Named after Arpad Elo, a Hungarian-American physics professor and 8-time state Chess champion, the Elo rating system is a system used in in zero-sum games for calculating the skill level of players. Elo is a primary factor used in Chess to determine a players rating, along with FIDE.
The Elo rating system is commonly thought of being created by Arpad Elo, since it is named after him, however this is not the case. The true inventor of the Elo system is Australian Chess master, Roger Cook.
You may have heard about a specific number referred to as a rating when you first learned how to play chess. In case you didn’t know, this is a reliable metric of how far you have come. It gives the player the opportunity to engage in self-reflection at several points throughout the learning experience.
You may have also been pondering this question for a considerable amount of time: how should the rating of a player’s ability be determined? The higher it is, the better it is, but there may be other considerations to take into account. Hence, aside from formality, an Elo rating system guide is made for measuring your achievements in playing chess.
If you are interested in how it is made and how you can measure your rating, be sure to continue reading.
What is the Elo Rating System
The Elo rating is a method that determines a player’s strength in certain games, including chess, compared to other players’ strengths without the need to fight each other. Arpad Elo, who came up with the idea and became a chess grandmaster, was also a physics teacher in the United States. He attempted to enhance the way the United States Chess Federation evaluated the skillsets of its players. This game that he fought against a younger Bobby Fischer demonstrates that he, too, was an accomplished chess player.
Significance of Elo Rating System
Although the Elo rating system guide was initially designed for the purpose of rating chess players, its application has now expanded to include ranking players in a wide variety of other sports. The Elo scoring system, or any variant thereof, like the Glicko system, is utilized by the vast majority of chess national associations and websites located across the globe. Because this method of determining a player’s ability became the mainstream technology in the chess world, using it is the most straightforward approach to determining a person’s skill level.
How does the Elo Rating System Work?
The Elo rating of each player is denoted by a score that is calculated depending on the outcomes the player has achieved in previously rated matches. Following the completion of each graded game, a change is made to each player’s overall rating based on how the competition went.
Everyone should be aware that although most people consider the Elo rating system to be a method for determining the absolute power of a player, it is not actually the case. This method determines the likely outcomes of a person’s matches when they are played against all other players.
Following the conclusion of each match, the player who came out on top is awarded points at the expense of the person who came in second place. The quantity of points awarded is proportional to the rating gap between the two competitors.
- When a player with a higher score prevails in a match, the player with the lower score loses a few credits.
- If the player with the lower rating prevails, the player with the bigger lead will suffer a significant loss of points.
- In the event of a draw, the player with the lower number receives a few extra points from the person with the higher rating.
Official Elo Rating System Guide
The following is a breakdown of how your ratings can be categorized, as provided by the United States Chess Federation.
- 2400 and above – Senior Master
- 2200–2399 – National Master
- 2200–2399 – Original Life Master
- 2000–2199 – Expert or Candidate Master
- 1800–1999 – Class A
- 1600–1799 – Class B
- 1400–1599 – Class C
- 1200–1399 – Class D
- 1000–1199 – Class E
- 800–999 – Class F
- 600–799 -Class G
- 400–599 – Class H
- 200–399 – Class I
- 100–199 – Class J
Why are Chess Ratings Important for Players?
Ratings come to serve as both a reference and a player’s reputation for chess players, particularly professionals. They gain a feeling of hierarchy and a healthy impulse to compete with one another as a result of this. Additionally, it instills athletes with the self-assurance to take on other players whom they view as a challenge to their position. It is not a negative thing, per se, not to rate the skills of a chess player; nonetheless, for practical reasons, it is important to conduct.
It’s possible that you are aware that there are some competitions where grandmasters and other chess players with the best ratings can win money for competing in the game. For some of the other participants, the opportunity to make money while doing what they enjoy most seemed to be a dream come true. Consequently, chess ratings are significant factors to consider based on the outcomes you seek.
How to Earn Ratings as a Chess Player?
