Questions tagged [theory]

Theory commonly refers to the erudite study and the philosophy behind the moves in chess (like opening or endgame theory) but this tag can also be used for questions about the game theoretic study of the game itself.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
3
votes
1answer
59 views

What's the best way to learn the French?

Recently, I have been very attracted to the French defense, as I feel as though it is perfect for my style. However, I am aware that the French is highly theoretical, which is why I need a good, ...
8
votes
2answers
452 views

1. e4 e6 2. d4 c5 - is this opening worth it?

While doing my spring cleaning, I came across an old book claiming to give a good opening chance for black. It's called the "Barcza-Larsen opening" and it is characterized by 2 .. c5: [fen ""] 1. e4 ...
1
vote
0answers
23 views

What is the longest amount of moves before an inevitable checkmate? [duplicate]

When most pieces are gone, inevitable checkmates often occur and are usually presented in the form x moves until checkmate. However, what is the biggest valid possibility of x. (By valid I mean that ...
3
votes
0answers
59 views

How to Create Positional Theory

I've been playing Kraton Chess, which is basically standard chess except there are 96 different possible starting positions that are similar to the standard starting position. All the rules of ...
2
votes
1answer
78 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
168 views

Where are the opening trends heading at the start of the decade?

Nearly every era has its opening trends like at the beginning of the millennia the Berlin started to become the trend and so much that e4 was starting to be avoided. With the 2018 world chess ...
1
vote
0answers
67 views

What effects would being able to capture while castling have?

Capturing an enemy piece while castling has been illegal for many decades, and the concept has been solidified in chess history. But what effects would it have if it were allowed? First, some ground ...
20
votes
2answers
3k views

What is the Dorfman method in chess?

On various occasions in commentaries or interviews, e.g. during the World Championship commentary with Peter Svidler and Anish Giri, I've heard the Dorfman method being mentioned. I then learned that ...
8
votes
5answers
1k views

Doubt on how move as black after pawn in e5

I am still at the beginning in playing chess, and I often encounter the following situation. Consider this sequence of moves: [FEN ""] 1. e4 d5 2. e5 Presuming that I am the black player, how do ...
1
vote
2answers
230 views

Fixed games in chess-is it real or just a conspiracy theory? If real, how bad is it?

One famous case of fixed chess games is the Keres vs. Botvinnik World Championship 1948. I ran across this example while looking for other such chess games from history. It is known that Stalin was ...
17
votes
3answers
3k views

Why is 1. Nf3 not nearly as popular as 1.e4 and 1.d4?

The opening move 1. Nf3 is considered as a perfectly sound opening and it is popular, but not nearly as popular as 1.e4 and 1.d4. Here are my thoughts about this: In most openings, white will make ...
4
votes
3answers
336 views

To what extent is the openness/closedness of positions determined by white? By black?

Say I am playing as white and I strongly prefer closed positions while my opponent strongly prefers open positions. To what extent do I have control over this? Will the game more likely end with a ...
-1
votes
1answer
58 views

What are the benefits and the drawbacks of the Sicilian defense [duplicate]

I am learning to play chess, and I am focusing my attention on the Sicilian defense. Many people says is one of the best openings against e4 when playing with black, and I think also it is a good ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Longest Sequence For Any Piece To Reach A Certain Square

What is the longest sequence of moves (by both White and Black) wherein White attempts to move one of their pieces from one square to another? Assume Black makes every move optimal towards the purpose ...
7
votes
3answers
574 views

In the Dutch Defense, why does white play b3 and Ba3?

In the Stonewall Dutch Defense, why does white play b3 and Ba3? Should I try to avoid it, or does it not matter? [fen ""] 1. Nf3 e6 2. d4 f5 3. g3 Nf6 4. Bg2 d5 5. O-O Bd6 6. b3 O-O 7. c4 c6 8. Ba3
2
votes
1answer
46 views

Analysis of a position in order to find the best move

I am trying to learn to play chess, but it is not an easy task. I am playing as much as possible and try to watch games an reading in order to learn. I am playng on Chess.com, and a lot of times I ...
2
votes
3answers
233 views

Analysis of a position of a low rated player in order to improve

I am a beginner in chess, and I am trying to learn how to play well. I am rated 800 in Chess.com, so I have a really low rating, and I am trying to improve it. I was playing a game and I have been in ...
4
votes
2answers
112 views

Improving my skills is getting harder

I am new to chess and I am playng mostly online at sites like chess.com. Now I have a rate around 800, so it is still low, but my problem is that improving my skills is getting hard. The arrival to ...
2
votes
2answers
353 views

What is the farthest away a game can be from a guaranteed checkmate?

