Julia Vysotska (Latvia)
Original Problems, Julia’s Fairies – 2013 (I): January – April
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No.252 by Julia Vysotska – Batteries by two white Locusts; three pairs of pieces change their functions. “Long trip” by the black King! 🙂 (JV)
Nightrider(N): A Rider along a straight line on squares lying a Knight`s move away from each other.
Locust (L): moves on Q-lines but only by capturing an enemy unit, arriving on the square immediately beyond that unit, which must be vacant.
No.252 Julia Vysotska
h#3 2 solutions (2+6)
Locust a6, e6
Solution: (click to show/hide)
1.Kc3-b4 Le6xd6-c6 2.Nf7-b5 Lc6xb5-a4 + 3.Kb4-a5 La6xa7-a8 #
1.Kc3-d4 La6xb6-c6 2.Ba7-c5 Lc6xc5-c4 + 3.Kd4-d5 Le6xf7-g8 #
The mechanism of 2 white and 4 black pieces looks perfect. The play of bK is also a part of mechanism. 1st black move Kb4/Kd4 is a switch that determines the way in which the mechanism will work.
bNf7 is here a bit better justified fairy piece, the thematic annihilation of bPd6 opens the line f7-b5 which is called a line only in fairy world.
Still, the other line, a7-c5, is not a fairy line and the balance of thematic fairy elements is imperfect. bVao a7 and bNao f7 would artificially establish a “visual” balance, but the line a7-c5 would still not be essentially a fairy one.
Black Bishop-lion (or hopper) a7 and Nightrider-lion (or hopper) f7 would establish the balance of thematic fairy elements. Thematic line-opening would be substituted by the “avoidance of a premature hurdle-annihilation”. Therefore, the 1st black moves by bK would be the tries which underline the thematic fairy-nature of black fairy pieces.
But irrelevantly to those theoretial details, it is another beautiful idea.
Nikola, I’ve tried different options here. Same as you I was not very happy about the pair B/N.
My “primary wish” was to put bK between two Locusts, and to get orthogonal and diagonal solutions (I like ODT in general, it is visible 🙂 ). It was not easy for me to come to this scheme, but although I thought, that the moves of black King are not very thematic, I liked them, as for me it was something new.
The first version of this problem didn’t have B/N pieces, but just the pawns a7/f7 in h#2.5. For such setting I had two versions:
1) +bPb5 and twin b) bPb5->c5 ; and the solutions were almost the same except B/N moves;
2) +bPa3, +bPb3 ; and moves of Locusts in the solutions were by the same road, in two directions: La6xa3-a2; La2xb3-c4 and Le4xb3-a2; La2xa3-a4. I liked those moves, but the economy was crying – two many unused pawns in each solution!
So, one more half-move was added to improve the economy. I agree there’s some imbalance because of using fairy piece N and orthodox B. I also had a Grasshopper (you’re right, Bishop-hopper is even better) on a7 in one version. And somehow I even liked that in one solution a hurdle Pb6 was needed for G move, but in another the annihilation of Pd6 was needed first. Had chosen Ba7 thinking about the economy – usage of non-fairy piece where it is possible. Also, N seems to me “less fairy” then other fairy pieces :).
Artificial balance or natural imbalance? I don’t know what is right. I also hope it’s a matter of taste. I’ve just made my choice! Thank you for your analysis!
1st moves of bK are not spectacular, but they are OK as being necessary to unite the two working modes of the same mechanism into one idea/theme.
Hm, Bishop-hopper a7 and Nightrifer f7 – I would see it as an interesting complementarity of two opposite motivations for the timing of bP’s annihilations.
But I’m afraid that the prevailing simplified (almost childish) concept of “harmony” would not welcome it. Equihoppers a7/f7 might suffice for spotting the simple harmony.
Brilliant idea and execution! Should we call this “Ecto-battery” play ?
Certainly not, there are batteries.
Going thr’ the various expert comments(highly educative), I followed up Nikola’s last suggestion of using EQ at a7/f7 and it works beautifully as follows:-
Popeye Windows-32Bit v4.63 (512 MB)
1.EQa7-c5 La6*b6-c6 2.Kc3-d4 Lc6*c5-c4 + 3.Kd4-d5 Le6*f7-g8 #
1.EQf7-b5 Le6*d6-c6 + 2.Kc3-b4 Lc6*b5-a4 + 3.Kb4-a5 La6*a7-a8 #
solution finished. Time = 0.022 s