There are a range of methods for a player to increase their rating. For instance, a player can earn an official ranking from a local chess organization such as the USCF or FIDE if they participate in events that are sanctioned by that organization. Following the conclusion of each event, the statistics are forwarded to the federation that is responsible for rating the competition, in which they are analyzed and kept current. After your rating has been created, it has the potential to shift anywhere from 0 to 60 credits based on the results of each rated match. In the event of a tie, the difference in scores will vary from (0 to 30).
What Should My Elo Rating Be?
For this classification to make better sense to you, here is how you can better understand it.
0-1000 Elo: Beginners
- When you are only somewhat familiar with the rules.
- When you still struggle to make sense of how the parts move.
- When you subconsciously do a lot of things that are against the law.
- When you produce a large number of mistakes that are open for taking.
- When you have no awareness of the positional, pivotal, or tactical aspects of the game.
- When you are empty of any understanding of chess tactics.
- When you are a novice because you lack the ability to evaluate and analyze information.
1000-1200 Elo: Beginner with Experience
When a player reaches this point, it is required of them to exhibit the following characteristics:
- You had multiple opportunities to gain experience.
- You still have a very fundamental knowledge of the tactics.
- You still belie a higher tendency towards error.
- You sometimes leave sections unfinished or hanging.
- You have fun without worrying about the long term.
1200 Elo: A Starting Player
- You become lesser subjected to the occasional error.
- You now possess fundamental strategies.
- You tend to infrequently leave pieces unfinished.
- You put moves into action, positioning strategies that are almost always inaccurate.
- You’re most commonly good at offensive but are weak at defense.
1200-1800 Elo: Decent Player
- When you gain an understanding of the opponent’s goals and possible responses.
- When you have errors that aren’t very frequent.
- When you no longer leave loose ends or questions unanswered.
- When you have abilities at the intermediate level of tactic.
- When you are fairly bad with defending abilities.
- When you’re beginning to get familiar with various openings
- When you have an excellent middle play.
- When you still have poor positioning and finishing skill.
- When you have a basic understanding of chess strategies.
1800-2000 Elo: An Expert Player
- When you can finally do thinking processes at an intermediate level.
- When you can finally track the opponent’s checking, captures, and actions taken while they were playing the game.
- When you finally don’t entirely leave loose ends unresolved.
- When you’re finally having excellent use of offensive strategy.
- When you have typical shots taken by the defense.
- When you have a limited amount of background knowledge.
- When you have introductory to intermediate endgame skills.
- When you have essential to intermediate mid-game capabilities.
How is Elo Calculated?
Assessing the probable consequence of chess matches is among the exciting parts of this rating scale, which considers a player’s play fluctuations. Occasionally, everyone has times when we perform poorly. Although while we are performing at our peak, we might still make a game-ending error. However, how is it calculated?
A player ranked 100 points better than his adversary is projected to win approximately 5 out of 8 (64%) matches, as a basic guideline. Someone with just a 200-point edge should win multiple out of four matches (75% of the time).
This method computes the overall performance of an activity in the following way:
- Add 400 to your enemy’s rating for every victory.
- For every defeat, subtract 400 from your enemy’s rating.
- And split this amount by the total number of matches.
Online and Offline Elo Rating Systems: The Difference
This method of calculating power points or Elo ratings established a league in chess. It is essential to recognize that digital and physical evaluations differ. The rankings on chess.com, Chess24.com,and lichess should not be compared to offline values. If you want an accurate score estimation, chess.com is an excellent resource.
So much for Elo scores. With offline chessboard, it is utilized, and how does it vary with ratings? Online players utilize Glicko ranking as a form of modification to the previous program. It is basically the same as the Elo method, with slight modifications. A rating divergence is implemented, making it more difficult to enhance the score over time.
Frequently Asked Questions
What does Elo stand for?
Elo does not stand for anything, because it is not an acronym. The form spelled “ELO” is the incorrect usage and “Elo” is the correct usage of the term.
How is Elo calculated?
Elo is calculate using an algorithm based on multiple factors. Current ratings or unrated, number of games played, and opponents ratings.
What is a good Elo rating?
A 1500 Elo is considered to be a good rating. That Elo means that you have played thousands of games and studied Chess on a consistent basis for a long period of time.