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Chess.com Official 2024 Event Rulebook

Chess.com Official 2024 Event Rulebook

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In this article, you can find the official rules for all Chess.com events with prize money. Use the table of contents below to jump to a specific event. All prize money events are also subject to the Chess.com Competitive Events Policy and the Fair Play Policy. Players must identify their accounts by adding their full name to their profile page to be eligible to participate in prize tournaments.


Definitions

Arena - Tournament play consisting of continuous matches for a predetermined window of time, during which players will be repeatedly paired against each other based on the results of previous games in the Arena.

Color - White or black pieces in the context of chess.

Computer Inspection - A fair play measure in which a player must share their screen and task manager (PC) or activity monitor (Mac) on a video conference call.

Environment - The physical space that a player is playing from.

Environment Inspection - A fair play measure in which a player may be requested to show tournament officials the layout and contents of the player’s environment using a camera.

FIDE Title - Grandmaster (GM), International Master (IM), FIDE Master (FM), Candidate Master (CM), Woman Grandmaster (WGM), Woman International Master (WIM), Woman FIDE Master (WFM), or Woman Candidate Master (WCM).

Game - A single game of chess played on Chess.com between two players.

Match - Tournament play between two players that may involve multiple games.

National Title - National Master (NM)

Non-Titled Player - A player not recognized by Chess.com as having a FIDE title or national title.

Physical Inspection - A fair play measure in which a player may be requested to 1) remove any glasses or eyepieces and show them to tournament officials using a camera; and/or 2) turn their head to one side, brush their fingers over their ear, and then repeat this process for the other side.

Single Elimination Bracket - Tournament play where players compete in matches, advance through a bracket, and will not be eligible to move forward if they lose one match in the bracket.

Swiss - Tournament play which consists of several rounds of games or matches, during which players will be paired against each other based on the results of previous games/matches in the Swiss.

Time Control - The total amount of time allocated to each player to make all of their moves during a game of chess. Time Controls are formatted as X+Y, where X is the initial amount of minutes on each player’s clock, and Y is the number of seconds added to a player’s clock when a move is played by that player.

Titled Player - A player recognized by Chess.com as having a FIDE title or national master title.

Tournament Official - Any Chess.com employee, or any other individual otherwise employed or contracted for the purpose of administration or operations of an event.


Titled Tuesday

Schedule

Titled Tuesday takes place twice every Tuesday, with start times as follows:

Tournament Los Angeles New York Paris Mumbai
1st Tournament 8 a.m. 11 a.m. 17:00 21:30
2nd Tournament 2 p.m. 5 p.m. 23:00 3:30

Tournament Format

Players will compete in a Swiss tournament with 11 rounds with a 3+1 time control. There is a planned 6-minute break after Round 4 and Round 8. Players will earn 1 point for a win, ½ point for a draw, and 0 points for a loss. Draw offers are not permitted until after move 30. Players will be ranked by total points. If two or more players are tied in total points, the following tiebreakers will be applied:

  1. Buchholz System (Cut 1), defined as the sum of scores of each opponent, minus the lowest opponent score
  2. Buchholz System, defined as the sum of scores of each opponent
  3. Sonneborn-Berger score, defined as the sum of the score of each defeated opponent and half the score of each drawn opponent.
  4. Points earned in games between tied players (2-way ties only)
  5. Number of game wins (including forfeits by opponents)
  6. Number of game wins with black
  7. Average rating of opponents (Cut 1), defined as the average rating of opponents, based on Chess.com blitz ratings immediately after the tournament, with the lowest rating removed
  8. Player Chess.com ratings immediately after the Tournament

Eligibility

Titled Tuesday is open to all Chess.com members recognized by Chess.com as having a FIDE Title or a National Master Title.

Fair Play

Upon request, players are required to join a video conference call for monitoring by tournament officials. To abide by this request, players must have video and audio turned on for one camera, which must clearly show the player’s full face and immediate surroundings beyond the player. Players may further be requested to submit to a Computer Inspection and/or an Environment Inspection.

Broadcasting

Players may live broadcast their participation in Titled Tuesdays. Players that choose to live broadcast must either disable any live chat functionality or set chat to "emote-only" mode. Players are not permitted to broadcast or distribute any "Fair Play" video conference call, including player cameras and video, in whole or in part, without permission from Chess.com. Exceptions to any of the broadcasting requirements may be made upon request AND require approval from Chess.com.

Prizes

Up to US $2,500 are available in each Titled Tuesday, as follows:

Standing Prize Money (USD)
1st $1,000
2nd $750
3rd $350
4th $200
5th $100
Top woman player $100


The top woman prize will be awarded to the highest placing woman player.


