Questions tagged [positional-play]

A style of play emphasizing capture of strategic squares and prophylactic moves.

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1
vote
0answers
125 views

Best theory-knowledge rewarding openings?

I wonder which are the openings (for both White and Black) where an advantage (or at least equality against great players) is granted. Also, if you could refer to some good books / resources linked to ...
8
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6answers
4k views

Why is 11. .. h6 such a bad move?

rnbqkbnr/pppppppp/8/8/8/8/PPPPPPPP/RNBQKBNR w KQkq - 0 1 [Event "?"] [Site "?"] [Date "????.??.??"] [Round "?"] [White "?"] [Black "?"] [...
8
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3answers
804 views

Material vs positional advantage: does Stockfish give good advice?

This is from Yusupov's "Build up your chess" volume 1, chapter 11 (pins). [Event "Munich"] [Site "Build Up Your Chess"] [Date "1994"] [Round "Diagram 11.4&...
4
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2answers
239 views

Who is actually winning here?

I came across this interesting position: [Title "Black to move (with full castling rights)"] [FEN "r2qkb1r/pp1nn1p1/7p/5N2/3p4/2P2N2/PP2QPPP/R1B3K1 b kq - 0 1"] On first glance, ...
7
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1answer
514 views

Can a 2000 ELO rated player teach me middlegame play properly?

I have reached 2500 in the chess.com tactics trainer while I haven't study theory and my FIDE rating is 1637 (I reached 1930 in rapids a year in France). I want to study with a coach and there is one ...
9
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1answer
2k views

Black's tools in the Caro-Kann Advanced Tal Variation

What are Black's plans to play for an advantage in this variation? [FEN ""] 1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. e5 Bf5 4. h4 h5 5. Bd3 Bxd3 6. Qxd3 e6 The kingside development seems so slow, allowing ...
3
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1answer
93 views

Playing with Ranks Advantage

[FEN "rnbqkbnr/pppppppp/8/PPPPPPPP/RNBQKBNR/8/8/8 w - - 0 1"] I was planning to play white against the computer, starting with the positional advantage as shown above. I don't know how to ...
3
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1answer
509 views

Why is Ne4 considered as an inaccuracy whereas it is one of very few moves which saves d3 pawn?

[FEN "r2q1rk1/1p3ppp/p4n2/2Pp4/1Pn5/P1Bp3P/3N2P1/R2QN2K b - - 4 21"] With Black to move Ne4 is not even in top 5 moves and engine says its an inaccuracy. I know it considers fastest winning ...
2
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2answers
222 views

Josh Waitzkin chessmaster mastery quiz - spatial advantage, trading bishops

Based on: Josh Waitzkin Chessmaster Strategy Section 7 - the mastery quiz. Position: [Event "From Josh Waitzkin Chessmaster Strategy Section 7 - the mastery quiz"] [Site "?"] [Date ...
5
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2answers
634 views

Which classical players' games should I check if I want to analyze positional players? [closed]

I am regularly analyzing games of grandmasters and now I want to check the classics. Who do you recommend to me as a positional player? Thanks.
4
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2answers
172 views

How do I create sharp, tactical positions?

It is said that you shouldn't simply look for combinations every move; rather, you should create positions that tend to create tactical opportunities. But what does this actually mean? I think my ...
4
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2answers
839 views

Positional chess understanding in the early game

As Black, when given a choice of taking the White's pawn, for what reason should I consider taking d5 pawn with e6 pawn? Wouldn't this open up the king's file and put it at risk of being attacked in ...
6
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2answers
1k views

How come it's actually Black with the advantage here?

I was analyzing a recent game of mine, and I noticed something interesting. After I blundered back a bishop on move 16, the evaluation was -3.4, which is still strongly winning for Black. [White "...
4
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2answers
274 views

Which open source chess engine has the most positional understanding?

Most open source chess engines with hand-tuned evaluations are known for their innovations on search (Fruit, Stockfish). I was inspired by HIARCS' generally more human-like play and the fact that ...
10
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4answers
3k views

How can I punish the “bad” knight on c3?

I play the Caro–Kann Defence against 1.e4 as black, and for whatever reason it feels like I get the following line way too frequently: [FEN ""] 1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3. exd5 cxd5 4. Nc3?! This ...
1
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1answer
155 views

What should be the next move for Black?

Both sides have had equal points untill now. If the Black knight is moved, then White can move their knight with discovered check. What should Black do? [FEN ""] [StartPly "11"] ...
1
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1answer
77 views

Why is the evaluation of the move h5 dependent on position of the bishop?

