I-The great faceoff

11th of May 2021

ETHZ wins!

Reports and results

Results and Reports

Thanks to everybody who took part to the tournament and/or watched the stream.
You can find the final results here.

Thanks to the incredible feedback we received, we are happy to announce that we are already working on organising a new edition of the event next semester!

News articles:

Swiss Chess Federation
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ASK Reti

Social Media coverage:



Player at home


The polychamps trophy, hand made by François Prudhomme.




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  • The tournament

    Take part to the first ever chess tournament between ETH and EPFL that will determine once and for all what university has the smartest students! Whether you’re a beginner or a grand master, join the tournament to enjoy some epic battles over the board and make the deciding move to help your university win the title. The tournament mode makes it possible for players of any level to compete and your performance can only have a positive impact on the team’s final result.

  • Prizes

    A trophy will be awarded to the winning team. Prizes will be distributed to the best players as well as to randomly drawn players, so anybody can win! Prize winners will be announced at the end of the livestream and contacted via email.

  • Organisers

    This tournament is organised jointly between ETHZ and EPFL. It is supported by AMIV and La Dame Blanche

Hero Image


We thank the Swiss Grand Master Nico Georgiadis for joining us on the livestream and providing us with some world class commentary and insigts about the world of professional chess players!

Thank you to all the viewers, we hope you enjoyed the commentary, chess conversations and friendly banter!

GM Nico Georgiadis

  • Switzerland
  • Rating: 2553
  • Editor for SRF
  • Professional chess player


  • 19:50 Welcome, tournament kick-off
  • 20:00-21:30 Tournament commentary
  • 21:30 Award ceremony
  • 21:40 End

Here are the rules

If you're a beginner, don't be intimidated by all of those rules. Once you joined the tournament, everything should work out automatically when it's game time. Just enjoy the game!
Nonetheless, here are some details about the tournament:

How does the tournament work?

At the beginning of the tournament, players are paired based on their rating. The time control is 5 minutes for each player, with an increment of 3 seconds per move. As soon as you finish a game, return to the tournament lobby: you will then be paired with a player close to your ranking. This ensures minimum wait time, however you may not face all other players in the tournament. Play fast and return to the lobby to play more games and win more points.

How are scores calculated?

A win has a base score of 2 points, a draw 1 point, and a loss is worth no points. If you win two games consecutively you will start a double point streak, represented by a flame icon. The following games will continue to be worth double points until you fail to win a game. That is, a win will be worth 4 points, a draw 2 points, and a loss will still not award any points. For example, two wins followed by a draw will be worth 6 points: 2 + 2 + (2 x 1)

What is Arena Berserk?

When a player clicks the Berserk button at the beginning of the game, they lose half of their clock time, but the win is worth one extra tournament point. Going Berserk in time controls with an increment also cancels the increment (1+2 is an exception, it gives 1+0). Berserk is not available for games with zero initial time (0+1, 0+2). Berserk only grants an extra point if you play at least 7 moves in the game.

Other important rules

There is a countdown for your first move. Failing to make a move within this time will forfeit the game to your opponent. Drawing the game within the first 10 moves will earn neither player any points. Draw streaks: When a player has consecutive draws in an arena, only the first draw will result in a point, or draws lasting more than 30 moves. The draw streak can only be broken by a win, not a loss or a draw.

How does it end?

The tournament has a countdown clock of an hour and a half. When it reaches zero, the tournament rankings are frozen, and the winner is announced. Games in progress must be finished, however they don't count for the tournament.

How is the winner decided?

The best 20 players of each team add up their points for a team total. Whatever team has the most points will win the Polychamps. Furthermore, an individual ranking is provided. The player(s) with the most points at the conclusion of the tournament's set time limit will be announced winner(s). If two or more players have the same number of points, the tournament performance is the tie break.