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  1. Forum
  2. General Chess Discussion
  3. 2 queries about Lichess chess rules

1. Why does Lichess allow a player to 'pre-move' so as not to run out the clock? It radically changes blitz end game strategy, and so far as I know, has no parallel in international chess (of course it would be impossible with a board and traditional clock).

2. Does Lichess use the 50 move rule to claim a draw?

When playing blitz on a computer, do you ever pick up your piece and hover over where you will move it to, waiting for your opponent to move so as to make your response immediately and save time?

This also would not be allowed over the board, so if you have a problem with one on those grounds I certainly hope you have a problem with the other as well.

Also, lichess did not invent premoves. It is not unique or original to this site.

To answer your second question, yes, the draw is claimed automatically when the 50 move rule applies.

First, Chessty, you cannot "pick up your piece" on a computer, since there are no physical pieces to pick up, just graphic digital representations. You can click on a piece and wait to decide where to move it. You can also touch or hold your piece on a board, but are then obliged to move it. What does any of this have to do with my question, which is, Why does Lichess allow you to premove, effectively stopping the clock, which has no parallel in international leagues with board games? I agree with you that neither of us has an explanation.

"You can also touch or hold your piece on a board, but are then obliged to move it."

Not while it's your opponent's turn, you can't. Do you ever do this on a computer? I bet you do. You've completely ignored the actual point to go on some diversionary tangent.

The reason it is relevant is because your argument of "it can't be done over the board" is irrelevant. You're not playing over the board, you're playing on a computer, and there are a million ways it is different, so is completely arbitrary to pick out this one way and say it is a problem.

There may be other differences between board games and computers. You seem to have the strange presumption that one has to either mention all of them or none at all. I'm talking about this one, as it happens, not out of arbitrariness, as you claim, or just because it happens to be a "difference", but because it changes blitz chess strategy radically (unlike the one you cite, which you have not shown the relevance of, sorry). In blitz one often plays in order to run out the clock, having gained a decisive time advantage earlier in the game. With premoves that advantage gets wiped out. Do I need to address all differences between boards and computers to be entitled to address this one?

Just as an aside, let me explain what relevance means. It is always relative to context. You could of course say there are differences between cabbages and kings, and demand that I address those too, claiming they are "relevant" because they too are "differences" between things. That would betray a misunderstanding of relevance. But here is an example of how you could have argued soundly for the relevance of the difference you cite. You could have said that since a player gains a time advantage by clicking on a piece before moving, it is fair compensation to allow players to undo that advantage with premoves. That would be relevant, albeit poor. It is relevant because it is actually trying to answer my question by explaining why the Lichess program departs significantly from standard blitz. It is poor because undoing the time advantage changes the strategy significantly, whereas the aim of online chess is to replicate the rules and skills of real chess.

I don’t like the premoving business either. But that‘s the way things go (online).

I just play with an increment so there isn't blood on the clock. But to each their own...

"the aim of online chess is to replicate the rules and skills of real chess."

Here I am, thinking the skills of a real chess game are about finding the best moves. But it turns out, the skills of a real chess game are about who can move their hands the quickest.

I totally agree with nayf.
Lichess is a great website. It offers many wonderful things. But it also offers other strange ones, which curiously have many defenders. For example premoves, berskering, etc. The latter do not occur in real chess. Some time ago I proposed that there would be tournaments without bersekering, or now it would be possible to propose tournaments without premoves but the vast majority prefer things as they are.
I do not propose to remove any of this, but you could do both.

> You seem to have the strange presumption that one has to either mention all of them or none at all. I'm talking about this one, as it happens, not out of arbitrariness, as you claim, or just because it happens to be a "difference", but because it changes blitz chess strategy radically (unlike the one you cite, which you have not shown the relevance of, sorry).

Nope, the mentioned one also changes the blitz strategy in time scramble radically. If you allow to take the piece and hover it over the square to move, and instantly drop when the opponent makes a move, that works similar to pre-move - you need to predict which of your moves will be "most safe to commit before", but also adds a "skill" element such as your reaction speed. Why you think the skill to do such a thing is somehow more relevant to chess skill than the ability to pre-move well I don't understand.

As far as I can see, you're most concerned with the fact that one can theoretically make 100 moves with almost zero time on the clock with the current pre-move mechanics, if all these moves are straightforward and simple. But 1) This have a close resemblance of the Bronstein delay mechanics OTB. 2) I don't really get how this is BAD. This is just one of the solutions used in online chess for x+0 games, where both players are in equal time-management conditions. If you don't like it, you better find another site for playing no-increment games (on chess.com every pre-move gets a penalty of 0.1 sec for instance), but many players here actually like this system, including Magnus Carlsen, by the way.