[FEN ""] [startply "50"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O b5 6. Bb3 Be7 7. Re1 d6 8. c3 O-O 9. h3 Na5 10. Bc2 c5 11. d4 Qc7 12. Nbd2 Nc6 13. d5 Nd8 14. a4 Ra7 15. Nf1 g6 16. Bh6 Re8 17....
2
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1answer
195 views

Why this move is good here but not few moves ago?

[FEN "r1bq1rk1/p2p2pp/1pn1p3/5p2/1PP1n1P1/P4N2/1BQ1PP1P/R3KB1R b - - 0 1"] Here, 1... fxg4 gives White an advantage. But 1...Nxf2 2.Kxf2 fxg4 is equal. Why is that?
7
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3answers
2k views

When should I play f3/f6?

For context, I've been playing chess for around two years now, and my rating on Lichess is ~1850. When I first started playing, I learned a lot of heuristics for playing well, e.g. rooks are better ...
11
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2answers
2k views

Why does Black want to trade off her King's Bishop in many d4 lines?

I feel that in many lines starting with d4, such as the Queen's Gambit Declined, or especially the Nimzo-Indian, Black is more than happy to trade her King's Bishop for White's knight on c3. For ...
1
vote
4answers
171 views

What is the best move for White in this position?

[title "White to move"] [fen "2b2rk1/pr2n1bp/2p1p1p1/2pqPp2/N2p1P1Q/1P1P1N2/P1PB2PP/1R3R1K w - - 1 0"] In this position, I was considering the best move for white. Re1 seems good but why not Ba5? Or ...
7
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5answers
1k views

Why is Ne2 better than Nf3?

I played Nf3 for attacking on king side which is about to castle having some plans to make a battery in future after castling but I feel Ne2 is making a block for Re1 at some point. Any suggestions? [...
3
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2answers
690 views

Can someone explain the positional advantages for white?

[FEN "3r1rk1/7p/bq2ppp1/p1R5/Pp2P2P/4QB2/1P3PP1/3R2K1 w - - 0 1"] As far I can see, Black’s bishop has more scope than the white one, White has some isolated pawns, and the Black pawns rule the 5th ...
1
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2answers
110 views

Why move the queen’s rook to defend d-file instead of king’s rook?

In this position, why is it better to move the queen’s rook to defend the d-file instead of the king’s rook? Moving the king’s rook to the d-file becomes more challenging. Is it important to leave ...
5
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3answers
467 views

How should one decide which rook to put on a central file? [duplicate]

How should one decide which rook to put on a central file? I usually just move the one which is closer to the file, unless there are weak squares in my position that one rook is defending. In ...
4
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4answers
270 views

Why is 16. d5 a blunder in this position?

In this position I'm White and I have just played 16. d5. Stockfish labels the move as a blunder. I do understand I had better moves than this, and it's not the move I would play if I were to get this ...
3
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2answers
281 views

Confused about timing of cxd5 and dxc4 in the Queen's Gambit Declined (QGD)

Recently I've been playing the Queen's Gambit Declined as my primary response to a d4 opening by white. While analyzing past games with engines, I've realized that as the game progresses, there's a ...
5
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3answers
230 views

In Caro-Kann, which one is less risky, the main line or the Steinitz?

After 1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 dxe4 4. Nxe4, the most popular move (main line) is 4...Bf5. But former world champion Anatoly Karpov seems to like 4...Nd7. Since Karpov's style is "solidly ...
1
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1answer
117 views

How should white push for advantage in the Nimzowitsh attack of the Petrov's defense?

This line of the Petrov defense can often lead to opposite side castling and the general rule for that is attacks happening on both sides of the board. However, I noticed that it's very difficult to ...
6
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5answers
1k views

How do I understand White's +6 advantage here?

[White "White (to move)"] [Black "Black"] [FEN "rnq1kb1r/ppp3pp/4pn2/4N3/2QP4/2N2P2/PPP3PP/R1B1K2R w KQ - 0 13"] In this position, White can still castle, but Black cannot (having moved the king ...
4
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2answers
251 views

Can anyone recommend a positional book focused on preparing pawn breaks?

