Winning Percentages of Chess Openings


How to Use the Visualization

This project shows the winning percentages of both players according to their opening sequences with data from 1000 games.

The sunburst layout displays the most popular move sequences made during games in our database. Each node is equivalent to making a move (or multiple moves) on the chessboard. Clicking on a node will generate the equivalent move on the chessboard and change the sunburst layout to display the next three most popular move sequences.

White's moves are depicted by a solid fill and black's moves is depicted by a patterned-fill. The fill color indicates how successful that particular move sequence was for the white player (green = good, red = bad). Finally, while hovering over a node, the first move in that sequence will be highlighted on the board in blue.

It is also possible to make legal moves directly on the chess board. The sunburst layout should update and display the next three most popular sequences. The sunburst circle becomes gray when a move which is not in our database is made.

The user may reset the chessboard and the sunburst layout by clicking "restart". The user may undo a move by clicking "undo" or by clicking the center of the sunburst layout.

The bottom bars show the winning and tie percentages corresponding to the next possible moves that can be made by the current player, given the current state of the game.


1. How do you calculate the score for a particular move sequence?

Score = (# White wins * 1.0 + # Ties * 0.5 + # Black wins * 0.0) / (# White wins + # Ties + # Black wins)

2. If a node in the sunburst is bright green does that mean black cannot win once the game has reached this position?

No. Even even if the color is bright green this does not mean that in an actual game of chess the black player cannot win. Our visualization only accounts for the games we analyzed.