Chess Pro Explains How to Spot Cheaters (ft. GothamChess) | WIRED

“Only a bot would play that!” Sacrificing a Queen in chess is a move you’re much more likely to see a bot make as opposed to a human, as humans want to protect the game’s most valuable piece. In the wake of the recent chess cheating scandal, Levy Rozman from GothamChess explains how you actually cheat at chess. Using artificial intelligence, see how people use everything from bathroom cell phones to ear pieces to try to skirt the rules and gain an edge.

Check out Levy’s YouTube channel:

Director: Lisandro Perez-Rey
Director of Photography: Charlie Jordan
Editor: Louville Moore
Talent: Levy Rozman

Line Producer: Joseph Buscemi
Associate Producer: Samantha Vélez
Production Manager: Eric Martinez
Production Coordinator: Fernando Davila

Camera Operator: Corey Eisenstein
Audio: Brett Van Deusen
Production Assistant: Patrick Sargent

Post Production Supervisor: Alexa Deutsch
Post Production Coordinator: Ian Bryant
Supervising Editor: Doug Larsen
Assistant Editor: Ben Harowitz

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125 Comments

  1. what is surprising is that I had found the movement of the knight to open the column at the rook, I think that with a little calculation I would also have seen what happened next. And yet my level is modest (not evaluated because I don't play in a club, but on the internet – and I have some difficulties seeing the chessboard in 3d)
    Also pay attention to precision, against a low level player, you can easily find the best move, these moves take advantage of the opponent's errors. I often achieve scores above 90% sometimes without any inaccuracy, and of course without errors. I only reached 99% once.

  2. This is why i only play 1 minutes matches in person. In the nude.

  3. I made an account at Lichess, and was set to 1500ELO. I tried playing a few games that night and lost all games until the 11th game. I got a message saying I am not allowed to loose on purpose, and this is called "Sandbagging". ME having never played chess before felt attacked and quit. I was called out for being bad.

  4. This is stupid why is the first clip cheating🤨?

  5. i get the point but i think the queen sak was not the best example since it was mate in 1. when somebody saks and it turnes out it was good after multiple moves its more suspicious.
    not that i would have seen it but some people shurely see this sak

  6. Is that queen sac actually crazy to think about? Because mate was in 3… I mean I understand his point but it wasn't super hard to predict that if you sac the queen that way then you win.

  7. "No human in history has ever played a sequence of moves like that" — Queen sacrifice is litteraly a big theme among classic matches… Bobby Fischer?

  8. The queen sacrifice position was not so much a sacrifice as a critical zugzwang. A zugzwang is the endgame is reasonable, but a zugzwang in the middle game is almost unheard of.

  9. Everyone criticizing the specific example are missing the point. It was obviously chosen as something easy to follow. A real AI move would be something like sacrificing your queen for a payoff 10 moves later, but that's difficult to concisely explain to a general audience in a short YouTube video.

  10. Rapid elo gain can not be considered cheating. The person could have been playing chess for years, but never played on that site or in competitions. We all start at a base elo that is not exactly representatives of our actual ability.

  11. This guy just cries cheating whenever he loses

  12. So, if I play chess like I play resource-based games and sacrifice my pieces to achieve goals rather than keeping my valuable resources safe, I will be called out as a cheat? Oh nooooo 😭🤣

  13. Bunch of other top comments echo my impression. The example given where the player sacrifices a couple pieces to get a checkmate isn't really a good example imo.

    To me it would seem more like weird positional stuff where the player makes a bunch of odd seemingly slack moves and then the board just evolves into their favor. Maybe that would only really be the case in very high level games though. Perhaps for crawling to 2k elo Levy's example makes more sense.

    One of my first wins was a queen sacrifice that made absolutely no sense to my opponent. He literally said 'I don't get it' and snatched it up. Next turn I mated him. I was and still am a really weak player but it felt great to humble him because he was talking some smack.

