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[Chess 2] Classic defense against Reaper

Similar to this thread I’m hoping to use this thread to explore if there is any way that Classic Black can win against Reaper White. Anyone is free to jump in and suggest alternative moves or lines. Everyone is in agreement that Reaper has the advantage here and will win in most “real” games, but this thread is to see if Reaper has a 100% line - therefore duels will not be played normally, instead Reaper will publicly duel first and then Classic can pick the best response.

Aiding us in this task is an AI I have built which is better than I am, but far from perfect. Notably, the opening is the weakest part of the bot’s capabilities. When faced against the double-ghost opening suggested by @Kristoph, my bot suggests:

  1. Rf6 d5
  2. Rg6 Nc6

Anyone have a better suggestion for Black’s first 2 moves?


I decided to let my bot play itself from here and it did this:

  1. Rf6 d5
  2. Rg6 Nc6
  3. g6d7 e6
  4. e3 Ke7
  5. Ke2 Ne5
  6. Qxe5 (2-0) Kd6
  7. d4 g6

At this point the bot finds the unstoppable line:

  1. d7h6 Qe7
  2. Kf3 Kc6
  3. Kf4 Qb4
  4. Kg5

[for some reason the forum insists on reformatting my numbered list to start from 1 even when I type ‘8’]

1 Like

We messed around with this about a year ago and we actually thought it was better for Classic than Empowered, though clearly that isn’t bearing itself out to be true right now!

Our impression was that queen is probably very important. The thing I’ve most wanted to try (though I haven’t had the opportunity to test it extensively) is just getting that out ASAP. Afterwards, no idea, but classic would be looking to pressure a decent queen trade.

Anyway yeah I don’t know that I’d mess with the knight move. d5 seems ok, but instead of nc6, why not qd6?

In the past, I’ve tried to advance pawns as much as possible, keep everything protected, and take advantage of Reaper’s drawback by using my king as an actual combat piece (protecting minor pieces from assassination attempts).

A small point @trojanrabbit but you’ve used … Kc6 in place of … Nc6 in your notation, any chance you could fix it to use the right letters as it’s throwing my best brain off when I try to read what you’ve suggested :stuck_out_tongue:

Fixed. Thanks.

I’m trying some new tactics and seeing if I can make any progress, but it will probably take a while. Please continue the conversation as it gives me ideas to look into. So far, bringing the queen out on move 2 seems at least as good as the knight, so I’m investigating that line.

This is still only available on Steam and Ouya, right?

Hey, I just check back here every so often to see how progress on this front is going - specifically, if this Reaper strat still feels somewhat broken. And if there does not seem to be progress, I was curious if you feel like Reaper matches feel un-fun while this tactic is literally on the table.

Haven’t played chess 2 since this thread. Been very busy with other projects.