Titled Cup

Overview
The Titled Cup is a year-long leaderboard competition in which players have the opportunity to earn prizes and qualification for Speed Chess Championship events based on the sum of their best Titled Tuesday scores, counting only events in 2024.

Format and Leaderboards
Players compete in weekly Titled Tuesday events, with their top 20 scores counting toward their final leaderboard placement. Leaderboard categories are as follows. 

  1. Open
  2. Women
  3. Juniors (born in 2006 or later)
  4. Seniors (born in 1974 or earlier)
  5. Girls (born in 2006 or later)

Players who finish top 10 in cumulative points in their respective leaderboard will win prize money according to the prizing chart below. Additionally, players can qualify for Speed Chess Championship events based on their 10 best Titled Tuesday scores, counting only events in 2024. Qualification information and deadlines can be found in the 2024 SCC, JSCC, and WSCC official rules. 

Titled Cup Leaderboard Tiebreakers

  1. Highest score, followed by second highest score, third highest score, etc
  2. Total events played
    • In order for an event to be considered as a played event, the player must have competed in a minimum of six rounds of that Titled Tuesday.

Prizes 

US $100,000 in prizes are available, as determined by the chart below.

Placement Open Women Juniors Seniors Girls
1st $10,000 $5,000 $5,000 $5,000 $1,500
2nd $8,000 $4,000 $4,000 $4,000 $1,000
3rd $6,000 $3,000 $3,000 $3,000 $600
4th $4,000 $2,000 $2,000 $2,000 $400
5th $3,000 $1,500 $1,500 $1,500 $250
6th $2,500 $1,250 $1,250 $1,250 -
7th $2,000 $1,000 $1,000 $1,000 -
8th $1,500 $750 $750 $750 -
9th $1,000 $500 $500 $500 -
10th $500 $250 $250 $250 -

Players are eligible to win only one prize. If a player wins multiple prizes, the player is awarded the prize with the higher monetary value and is removed from consideration of the lower-prized leaderboard. All remaining players in the affected leaderboard will advance up a spot for prizing purposes. 


Bullet Brawl

Schedule

Starting on July 1, 2023, Bullet Brawl takes place every Saturday beginning at 10 a.m. PT / 19:00 CET. Note that due to Daylight Savings Time, in 2023 the time will be an hour earlier in India through November 4 and an hour later in Europe on November 4.

Tournament Format

Players will compete in a 2-hour Arena with score-based pairings and a 1+0 time control. Players will earn 2 points for a win, 1 point for a draw, and 0 points for a loss. Consecutive wins will be worth additional points, with the second win in a row worth 3 points and every consecutive win thereafter worth 4 points. Players will be ranked by total points. If two or more players are tied in total points, the following tiebreakers will be applied:

  1. Most consecutive game wins
  2. Total game wins
  3. Fewest game losses

Eligibility

Bullet Brawl is open to all Chess.com members recognized by Chess.com as having a FIDE Title or a National Master Title.

Broadcasting

Players may live broadcast their participation in Bullet Brawl. Players are not permitted to broadcast or distribute any "Fair Play" video conference call, including player cameras and video, in whole or in part, without permission from Chess.com.

Fair Play

Players in this event are not required to join a video conference call for monitoring

Prizes

Up to US $1,000 are available in each Bullet Brawl, as follows:

Standing Prize Money (USD)
1st $400
2nd $250
3rd $150
4th $100
Top woman player $100

The top woman prize will be awarded to the highest placing woman player.


Variants Community Series

Schedule

The Variants Community Series (“VCS”) is a recurring two-month cycle of competition. VCS consists of “Community Arenas,” “Streamer Arenas,” and “Championships.” Cycles will commence on the first Thursday of every other month, starting in September 2023. Each cycle’s matches will be played every Thursday until the completion of the competition, with the first cycle beginning on September 7, 2023. Weekly start times for the first cycle are as follows:

Event Arena Week Start Time (PT) Start Time (CEST)
Weekly Arena Weeks 1, 2, 4, 5 9 a.m. 18:00
Streamer Arena Weeks 3, 6 9 a.m 18:00
Championship Week 7 9 a.m 18:00

Future cycle starting dates and times are subject to change. 

Tournament Format 

VCS is played in two-month cycles and will consist of the following competitions per variant cycle:

  1. Four Community Arenas
  2. Two Streamer Arenas
  3. One Championship

Community Arenas

Players will compete in a two-hour Arena with a 3+2 time control and a score-based pairing system. Players will earn 2 points for a win, 1 point for a draw, and 0 points for a loss. Consecutive wins will be worth additional points, with a second win in a row worth 3 points and every consecutive win thereafter worth 4 points. Players will be ranked by total points. If two or more players are tied in total points, the following tiebreakers will be applied: 

  1. Most consecutive games won
  2. Total game wins
  3. Fewest game loses

The winner of each Weekly Arena will qualify for the Championship. If the winner of an Arena has already qualified for the Championship, the next eligible player will qualify.

