Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Opening Book Development II

Before I go any farther let me address this issue of stealing lines. (I used this term in the last post) It is a fact that some players out there seem to think that if they personally worked out a line or a refutation of one; that they somehow own this series of moves. I find this thinking hilariously funny. It brings to my mind Bobby Fischer jumping up from the table and saying you can’t play that move it is mine, you stole it from my game in the interzonals last year… I call this concept of stealing lines. Fischer thinking. “Look Bobby, once you play the line in open play it belongs to all of us.” This is how, in esoteric disciplines, we collectively learn and advance human knowledge. It is by the possess of peer review that the lines you submit in open play are accepted or rejected. So there is no real stealing of anything only finding and using good ideas. We are all standing on the shoulders of geniuses to be where we are.

Now that you have made your seed book and played some games with it, you are ready to start its development by adding games. Adding games to a book (both your own and kibitz ones) is much different than hand tuning. I think it would be accurate to say that adding games increases the width of the book where as, tuning deals with depth and direction.

It is always best to add games to the book that are played by the book that you are adding them to. This technique has a tendency to reinforce and expand winning lines. However if you find good opening lines while kibitzing do not hesitate to include them into your book.

Lets look at the method of adding the games. First never add games directly to an existing book. Add the games to the database that the book was made from and then make a fresh book from the updated game bases. Importing games into an existing book is probably the most conmen mistake that is made in book making.

Make sure that if you add a game to the learn game base you also add it the main game base.

I recommend that you add all games that you won in online play to the main game base and a selected few that beat you solidly within the first 50 moves. Be more selective as to the games you add to the learn base. Look carefully at your played games; making sure that advantage in the game came from the opening or early in the middle game. (Never add draws, only wins and losses)

Continue to add the games that you play with the seed book back into the book using this technique. Every day review your games, update the game bases (both main base and learn) and remake the book for the next time at online play. This process will slowly but surly expand the books practical repertoire and adjust it to your particular system engine combination. You will begin to notice games that your engine struggled to win now being won easily and good winning lines that were used against you now being played by your book.

At least 2000 games or so should be added to the seed book before you start the hand tuning process. Once you start hand tuning you can no longer add games as red-green marks would be lost.

As always; I am sure that there are many impotent details I have inadvertently forgot to mention. If you get stuck or have a problem please do not hesitate to ask me specific question via email.

Please feel free to try the new hand tuned book I have recently made available. Tour Book 14.0z it has hit 2900 Elo several times in open formula play. (Running on Quad and Octo core CPUs using Rybka 2.3.2a and 6 man EBTBs)

Thank you all for visiting the Google advertising sites on this blog, every time this is done I receive a small monetary compensation.


Anonymous said...

I wanted to ask you a question regarding book building...

What are the pro and con of building a book out of 2 or more books?


Kevin Frayer said...


This is some thing that I do not have a lot of experience with. You are I believe referring to the Fritz GUI function in Books…Import Book.

“Import book” merges the contents of a different book into the current one.

“Import old book” converts a book in the older (FBK) format and imports the contents.
The program will also convert and import books from the programs Genius, Rebel and Chessmaster. If a move is already in the openings book it will be marked as a preferred tournament move.

I put this function in much the same category as the GUI Book Learn. It works on an elementary level but probably will not produce the results you are looking for. The problem is that when you use this function to attempt to merge two all ready highly advanced books. (books with extensive move weights and hand enabled red-green tuning marks) The weights and move preference marks become convoluted creating conflicts for the GUI when the book is in play. It would be nice if the best lines of two books could be combined so easily as it would if book learning actually worked.

However having said this there are techniques that some book makers use to utilizes the book learn function. Playing a newly created book without weights or marks with the book learn turned on to identify faulty lines; that can then be later addressed and altered manually.

I am sure that some book development technique may successfully employ the Import Book function but it not something that I have ever used.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for your answer. Same poster who asked the question above.

I see a lot of parallels between building a book from games and building a book from books.

One has more control building from games and can add new ones. On the other hand building from books and then manually adding moves seems more accessible for a beginner who does not have the time to select individual games.


Anonymous said...

I don't want to sound stupid,but I don't really know nothing on this,I just want to learn like you , how can I manually add a new move ,or a new line to my ctg book

Kevin Frayer said...


If you are using the Fritz GUI; F9, F10 or F11 all you need to do is right click the opening book panel and choose Allow Move Adding. Now any moves you manually make on the board will be added to the book. Be careful however, these hand added moves will be marked green, on both sides. So do not forget to go back and remove the green marks from the side that came out bad in the new line.


Elcriollito said...

Mr Kevin
I would like to ask you a couple questions?

1-Where are my games saved, when I play with my chess engine at

2-Are those auto-saved game that I need to choose for my opening book?, (only the winner and the lost games)

this data can help you to answer my question

I have a Fritz GUI,Rybka engine,and your lastest opening books

Elcriollito said...

Hi Kevin,

I just find out where are my games,lol,
Fritz GUI
-Open Database
-click Games
-Open Database

My next step is eliminate all draw games,and keep the winner and losser games,correct

then I have to review where I have lost my games with the infinite engine analize,and import them to my opening book,

Anonymous said...

Ok So I have followed all of your steps and I have made a monster of a book....63MB consisting of games played on playchess over the last 4 months with elo no less than 2700 elo, no draws, the last two freestlye tournaments, and my own played engine matches on playchess server, no draws.

I still have about 1500 more of my games to add to the book database before creating my final book for hand tuning.

Am I on the right path?

roland said...

i have a chessbase 9. i'm new to bookmaking and never tried making a book(bin)or (ctg). do you have a simple step by step instruction to follow on bookmaking? i have seen engine vs engine games that were on pgn files, how would you convert these games into a ctg or bin book?

Anonymous said...

Hi when wil com a new book update, i use now Tour Book 14.1z

Tnx for the great work!!!!!!!!!!!