Questions tagged [beginner]

Questions of interest to or relating to new players.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
5 votes
4 answers
179 views

Will writing a chess engine help my chess?

At first the premise seems absurd - the computer engine relies much more on brute-force search (Shannon's Type A Strategy) over selecting a few strong lines with heuristics (Type B Strategy). But can ...
11 votes
5 answers
3k views

How to pass 1000 elo

Currently my chess.com rating is fluctuating between 1000 - 1050. What are some common pitfalls that players in this range make and how can I capitalize on them? I've been playing for about 5 months ...
3 votes
1 answer
92 views

Literature on Accelerated London system

I (beginner) have been trying to shift from Philidor Defense (I still play it for Black) to the Accelerated London System for Blitz and Rapid. For eg: [FEN ""] 1. d4 d5 2. Bf4 Nc6 3. e3 Nf6 ...
7 votes
3 answers
1k views

How can I avoid stalemate in this position?

I am very much a beginner to chess and have been clueless in my past matches. I feel like I'm either making a move just to protect any of my pieces at that moment or make a move to simply knock my ...
3 votes
3 answers
718 views

How does centipawn scoring work?/Why is a higher (positive) score horrible while a lower score is better?

I'm a total beginner in Chess. I've known the basic rules for at least 20 years, but have never played it somewhat serious. Only toddler-level. I recently started trying to learn how to play properly. ...
4 votes
2 answers
569 views

“Rating” going up too fast [closed]

I am a chess beginner. I love playing Blitz games (especially 3+0). I play on Lichess.org. My “Lichess blitz rating” (currently between 1040 and 1060; not giving exact value for privacy) has been ...
2 votes
1 answer
270 views

What are some good tactics books?

I am looking for books with exercises to improve at tactics. It seems that there are lots of options. My definition of what constitutes a “good” tactics books is variety. Even if the book focuses on a ...
6 votes
3 answers
313 views

Analyze this game

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

What are some middle game chess books that are good for beginners? [closed]

What are some great middlegame chess books that are for beginners that will help me to improve my middle game in chess? There aren't a lot of books on the middle game.
5 votes
7 answers
908 views

Is playing stronger opponents useful as a beginner?

I have signed up to a chess website and there are very few people who are as bad as I am (rating around 800), so I have to resort to playing against people who are much better (1200+) and end up ...
2 votes
1 answer
179 views

Why is this a Checkmate? Pawn can capture queen?

I am just learning Chess. Why is this a checkmate? It's Black's turn, and White's queen threatens Black's king, so check. But if I play gxf8, the check is gone. Why doesn't the game let me do it?
9 votes
2 answers
2k views

Why is 3...c5 a blunder in the Center Game Accepted?

[FEN "rnbqkbnr/pppppppp/8/8/8/8/PPPPPPPP/RNBQKBNR"] [Title "Center Game Accepted"] [StartFlipped "1"] 1. e4 e5 2. d4 exd4 3. Qxd4 c5?? Stockfish says that 3…c5 was a ...
4 votes
3 answers
418 views

Play/learn Sveshnikov Sicilian as a beginner?

I've read countless times, that beginners should not play the Sicilian. On the other hand, one often reads that the opening does not matter for beginners. There are many courses claiming the included ...
0 votes
1 answer
189 views

How to discourage distracting behaviour by a teenager?

I’m showing a 12 year old male how to play chess. While he has amazing abilities, he plays with the captured pieces, jumps around, leans over the board, knock pieces over that are still on the board. ...
0 votes
0 answers
72 views

Does Story Time Chess work to teach young players the game?

Story Time Chess claims that it will teach young children to play the game, and - with some add on workbooks - to improve. I have a pre-school relative who I would like to help learn to play, but I ...
4 votes
2 answers
786 views

What is the great thing about Bc4 here?

Please forgive my blindness! I am a beginner and have not played in months. I was going to go Bd3, where my bishop would have been protected by a pawn and poised to strike one of the next potential ...
-3 votes
2 answers
58 views

Benefits Of PGN Files [closed]

I’m wanting to improve at Chess and reduce my number of mistakes and blunders in order for me to win more games. Can Pgn files help me with my quest to improve? If not then what can I do? What is a ...
1 vote
2 answers
96 views

Rules of Checkmate [duplicate]

I’ve attached a picture of the board configuration of an end game. Black wins this game by checkmate, however, I’m wondering how this is valid checkmate? To my understanding, checkmate occurs when a ...
0 votes
3 answers
228 views

What are some good chess resources to learn from?

I have looked in a lot of places, but I can't find good places to learn chess. I am at the stage where I know basic chess strategies, but my rating is still below average. I can't find a source longer ...
6 votes
1 answer
389 views

Why should Black capture with different pawns in these similar Spanish game variations?

As a general “rule”, I have read that pawn captures toward the center should be preferred. I have found 2 different positions which look similar but the best way for Black to recapture with the pawn ...
12 votes
4 answers
1k views

Why is it a blunder to capture this pawn even if its defender is pinned?

[FEN "1r1q1rk1/p4pp1/3p1b1p/2pQ4/4P3/P1P2P2/1P2B1PP/1K1R3R b - - 0 20"] [Title "The Position"] 1... Bxc3?? In this position, I believed that the best move for Black is Bxc3. It’s ...
5 votes
1 answer
855 views

Why is 4…Bb4 an inaccuracy in the Berlin Defense?

[FEN "rnbqkbnr/pppppppp/8/8/8/8/PPPPPPPP/RNBQKBNR"] [Title "Berlin Defense"] [StartFlipped "1"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. O-O Bb4?! When White castles, ...
3 votes
1 answer
206 views

Why is 2…f6 a blunder in the Center Game?