Streamer Arenas

Players will compete in a two-hour Arena with a 3+2 time control and a score-based pairing system. Players will earn 2 points for a win, 1 point for a draw, and 0 points for a loss. Consecutive wins will be worth additional points, with a second win in a row worth 3 points and every consecutive win thereafter worth 4 points. Streamer Arenas consist of score-based pairings. Players will be ranked by total points. If two or more players are tied in total points, the following tiebreakers will be applied: 

  1. Most consecutive games won
  2. Total game wins
  3. Fewest game loses

The winner of the Arena and the top-performing streamer will qualify for the Championship. If the winner of an Arena has already qualified for the Championship, the next eligible player will qualify.  

Championship

Qualified players will compete in an eight-player single-elimination bracket, seeded by Chess.com. All matches consist of four games with a 3+2 time control. Draw offers are not permitted. Players will alternate colors between consecutive games of the match. Players will earn 1 point for a win, 0.5 points for a draw, and 0 points for a loss. A match ends when a player reaches 2.5 points, at which time that player has won the match. If a match is tied after the completion of all games, tiebreaker matches will be played until a player reaches 1.5 points, as follows:

  1. Two games with a 3+2 time control are played; then
  2. Two games with a  1+2 time control are played; then
  3. Repeat the previous step until there is a decisive result

Eligibility

The VCS is open to all Chess.com members. Competing players must have a minimum of five games completed of the corresponding variant. To be eligible for streamer prizing, additional requirements must be met, listed below:

For YouTube:

  • Be eligible for and part of the YouTube Partner Program
  • Have a US $4.99 membership tier
  • Must fill out form here: VCS YouTube Eligibility Form
  • This must be done each event to be prize eligible. Forms submitted after 20 minutes into that week's arena will not be accepted.

For Kick and Twitch:

  • Streamers must be at least an Affiliate on Twitch and/or Kick to be eligible for prizes.
  • Players must be easily identifiable on Twitch and/or Kick by listing their streams in the "Chess" category.
  • The streamer must connect their Twitch account to Chess.com

For all platforms, in order to be prize-eligible:

  • "!VCS" Must be in the stream title.
  • Anonymous players cannot earn prizes. All accounts must be labeled with the player's real name
  • All streamers must play using accounts that properly reflect their playing strength as measured by rating. All forms of rating manipulation are against site rules.
  • The player must stream their games with their board and themselves visible on stream, and their video and audio must be clear.
  • The player must stream at least 100 minutes of the event.
  • The player must save their VODs for a minimum of 14 days publicly.
  • Verbal commentary and/or chat engagement are required. We are specifically discouraging players from streaming simply to be eligible for prizes while not providing any streaming "value."
  • No short or unnatural draws without playing an authentic game of chess are permitted. Our team may review games and remove points gained from such draws when considering the final standings. We expect players to abide by the spirit of the competition and play normally at all times. A draw may be offered before time expires in your final game to "beat the buzzer", but only if this game was played in the authentic manner we expect throughout the whole tournament, and beyond a minimum of 20 moves.

Fair Play

Players in this event are not required to join a video conference call for monitoring during Qualifiers. During the Championship, players are required to join a video conference call for monitoring by tournament officials. Players are required to screen share and have two cameras. One camera must clearly show the player’s full face and the immediate surroundings beyond the player. No virtual or blurred backgrounds are allowed. The other camera should be placed behind the player diagonally at approximately a 30-degree angle, with the player’s desk and monitors clearly visible. One camera must have audio turned on. Non-compliance may result in a player’s removal from the event. Players may further be requested to submit to a Computer Inspection, an Environment Inspection, and/or a Physical Inspection at any time in any match.

Broadcasting

Players may live broadcast their participation in the VCS. Players are not permitted to broadcast or distribute any "Fair Play" video conference call, including player cameras and video, in whole or in part, without permission from Chess.com.

Prizes

Streamer Arenas

Up to 325 Gifted Subscriptions are available in each Streamer Arena, as follows:

Standing  Gifted Subscriptions
1st 70
2nd 50
3rd 40
4th 30
5th 20
6th-10th (5 players) 15
Highest ranked U2000 10
Highest ranked U1600 10
Highest ranked U1200 10
Staff Choice Award 10

Approximate Retail Value of the aforementioned prizes may vary by each player’s streaming platform and jurisdiction. Please refer to documentation from Twitch and Kick respectively.

Under-prizes (U2000, U1600, and U1200) are based on Chess.com variant rating immediately at the conclusion of the Arena. The Staff Choice Award is awarded to one player based on Chess.com's sole discretion.