What is the maximum number of moves away from checkmate that a player can be where checkmate is guaranteed? There are many positions that are a guaranteed win for a player if played perfectly right? (...
2
votes
3answers
147 views

Are there any moves in the opening stage that are perfectly sound but not book moves?

In the opening stage, are there any moves that are perfectly sound but are not book moves? Here a book move, is defined in Wikipedia as follows: Opening moves that are considered standard (often ...
23
votes
5answers
13k views

Has anyone attempted to characterize chess mathematically?

From years of being student, researcher, and practitioner of chess, I feel like it possesses completeness and elegance that are found in mathematical proofs and theories. Thus, it seems only natural ...
3
votes
1answer
130 views

Anderssen's 'immortal game'

I came across Anderssen's 'immortal game': [FEN ""] 1. e4 e5 2. f4 exf4 3. Bc4 Qh4+ 4. Kf1 b5 5. Bxb5 Nf6 6. Nf3 Qh6 7. d3 Nh5 8. Nh4 Qg5 9. Nf5 c6 10. g4 Nf6 11. Rg1 cxb5 12. h4 Qg6 13. h5 Qg5 14. ...
15
votes
11answers
6k views

Chess Tournaments Without Studying Theory?

I have played chess since a very young age and my tactics are very developed in my opinion. However, I never bothered to read chess related books about opening or related theory. This often leads to ...
0
votes
2answers
107 views

Longest non-cooperative game of chess [closed]

Typical arguments for the longest possible game of chess take a form something like this. 1) Each player moves their knights back of forth 49 times 2) Each player moves one pawn forward one square ...
13
votes
5answers
2k views

Why is 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 b6 so unpopular?

Why is the Sicilian line with 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 b6 almost never played at any level, nor considered in books and similar? It seems logical to me, and after the usual 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Bb7, the Bishop is ...
3
votes
5answers
203 views

When can king and pawn win against another king and pawn?

Assume such a situation: Both players (Black and White) only have two pieces, that is a King and a Pawn. They have the liberty of placing them according to their wishes on the first row of their side ...
2
votes
2answers
189 views

Does White have any feasible way to break through this position?

I recently played as Black in a 1+0 blitz game on Lichess in which the below position was reached. [FEN ""] 1. e4 Nf6 2. Nc3 e6 3. d4 d5 4. e5g Nfd7 5. f4 Nb6 6. Nf3 Nc6 7. Bb5 Bd7 8. O-O g6 9. Bxc6 ...
6
votes
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 ...
4
votes
2answers
390 views

Conceptually, what makes the Sicilian opening sensible for black?

We all know the Sicilian as shown below, is one of the most famous and commonly employed openings in chess. But compared to the other replies, which tend to be more about fixing the center (such as e5,...
7
votes
5answers
2k views

Introduction to the Sicilian

I am trying to work on my openings and start playing the Sicilian as a response to 1. e4 but I am slightly overwhelmed by the huge amounts of resources available. I am rated around 1850 FIDE and I ...
5
votes
2answers
286 views

How is endgame theory developed?

First of all, I am explicitly not asking for a list of endgame principles, nor am I asking for resources to study endgames from. My question is: How does one develop endgame theory? The main ...
2
votes
3answers
438 views

Novice - Capitalizing on players not knowing their openings?

I am a 1400-rated player currently working on my theory and understanding of openings. I am good at learning lines, much more so than others at my rating. But I'm less sure on where/how to learn the ...
1
vote
5answers
229 views

Why aren't 1.e4 g6 2.d4 Bh6, and 1.e4 b6 2.d4 Ba6 considered by theory?

As the title above, why aren't 1.e4 g6 2.d4 Bh6, and 1.e4 b6 2.d4 Ba6 (or eventually beginning with 1.d4) for Black not even considered by theory? Isn't the eventual early trade-off of White's strong ...
3
votes
3answers
530 views

Of all the possible legal chess games, how many end in white win, draw and black win (assuming 50 move rule)?

If both sides make moves completely randomly but legally, how many different games are there? Since the 50 move rule applies, this number should be finite (but HUGE). For example, there are 20 ...
-1
votes
1answer
154 views

Is this the longest possible series of consecutive captures?

