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1Bb3BN/R2Pk2r/1Q5B/4q2R/2bN4/4Q1BK/1p6/1bq1R1rb w - - 0 1

Standard chess rules apply, the board is not rotated (i.e. white pawns move upwards), no lateral thinking is needed. Simply find the one move for white which mates the black king.


This puzzle was created by Leonid Kubbel.

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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Are there two queens each(of black and white)? $\endgroup$ – Mea Culpa Nay Nov 15 '17 at 9:29
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    $\begingroup$ @MeaCulpaNay apparently so, it appears some pawns have promoted. $\endgroup$ – boboquack Nov 15 '17 at 9:30
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    $\begingroup$ @MeaCulpaNay Yes, and 4 bishops, 3 rooks, ... $\endgroup$ – Sleafar Nov 15 '17 at 9:30
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    $\begingroup$ See about the 29 minute mark in youtube.com/watch?v=0saFg21rbY8, where grang master Ben Finegold "analyses" this exact puzzle (he talks about it for a few minutes, at least). $\endgroup$ – Arthur Nov 15 '17 at 13:55
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @M.M You could ask a similar question about any math puzzle here. Regarding chess puzzles at least the "funny" ones are considered on topic here. According to a meta post serious chess puzzles should be posted on chess.se, but I don't see any puzzles posted there regularly, which makes me doubt if they are welcome there at all. $\endgroup$ – Sleafar Nov 17 '17 at 5:17
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It's simple:

Move the queen on e3 to a3

This gives the position:

Lichess board editor

which is clearly mate.

NB:

The black queen on e5 is pinned by the white rook on e1, so it can't intercept.

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  • 2
    $\begingroup$ I was quite busy with the red herring on d7. $\endgroup$ – Sleafar Nov 15 '17 at 9:33
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    $\begingroup$ What is the problem with queening the pawn d7-d8? $\endgroup$ – Chris Nov 15 '17 at 11:41
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    $\begingroup$ @Chris It's pinned by the bishop $\endgroup$ – Rubio Nov 15 '17 at 11:58
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    $\begingroup$ Aha! Of course. I spent so long looking for how black could get out of it that I completely forgot to check if it was a legal move! :) $\endgroup$ – Chris Nov 15 '17 at 12:02
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    $\begingroup$ @Neil Rg5 blocks that check. $\endgroup$ – Herb Wolfe Nov 15 '17 at 12:33
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@boboquack found the only solution. The following list shows suggestions from comments and other answers together with their refutation. You can click each link to show an image/animation.

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  • $\begingroup$ What about moving d7 to d8 and promoting to queen? $\endgroup$ – Rick van Osta Nov 16 '17 at 9:38
  • $\begingroup$ @RickvanOsta It's at the top of the list. $\endgroup$ – Sleafar Nov 16 '17 at 9:39
1
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bishop d6 point blank boom what do you say

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    $\begingroup$ ... Ke8 perhaps? $\endgroup$ – Destructible Lemon Nov 15 '17 at 22:45
  • $\begingroup$ thats right, no point trying after the solution was found xD $\endgroup$ – Itwasme Nov 15 '17 at 22:47
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    $\begingroup$ Doesn't ... Ke8 put K into the path of the pawn on d7? (I don't play chess, so an explanation of the subtleties would be welcome.) $\endgroup$ – shoover Nov 15 '17 at 23:16
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    $\begingroup$ 1... Kf6, then? $\endgroup$ – boboquack Nov 15 '17 at 23:58
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    $\begingroup$ As pointed out by boboquack, this is wrong as well. $\endgroup$ – Sleafar Nov 16 '17 at 5:00
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What about moving the bishop from g3 to h4.

Seems like a winner to me.

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  • $\begingroup$ The refutation for this was already posted: Rg5 $\endgroup$ – Sleafar Nov 16 '17 at 19:24
  • $\begingroup$ Ah didn't see that. I don't know what the chess abbreviations mean $\endgroup$ – KillerKoala Nov 16 '17 at 19:30
  • $\begingroup$ Therefore I added animations to the list above. And there is only one solution. $\endgroup$ – Sleafar Nov 16 '17 at 19:31
  • $\begingroup$ Right but I didn't want to click and wait for every animation to find the move I was thinking of. It would've been easier to just write the moves in plain English $\endgroup$ – KillerKoala Nov 16 '17 at 19:33
  • $\begingroup$ I doubt it would be easier, it would be too long and nobody would read it. The chess notation isn't really that complicated. Usually it's the name of the piece + target square. $\endgroup$ – Sleafar Nov 16 '17 at 19:38
-1
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Knight to G6, right?

No capture No escape for King in any direction.

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  • 4
    $\begingroup$ Nope: 1. ... Bxg6 $\endgroup$ – Sleafar Nov 15 '17 at 17:02
  • $\begingroup$ The bishop at b1 captures. $\endgroup$ – Prune Nov 16 '17 at 1:05
-1
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White queen at e3 takes black queen at e5

This should mate the king

Edit: did not see that a bishop could block this. This is not a mate.

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  • $\begingroup$ K escapes to F8 $\endgroup$ – xQbert Nov 15 '17 at 17:33
  • $\begingroup$ @xQbert F8 is guarded by bishop at H6 $\endgroup$ – Horizonshard Nov 15 '17 at 17:35
  • $\begingroup$ At true missed that $\endgroup$ – xQbert Nov 15 '17 at 17:38
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    $\begingroup$ How about: bishop at c4 moves to e6, blocking check? $\endgroup$ – psmears Nov 15 '17 at 17:45
  • $\begingroup$ @psmears touche. didn't see that $\endgroup$ – Horizonshard Nov 15 '17 at 17:46
-1
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Knight, D4 to F5. I think this meets the criteria.

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    $\begingroup$ Nope, Bxf5 prevents mate. $\endgroup$ – boboquack Nov 15 '17 at 22:31
-3
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I have a solution that can be given in just nine characters, but Stack Exchange demands that an answer be at least 30 characters long. So now that I've satisfied that restriction:

d7xc8 = N

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  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Nope: 1. ... Ke8 $\endgroup$ – Sleafar Nov 15 '17 at 16:28
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    $\begingroup$ doesn't work, king esxapes to e8 $\endgroup$ – Sconibulus Nov 15 '17 at 16:30
  • $\begingroup$ The king can't escape to e8 if the pawn is queened instead of knighted (or any other sufficiently mobile piece), and the knight isn't needed because of the rook on a7, but the bishop can block h1 to b7. $\endgroup$ – Jason Nov 15 '17 at 18:58

protected by Community Nov 15 '17 at 22:41

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