Championship

Up to US $3,750 in prizes are available in each Championship as follows:

Standing  Prize Money (USD)
1st $1,000
2nd $750
3rd - 4th $500
5th - 8th $250

Arena Kings

Schedule

Arena Kings takes place every Wednesday beginning at 9 a.m. PT / 18:00 CET. Note that due to Daylight Savings Time, in 2023 the time will be an hour earlier in India from March 15-November 1 and in Europe on March 15 and 22, and an hour later in Europe on November 1.

Tournament Format

Players will compete in a 2-hour Arena with a 3+0 time control. Some events may feature chess variants (i.e. Fischer Random) or different time controls, to be communicated prior to the event.  Players will earn 2 points for a win, 1 point for a draw, and 0 points for a loss. Draw offers are not permitted until after move 30. Consecutive wins will be worth additional points, with the second win in a row worth 3 points and every consecutive win thereafter worth 4 points. Players will be ranked by total points. If two or more players are tied in total points, the following tiebreakers will be applied:

  1. Most consecutive game wins
  2. Total game wins
  3. Fewest game losses

Eligibility

Arena Kings is open to all Chess.com members. To be prize eligible participants must meet the following criteria:

For YouTube:

  • Be eligible for and be part of the YouTube Partner Program
  • Have a US $4.99 membership tier
  • Must fill out the form here: Arena Kings YouTube Eligibility Form
    • This must be done each event to be prize eligible. Forms submitted after 20 minutes into that week's arena will not be accepted.

For Kick and Twitch

  • Streamer must be at least an Affiliate on Twitch and/or Kick to be eligible for prizes.
  • Players must be easily identifiable on Twitch and/or Kick by listing their streams in the "Chess" category.
  • The streamer must connect their Twitch account to Chess.com.

For all platforms, in order to be prize-eligible:

  • "!arenakings" Must be in the stream title
  • Anonymous players cannot earn prizes. All accounts must be labeled with the player's real name.
  • All streamers must play using accounts that properly reflect their playing strength as measured by rating. All forms of rating manipulation are against site rules.
  • The player must stream their games with their board and themselves visible on stream, and their video and audio must be clear. 
  • The player must stream at least 100 minutes of the event.
  • The player must save their VODs for a minimum of 14 days publicly.
  • Verbal commentary and/or chat engagement are required. We are specifically discouraging players from streaming simply to be eligible for prizes while not providing any streaming "value."
  • No short or unnatural draws without playing an authentic game of chess are permitted. We expect players to abide by the spirit of the competition and play normally at all times. A draw may be offered before time expires in your final game to, 'beat the buzzer' but only if this game was played in the authentic manner we expect throughout the whole of the tournament, and beyond a minimum of 20 moves. 

Fair Play

Players in this event are not required to join a video conference call for monitoring.

Pairing Manipulation: Players are prohibited from intentionally manipulating pairings within Arena Kings. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Delaying gameplay, forfeiting games, or making strategic decisions with the express purpose of affecting who they are paired against.
  • Colluding with other players to manipulate pairings for a mutual advantage.

Prizes

Up to 400 Gifted Subscriptions are available in each Arena Kings, as follows:

Standing  Gifted Subscriptions
1st 75
2nd 50
3rd 40
4th 30
5th 20
6th-10th (5 players) 15
11th-15th (5 players) 10
Highest ranked U2000 10
Highest ranked U1800 10
Highest ranked U1600 10
Highest ranked U1400 10
Highest ranked U1200 10
Staff Choice Award 10

Approximate Retail Value of the aforementioned prizes may vary by each player’s streaming platform and jurisdiction. Please refer to documentation from Twitch and Kick respectively.

Under-prizes (U2000, U1800, U1600, U1400, and U1200) are based on Chess.com blitz rating immediately at the conclusion of the Arena. The Staff Choice Award is awarded to one player based on Chess.com's sole discretion.


Puzzles World Championship 2024

Schedule

The Puzzles World Championship (PWC) consists of Puzzle Rush Royale and Puzzle Battle KO as follows:

Date (2024) Event PT ET CET IST
11-Jan Puzzle Rush Royale 9 a.m. 12 p.m. 18:00 22:30
12-Jan Puzzle Battle KO 9 a.m. 12 p.m. 18:00 22:30

Tournament Format

Puzzle Rush Royale

During Puzzle Rush Royale, all players will compete in up to five rounds of Puzzle Rush. During each round, all players will have 30 minutes to achieve a high score in a 3-minute Puzzle Rush. All attempts started within the 30-minute window will be counted. Players may abort attempts at any time. At the end of each round, players will be ranked for that round based on the highest score achieved during that round. If two or more players achieve the same highest score within a round, the following tiebreakers will be applied, based on the attempt in which the highest score was achieved:

  1. Highest streak; then
  2. Highest rating puzzle solved; then
  3. Average time per puzzle

After each round, players will either be eliminated from further rounds or advance to the Puzzle Battle KO stage, according to the table below. Eight players in total will advance to Puzzle Battle KO.

