Pawn and Move

The odds of Pawn and move are a big edge ( +- ), but perhaps not a forced win ( ++ ). A nineteenth century reference stated that this much of an advantage was equivalent to a 2:1 winning ratio, which in turn would be equivalent to a difference of about 125 USCF rating points in todays' terms.

Bobby Fischer was able to give Pawn and move to at least some other American Grandmasters, but in 5-minute games; in tournament games, surely it would have been impossible even for Bobby?

Simplifying Pawn and move into the terms of Point Count Chess, we find that White's advantage is somewhere between four and five "points": the extra Pawn is worth three points, the first move is possibly worth a full point, and the fact that Black's King is exposed seems to be worth something (although Black can hope to turn this weakness into an advantage later on, by using the half-open f-file).

Of course, these figures are relative, and also very inaccurate, but as a general principle we have an equivalence of one Point Count Chess "point" to 40 USCF ELO rating points, and four-or-five Point Count units to 125 Elo units. I can smell a flexible handicap system here, using the subtle gradations of piece strengths available in Chess with Different Armies.

And In Closing, May I Say

Positional advantage, material advantage, the values of chess pieces, and the ELO ratings of chess players, can all be translated into each other through the medium of winning percentages.

Is this the Chess version of a Unified Field Theory?

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