Friday, July 9, 2010

Revealed: The Secret To Winning At Chess

The secret can now be revealed and it is:

"You beset your opponent more problems than he/she can solve.

I know what you're thinking: "No kidding, Captain Obvious."

But how do you give your opponent more problems?

That's the beauty of chess. There are so many ways one can do it. Below are some of the common ways:

- giving your opponent a permanently weakened pawn structure
- forcing your opponent to make concessions in terms of either tempo, space or exchange (and in converse, increasing yours in reverse)
- frustrating your opponent by either creating blockades or making patient defensive moves to repel his/her attacks
- forcing your opponent's pieces to go to bad squares
- stretching your opponent's piece mobility and range till they over-commit (eg. by attacking on 2 fronts)
- creating tactical mayhem on the board especially against a player who is tactically weak
- mastering and adopting the art of prophylaxis
etc. etc.

Sounds simple isn't it? But it's one that is very hard to accomplish and even harder to get it right.

And remember, as Saviely Tartakower eloquently put it,“No one ever won a game by resigning”.

Onwards! :)


  1. "forcing your opponent's pieces to go to bad squares"

    What is a bad square? Is a8 a bad square? What about a7? a6?

  2. a8 a bad square? Are you kidding? They make amazing sandwiches there!

  3. Very funny, Chunky Rook. :)

    HeinzK, what is a bad square? It depends on the nature of the position but one of the ideas of a piece being moved to a bad square is if:

    a. It obstructs another piece's movement and mobility
    b. It restricts and reduces the number of squares it can control.
    c. It exposes weaknesses in the position which can be attacked
    d. It cedes the advantage in terms of tempi