Feel free to share more than one book. I'm very interested in understanding better those preparatory moves.
1
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1answer
85 views

Advanced Pawn Structure books [duplicate]

Hello fellow chess players. I've recently returned to the learning of this game, and as I forgot several ideas on deep mechanics, I read (again) "My System", from Nimzowitsch, and found it very useful,...
4
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2answers
280 views

Analysis of a middlegame out of the Queen's Pawn Game: Zukertort Variation

What positional considerations must be made in order to come up with a plan for White in this position? What are the ideas behind the central squares and weaknesses that must be analyzed for both ...
11
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3answers
2k views

Good Knight Against Bad Bishop Endgame - A More Constructive Plan?

I reached the position below in a recent tournament game [Event "Recent Tournament"] [Site "Deepest, Darkest Oxfordshire"] [Date "Feb 2020"] [White "Ian Bush"] [Black "A Young Victim"] [Result "1-0"] ...
18
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6answers
7k views

What is a “monster knight”?

I was watching an agadmator video explaining a game between two chess engines, and at one point in the video after a knight move, agadmator talks about how that knight then became "basically a monster ...
2
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2answers
141 views

Is my positional pawn sacrifice justified?

Today I have played a game and the following position was reached: [fen "rn1qk2r/p4ppp/1p2bb2/1Q1pp3/8/3P2P1/PP2PPBP/RN2K1NR b - - 0 1"] 1... Nd7 2. Bxd5 a6 3. Qb3 Nc5 4. Bc6+ Ke7 5.Qa3 Rc8 6. Bg2 ...
6
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2answers
245 views

Firouzja vs Kovalev: what went wrong for black in the opening?

In the first round of the ongoing Wijk aan zee Masters tournament, Firouzja won vs Kovalev. Apparently, right out of the opening white had gained a winning edge. In particular, somewhere around 16......
23
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2answers
2k views

Understanding Anand's Bc4 move vs Ivanchuk 1992

In the Ivanchuk vs Anand game (1992), the game leads into an endgame after lots of exchanges, which by no means looks (to me at least) winning for black: they both have 2 rooks, 2 bishops, and black ...
7
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2answers
355 views

I am 1400, how do I improve my positional play? [duplicate]

My lichess puzzle rating (tactics) is around 2100, while my game rating is only around 1400, so I'm pretty sure that means my positional play is utterly trash. There aren't any positional puzzles out ...
5
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3answers
428 views

Is h6 or g6 better to defend the h7 square against a combined attack by a queen and bishop?

I am setting the question from black's perspective, but it holds the same for white too. Many times in my personal games a position arises where a Bishop along the b1-h7 diagonal and a Queen on the h-...
24
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5answers
4k views

What does it mean to play “positionally”, and how do you train that?

I often hear this term thrown around when people are analyzing chess, but I don't really know what it means. I assume it's a generic term that means to play defensively, or to set up for the future. ...
4
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2answers
1k views

What is a winning position in chess?

I am new to chess, so I have some difficulties on understanding some concepts. For example, by watching games usually I hear that a player has a winning position, or a better position respect to the ...
14
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3answers
4k views

Positional thinking by Grandmasters

How do Grandmasters think in an unknown position and make the best move?
8
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1answer
721 views

How to “crack” this position?

I find this particular final position from a personal game intriguing. Even though there's a material advantage, there's no clear path to the victory. Does anyone have any good ideas on how to crack ...
1
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2answers
244 views

Why doesn’t the computer like my odd queen trade?

I played a game as Black some months ago on chess.com in which I made a rather amusing, in my opinion at the least, queen trade. I won the game in the end, but only after being a bastard and promoting ...
17
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7answers
7k views

Was this “caterpillar” strategy a good way to advance my pawns?

I recently played an endgame as Black in which I thought up a silly, but effective, to advance my doubled pawns. Here is the relevant part of the game. [FEN "8/6p1/2p2kp1/1p1p4/p2P2K1/P1P5/1P6/8 ...
4
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3answers
964 views

What is the weakest file on the board?

If f2 and f7 are the weakest squares on the board, if the f-file the weakest file on the board? For example, other than attacking f2 and f7, is there a theoretical advantage in dominating the f-file?
6
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2answers
3k views

Why is this a missed win?

I found myself in this position as Black. I played Kb6, but the engine on chess.com suggested that the move Kb7 is a missed win, and the continuation below would have been winning for me. It gave no ...
1
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1answer
201 views

What move did I miss?

I played b4. According to computer, it is a "missed win" move by me. But what move did I miss? What move should I have played? (I am white. And played b4 but I got "missed win")
6
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2answers
2k views

Pushing the e-pawn

I am having trouble understanding why the move e5 which I played in the position below is not correct according to Stockfish (6th move for White) I am not doing this move by winning a tempo, but I ...