The Relative History Heuristic

M.H.M. Winands, Erik van der Werf, H.J. van den Herik, J.W.H.M. Uiterwijk

Research output: Contribution to journalConference article in journalAcademicpeer-review


In this paper a new method is described for move ordering, called the relative history heuristic. It is a combination of the history heuristic and the butterfly heuristic. Instead of only recording moves which are the best move in a node, we also record the moves which are applied in the search tree. Both scores are taken into account in the relative history heuristic. In this way we favour moves which on average are good over moves which are sometimes best. Experiments in loa show that our method gives a reduction between 10 and 15 per cent of the number of nodes searched. Preliminary experiments in go confirm this result. The relative history heuristic seems to be a valuable element in move ordering.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)262-272
JournalLecture Notes in Computer Science
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2006

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