Round Players Eliminated Players Advanced to Puzzle Battle KO
1 All players below 20th place None
2-5 Bottom 3 Top 2

Puzzle Battle KO

Puzzle Battle KO is a double-elimination bracket with the eight players that advanced from the Puzzle Rush Royale, with seeding based on the round they qualified. All matches will be played in Puzzle Battle, with the winners bracket being best-of-eight games and the losers bracket being best-of-four games. Grand Finals will be best-of-eight games, with a second set, if necessary, being best-of-four games. If both players achieve the same score in a Puzzle Battle, the player with fewer strikes will win the game. If both players have the same number of strikes, the game will be a draw. If a match is tied after all games are played the following tiebreakers will be utilized to break the tie:

  1. Cumulative points scored, calculated by adding player’s scores across all games; then
  2. Comparison of individual game scores from highest to lowest; then
  3. Bo1 sudden death

Eligibility

  • All players must be approved by Chess.com to participate in the event.
  • Players may apply to participate in the event by submitting a live-streamed video clip of themselves achieving a 5-minute Puzzle Rush score of at least 50. The score must be achieved and submitted between January 8, 2024, at 12 a.m. CET and January 10, 2024, at 11:59 p.m. CET.
  • All players must livestream their participation in all stages of the tournament. Live streams must include gameplay and the player's face.

Prizes

Up to US $25,000 in prizes are available in the PWC. Payments will be made in United States dollars, according to the table below:

Event Standing Prize Money (USD)
Puzzle Battle KO 1st $5,000
Puzzle Battle KO 2nd $4,000
Puzzle Battle KO 3rd $3,000
Puzzle Battle KO 4th $2,000
Puzzle Battle KO 5th (x2) $1,500
Puzzle Battle KO 7th (x2) $1,000
Puzzle Rush Royale Elim’d rd 5 (x3) $800
Puzzle Rush Royale Elim’d rd 4 (x3) $600
Puzzle Rush Royale Elim’d rd 3 (x3) $400
Puzzle Rush Royale Elim’d rd 2 (x3) $200

Champions Chess Tour

Schedule

The Champions Chess Tour ("CCT") consists of four online qualifiers for Non-GM players (“Qualifiers”) and four online events, each with a "Play-In Stage," a “Division Placement," and a "Division Play Stage." Based on event performance, players can qualify for the in-person "CCT Finals." CCT events, other than the Qualifiers, consist of eight consecutive days of competition and take place on the dates below. 

Event Dates (2024)
Non-GM Qualifier 1 Jan 26
Chessable Masters Jan 31 - Feb 7
Non-GM Qualifier 2 May 3
Champions Chess Tour Event 2 May 8 - 15
Non-GM Qualifier 3 Jul 12
Champions Chess Tour Event 3 July 17 - 24
Non-GM Qualifier 4 Sep 20
Champions Chess Tour Event 4 Sep 25 - Oct 2
Champions Chess Tour Finals Dec 14 - 21

Unless otherwise specified, all play in the CCT begins at 11:00 a.m. ET / 17:00 CET.

Tournament Format - CCT Events

Match Format

Other than Qualifiers and Play-In, all matches in the CCT will consist of one or more two- or four-game matches. Players will earn 1 point for a win, ½ point for a draw, and 0 points for a loss. Draw offers are not allowed until after Black’s 30th move. If a player reaches a majority of points available in the match (1 1⁄2 for a two-game match and 2 1⁄2 for a four-game match), that player will be declared the winner of the match. The higher seeded player will begin with the white pieces, and colors will be swapped after each game. If the match is tied after all games are played, an Armageddon game will be played, as described below.

Non-GM Qualifiers
Eligible players (see “Eligibility” below) may register to participate in the Qualifiers. Each Qualifier is a nine-round Swiss with a 10+2 time control. Players will earn 1 point for a win, ½ point for a draw, and 0 points for a loss. Draw offers are not allowed until after black’s 30th move. The top three ranked players of each Qualifier will be eligible to participate in all CCT online events. Eligible players may participate in any number of Qualifiers. Grandmasters and players that have already placed third or better in a previous Qualifier are ineligible to participate in additional Qualifiers.

