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This item is a game information page
It belongs to categories: Orthodox chess, 
It was last modified on: 2004-12-08
 By GM Gregory  Topov. Stanley Random Chess This item is a game information page
It belongs to categories: Orthodox chess, 
It was last modified on: 2004-12-08
 By GM Gregory  Topov.. Missing description[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
George Duke wrote on 2015-12-24 UTCGood ★★★★
Stanley Random was first to use "Simpleminded Chess" to describe their stubborn little f.i.d.e. form that will probably stupidly outlast another decade. The original Stanley Random on CVPage was December 2004. Because of some criticism and unclear Rules, the description by Topov is dispersed and not completely in this article, apparently some of it edited by Topov, because for one thing originally there was mention of like 20,000 2 millenniums back origination in the first paragraph. Although it is not clear anyone knew exactly what was going on with Stanley Random: <a href="">One_of_Dozens</a>. See the other fifty comments.<p>Simpleminded? <a href="">Wit</a>. <a href="">Excess</a>. <p> <a href="">Gargantua</a> -- Rabelais in 1530s wrote excitedly of new mad Queen Chess, not as old as Stanley Random, still played today, and the image from the book represents Chess play. Rabelais' two chapters on a ball, a dance, for Chess, describing actual game moves of all the pieces, two of them brand new in Bishop and Queen, were longer at 12 pages or more even than individual Chess Morality poems of years 1200 to 1500 about the early Shatranj form. <a href="">Quotes</a>.

Rich Hutnik wrote on 2008-04-13 UTC
My take on this, is that Mornington Crescent, and is a bit like Calvinball.  I would consider SRC to be the Mornington Crescent of Chess games, a bit of an inside joke actually.  I will say that it does serve a useful purpose of showing people who play a game like chess, or even a particularly variant, what their game sounds like to those who don't know about it.

So, on this note, we can use this comment here as a note that SRC is very likely a joke.  The funny thing is someone I have messaged on BGG said they were responsible for its creation.

Charles Daniel wrote on 2008-04-12 UTCPoor ★
And I mean this is a poor joke at that! 
I don't think this should be at this site unless it is categorized as a joke and a poor one at that. 
This is like one of the numerous Wikipedia joke/bogus entries and far less   interesting to boot.

Rich Hutnik wrote on 2008-04-11 UTC
Why do I have a feeling this is connected to CalvinBall Chess somehow:

Anonymous wrote on 2006-03-27 UTC
this is pretty funny. i just can't believe people actually waste time playing it at schemingmind.

Larry Smith wrote on 2005-10-26 UTC
Fortunately, Topov provided himself with a large contingency of clones. Each being thoroughly trained and legally able to repesent the original.

Christine Bagley-Jones wrote on 2005-10-26 UTC
Topov!! i thought you were dead!?!
'This was GM Topov's last published article about Stanley Random Chess,
prior to his unfortunate death at the hands of escaped primates at the New
York City Zoo. Stanley Random Chess today owes much of its popularity to GM
Topov. Under his influence it has an active presence on the internet,
notably the excellent web-based email chess server'
Nice to see someone got that wrong and you are alive and well :))

GM Gregory Topov wrote on 2005-10-26 UTC
Those looking for the original comments on Stanley Random Chess will find them here:

Christine Bagley-Jones wrote on 2005-10-23 UTC
austin take it easy, i don't think there is a strong drive to have this
game removed, just ya normal bunch of knockers, which you should
understand, because games make it to this site, and they are a 'joke' on
purpose, and src can easily be mistaken as this.
anyway, now to a important question ...
how was src played before computers came along ... someone must of known
of the rules lol ...
kind of funny how much talk this game gets, with seemingly no one
bothering to try out the game at schemeingmind he he

John Lewis wrote on 2005-10-20 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
I think I can clear up the problems presented by those who are mystified by
the rules of Stanley Random Chess.  As the current American Grand Master, I
can assure you that even I find it hard to keep up with the volumes of
rules and stipulations that are involved.  In fact, I would suggest that
about 50% of the moves I make feel as if they were chosen at random from
all the possible moves available at that time.  It's only afterwards that
I'm able to determine the reason for my own errors, after looking up the
specifics of the situation in my leatherbound library.  (My personal
Achilles Heel are the moon phase transition instituted in Berlin, 1484.)

So while I often like to open with e4, about half the time my opening move
is substituted with the nearest legal ('random', to the layman) move from
all the available legal moves.  Again, I've never failed to be able to
find the rational for this transition upon review of the historical
journals.  I almost always find time to note these transitions to my
opponent, who sometimes finds such things humourous.  For example, when a
King joins inline with a row of pawns, this is known as 'Slumming'. 
When a Queen is prematurely brought into play she is often refered to as
'Dancing'.  The terminology is quiet liberating.

