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Everything you need to know about chess

Jan 3, 2019 · 1 min read · Last updated: Jan 4, 2019

Notes from the series by Chess.com.

Opening

10 rules for opening:

  1. Develop
  2. Develop
  3. Develop
  4. Control the center
  5. Don't move a piece twice
  6. Castle early (before move 10)
  7. Don't bring the queen out too early
  8. Develop with purpose
  9. Think about your opponent's moves and threats
  10. Connect the rooks

Tactics and strategy

  • Chess is 90% tactics, and you need to know these fundamental tactical patterns.
    • Fork / Double attack - a piece attacks multiple enemy pieces simultaneously.
    • Pin - a defending piece cannot move without exposing a more valuable defending piece.
    • Skewer - like pin, but more valuable piece is under attack.
    • Discovery - a direct attack revealed when one piece moves out of the way of another.
    • Discovered check - a discovery that comes with a check.
  • The basic checkmate patterns often occur at the end or as the climax of many tactical combinations. They are:
    • Smothered mate
    • Support checkmate
    • Back-rank mate
  • "Tactics are the servant of strategy" - Mikhail Botvinik
  • A good piece leads to good tactics:
    1. How many squares does my piece control?
    2. Is it safe?
  • Long term "strategical plans" are based on recognizing and attacking pawn weaknesses:
    • Doubled pawns
    • Isolated pawns
    • Backward pawns

Endgame

  • Two factors dictate the play of all roughly equal endgames:
    1. King play and power
    2. Passed pawns
  • "In the middlegame, the king is but a mere extra but in the endgame, the king is a principal." - Aaron Nimzowitsch
  • Activate your king at the earlist oppportunity.
  • Use your king to help protect your passed pawns as they advance.
  • Remember "king on the 6th, pawn on the 5th".
  • "Pawns are the soul of chess." - Danican Philidor
  • Recognize the potential of your pawn majorities.
  • Remember:
    • Protected passed pawns,
    • Outside passed pawns,
    • And... push, push, push your passed pawns to victory!