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Questions tagged [tactics]

Tactics are the concrete maneuvers (e.g. forking two pieces with a knight, pinning a piece to the opponent's king, or unleashing a discovered check) that chess players use and combine in order to achieve their overall goals in a game. They are the building blocks which underlie successful strategies.

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1answer
456 views

Game with computers choosing the worst possible moves [duplicate]

Since chess engines in one way or an other rank alternative moves, it should be able to search for the worst move as well as the best. Have engines played each others trying to lose, and what has come ...
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963 views

How to get to 1600

I've often heard people say that, to get to a FIDE rating of 1600, one doesn't need a coach, and that one can do it by oneself. I'd be glad if you could help me see what one can do to achieve that. ...
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Training tactics - doing more easy puzzles or fewer, but deep, puzzles?

I know daily tactics training is very beneficial. However, what is the best way to do so? Lets say I have 15 minutes a day. Is it better I do 3/4 puzzles in detail, spend 5 minutes on each ...
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What is the CQL syntax for combinations where king is checked along a file, and the square near it is attacked by bishop or queen?

I am looking to search for combinations similar to the one in Karpov - Taimanov, 1977 - a knight check, is followed by opening of an 'h' file, and the rook comes with decisive effect because attacker'...
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3answers
331 views

Improving my ability to scan the board

This seems like a silly noob question...but I am a silly noob. Sitting at around 600 (and floating there in both tactics and in 30 minute games) I've noticed I give away material or extend the game ...
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3k views

What is the best way to solve chess puzzles?

Doing puzzles at lichess.org I stuck at raiting 1750 +- 50. I cant really go over 1800. So what are the first things one should check by solving puzzles? Are there some tricks how to solve puzzles?
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When is a bishop stronger than a rook?

Usually the rook is stronger than the bishop. Are there situations (and obviously I'm not assuming equal material) in which the latter is stronger?
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2answers
101 views

Looking for a Horowitz game

I just remembered a puzzle from a Horowitz game in which he played white against an Italian (I believe) player whose name started with "M". The black queen was defending f6, preventing Bxf6#. There ...
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1answer
182 views

Why is e6 “forced” in this position?

Larry Christiansen has played and analysed his four games against Chessmaster. At the 8th move, he shows a different possible continuation and says that e6 (shown below) is forced for black. I don't ...
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1answer
201 views

Why is exposing my queen for capture better in this position (According to computer analysis)?

In one my of my game, the following position appeared (me white): Computer analysis says that I should have played Nf3 (exposing my queen being captured by the bishop). In the proposed scenario by ...
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2answers
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Why is `a5` a better move in this position?

I was playing with a friend and we come to the following position (me white): My friend played b5 but computer analysis says that this is a mistake and he should have played a5. Now, I don't see why ...
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4answers
492 views

What should a beginner focus on to improve his level?

I've learnt chess only about 1 month ago. Of course, my first game was terrible. But with reading some tips I've proceeded a little. Learning basics of few openings (like Spanish, Vienna and Urusov) ...
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6answers
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How did I go wrong?! Embarassing Loss

this is a recent online game I played. I'm usually about an 1800 USCF player, but I had this very disappointing loss to a 1400 level player. Stronger players might look at this sub-par game and wonder ...
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8answers
956 views

How do you solve chess tactics?

Do you just grind them, or do you save some of the chess tactics that you miss? Do you ever annotate your chess tactics? Do you try to remember certain patterns and main ideas? Do you categorize ...
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6answers
177 views

How to bring tactics skills into the actual play?

According to few popular sites, my tactics rating is consistently about 400 points above my game rating (say, 2200 vs 1800). Of course, partially it could be a fault of the process: when a tactics ...
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2answers
202 views

What are some techniques for BvN endgames?