Should you have further questions, I'm sure playing a game would satisfy
your curiosity.  Feel free to challenge me on Scheming Minds.

Larry Smith wrote on 2005-10-20 UTC
I personally believe that pushing sleeping trolls over, or 'trolling', is
a cruel and rather childish act.  And besides it has nothing to do with SRC
since the use or participation of trolls is strictly forbidden by the 1987
Articles of the Tongalese SRC Convention.

It's not that trolls have low IQs which cause the problems, it just that
when they become fixated.  This can result in them endlessly staring at
such things as moving fan blades, constantly digging in their noses, or
humming the same tune over and over and over....

But SRC still commemorates their past participation by tournament
audiences spontaneously breaking into rousing rounds of 'Pop Goes the
Weasel'.  The humming of such by a player can result in severe

Austin Lockwood wrote on 2005-10-19 UTC

This article was submitted in a complete form and accepted for publication as such by a ChessVariants editor nearly a year ago, it's been available for peer review ever since. No respectable publisher would demand changes so long after publication, and I'm sure that ChessVariants is no exception to this. OK, if the editors now feel that the article is offensive in any way then simply remove it and we'll discuss it no more; but please don't ask Greg to change it at this point.

The rules of SRC are occult within certain limitations; moves which are legal in SRC are always legal in Standard Chess, but not necessarily the reverse... so if I enter the move 1.e4 in my game, the server might (or might not) deem that move to be illegal under SRC rules, and change it to 1.a3. The reason for this is unimportant, it could be because dark squares are modal on the third Tuesday of the month, or it could just be because there's a random number generator hidden somewhere within the software - you don't know and it doesn't matter, the fact is that it's impossible to say why without some degree of confabulation - and the more outrageous that confabulation, the more enjoyable the game.

Yeah, OK, some of the things that have been written about SRC may have been slightly exaggerated... but c'mon guys, relax - it's only a bit of fun!

Greg Strong wrote on 2005-10-19 UTC
Larry Smith:

This comment is a joke, right?  Or are you trolling?

Larry Smith wrote on 2005-10-19 UTC
It is obvious that the Anti-Stanleys have reconstituted their effort to
eradicate SRC.  The previous attempt resulted in decades of repression,
lost documents and rather boring knock-offs of SRC, like the Mad Queen
variant which many still believe is the original game of Chess.

Anti-Stanleyism is an ugly thing.  Usually the genetic result of the
absence of the buffo-osso.  There are maintenance techniques which can
counter-act this deficiency.  Visit the ASA(Anti-Stanley Anonymous)
website for a list of phrenologists which will be glad to assist in
alleviating this crippling condition.  The local support groups are quite
nice, too.

Unfortunately, the effect of the Anti-Stanley movement cannot be totally
wiped out.  There usually survives a Master and an Apprentice.

Greg Strong wrote on 2005-10-19 UTC

Also, Austin Lookwood said:

The rules are occult - nobody knows them.

How exactly is this possible? How could the scheming mind server have been programmed to enfore rules that are unknown by anyone? Also, editor Tony Quintanilla has stated that the rules were disclosed to him. So the rules are known by some people and to say otherwise is just more misinformation.

This whole discussion could terminate in a hurry if a simple change was made to these pages. State up front what SRC is and what it isn't. This would help encourage support from the members of this community, rather than discouraging it, and would not detract from whatever humor may be present.

Greg Strong wrote on 2005-10-19 UTC
I agree with Derek.  If the rules themselves are hidden information, then
that is an interesting idea which merits consideration (and, perhaps,
playtesting.)  But as Derek points out, the pages don't say that this is
hidden information, and these pages are so long and convoluted as to
deliberately dance around that point.

Furthermore, what is missing from the discussion on this page, is the fact
that this is a continuation of a previous discussion.  I assume that the
start of the discussion is not here because it originated under a
user-created topic thread before the game had an official page.  In any
event, when the questions of the legitimacy of the so-called history of
SRC came up, and I insisted that SRC does not pre-date Orthodox Chess, the
response was a resounding denial that any of the history was invented.  He,
(Gregory Topov, I believe,) insisted that, although the history may be
humorous, it was completely legit and that future research will prove
centuries-old heritage of SRC as the true, original form of Chess.  (This
is paraphrased from memory since I do not know how to locate the original
thread, but my memory is quite good.)  As I previously stated, humor is
one thing; lying is quite another.

Derek Nalls wrote on 2005-10-19 UTC
I would at least recommend that your editorial policy insist that all 
gamepages be mainly serious and rational in describing the rules, board,
pieces, history, etc.  In this case, it should clearly state that Stanley
Random Chess is a game where the rules are hidden information.