Play-In Stage

Eligible players (see “Eligibility” below) may register to participate in the Play-In. Each Play-In is a nine-round Swiss. All games will have a 10+2 time control. There is a planned 6-minute break after Round 4 and Round 7. Players will earn 1 point for a win, ½ point for a draw, and 0 points for a loss. Draw offers are not allowed until after Black’s 30th move. The top 69 ranked players will advance to Division Placement according to the following table:

Play-In Result Division Placement
1st Division I placement with a Round 1 bye
2nd - 11th Division I Placement
12th - 17th Division II placement with a Round 1 bye
18th - 29th Division II Placement
30th - 69th Division III Placement

In Division Placement, the top 69 players from the Play-In and four pre-seeded players, based on the previous online CCT event, will be paired with an opponent and play matches consisting of one two- or four-game match. Division I Placement and Division II Placement each have two rounds of matches to determine who qualifies for each division. Matches in Round 1 consist of two games, and matches in Round 2 consist of four games. Division III Placement has one round of matches to determine who qualifies for Division III, with matches consisting of four games.

Division I Placement - Seeding

Seeding and pairings for matches in which the players will begin in Division I Placement will be determined as follows:

The following players will receive a bye in Round 1 of Division I Placement

  • First place in Play-In 
  • Third place from the previous event’s Division I
  • Fourth place from the previous event’s Division I
  • Second place from the previous event’s Division II
  • First place from the previous event’s Division III

For Chessable Masters, the previous event's pre-seeded players are selected based on the 2023 AI Cup results.

Players ranked second-11th will start in Round 1 of the Division I Placement.

The player ranked second in the Swiss picks an opponent from the players ranked seventh-11th. The player ranked third then picks from the remaining players, with the process repeating until all pairings have been determined.

Players who advance to Round 2 of the Division I Placement will enter a pool of players to be selected through opponent selection. The selection order is as follows:

  • First place, Play-In
  • Third place, Division I (previous event)
  • Fourth place, Division I (previous event)
  • Second place, Division II (previous event)
  • First place, Division III (previous event)

Round 2 winners advance to Division I, whereas Round 1 and 2 losers advance to Division II.

Division II Placement - Seeding

Seeding and pairings for matches in which the players will begin in Division II Placement will be determined as follows:

  • Players ranked 12th-17th in the Play-In will receive a bye in Round 1 of the Division II Placements.
  • Players ranked 18th-29th in the Play-In will start in Round 1 of the Division II Placements. 

Round 1 matches are seeded as follows:

  • 18th (Play-In) vs. 29th (Play-In)
  • 19th (Play-In) vs. 28th (Play-In)
  • 20th (Play-In) vs. 27th (Play-In)
  • 21st (Play-In) vs. 26th (Play-In)
  • 22nd (Play-In) vs. 25th (Play-In)
  • 23rd (Play-In) vs. 24th (Play-In)

Players who advance to Round 2 of the Division II Placement will enter a pool of players to be selected through opponent selection. The selection order is as follows:

  • 12th place, Play-In
  • 13th place, Play-In
  • 14th place, Play-In
  • 15th place, Play-In
  • 16th place, Play-In
  • 17th place, Play-In

Round 2 winners advance to Division II, whereas Round 1 and 2 losers advance to Division III.

Division III Placement - Seeding

Seeding and pairings for matches in which the players will begin in Division III Placement will be determined as follows:

  • Players ranked 30th-69th in the Play-In will play in Round 1 of the Division III, Division Placements. 

Round 1 matches are seeded as follows:

Matchup Matchup
30th (Play-In) vs. 69th(Play-In) 40th (Play-In) vs. 59th (Play-In)
31st (Play-In) vs. 68th (Play-In) 41st (Play-In) vs. 58th (Play-In)
32nd (Play-In) vs. 67th (Play-In) 42nd (Play-In) vs. 57th (Play-In)
33rd (Play-In) vs. 66th (Play-In) 43rd (Play-In) vs. 56th (Play-In)
34th (Play-In) vs. 65th (Play-In) 44th (Play-In) vs. 55th (Play-In)
35th (Play-In) vs. 64th (Play-In) 45th (Play-In) vs. 54th (Play-In) 
36th (Play-In) vs. 63rd (Play-In) 46th (Play-In) vs. 53rd (Play-In)
37th (Play-In) vs. 62nd (Play-In) 47th (Play-In) vs. 52nd (Play-In)
38th (Play-In) vs. 61st (Play-In) 48th (Play-In) vs. 51st (Play-In)
39th (Play-In) vs. 60th (Play-In) 49th (Play-In) vs. 50th (Play-In)

If a player qualifies for a Division but declines to participate or is otherwise removed from the event, Chess.com may replace such player at its sole discretion. If a vacancy is confirmed prior to the relevant stage, the format of the stage may be adjusted to fill the spot.

Division Play

Players will be sorted into "Divisions," called "Division I," "Division II," and "Division III," for the Division Play Stage based on the results of Division Placement. Division I has eight players, Division II has 16 players, and Division III has 32 players.

