldn't play a whole weekend (I find I usually need one of the two days to do housework, shopping, other activities etc), but if it was just a one day tournament I would play in it (assuming nothing clashes on that particular day, of course).

Like with most chess clubs, there is just social chess at Canterbury during January, so if you like you could give it a "dry run" one Monday night at Canterbury during January with lightning/allegro time limits?

1min_grandmaster
14-12-2004, 01:24 PM
For those wondering 'how good' such a tournament will be, basically, it will feel exactly the same as any other tournament, such as the NSWCA weekenders, except that the main difference is that we are playing Fischer Random Chess. I will arbiter the event with the aid of SwissPerfect, and I consider myself very competent in running a tournament (I have been doing so at the uni for more than 4 years).

We intend to use DGTs on all boards and be using standard chess sets. We will provide scoresheets but perhaps we wont enforce scorekeeping.

Prizemoney will be as normal, i.e. open and rating prizes, and most likely at least 2 prizes in each division. I am considering restricting the tournament to U2000 so that everyone has a real chance to win 1st prize, which would be at least $300 and possibly more. I have great respect to strong players but it seems as if the same people are always winning tournaments and it would be nice if everyone else knew that they had a chance. The strong players are considerably better than other players.

Entry fees will probably be cheaper, because we wont be able to rate the event, there will be no grand prix fees, no rent, and Union support. My estimate at this stage is $40 full entry fee and $30 concession (students and pensioners).

1min_grandmaster
14-12-2004, 01:30 PM
Thanks for your support Paul. I feel many players are in the same situation as yourself, without the time or effort to put so much effort into reading chess books, or preparing their opening reportoire. I'm sure they will enjoy this event if they played in it. I just wonder given the chance, would they actually play in it.

Like I said, I would make sure we clash with nothing else.

I feel Fischer Random Chess has not been receiving the attention it deserves, both in Australia and even globally. I think the success of this game (in the short term) depends upon events based upon it being successful. So I would not like to run a small 'test' tournament at Canterbury and get a low turn out. So that's why I intend to run an Open (or perhaps U2000) weekender first up, run it well, and get a good response.

The introduction of the game by Fischer was a great idea, but the actual press conference and supposed first match was a disaster. This only hurt the game. It needs to be promoted in successful events before the wider community actually realised just how good this game is.

1min_grandmaster
14-12-2004, 01:36 PM
Brian Jones ran a Fischer Random tournament during the Australian Open in Penrith, 2003, and had a good, but not great turnout. I was not suprised because the main events obviously attracted most attention. Also, I felt that book prizes for monetary entry fees didn't attract some players, but I also understand Brian's choice because Fischer Random was, and still is seen as just a chess variant. It's almost considered by many on the level as other kid's games.

I think the 2003 Penrith Fischer Random event was moderately succesful, but no other events have been held since, to my knowledge. I am aiming to run something bigger, for a more succesful event, and to get more exposure for the game.

Recherché
14-12-2004, 01:43 PM
There's a Fischer Random tournament at BHCC down here in VIC early next year. I'm looking forward to it; I've never played FR chess. :)

1min_grandmaster
14-12-2004, 01:44 PM
Really? I didn't know. Can you give me details of the event, or perhaps a URL/flyer?

Trent Parker
14-12-2004, 01:57 PM
the last year or so Campbelltown collegians chess club has run a FR tournament amongst club players.

I have to say i would play because its something different

1min_grandmaster
14-12-2004, 02:01 PM
Is there anything that they did in Campbelltown that I should know about? How did they run it? Time controls, opinions of players, etc?

arosar
14-12-2004, 02:14 PM
If you want to go visit those BHCC mob, I absolutely recommend it. It's very easy to get to as well, both by train and tram. They're quite hospitable mob down there I must say.

AR

Recherché
14-12-2004, 02:24 PM
Really? I didn't know. Can you give me details of the event, or perhaps a URL/flyer?

