Questions tagged [beginner]

Questions of interest to or relating to new players.

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43
votes
14answers
19k views

How to make a 6 year old think more?

I have been teaching my 6 year old daughter chess for past 2 years. She plays reasonably well. She often defeats level 25 in Chess Lv 100 app and sometimes Level 6 in Chess.com app. So I am guessing ...
35
votes
13answers
32k views

Can playing blindfold chess be learned or is it a natural skill?

Any blindfold players here? Just wondering if blindfold chess is a skill that can be learned by amateurs like me or a natural skill by chess GM's, IM's, etc.
32
votes
12answers
9k views

What should I do when I have no ideas and no strategies?

I'm really a beginner in chess, and I just know the rules. So many times in the game I have no idea what should I do. None of my pieces are in danger and I don't have any strategies. What should I do ...
31
votes
17answers
31k views

Good openings for a beginner (for white)

I am a beginner in chess and I like to play some of my friends who are basically at the same level. Usually who wins is based on who makes that one amazing (and lucky) move and quite frankly I want to ...
26
votes
14answers
9k views

How to learn chess if you're still a 3-digit rating after a few years

I know how all the pieces move and I've learned about castling and en passant. But all I do is play online against other people and get wrecked because I don't know how to "play." I make moves like ...
25
votes
6answers
8k views

What should you do when opponent opens with excessive pawn moves?

As a beginner I'm not spending much time studying openings (there are so many!) but trying to work on opening principles. One principle I've read is not to move too many pawns in your opening moves. ...
16
votes
3answers
1k views

En passant for beginners

When I started playing chess, I learned many of the rules of chess on my own. I was playing chess online, and then I realised that pawns can capture in such a fashion. At first, it was weird to me. ...
16
votes
6answers
5k views

As a Beginner, is playing a lot of tactics chess (puzzles) a good way to improve?

I am pretty new to chess, and I play lot of chess puzzles: trying to find the best move for a given situation (which will not necessarily end-up with a checkmate). Is this a good way to learn chess ...
14
votes
4answers
2k views

What book should I refer to to begin learning chess?

I'm a highschool student and want to play chess seriously. A friend of mine taught me the basic rules of the game. What book should I refer to to begin learning chess? I tried Capablanca's Chess ...
14
votes
3answers
1k views

Examples of harmony?

Recently my chess tutor used a word which in hindsight is very interesting: harmony. He mentioned I should not just develop my pieces in the opening, but develop them harmoniously. Since then, I've ...
11
votes
2answers
2k views

Beginner Tactics - Why Isn't This Mate?

I was playing on chesstempo and came across the following setup: [FEN "k1r4r/p6p/5p2/3Q4/1R5P/PPqn4/3N1P2/1K1R4 b - - 1 1"] With black to move. I was unable to solve this tactic - it seemed to me ...
10
votes
3answers
4k views

Is the English opening the most suitable for beginners?

Here are my understandings of the English opening: The English opening is as good as 1.d4. Since it is less common than 1.e4 and 1.d4; it is more likely that an average amateur player is less ...
10
votes
8answers
3k views

How to study a chess tactics book?

I've been playing chess for quite a while now, but I still consider myself a beginner. I play with friends most of the time. Now I want to get better so I bougth a tactics book (Yusupov: Build up your ...
9
votes
8answers
11k views

Ways to quickly beat beginners

Are there any common tactics or combinations used to beat complete beginners quickly (or gain large material advantages)? By "beginner" I mean someone who is good enough not to get caught out by ...
9
votes
3answers
4k views

How are the scores decided in Chess?

Consider the following pictures: I would like to understand the following: My understanding is that it depends on the opponent's move against our move. Am I right? What is the minimum and maximum ...
9
votes
4answers
2k views

Does it make sense to use an online ELO-rating-test for a beginner as a monthly test tool in order to see my progress?

I'm almost a beginner in the chess world who at the moment only plays online and watch various chess lectures on youtube. I'm thinking about using http://www.elometer.net/ on a monthly basis in ...
9
votes
3answers
344 views

Chess engine with danger (mate) warnings for beginners?