[FEN "rnbqkbnr/pppppppp/8/8/8/8/PPPPPPPP/RNBQKBNR"] [Title "Center Game"] [StartFlipped "1"] 1. e4 e5 2. d4 f6?? Stockfish says that 2…f6 was a blunder and recommends 2…...
2 votes
1 answer
267 views

Why is forking the king and rook a blunder in this Halloween Gambit line?

[FEN "rnbqkbnr/pppppppp/8/8/8/8/PPPPPPPP/RNBQKBNR"] [Title "Halloween Gambit Game"] [StartPly "22"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Nxe5 Nxe5 5. d4 Nc6?! 6. d5 Ne5 7. ...
6 votes
4 answers
7k views

On a glass board, which squares are "white"?

I have a chessboard made of alternating frosted and clear glass pieces. I'm never sure how to orient the board. Which is the official "light color" to put in the lower right corner?
1 vote
2 answers
142 views

Why is this rook move a mistake?

Recently I was playing a game on chess.com (300 rating) and after the game the engine showed that this move was a mistake, losing two points of material. [FEN ""] 1. e4 a5 2. d4 h5 3. f3 f6 ...
43 votes
15 answers
49k 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.
8 votes
2 answers
3k views

Why is g3 a bad move here?

Why is the last move by white, g3 on the board below, considered a bad move? It was in a game that I played recently and my idea was to protect the bishop in f4 and give the other bishop more space to ...
3 votes
2 answers
305 views

Challenges of becoming a good chess player

Chess is a deterministic game. Hence in principle we can have a perfect strategy for chess, a strategy that prevents a player losing a single game (given that no mistake has been made). All chess ...
6 votes
1 answer
305 views

Are there any online chess tournaments for beginners( or new players)?

I have been playing online chess for a long time on sites like lichess and chess.com. But I have never played in any FIDE or AICF organized tournament. In this pandemic are there any online ...
6 votes
9 answers
1k 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 ...
3 votes
3 answers
613 views

What does the term LPDO (Loose Pieces Drop Off) mean?

I have been hearing the term LPDO (Loose Pieces Drop Off) a lot lately, which apparently is helping players in the beginning level. If so, does it prescribe some best practices and tips to help ...
11 votes
1 answer
1k views

How can white gain a slight advantage in this position? (puzzle for beginners)

Try solving the following puzzle authored by me (for beginners). White to move and gain a slight advantage, despite being a Queen down for a bishop at present: [FEN "2k1r3/pp6/n5q1/1N3p2/8/3B4/...
4 votes
5 answers
1k views

Tools specifically for training at finding loose pieces?

There are of course lots of tactical trainers out there, but I'm wonder if there are any that focus solely on the basic skill of spotting loose or hanging pieces. It is of course a trivial exercise ...
-1 votes
2 answers
119 views

Looking to improve my tactics and possibly develop an opening repertoire at the beginner/intermediate level [closed]

I am new to the game and I so far like it. I have watched people on the internet play, tried to copy their moves and have been maintaining an 800 rating on Chess.com and around 1000 on Lichess. I have ...
4 votes
3 answers
3k views

What is a good strategy for blocking your opponent from checkmating you even though they always win? [closed]

I like to play chess against my Dad. He is almost a professional player. He always finds ways to checkmate my king. Every game I try new blocking strategies, but none of them work.
5 votes
8 answers
1k views

Is this a good idea for starting the game?

Usually I am a defensive player. Because of this, a few years ago, I created an opening set of moves, where I moved every other pawn forward 1 space, starting with pawn a2. To be more specific, I ...
11 votes
3 answers
4k views

Why is 1. d4 2. c4 3. b3 so bad for white?

I recently played a game that opened like this: 1. d4 c6 2. c4 d5 { D10 Slav Defense } 3. b3 [FEN ""] My third move, 3. b3 is apparently so uncommon that Lichess doesn't have it in its ...
2 votes
1 answer
121 views

When you study chess what do you do to learn something new? [closed]

All my life i was never been able to progress past beginner level. When i read a book or study a game i can't long term memorize what i do or what i read. So in practice what do you do to progress ? ...
5 votes
5 answers
2k views

An aggressive counter for white vs Scandinavian Defense

My chess rating is somewhere between 400 and 500 and I have a lot of trouble countering the Scandinavian Defense. My first move is usually e4 but when my opponent uses the Scandinavian Defense (d5), I ...
6 votes
6 answers
947 views

The London System

I'm rated on Chess.com in 1400 right now (elo). But sometimes my rating fluctuates between 1200 to 1500. As I searched on internet, I'm a beginner that is going to the intermediate level. Should I, as ...
8 votes
4 answers
600 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....
9 votes
5 answers
36k 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), ...
6 votes
5 answers
407 views

How should a beginner improve gameplay speed?

I am a fairly low skill player and am wanting to improve my game, but I feel as though I need to gain at least a bit more speed in my decision making to make better progress. I am a fairly analytical ...
3 votes
6 answers
373 views

Which elements of chess are best to focus on for extended "crash course" learning?

I want to spend between 1-2 hours/week practicing chess. I know that my skill will be severely limited by the time constraint. However, within this time constraint, where would my time be best spent? ...
2 votes
2 answers
610 views

What is the right path to be followed on Chess.com for learning Chess?

I am a beginner in Chess. I know the basics but I have very very little practice as of now and I've shortlisted Chess.com to learn and improve my game. I am yet to buy a premium subscription there ...
38 votes
12 answers
12k 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 ...
5 votes
4 answers
292 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 ...
18 votes
3 answers
2k 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. ...
7 votes
4 answers
2k 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 ...