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Normal Topic 3 pieces vs 2 rooks - which side is usually better (Read 1606 times)
erasmus_b_dragon
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Re: 3 pieces vs 2 rooks - which side is usually better
Reply #7 - 02/28/14 at 21:02:06
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ErictheRed wrote on 02/28/14 at 10:43:04:
Interesting question, and the correct answer isn't at all obvious to me and, I'm sure, must depend a lot on other factors like whether the side the minors has the bishop pair, passed pawns, king position, open files, outposts for minor pieces, etc.  These two minors are better than this rook, but this other rook is better than the other minor, so....?


I always want to test claims written in chess books, even if I like the author!

Here is a more recent game in which the Rs seem to have the advantage. As you said, the pawn situation (in this case the white a-pawns) can be a huge factor. Also white's b2 bishop doesn't have a lot of wiggle room and there is a danger of a black R (or 2) invading on the 2nd rank.

[White "Bernal Moro, Luis Javier"]
                        [Black "Gomez Jurado, Luis Alberto"]
                        [WhiteElo "2424"]
                        [BlackElo "2299"]
                        [ECO "D47"]
                        [EventDate "2008.09.03"]
                        [EventRounds "5"]
                        [EventCountry "ESP"]
                        [SourceDate "2008.10.01"]
                        [Result "0-1"]




« Last Edit: 03/01/14 at 15:43:44 by erasmus_b_dragon »  

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TalJechin
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Re: 3 pieces vs 2 rooks - which side is usually better
Reply #6 - 02/28/14 at 19:55:56
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Btw, I happened to come across another example of this imbalance, RR+p vs BNN - neither side was confident enough to play on, though.

  
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ErictheRed
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Re: 3 pieces vs 2 rooks - which side is usually better
Reply #5 - 02/28/14 at 10:43:04
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Interesting question, and the correct answer isn't at all obvious to me and, I'm sure, must depend a lot on other factors like whether the side the minors has the bishop pair, passed pawns, king position, open files, outposts for minor pieces, etc.  These two minors are better than this rook, but this other rook is better than the other minor, so....?
  
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TalJechin
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Re: 3 pieces vs 2 rooks - which side is usually better
Reply #4 - 02/28/14 at 09:58:57
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It obviously depends a lot on the pawn structure and if the three pieces are BBN or NNB.

On a reasonably open board I'd assume that BBN generally have a better chance of winning the exchange than the rooks have of winning a piece. The minors may also be more effective in a race between passed pawns as they can gain time by hitting the rooks.

And in analysis the possible pawnless endings will always have an impact on the verdict. For instance, I have an older thread here where Vass showed me that RBB or RBN vs RB are both nearly always winning according to the 7men base. Though this example may be more important if both sides have an additional piece.
  
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Re: 3 pieces vs 2 rooks - which side is usually better
Reply #3 - 02/28/14 at 08:58:41
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Looks a good setting for the pieces that game. The bishop pair for starters which is obviously worth a chunk extra here but also a pretty stable pawn structure, homes for the knight etc.

If a rook can (sometimes!) beat two pieces then 2 will logically sometimes beat three Smiley
  
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erasmus_b_dragon
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Re: 3 pieces vs 2 rooks - which side is usually better
Reply #2 - 02/28/14 at 03:09:43
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dfan wrote on 02/28/14 at 02:51:04:
I've never had two rooks vs three minor pieces, but this makes sense to me. The one common two rooks vs no rooks scenario is 2R v Q, where the one nice thing you can do with the rooks is line them up and pick off pawns that the other side can't defend well because he has fewer pieces than you. But in 2R vs BBN, that seems much less possible.


Well, I actually looked at some 3 piece vs 2R master games, and the rooks did OK more often than I expected. Again, it may be the case that 2Rs are on average stronger in endgames than middlegames because they start slower, both agains Q and 3 pieces. In the capa-alekhine game, after the trade of Qs capa's game seemed better.

Quote:
Funnily Soltis mentions the same game in Rethinking the Chess Pieces and claims that Alekhine just miscalculated, thinking he was winning two exchanges but forgetting about the third piece. But Soltis has a habit of making up what players were thinking.


That is consistent with what Soltis said in The Inner Game of Chess. He also gives a real Alekhine quote: "'A miscalculation of a most peculiar kind,' wrote Alekhine. He thought he was winning two exchanges..."
  

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dfan
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Re: 3 pieces vs 2 rooks - which side is usually better
Reply #1 - 02/28/14 at 02:51:04
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I've never had two rooks vs three minor pieces, but this makes sense to me. The one common two rooks vs no rooks scenario is 2R v Q, where the one nice thing you can do with the rooks is line them up and pick off pawns that the other side can't defend well because he has fewer pieces than you. But in 2R vs BBN, that seems much less possible.

Funnily Soltis mentions the same game in Rethinking the Chess Pieces and claims that Alekhine just miscalculated, thinking he was winning two exchanges but forgetting about the third piece. But Soltis has a habit of making up what players were thinking.
  
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erasmus_b_dragon
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3 pieces vs 2 rooks - which side is usually better
02/28/14 at 02:28:27
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NOTE I am not really interested in pawn-less endings here. But in endings the pawns should probably be materially even, or balanced in some other way. I realize that in my example, white has an extra pawn, but it is doubled/isolated.

Soltis in The Inner Game of Chess, commenting on Capablanca-Alekhine Nottingham 1936 (1-0), imagines that Alekhine should have thought, "I know from experience that three pieces are almost always better than two rooks."

Does the evidence really support that assertion? Are the rooks likely to be stronger in an endgame than early middlegame (because in the latter case the rooks may not yet be well deployed)?

Seems like Alekhine was OK before he played 29...Qf6, although maybe when the white N gets to d5 black is in trouble

  

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