I am new to the site and would appreciate help in this area. At my current stage (beginner) I have started to draw or sometimes even beat the computer at low levels (ex. chess.com level1,2,3, lichess....
8
votes
9answers
7k views

Moving the queen early in the game - beginner

Ok, I know this will be a vague question... I recently played against a friend three games, and lost all of them, and the problem was that he played his queen very early in the game (second move). I ...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

Strategic implications in this puzzle by S. Polgar/P. Truong

Usually chess puzzles at my level (beginner) have just one or two forced variations and a clear achievement, like a substantial material gain or checkmate. Once in a while, though, a puzzle leaves me ...
8
votes
5answers
2k views

Which of these two endgame books?

I am a beginner (approximately 1400) seeking to improve my endgame technique. Which one of these books would you recommend as suitable for my strength and why? 100 Endgames you must know by Jesus de ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

When should you stop chasing a piece?

I'm only a beginner, and I've found that sometimes a piece of mine (esp Queen) will just get chased around relentlessly causing problems, so I've started trying to do the same, but I seem to sometimes ...
8
votes
4answers
15k views

Is there any good app for learning openings

My great fail is that I cannot learn opening or initial play. Normally I only play when I can connect to my mobile app (Chess Free on iOS), and play at a very low level (adjusted as a single bar), ...
8
votes
4answers
403 views

Beginner Chess Question: Bringing out my queen early?

Sometimes I bring my queen out early, however GMs say "Queen is vulnerable to attack and hinders development" I agree with that but most of the time I only bring it to f3 or around the 3rd-rank ex. b3/...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Chess traps without positional loss

Most of the common chess traps are ill advised (at least in standard games), as you sacrifice better moves. Traps that I have tried out with some success are the fishing pole, and the blackbourne ...
7
votes
3answers
214 views

What do I do next?

So I've been playing chess for about 7 months regularly. I learned basic movements years and years ago but tactically there was nothing. Over the 7 months tactically I've learned basic moves, beginner ...
7
votes
3answers
4k views

Shortest path for a knight

Is there a practical way of computing the shortest path from a square to another, for a knight? (for a human chess player, not for a computer) Usually, when I want to send my knight from a square to ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

What is a chess database used for?

I frequently see advice about how to learn chess that include links to databases, or how to set them up, or a question here about Analysis where the accepted answer says to just add some stuff to your ...
7
votes
4answers
3k views

How do you teach chess to a beginner / rookie?

Recently, I got some students (beginners) in chess, and I would like to teach them how to play but I don't know where to start! They already know how to move pieces and some concepts on how to play, ...
6
votes
3answers
417 views

Good chess opening for a beginner

I am a beginner and my chess opening is pretty weak. Can you suggest me an opening that is easy to learn and is suitable for a beginner like me?
6
votes
2answers
690 views

Resignation methodology [duplicate]

Is there a method to determine whether or not a player should continue playing, or resign? I would currently consider myself a beginner at chess. So when for example I make a bad decision and lose a ...
6
votes
2answers
720 views

I would like to know if this game is winnable for black?

Black to move but unsure of the pieces that would give black a better advantage. Any help would be greatly appreciated. r5k1/pp1qpr1p/3p2p1/2pP4/1n2P3/1P2N1Pb/2PQ1P1P/3RR1K1 b - - 0 1
6
votes
3answers
486 views

Intention of two moves of Topalov vs Anand

What was the intention for the moves 23. ... Bb6 and 24. ... Bd7 ? [FEN ""] [White "Anand"] [Black "Topalov"] [StartPly "45"] 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 d5 4. g3 dxc4 5. Bg2 a6 6. Ne5 c5 7. Na3 ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

How to make a self study plan to become a good chess player to play rated tournaments?