Quite simply, is this the longest possible series of consecutive captures in a legally reachable, legal game? I composed this particular party myself. [FEN "q1kr2q1/1qnqnb2/2prp3/q2pK3/2P1P3/1QNQNB2/...
4
votes
5answers
262 views

Is learning the English Opening helpful for learning the Sicilian Defence? How about vice versa?

Is learning the opening 1. c4 e5 as white helpful in learning the opening 1. e4 c5? How about vice versa? Are the ideas behind the Sicilian Defence as black very similar to the ideas behind the ...
2
votes
2answers
294 views

Longest series of mutual “!” moves

Normally I'd pester the/a computer chess forum, but I couldn't register yet... On the Matplus chess forum, the following construction task came up. Both White and Black are on the brink of ...
6
votes
1answer
425 views

What is the longest possible sequence of double checks?

It is a known record for most number of mutual checks in a row. This made me wonder what the most number of possible double checks in a row is. Only one side can deliver a double check of course. I ...
4
votes
1answer
430 views

What are the shortest possible games with a) 20 Bishops, b) 20 Knights, and c) 20 Rooks?

The 18 queeens chess problem has already been brought up one CSE: Shortest possible game with 18 queens? That is a game where all 16 pawns are promoted to queens. But nobody has asked this yet: What ...
6
votes
1answer
134 views

Comparing 9…a6 to 9…b6 in the Panov-Botvinnik Attack

This question is motivated by a recent LiChess game where I was black where I played the Caro-Kann and white played the Panov-Botvinnik Attack: [fen ""] [Site "https://lichess.org/J9cdDkL5"] [Date "...
0
votes
4answers
222 views

Can someone make a puzzle in which a KNN vs. K checkmate is forced in the end?

No, I am not asking if a KNN vs. K can be forced if those are all that's on the board. It is well known that this is impossible. (I wasn't quite sure om if I should have put this in here or in the ...
3
votes
2answers
303 views

Piece And Pawn Only Massacre Games

Just another theory thought of mine. I believe I have found the fastest way for each variation. Am I right or am I wrong? EDIT: Now a sub-category of Piece Massacre is open in which pawn captures are ...
2
votes
3answers
279 views

Is this the quickest way to clearing the board to two kings? [duplicate]

Is 21 moves the least needed to get board down to 2 kings? [FEN ""] 1. e4 d5 exd5 Qxd5 Qh5 Qxa2 Qxh7 Qxa1 Qxh8 Qxb1 Qxg8 Qxb2 Qxg7 Qxc2 Qxf8 Kd7 Qxf7 Qxc1 Ke2 Qxd2 Kf3 Qxf2 Ke4 Qxf1 Qxe7 Kc6 Qxc7 ...
1
vote
1answer
189 views

What are the fastest horizontal checkmate for both castlings?

Horizontal: wherein the rook attacks down a rank. I wish to know the fastest possible castling checkmates, for both queenside and kingside, that are a horizontal one See my question about vertical ...
2
votes
3answers
221 views

What are the fastest vertical checkmates for both castlings?

Vertical: wherein the rook attacks down a file. I wish to know the fastest possible castling checkmates, for both queenside and kingside, that are a vertical one. See my question about horizontal ...
4
votes
2answers
218 views

What should be defined as an en passant checkmate?

Is there a general consensus amongst top chess players, composers, analyzists, and organizations, such as FIDE, for what exactly defines an en passant checkmate? Is there any history for it? As far ...
-6
votes
2answers
251 views

Is 6 the limit for the most pawns possible on a single file?

As far as I can calculate, 6 is the limit for the most number of pawns on a single file possible. Is 7 possible at all, ignoring promotion? I only took into account using the edge of the board, not ...
4
votes
3answers
342 views

On the board: K vs. KRN. Could an Arabian mate be done without king’s help?

Can an Arabian mate be enforced without the king’s help in this position? [FEN "r6k/8/8/8/8/8/8/K6n w - - 0 1"]
1
vote
3answers
246 views

What are the quckest helpmates delivered by rook, knight, bishop, and pawn?

What are the quickest helpmates, which is where both sides help administer checkmate to one side, delivered by the rook, knight, bishop, and pawn? Said piece has to deliver the checkmate on the final ...
5
votes
2answers
350 views

Can anyone recommend a Chess platform that, well, you better read further

I thought I might take a minute to share a project I started about 20 years ago. Essentially, I used my ChessMaster program to make a "Chess Explorer". In 1998, I noticed I could add notes into ...

1
2 3 4 5 6