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The mathematical chances of each piece surviving a chess game

Somebody’s actually worked out the mathematical chances of each piece surviving a chess game. They used Quora.

chess survival odds

Considering common endgame positions, it’s not surprising that rooks and the outside pawns have the best survival rate, along the queen herself.

It’s the minor pieces and center pawns that have the most complicated survival chances:

The situation with the c-d-e pawns is very interesting. The most survivable central pawn is the White c-pawn (42%), while White’s d-pawn is the most doomed of all the chessmen (24%) – more so even than the knights (~26%). There’s a pleasing symmetry in the survival rates of the White and Black c- and e-pawns that suggests they’re frequently exchanged on the d-file. Bishops survive around 35% of the time, with the kingside bishops slightly more likely to survive than queenside ones.

chess survival odds

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