I am a programmer and a chess player who knows the moves and the basic rules but never played professionally. I am a complete novice. I tried in FICS and failed to win a single match. I was playing ...
6
votes
2answers
833 views

What openings provide “mini-objectives” in the early game?

As a beginner I've found that it is psychologically really nice playing QGA as white simply because I have a clear task at hand in the early game - namely recapture that pawn. Similarly, hedgehog for ...
6
votes
3answers
262 views

Analyze this game

I am improving my chess. What is the best move here and why? (black moves) Thanks in advance:) rnb2rk1/pp2qpp1/3p1b1p/2pBp2Q/4P2P/3P1N2/PPP2PP1/2KR3R b - h3 0 1
5
votes
5answers
890 views

How to deal with unorthodox players?

I am new to chess and know only a bit of opening theory and understand some general ideas like developing my pieces, threatening and controlling the center of the board, etc. but I struggle against ...
5
votes
4answers
213 views

Where should I start?

So, I am returning to chess after not playing for about 10 years. I learned the basic rules when I was in elementary school and then didn't play for a while. I am starting to get back into chess and ...
5
votes
8answers
630 views

Opening as a Beginner: Mainlines or Offbeaten path?

I am approximately 1500 OTB (Lichess Classical 1750, chess.com 1540, internal rating in my club ~1500), and of course I would like to improve. Work and family are demanding, so naturally I would like ...
5
votes
5answers
136 views

What are good Android apps to learn chess from scratch?

Knowing nothing but the rules of chess, I'd like to start learning a bit more. Some kind of tutorial app for my Android smartphone would be perfect as I can use it anywhere. The app should give ...
5
votes
4answers
370 views

What are the mistakes that I have done in the following game?

I am a begginer and I have a rating of about 1000 Elo. I played a game against stockfish 5 but I lost the game. I know that stockfish is a very strong engine but I played against it to learn more. ...
5
votes
3answers
668 views

chess book for kids (9-11 y.o.)

Are there any chess books accessible for kids in the 9-11 age range that don't waste the first half of the book teaching how the pieces move, castling rules and en passant capture? I am expecting some ...
5
votes
4answers
254 views

Neither Attacking nor Defending?

I am a novice in chess. After about ten moves, I sometimes get into a situation where I am neither attacking nor defending and really can't figure out what my next move should be (that is I don't want ...
5
votes
4answers
901 views

What books and videos would you recommend to an absolute beginner of Chess?

The entirety of my current chess knowledge consists solely of the valid moves which the pieces can make. I've played a few matches, but my moves tend to be aimless, by this I mean they lack any ...
5
votes
1answer
440 views

Simple chess variants for beginners

How suitable would these variants for beginning players? First to check wins Three-Check Chess First to take king wins All other rules being equal.
5
votes
1answer
220 views

Beginners question: Controlling the center

As a beginner I've been studying openings for center control. I am having a hard time finding the next lessons and steps when I actually have the upper hand in the center. Now I realise I don't ...
5
votes
1answer
394 views

What is the best way to play chess via terminal?

I've recently learned about gnu chess, but it's poorly documented, and I'm having difficulties: Setting a reasonable difficulty level; Saving an entire game to a pgn: it's only saving the last move; ...
5
votes
2answers
3k views

Additional openings that are Chess Position Trainer compatible

I just started playing with Chess Position Trainer and I really enjoy the experience of playing through the "Closed Sicilian” repetoir that comes pre-loaded. The manual mentions that you can build ...
5
votes
8answers
2k views

A first book for a chess beginner

I am thinking about getting my first chess book. After making a bit of research, people recommend to not worry about opening and endings and start with a primer on general strategy. That description ...
5
votes
3answers
289 views

Kings gambit for white

I'm just a beginner at chess and am just starting to get into the king's gambit but there seems not to be much information on this line probably because I'm not very good and the same with my ...
4
votes
5answers
747 views

What advice would you give a novice in Chess?

I am a bit of a new blood when it comes to Chess. Oh I know how to play but before I started getting more serious it was more like flailing about and hoping for the best. Recently I came to the ...