I actually have updates!
I have checkmated the bot “Laura” 4 times unassisted! Three times was this morning. I’d done a stack of corrections for the two MA supervisees of mine who need to submit their thesis this coming week, fell asleep, and then woke up with a start three hours later. Couldn’t go back to sleep, probably stressed to the max, and started dueling Laura. So, I checkmated her three times, I think she got as many checkmates when I was making dumb moves.
I learn a lot playing with this AI and the fact that it’s flagged that she’s studied Judit Polgar moves makes her fascinating to play. I think she’s basically Judit Polgar lite with a severely reduced difficulty level at 1100 so it is a good way to learn strategy. I’ve already learned the best way to beat her is to take out her queen early. Sometimes this requires trading Queens but then promoting a pawn later. My favourite endgame revolves around promoted pawns anyway. I’m also learning new strategies on the go.
Anyway. I’m improving on book moves also, but! I like developing my own erratic gameplay as well. I won’t be winning any chess tournaments, obvs but it’s a lot of fun. The plan is to checkmate Laura 20 times and then move on to the next bot/NPC in the Intermediate range. I think the Intermediates will take me the rest of 2021 but I’m in no hurry. I’m savouring the long, leisurely stroll towards improvement.
God, I love this game. It’s like catnip to me.