Saturday, 1 January 2022
074. Online Ratings
White: tripoduk - Chess.com, 2021
Online ratings are – how should I put it? – not very reliable. As evidence for that assertion I present my own. On ChessWorld.net I'm rated 2882 right now and have a highest ever rating of 2960. Eat your heart out, Magnus Carlsen. On lichess.org my blitz (3+0) rating is 2403, which also seems a bit high. I'm not an IM-level blitz player.
On chess.com, my blitz (3+0) rating is 2340. That cost me considerable pain and suffering (in the form of appalling and repeated blunders after playing for too long), so it's the only one I care anything about. My daily chess.com rating, on the other hand, is 2244, down from a highest of 2314. The steep decline there is the impetus for this post.
At blitz my opponents are... whoever turns up. You never have to wait more than 10-15 seconds. My opponents at daily are basically just two, whose ratings are currently around 1500. So whenever I win a game – which I nearly always do – my rating goes up perhaps a single point. Anything else causes it to drop considerably.
I've never lost at daily, but there have been a few draws, as in Game 18 and Game 29. Although the chess.com analysis module usually assesses my play in the 90th percentile – because I'm not challenged seriously enough to make many mistakes – that's not always sufficient to win. And the result of the game below actually made me laugh out loud.
Facing the very rare MacLeod's Opening, 1 e4 e5 2 c3!?, I went for a line suggested by GM Bologan: 2...d5 3 exd5 Qxd5 4 d4 Nc6 5 Nf3 e4!? (instead, 5...exd4 is a Göring Gambit Declined, as in Game 5) 6 Nfd2 Nf6, whereupon my opponent surprised me with a troublesome novelty: 7 f3!?.
Ha ha ha. It would take me another year of winning every game to get back over 2300. Supposing I managed to do that. And supposing I was the tiniest bit bothered.