Questions tagged [beginner]

Questions of interest to or relating to new players.

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5 votes
4 answers
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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 ...
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  • 1,964
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 ...
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  • 119
3 votes
1 answer
95 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 ...
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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 ...
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3 votes
3 answers
725 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. ...
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  • 141
4 votes
2 answers
572 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 ...
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0 votes
2 answers
88 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.
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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?
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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 ...
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  • 1,060
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. ...
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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 ...
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  • 2,434
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 ...
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  • 333
-3 votes
2 answers
59 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 ...
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1 vote
2 answers
98 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 ...
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  • 29
2 votes
1 answer
274 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 ...
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  • 1,060
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. ...
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  • 1,060
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 ...
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  • 1,060
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 ...
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  • 1,060
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 ...
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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…...
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  • 1,060
4 votes
3 answers
422 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 ...
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  • 2,098
5 votes
1 answer
856 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, ...
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  • 1,060
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 ...
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6 votes
1 answer
307 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 ...
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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/...
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  • 357
3 votes
3 answers
622 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 ...
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  • 357
-1 votes
2 answers
121 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 ...
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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.
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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 ...
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  • 191
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 ? ...
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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 ...
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-1 votes
3 answers
335 views

Why does the computer give me a high accuracy score?

My rating on chess.com is of about 1077 on rapid and today when I won a game against a player with slightly lower rating the analysis results said I played with 73 accuracy according to their best ...
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  • 125
-5 votes
2 answers
385 views

What does this algebraic notation expression mean?

What does this algebraic notation expression mean? exd5 There is no such notation as x. There is only a, b, c, d, e, f, g, and h. I don't know how this algebraic notation works.
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0 votes
3 answers
239 views

How good is 1. e3 2. c4 as an opening for White?

How good is 1. e3 2. c4 as an opening for White? Afterward, developing the knight on b1 to c3, and developing the bishops too, it seems good. Castling is preferably done on opposite sides as well.
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2 votes
2 answers
191 views

What are some "quick start" openings?

First of all, I'm sorry if it looks like I didn't really research before asking the question, but I really did put in some effort and couldn't find a satisfying answer. My problem is, I don't want to ...
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  • 23
0 votes
3 answers
229 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 ...
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-1 votes
2 answers
119 views

Why is bishop to h8 the best move in this position?

I don't understand how that move is a good move, much less the best move according to this chess.com analysis.
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4 votes
2 answers
598 views

Can the pawn take the rook in this position?

I have a question regarding the way that pawns are allowed to attack. Sorry I’m a beginner, but me and my friend are playing and I don’t want to make this move if I’m not allowed to. I have a picture ...
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5 votes
1 answer
226 views

I need help understanding this puzzle

With White to play, I have trouble understanding what goes on in this puzzle. First of all, how exactly Kh1 is preferable to Kxh2? I know that Black can give checks after Kxh2, but there really is no ...
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  • 181
30 votes
4 answers
7k views

As a beginner, how do I learn to win in "won" positions?

I'm fairly new to chess (~3 months) and I have almost entirely been playing on chess.com where my rating sits somewhere between 1000 and 1100. Recently, I decided to sign up for lichess.org, where I ...
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  • 970
3 votes
2 answers
197 views

Why should black trade knights in this position?

After playing the following game, Stockfish advised me to play ...Nxd2 after white played Nd2 (which I did not play during the game). However, I am not sure why. Certainly, in the worst case, this is ...
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6 votes
1 answer
203 views

Why is a6 strong in this position?

I was spectating an online simul given by a GM (this game in particular) and as the game was played I was very surprised to see GM Chessweeb play 24... a6. Here is the position. [Title "Black to ...
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2 votes
1 answer
1k views

Alternatives to the paid analysis on chess.com [duplicate]

On chess.com we get only one full depth analysis in a day, which is very little. Is there a way to analyze more chess games and get all the accuracy metrics as well? Are there any other website which ...
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1 vote
1 answer
177 views

Beginner book that has endgame scenarios

I’ve been looking for free online books on endgame scenarios, since I'm very bad at them. So far, I haven’t gotten any luck. By the way, I only know the pieces moves and some other basic stuff.
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  • 45
6 votes
3 answers
1k views

Why does black have an advantage here?

I am studying now old Polish book "ABC Szachisty" ("ABC for Chess Player", informal translation) and the following example is given there: [FEN ""] 1. e4 d5 2. exd5 Qxd5 3. Nc3 ...
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4 votes
5 answers
547 views

Move comparison in this opening

In this opening, being White, I want to understand, for the next move, why is e4 not as strong a move as e3 or Nf3? I am a beginner. [FEN ""] 1. c4 e5 2. Nc3 Nc6
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9 votes
4 answers
3k views

What is so great about Bxa3?

I only have about 35 games experience , so please excuse blunders. I am in the following position. My app (dr wolf) wants me to capture on a3. However I fail to see either the extreme threat posed by ...
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  • 333
9 votes
4 answers
2k views

Why is Qf3 better than Nf3?

I am training with an app and have played about 10 games in my life, most years apart. However, now I became interested in the game. I have this situation: [FEN "4kbnr/p2npppp/1p6/4P3/q2N4/P6P/...
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  • 333
9 votes
7 answers
5k views

How good can I get just by playing?

On blitz 3|2 I am rated around 1000. I love playing the game and usually I play with players around my level. I try to play against slightly better players. Assuming I am not reading chess books or ...
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  • 223
9 votes
4 answers
312 views

What's an ideal game for teaching a new beginner?

I sent my nephew a chess set for his 8th birthday. He doesn't play yet. When my children were small, I taught them to play by working through a simple game in which each piece was introduced in turn. ...
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