Each Division follows a double elimination bracket. All Winners Bracket matches will consist of one four-game match, and all Losers Bracket matches will consist of one two-game match. In the Grand Finals, the player that advanced from the Losers Bracket must win two matches to be awarded first place in the Division, with the first match consisting of four games and the second match, if necessary, consisting of two games.

Armageddon

If two players are tied after playing all their games in a match, the Armageddon game will decide the winner of the match. If a game of Armageddon is to be played, each player will communicate to Tournament Officials a "bid" via a private message. The bid is the amount of time that the player is willing to play with, having the color of choice. The maximum allowable bid is equal to the specified "base time" of the Armageddon game. All Armageddon games will have a 10-minute base time. The player with a lower bid will have the choice of color and will begin the game with an amount of time equivalent to their bid. The other player will begin the game with the base time. If the bids are tied, those bids will be discarded, and players will submit another bid. Armageddon games are played with no increment. The player that wins the Armageddon game wins the match. If the game is drawn, the player with the black pieces will be the winner of the match.

Swiss Tiebreakers

If two or more players are tied in total points in a Non-GM Qualifier or Play-In, the following tiebreakers will be applied:

  • Buchholz System (Cut 1), defined as the sum of scores of each opponent, minus the lowest opponent score
  • Buchholz System, defined as the sum of scores of each opponent
  • Sonneborn-Berger score, defined as the sum of the score of each defeated opponent and half the score of each drawn opponent.
  • Points earned in games between tied players (2-way ties only)
  • Number of game wins (including forfeits by opponents)
  • Number of game wins with black
  • Average rating of opponents (Cut 1), defined as the average rating of opponents, based on Chess.com blitz ratings immediately after the tournament, with the lowest rating removed
  • Player Chess.com ratings immediately after the Tournament

Points & Leaderboard

Each Event will award points that are used to rank players on the CCT Leaderboard. Points are awarded per Event in accordance with the table below:

Placing Division I Division II Division III
1st 100 50 30
2nd 80 40 25
3rd 60 30 20
4th 50 25 15
5th (two players) 40 20 10
7th (two players) 30 15 7
9th (four players) - 10 5
13th (four players) - 5 3
17th (eight players) - - 2
25th (eight players) - - 1

If two or more players achieve the same number of points, ties will be resolved by applying the following tiebreakers. If any step only partially resolves a tie, the tiebreakers will be re-applied from the first step for any players still tied.

  • Cumulative head-to-head match result for all matches played in Division Play and Division Placement (only for ties between exactly two players)
  • Number of Division I appearances, then number of Division II appearances, etc.
  • Average points earned per Event played.

Eligibility

  • To be eligible for Qualifiers, a player must be recognized by Chess.com as having a FIDE Title or National Title. Grandmasters are not eligible to play in Qualifiers.
  • Eligible Titles include NM, CM, FM, IM, WCM, WFM, WIM, WGM.
  • To be eligible for Play-Ins, a player must be recognized by Chess.com as having the Grandmaster Title or have placed top three of any previous 2024 Qualifier.
  • All players that participate in the Division Play Stage of any Event will be required to execute a player agreement with Chess.com. Failure to execute such an agreement may result in forfeiture of prize money at Chess.com’s sole discretion.

Fair Play

In the Qualifiers, players are required to screen share and join a video conference call, upon request, for monitoring by tournament officials. To abide by this request, players must have video turned on for one or two cameras (as requested). One camera must clearly show the player’s full face and immediate surroundings beyond the player. No virtual or blurred backgrounds are allowed. Players may be requested to use a second camera, which should be placed behind the player diagonally at approximately a 30-degree angle with the player’s desk and monitors clearly visible. One camera must have audio turned on. Non-compliance may result in a player's removal from the event.

In all other play in the CCT (Play-In, Division Placement, Division Play), all players are required to join a video conference call for monitoring by tournament officials. Players are required to share their screens and have two cameras. One camera must clearly show the player's full face and immediate surroundings beyond the player. No virtual or blurred backgrounds are allowed. The other camera should be placed behind the player diagonally at approximately a 30-degree angle, with the player's desk and monitors clearly visible. One camera must have audio turned on. Headphones are not allowed for this event. Non-compliance may result in a player's removal from the event.

Players may further be requested to submit to a Computer Inspection, an Environment Inspection, and/or a Physical Inspection at any time in any match in connection with the CCT.

Broadcasting

Players may live broadcast their participation in the CCT. Players that choose to live broadcast must either disable any live chat functionality or set their chat to "emote-only" mode. Broadcasting of any gameplay must also have a delay of at least 60 seconds. Players are not permitted to broadcast or distribute the "Fair Play" video conference call, including player cameras and video, in whole or in part, without permission from Chess.com. Exceptions to any of the broadcasting requirements may be made upon request AND require approval from Chess.com.