Let's say all the pawns are on one side of the board, either left, middle or right. (If there were two pawn groups far from each other, I imagine the Bishop would be much better than the Knight.) So ...
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269 views

How would you analyze this critical position from my most recent game?

r1b2r2/1p2bp1k/p3p2p/2qnN3/2B4Q/2P3R1/PP3PPP/2K1R3 w - - 4 20 In the diagram position, I was white. I had sacrificed a bishop for a pawn for a huge attack on the black king. I realized during the ...
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Creating opportunities for tactics other than by enemy mistakes [closed]

Tactics, such as the pin, skewer, and fork, take advantage of uncompromised positions of pieces, and sometimes inadequately guarded pieces. Usually, tactics can also occur during an intermezzo. If ...
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Where to find Tactical Exercises on the Decoy

A decoy tactic is forcing an enemy piece to move to a square that prevents it from guarding an original square. For example, if the black queen is at c7 and the f7 square is being attacked, getting ...
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405 views

How can one precisely sacrifice a piece for a winning attack?

r2qkb1r/5ppp/p1bppn2/1p3P2/4P3/1BN5/PPP3PP/R1BQ1RK1 b qk - 0 1 1... b4 2. fxe6! bxc3 3. exf7+ In the above game, black played 1...b4 to encumber the white knight's journey to d5. Ambitiously, white ...
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285 views

Best heuristic for memorizing positions in chess

Opening variations may be memorized by recalling what the objective behind every move is. For example, the first few moves of the Ruy Lopez fight to control e5. In the middlegame, we may find ...
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Reviewing Chess Tactics Puzzles

Is there somewhere online I can play chess tactic puzzles and redo them whenever I want? I do tactics on lichess but it doesn't store my puzzles. Is there somewhere that stores all my tactic problems ...
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3answers
957 views

Method to study chess puzzles way above your level

I have a collection of middle-game chess puzzles classified in levels. I can solve most puzzles in the first level after a few minutes, and some of the puzzles in level 2. But for higher levels there ...
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6answers
290 views

How could I have improved my attack in this game?

I won the game easily because my opponent left a rook hanging in the end. I believe I missed opportunities to build a stronger attack, but I am not sure how I could have done so. [FEN ""] 1.d4 e5 2....
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4answers
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What are some common tactics that arise when black has played h6?

What are some common tactics or ideas that arise when black has played h6 (or white has played h3) in front of his castled king? An example I have in mind is, in this position, white can win a pawn ...
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2k views

How to play better with Knight?

I'm solving tactics on http://chesstempo.com . One of the things that I struggle with, is tactics involving moving the Knight several times. I find it very odd to calculate Knight movement beyond the ...
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Is three knights versus knight really winning?

Take a look at the following position, reached in the #40974 Tactics Problem on chess.com [fen "4N1K1/5P2/6k1/8/6n1/8/N7/8 w - - 0 1"] The engine gives +6.22 for white in this position. I already ...
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1answer
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Chesscademy Tactic: Is my alternative as good as the right answer?

I've been playing with the Chesscademy app for a while, solving some tactics (which I'm not sure is improving my chess, but it's a good puzzle to kill some time). Today I ran into one tactic that I ...
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What to do when your opponent doesn't play along in the opening?

I looked around and could not find an answer for this. I've studied a pretty good amount of opening theory and so I know the "correct" moves for some basic lines. Most e4 openings and a fair amount ...
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1answer
128 views

An unnecessary threat?

I found myself in a game with this position. Last Black's move was a Queenside castle, which let him a little bit uncovered. My first spontaneous move idea (which I finally played, because of time ...
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4answers
344 views

Are mind games effective?

If you want a quick match and need a way to put off your opponent early on, what sort of tactics can i use to mess with their head? I am specifically interested in the opening and middlegame, however ...
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1answer
263 views

Does three-player chess have any special tactics I should know about?

In chess, attacking the centre and using major pieces to support minor pieces to support pawns are common tactics. In three-player chess the game is more complex. Should I be taking the centre, ...
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5answers
2k views

What are some good podcasts to listen to?

I'm an intermediate player, and I practice chess tactics and play regularly. I'm looking for a good podcast or two to listen too during my day. I don't care if its a podcast that discusses chess news, ...
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923 views

Why does chess.com's tactics player avoid taking the queen in this problem?

