Are there any resources with a list of short endgame facts and rules ? For instance : "2 connected pawns on the 6th rank always win against a rook" , "rook's pawn results often in a draw in KPvP endings".

Or do I have to necessarely go through an endgame manual to find this information ?

  • You won't find this "Information" anywhere because it's not information at all (but rather misinformation). The first "tip" is only true if neither king plays any role at all. For the second one I can't even find the rationale behind it. If anything, transposing to a won pawn endgame is among the main resources available to the side playing for the win
    – David
    Commented Oct 19, 2021 at 21:01
  • 2
    @David I think what OP means is something akin to "how do experts quickly evaluate end games". To explain a little more, to a beginner or intermediate player, it's not always obvious who's winning in some endgames, whereas experts might instantly identify a position as "completely winning for black/white" etc. I think the OP is asking how do experts manage to do that, i.e. what rules of thumb are they using to make those evaluations? (I could be wrong, but I think that's what OP means)
    – stevec
    Commented Oct 20, 2021 at 1:57
  • Does this answer your question? (practical) Endgame resources: What's next after josh waitzkin's series in chessmaster?
    – BCLC
    Commented Oct 20, 2021 at 7:15
  • 1
    @David Rules of thumb are incredibly valuable to beginning players, and surely form the building blocks of helping even expert players create an initial list of candidate moves. Even in your last statement you admit to 'known theoretical position', which is just a pedantic way of saying that at a certain point, an expert player can rely on rules of thumb to evaluate where a position might lead. Commented Oct 20, 2021 at 14:01
  • 1
    @Grade'Eh'Bacon "Known theoretical position" is not a pedantic way to say "rule of thumb". They're two different things. A theoretical position is always specific, not a vague, abstract idea
    – David
    Commented Oct 20, 2021 at 16:35

3 Answers 3


"Dvoretsky's Endgame Manual" is exactly one such book that contains a lot of these short facts. You can treat it similarly to an encyclopedia in that regard. Throughout, he writes these key tidbits of advice in italics like so:

king and pawn endgame advice

rook endgame advice

I will caution you though that the actual meat of this book is incredibly involved and is most appropriate for players >2000 OTB. There are other books out there that contain the most simplified bits of advice. Shameless plug for my own set of lichess studies on the endgame that contains exactly those bits of info that I think are most relevant without the most complicated examples. I've linked to the study for advanced players, but there are also studies for beginners, studies for intermediate players, and studies specific to rook endgames linked throughout. I describe the "rules" of king and pawn endgame races as follows:

from my study

Finally I can address your exact question. The endgame is the portion of the game where one must calculate the most precisely. These general rules are helpful to help guide one's thoughts, but remember: nothing beats a good move. There are countless counterexamples to the general principles. Without an endgame manual or similar to show you how and why the general facts/rules work and fail, the rules are not so useful on their own. So yes you should necessarily go through guided material that presents the rules. No you should not just read the rules by themselves.

  • 2
    Please could you insert into your answer the content of your three images, but in plain text? By all means use italics if you want. Trying to make out darek text from bright images is too much eyestrain for visually impaired people and impossible for those who rely on screen-readers.
    – Rosie F
    Commented Oct 20, 2021 at 6:37
  • how about our thingy here? chess.stackexchange.com/questions/35641/…
    – BCLC
    Commented Oct 20, 2021 at 7:17
  • In my english 3rd edition they key ideas are in blue text so you could just look at those and not go though everything. Commented Oct 20, 2021 at 12:54

The golden rules of converting a won endgame -

    1. The Plan - schematic thinking. Creating step-by-step plans that lead to eventual success make playing the game easier. Apart from methodology, it has a great psychological effect because we don't concentrate on winning a difficult position but on something which is close at hand (e.g. creating a passed pawn).
  1. Exchange - When there are not many pieces left on the board, every exchange counts. It's extremely important to consider your exchanges carefully as there's no time and possibility to obtain compensation. Consequences are severe!
  2. Restricting your opponent's possibilities (to maximum) - Every single player should master the art of prophylactical thinking. Even the smallest sign of activity should be put down immediately. It's one of the most important rules.
  3. No rush! - When redeeming the advantage, it's crucial to remain calm and play solid chess even if other possibilities are more tempting. We should consider all of the possible options and before undertaking any measures that drastically change the situation on the board, improve our own position at most. "No rush" doesn't mean unnecessary loss of time. On contrary, every single tempo counts.
  4. Two weaknesses rule - If our opponent is pushed into defense, the play should be conducted on the whole board. Creating new weaknesses, problems and attacking them alternately.
  5. Transformation of the advantage - It's a rare situation when there's only one type of an advantage during the endgame. Chess is a dynamic game and in most cases it's beneficial to change one type of the advantage to another one (e.g. sacrifice an exchange in order to queen the pawn). These rules are for converting a won endgame, doesn't answer your question, but I hope it was helpful.

I think the book "100 endgames you must know" by GM Jesus de la Villa (sample pages) comes close to what you describe. The book is much more than just "facts", but it tries to summarize each of the titular 100 endgames with a short sentence which describe the situation. The second part, of what must be done, will be left for you to summarize, after you read the explanation.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.