Prizes

Up to US $1,200,000 in prizes are available in the CCT. Payments will be made in United States dollars. Chess.com will award US $300,000 for each Event's Division Play Stage, according to the following table:

Placing Division I Division II Division III
1st $30,000 $15,000 $7,500
2nd $20,000 $10,000 $6,000
3rd $15,000 $7,500 $5,000
4th $12,500 $6,000 $4,000
5th (x2) $10,000 $5,500 $3,500
7th (x2) $7,500 $5,000 $3,000
9th (x4) - $4,500 $2,600
13th (x4) - $4,000 $2,200
17th (x8) - - $1,850
25th (x8) - - $1,500

Players Eliminated in Division III Placement (20 players) will receive US $500

During each online event, special prizes will be awarded to the following groups: 

Placing Prize
Top Woman $500
2nd Place Woman $300
3rd Place Woman $200
Top Senior $500
Brilliant Move (1 awarded) $500
Best Game (1 awarded) $500

The top woman and senior prizes will be awarded to the highest-placing woman and senior player(s), respectively. The Brilliant Move and Best Game prizes are to be selected by a Chess.com panel at the conclusion of each online event.


Team Chess Battle  

Schedule
The Team Chess Battle takes place within the date range below. 

Event Dates (2024) PT ET CET
Main Event Feb 21 - Mar 15 varies varies varies

Tournament Format 
The Team Chess Battle consists of one single-elimination bracket with 8 Teams. Each Team has 2 Players, with no substitutions. Players 1 and 2, within a Team, are determined by the Players' ratings (February 2024, FIDE Standard). The Player with the higher FIDE standard rating, as of February 1, 2024, is designated as Player 1, and the lower rated Player is designated as Player 2. Players must compete from different rooms but may communicate with their partner at any time during the Match. During competition, Player 2 will control (active use of the mouse) the board. Tournament pairings are determined by a Chess.com panel.

Match Format 
Matches in the Quarterfinals and Semifinals consist of 2 games. The Final Match consists of 4 games, each with a 10+10 time control. The Team with the higher average rating (February 2024, FIDE Standard) starts with the white pieces, and colors will be swapped after each game. Players will earn 1 point for a win, ½ point for a draw, and 0 points for a loss. Draw offers are not allowed. If a Team reaches a majority of points available in the Match (1.5 for a 2-game match and 2.5 for a 4-game match), that Team will be declared the winner of the Match. If the Match is tied after all games are played, an Armageddon game will be played, as described below.

Armageddon
If 2 Teams are tied after playing all games in a Match, the Armageddon game will decide the winner of the Match. If a game of Armageddon is to be played, each Team will communicate to Tournament Officials their Team’s "bid" in the Zoom Meeting. The bid is the amount of time that the Team is willing to play with, having the color of choice. The maximum allowable bid is equal to the specified "base time" of the Armageddon game. All Armageddon games will have a 10-minute base time with a 5-second increment from move 1. The Team with a lower bid will have the choice of color and will begin the game with an amount of time equivalent to their bid. The other Team will begin the game with the base time. If the bids are tied, those bids will be discarded, and Teams will submit another bid. The Team that wins the Armageddon game wins the Match. If the game is drawn, the Team with the black pieces will be the winner of the Match.

Eligibility
Only Players invited by Chess.com are eligible to participate in the Team Chess Battle.

Fair Play
In all matches of the event, Players are required to join a video conference call for monitoring by Tournament Officials. Players are required to share their screens and have two cameras. One camera must clearly show the Player's full face and immediate surroundings beyond the Player. No virtual or blurred backgrounds are allowed. The other camera should be placed behind the Player diagonally at approximately a 30-degree angle, with the Player's desk and monitors clearly visible. One camera must have audio turned on. Non-compliance may result in a Player's removal from the event.
Players may further be requested to submit to a Computer Inspection, an Environment Inspection, and/or a Physical Inspection at any time in any match in connection with the Team Chess Battle.

Broadcasting
Players may live broadcast their participation in the Team Chess Battle. There are no chat restrictions for this event. Broadcasting of any gameplay must also have a delay of at least 60 seconds. Players are not permitted to broadcast or distribute the "Fair Play" video conference call, including player cameras and video, in whole or in part, without permission from Chess.com. Exceptions to any of the broadcasting requirements may be made upon request AND require approval from Chess.com.

Prizes
Up to US $25,000 in prizes are available in the Team Chess Battle, according to the table below.

Standing Prize Money (per Team)
1st $7,000
2nd $4,000
3rd (x2) $3,000
5th (x4) $2,000

2023 Rulebook

Click here to access Chess.com's official rulebook for 2023 events.

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