  14. 9:09 Wait, can't magnus and other top level players think of that move? It's only 3 moves ahead.

  15. So basically everyone’s playing a game where there is a limit to how good you can actually play and never evolve or make new strategies. Sounds pointless

  16. Bobby Fischer and Magnus Carlsen sometimes sacrifice queens to win the games, but super advanced AI do many more sacrifices which maybe even Tal wouldn't have thought of.

  17. Well I used stockfish to play and have fun. Anyway they get their points after the ban ❤

  18. I can't believe SockFish didn't make the cut.

  19. I play like the computer, i have adhd and I always sacrifice to confuse people.

  20. tennison gambit/fried-liver mains saccing the queen:

  21. Fun fact about myself playing chess, cheaters cannot play bullet as it has only 1:00 minute left. This means that the engine only and slowly responds to the opponent's moves cuz the A.I is calculating your "plan" or in other words "Possibilities"

    edit: A.I calculates aren't advanced which is one of the main reasons for spotting chess cheaters

  22. New account and high accuracy is a sign of cheating? lol. Levi “Blabla” Rozman.

    When I started playing again after 20+ years, my first few games were also way above 95%, because a new account starts with an ELO of 400 or 800 or so. I won within 10 moves all those matches. Of course my accuracy is high.

  23. Chances of me having 90% accuracy on the game 3-10 chess games.

  24. Sandbagging is even more annoying

  25. Jeeez just play the game and get folded with honor! I've gotten destroyed countless times, and will continue to be destroyed. I firmly believe that's how I got where I am. Honor less people

  26. The only game where being a bot is considered being too good lol

  27. I can understand cheating in tournaments bc of money and fame etc.
    But cheating in online games? Like wtf, ur literally playing the middleman between a player and a bot and u cheering for the bot to win. U win nothing, gain nothing and still waste ur time telling the bot what pieces I moved. Like what?

  28. That first queen sac was not that crazy tbh. I mean it wasn’t some insane move

  29. Maybe there are way less cheaters but instead players have gotten so much better in chess instead

  30. I blunder the queen or sacrifice the queen all the time does it mean I cheat …

  31. So I need to become more like a computer

  32. How'd he get caught on the toilet..? Who peeked?

  33. I so wish this was like an hour long.

  34. You should ask Ken Regan this question….he is the real internationally recognized expert on chess cheating!

  35. my lil bro was a complete noob and started playing like a gm the next day he wouldn't admit it but ik its a bot smh

  36. The the concept of Gambits and trap moves never entered this guys thought process?

    That queen gambit was literally a checkmate trap.

  37. man I'm not cheating but i always sacrifice my queen for a good check mate and btw my account is banned because of that? 😞 Wish i could activate my account. 😔

  38. Acusing people of cheat just because they did something brilliant found a nice sacrifice or got a very high accuracy is stupid, i get a few brilliant moves once in a while and already had a few games with accuracy higher than 98%. I play 3 min blitz games only, i do it for the pleasure of the game, not for competition. Maybe those guys watched too much Mikhail Tal games, and got inspired.

  39. His final example was edited in a way that makes it very difficult for a beginner to follow. They keep cutting between the boards and I've re-watched so many times and still confused 😕

  40. Shut up man!! That first queen example was SO easy to spot. Tired of this clout chasing muppet

  41. If you cheat in ANY game your a loser forreal 🤡 I’ve never understood it

  42. At 9:20 could you not take that as inspiration though? There are still higher levels of chess to reach which nobody is yet playing at.

  43. What I don't understand is, if you cheat at one tournament, you have to cheat at every tournament thereafter to keep up the fake elo. If you play at a 2300 elo in one tournament because you cheated and then drop down to a 1500 elo the next because you didn't, people are going to take notice.

  44. I can see a ~1400+ player seeing that Queen sacrifice in order to win, assuming it’s a traditional game and not blitz.
    I would spot a bot if mate came in 3+ moves after the sacrifice.

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