Fischer Random tournament

Venue: Box Hill Chess Club (http://www.boxhillchess.org.au/)

Dates: January 21(Fri), 25(Tue), 28(Fri), Feb 1(Tue)

Format: One round on January 21, 2 rounds per night thereafter. 7 rounds total.

Time Control: 30 minutes per player + 10 seconds per move from move one.

Entry: $10 for the whole tournament

Rating: Not rated.

Prizes: 1st Prize, 2nd Prize, and 1st in the bottom half. (I'm not certain, but I think "bottom half" is determined by your normal ACF rating at the time of the tournament, so it would be whomever scores highest out of that group.)

1min_grandmaster
14-12-2004, 02:34 PM
Thanks for the info. I am surprised that the tournament is held on two different weeknights, and that one of them is Friday. Is that normally successful? I would have thought most people like to go out and socialise on Friday nights, and by using two different weeknights, if any one player is unavailable on one weeknight, then they are not available for the tournament.

Trent Parker
14-12-2004, 03:35 PM
Is there anything that they did in Campbelltown that I should know about? How did they run it? Time controls, opinions of players, etc?

Nah not really.

the time control we had was a 15min each.

Recherché
14-12-2004, 03:41 PM
Thanks for the info. I am surprised that the tournament is held on two different weeknights, and that one of them is Friday. Is that normally successful? I would have thought most people like to go out and socialise on Friday nights, and by using two different weeknights, if any one player is unavailable on one weeknight, then they are not available for the tournament.

Tuesday and Friday are the Box Hill club nights. Usually tournaments are run on successive Fridays, or successive Tuesdays. See the calendar (http://www.boxhillchess.org.au/e2004/calendar.htm) for more info. Friday is the big night, with tournament attendance generally 60-100 people. Tuesday is a smaller night, and tends to get 30-40 players for its tournaments. Attendance for the Fischer Random tournament I can't really guess at.

The Fischer Random tournament is, in a sense, "filler" before the main tournament schedule for the year starts. If it was run only on Tuesday, or only on Friday, it wouldn't finish in time for the Autumn Cup and New Season Swiss, which start on Feb 4 and 8 respectively.

1min_grandmaster
14-12-2004, 03:55 PM
Thank you both for your info. I suspect BHCC may not get such a good turnout for the Fischer Random tournament because players who can come to Tuesdays may not be able to come on Fridays and vice versa. But I hope they do well.

Recherché
15-12-2004, 09:16 AM
Thank you both for your info. I suspect BHCC may not get such a good turnout for the Fischer Random tournament because players who can come to Tuesdays may not be able to come on Fridays and vice versa. But I hope they do well.

I think the nature of the tournament (unrated; not standard chess) would have more effect on the numbers, but I suppose that will be an additional factor.

Personally I'd expect the turnout to be decent, especially since it will be a novelty. Perhaps not up to the normal BHCC levels, though. :)

PHAT
15-12-2004, 10:47 AM
I am posting this because I would like to know what people think of the idea. Would you likely play in it? If you don't live in/travel to Sydney, would you seriously play in one if it were nearby? Any ideas that you can suggest? Any comments would be appreciated.

I will go unless prevented.

Suggestion:

Get it onto the NSWCA calender ASAP. They are cutting and pasting the old 2004 events into 2005 now. Grab a date!

1min_grandmaster
15-12-2004, 11:34 AM
I was thinking of waiting until their calendar is up so that I can choose a date that doesn't clash with anyone. I am looking for a date somewhere in the middle of the year, most probably around July.

1min_grandmaster
15-12-2004, 11:37 AM
So far I think there has been a pretty positive response from BB members about a Fischer Random tournament. Therefore, I am almost certainly going to run this. It is just a matter of confirming a few things, and then I will have concrete details. I believe I will have these ready in January, and at the latest, February.

The most difficult decision to make is whether to run it as a weekender or just a one day event.