Advocates of this game are not winning any new fans by having their game
genuinely mistaken for a hoax or a practical joke by intelligent peers. 
Furthermore, frustrating people who show a serious interest with endless
layers of presumably funny or witty bullshit is neither humorous nor
clever.  A number of people have received extremely-far-from-straight
answers to their straight questions.  The humor in their treatment escapes
me completely.

Austin Lockwood wrote on 2005-10-19 UTC

First of all my apologies if my promoting this chess variant has caused any offence to members of this site, I can assure you that this hasn't ever been my intention. I do realise that SRC is not a conventional chess variant, however I would hope that people who were sufficiently enlightened to change the rules of orthodox chess would be prepared to at least consider the possibilities.

Whether or not this page remains on this site is clearly an editorial decision, however Stanley Random Chess is a chess variant. I fail to see why some people find it distasteful, but then many orthodox chess players find CrazyHouse and Fischer Random Chess distasteful in the same way...

I can assure everyone here that Stanley Random Chess is a real game, which is currently being played and enjoyed by dozens of people. The rules are occult - nobody knows them; whether you choose to believe that this is because they are contained in hundred year old bound leather volumes which are only available to members of a secret society, or because they are encoded in a computer algorithm on the SchemingMind server is up to you - the important thing is that it doesn't matter, you don't need to know the rules to play the game... that's the whole point.

Regarding the previous posts here - part of the fun of SRC is discussing the mythology around the game, and a common style for this prose seems to have evolved. I do recognise the names of some of the posters here from SchemingMind, and if I am correct in identifying these people then these posts have been made by discrete individuals. I would urge you to check IP addresses if possible before taking any further action.

Peter Aronson wrote on 2005-10-19 UTC
A joke is a joke, but the CVP is the sort of place that likes its humor clearly labeled where it won't get in the way of scholarship. I am beginning to get annoyed to the point of editorial intervention by multiple posts by supposedly different people in the exact same writing style. This sort of thing tempts the editors to a policy of only allowing posts by registered users. If you guys want to practice surrealist humor, do it on your own web pages -- imposing it on us is in dubious taste. And the joke isn’t funny any more.

Somebody wrote on 2005-10-18 UTCExcellent ★★★★★

This item is a game information page
It belongs to categories: Orthodox chess, 
It was last modified on: 2004-12-08
 By GM Gregory  Topov. Stanley Random Chess This item is a game information page
It belongs to categories: Orthodox chess, 
It was last modified on: 2004-12-08
 By GM Gregory  Topov.. Missing description[All Comments] [Add Comment or Rating]
Archr wrote on 2005-10-18 UTCExcellent ★★★★★
I am agast at some of these comments. Really! Some of the commentors sound like shameless philosophers of the baser sort. Of course Stanley Random Chess exists! If you don't enjoy it, fine, but please don't resort to bald-faced lies (to adopt the terminology of one critic) regarding SRC. I just recently played my first correspondence game at I have not played an OTB game in many years. (In fact, I have not had an SRC library since the Great Des Moines Flood of 1993.) I thoroughly enjoyed the game. Fortunately for me, the game was not rated (I lost). I botched the complicated Butterfly Wing Gambit in the opening. In the middlegame, I simply couldn't gain much ground back. Much of my enjoyment stemmed, however, from seeing the masterful endgame play of my opponent. At one point, he sacked a rook to unstack my pawns and force my king onto a bad square. If that all sounds interesting, great! Play! If you are not interested, fine, don't play. And whether you play SRC or not, just remember: A bad day in chess better than a good day with a stomach flu. Archr aka ChessArchr

Max Maven wrote on 2005-10-18 UTCGood ★★★★
I don't see what the fuss about the legitimacy of Stanley Random Chess is all about. Clearly it is a chess variant that is currently playable at the correspondence chess server, there is an active player base, there are annotated games. So it's real. Sure, some of its history is clearly humorous and tongue-in-cheek, but since it is a real game that can genuinely be played online, and there are many people actively playing it, it belongs on this site.

The rules are honestly not that difficult to find out, and most players willing to take the time to play one or two games at will discover them quickly. Nobody should be allowed to question the authenticity and legitimacy of Stanley Random Chess without first trying the game online at

I have personally played several games, and can appreciate and understand the game's appeal! New players should not give up too quickly, and indeed the best way to learn the game is simply play one or two games with experienced players.

Matthew Montchalin wrote on 2005-10-07 UTC
Say, is there any chance the convention will be heading to my part of the country? I have lots of trouble with Internet, especially that darn 'point to point protocol' as it involves webbrowsing like it does. I doubt I could ever click my way to that 'paper' if it is some kind of an electronic event.

Christine Bagley-Jones wrote on 2005-10-07 UTC

Tony Quintanilla wrote on 2005-10-07 UTC
Obviously, some might gain by attending Austin Lockwood's upcoming paper, 'SRC on the Internet - Fantasy or Reality?' at the annual CCSRC conference in Prague. This is no time for quibbling.

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