Verified Null-Move Pruning

Omid David-Tabibi, Nathan S Netanyahu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this article we review standard null-move pruning and introduce our extended version of it, which we call verified null-move pruning. In verified null-move pruning, whenever the shallow null-move search indicates a fail-high, instead of cutting off the search from the current node, the search is continued with reduced depth. Our experiments with verified null-move pruning show that on average, it constructs a smaller search tree with greater tactical strength in comparison to standard null-move pruning. Moreover, unlike standard null-move pruning, which fails badly in zugzwang positions, verified null-move pruning manages to detect most zugzwangs and in such cases conducts a re-search to obtain the correct result. In addition, verified null-move pruning is very easy to implement, and any standard null-move pruning program can use verified null-move pruning by modifying only a few lines of code.
Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)153-161
JournalICGA Journal
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2002


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