At last the wait is finally over, so without further ado, welcome to the 2012 Chess.com Holiday Puzzler!
What better way to entertain yourself over the holiday season than by trying to answer the questions in our fun seasonal chess quiz?
There should be something for everyone, so you don't need to be a Grandmaster to have a go!
But don't forget, this is a prize competition so...
Don't answer in the comments!
Instead, send your answers to firstname.lastname@example.org and you could win one of the fabulous prizes below!
First prize: One year Diamond membership, plus t-shirt
Second prize: One year Platinum membership, plus t-shirt
Third prize: One year Gold membership, plus t-shirt
Fourth prize: One month Diamond Membership plus t-shirt
Fifth-Tenth prize: One month Diamond Membership
So get puzzling, and send in your answers to the email address above. Please include your Chess.com username with your answers, so we know who you are! Only one entry per member, so think carefully before you send your answers in - changes are not allowed!
Any ties will be broken by a random draw, so there's no need to hurry. Entries will be accepted up to and including 31 December 2012, and the winners will be announced early in the new year. Good luck, and have a great 2013!
The competition is now closed. The answers and results are here!
1. A major new chess tournament in 2012 experimented with the re-introduction of adjournments. What was the name of the tournament and who was the winner?
2. Who played the black pieces in this rapid game from 2012, beating world #1 Magnus Carlsen?
3. Can you name this chess Grandmaster pictured at a tournament in 2012?
4. What was the price of a ticket to the 2012 Istanbul Chess Olympiad's Bermuda party?
5. After six moves of a very strange chess game, the position below has been reached. Can you work out the moves of the game (6 moves for both players)?
6. Which Grandmaster broke the record for appearances at chess Olympiads when he represented his country for the 21st time at the 2012 competition in Istanbul?
7. My pesky MS Word document has auto-corrected these famous chess players names! Can you work out who they are?
a) Gaga Kiosk
b) Banish Girl
c) Seeger Terrace
d) Ruin Life
e) Limos Putsch
8. This year Chess.com’s very own David Pruess and Danny Rensch moonlighted as chess consultants during the filming of a new movie. What is the working title of the movie, and who was the big Hollywood star in the cast?
9. Can you name these two cosmonauts taking time out to play a game of chess before their flight?
10. Name this player describing their emotions after a chess game..."When I lose, I'm in pain. It's not depression but a crappy why-am-I-so-dumb? feeling. It passes quickly if I get away from the tournament hall and watch a movie, have a glass of wine, or spend time with friends who aren't in the chess world. When I win, though, the glow stays with me."
11. Judit Polgar wasn’t the only woman to play in the Open section at the 2012 Chess Olympiad in Istanbul. Which Georgian-born Grandmaster represented her adopted home country for the second time, having earned her final GM norm at the 2008 Olympiad in Dresden?
12. So far Chess.com has staged 9 Death Matches, with the next due on 12th January between Parimarjan Negi and Alejandro Ramirez. But who has been the highest-rated Death Match player so far (by the current FIDE rating list)?
13.The chess position below featured in a major Hollywood movie. What was the name of the movie and what were the final moves of the game?
14. Some say the best chess player in the world is the player ranked at #1 on FIDE’s official rating lists. Others say that it is the world champion, by definition. Often this is the same player! But have there been any official world champions since the inception of FIDE ratings (not counting the FIDE KO events) who were not ranked #1 at least once during their reign? If so, who?
15. The position below is from a game played in 2012. Can you name the rising young star who was playing with the black pieces, and what was his stunning next move?
16. When Vishy Anand successfully defended his world chess championship title in May this year there were grumblings about the number of draws in the match. But which match of all the official world chess championship matches featured the fewest draws?
17. Who is this smiling man, and what is his most famous connection to chess?
18. Who am I? I started playing chess at 13 years of age after my older brother qualified for a Chess Olympiad. Within 2 years I had won my national under-16 championship. Now aged 33, I am the highest ranked player in my country and recently earned my third GM norm at the 2012 Olympiad.