Why can't the black pawn take the queen at h6? Instead the computer makes the king go to g8.
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1answer
545 views

What's a really good tactic trainer rating on chess.com for a Candidate Master?

I'm currently a Class B with a TT rating of 2100. I would like to aim to become a 2100 with norm of Candidate Master. What tactic rating does a CM usually have? How strong are Expert class chess ...
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878 views

How many windmills types exist in chess?

I'm interested in chess patterns similar to the windmill. If you think there are none more than the ones that I'm listing I'm interested in a proof that satisfies me to stop looking for more of them. ...
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8answers
469 views

Simultaneously managing attack and defense

I am an amateur chess player. I have the knowledge of pawn structure, development of the pieces and control of the center in the opening. After that my midgame rationale is attacking the weak pieces, ...
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2answers
124 views

Why using the queen is not a good idea in this case?

I am a new [and a late] comer to chess. I started practicing on chessacademy.com where I got this exercise: r1bqk1nr/ppp2pp1/4p2p/8/1bPnN3/5N2/PP1B1PPP/R2QKB1R w KQkq - 1 13 According to the site, ...
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2k views

How to practice tactics correctly? [duplicate]

When it comes to tactics training what is the best approach to optimize results? I've recently started only doing really hard puzzles, the only immediate change is it obviously take me a lot longer ...
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2answers
149 views

Bullet rating fluctuations

I play on chess.com and I noticed that at some times I am getting beaten by 1700 pretty easily but other times I can beat 1900 with almost no effort. I broke my record and passed 2000 in bullet ...
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148 views

How to gain material by trading pieces?

So, I am learning the basics on trading pieces, but can someone please give me tips on the "Art of trading pieces with material gain". I know a concept called overloading, but are there any other ...
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1answer
227 views

How to develop tactical and combinational awareness?

Most of my learning comes from trial-and-error sort of self-teaching. I cannot say I am completely blind to tactics and combinations, but, while solving puzzles (approx. ~1600+) I tend to miss ...
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215 views

Would you look for mate, if tactics to win materials are easier to spot?

I'm black, I defeated a 1830 very easily in a 11 + 10 game and I had plenty of time, but I played fast and didn't see mate, he was low on time. Analyzing with lichess engine The engine suggested ...
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161 views

What advantage does black gain from this move?

Consider the following: [FEN "r3q1k1/p2p1p1p/b1p2QpB/8/8/2r5/P4PPP/R5K1 b - - 0 1"] Why is black's next move Qf8? White just follows with Bf8.
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207 views

Chess knowledge and understanding [duplicate]

I am not a beginner, but I am absolutely not a practicing chess player, although I would like for that to change. I am inquiring about which direction I should take in advancing my abilities and ...
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Shocking queen sacrifices?

I am a chess beginner and I find queen sacrifices are the most shocking moves I have ever seen. Please, can you provide me with some shocking examples of queen sacrifices. It need not be a big list, ...
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151 views

Moving pawns which are defending the king

Is f4 a good move here? [Title ""] [SetUp "1"] [FEN "r2qk1nr/pbp3pp/1p2p/4b/4P/2N/PPP2PPP/R1BQ1RK1 w - - 0 1"] 1. f4 On the one hand, many times you would move like this way to attack some ...
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3answers
394 views

Top chess books and online software that would help me increase my rating

My current rating is 1200 and I had stopped chess for some time due to school exam pressure. What steps should I take to increase my rating? I do tactics from chess.com everyday. Please suggest some ...
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3answers
1k views

How do I raise my tactic trainer rating to 2300?

I'm currently a 1600 USCF with a tactic rating on chesstempo.com of high 1600. My chess.com tactic rating is 1600 as well. Though my best tactic rating has been high 1700 on chesstempo.com. The ...
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4answers
2k views

How much time you spend on one puzzle?

I know solving tactics puzzles is one of the recommended ways to improve in chess. I spend around 30 min solving puzzles. How much time I should spend on one puzzle? During games we don't think 15-...