31 ( +1 | -1 ) Finding my own styleId like to ask if anyone knows any questions or ways I can find my own style of play... Is this acheive by playing in many games and finding out what is best?
How can i tell which style is best for me; between open and closed games which types of openings depending on the above
That's a question every chessplayer asks him(her)self at least once in his(her) life.
I recommend to you to study the games of the best players from the past to the present. Try to find a "hero", one player who's style you would like to imitate. Study and play the same opening repertoire.
If you follow my recomendation, you are not only begin to find your own style, you'll learn a lot of chess theory.
Be flexible, the chessplayer reaches the maturity when he or she can play every kind of position. If you have studied many different players you can "emulate" them in a given position, e.g. "...this is a very closed position, I remmember how the supreme masters of these sorts of positions (Steinitz, Nimzowitsch, Petrosian) used to play them..." , "...this one is an open or semiopen position (Capablanca, Alekhine, Fischer)".
Don't be rigid!, even if you like some kind of play, it's the position not your desires that rules. The very best players have a "Universal Style".
To finish this very personal recommendation, I would like to recommend you two magnificent books: "The Development of Chess Style" by Max Euwe, revised by Dr. John Nunn, and "The March of Chess Ideas" by Anthony Saidy.
Hopefuly my humble advices will be helpful to you.
17 ( +1 | -1 ) excellent recommendations,Macheide!And if I may add my own 2 cents,Youngglor,if there is one player whose style could truly be called "universal",then a study of Boris Spassky's games would be invaluable.
Your advice worths a lot more than that! Quoting a passage of Saidy's book, from his chapter dedicated to Boris Spassky:
"Spassky was soon taken to task by disappointed partisans of the Romantic school, who hinted at betrayal. What they failed to appreciate was the monumental ambition and psychological courage behind this strategy-he attempted to mount the world throne as master of all facets of chess-the universal player." ...
"Spassky's destiny was to reign supreme, a beacon to all those lovers of our game for whom chess remains a beautiful art".
111 ( +1 | -1 ) one thingto maybe add to the great suggestions made by macheide and myway316 : about open and closed positions. One can usually say that Knights have an advantage over Bishops in closed positions (because they can "hop" over closed pawn structures) while Bishops benefit from open positions where they are able to cover an entire diagonal (Rooks of course, like open positions as well). Maybe you prefer to play with either Bishops or Knights. (I, personally, prefer to play with Bishops these days.) If you do, you could choose the opening accordingly. It's in the openings where you can decide which position you want to have, once the position is there, you have to obey it, as macheide already said.
Some gambits, as Benko (as black) or Morra (as white) give you very strong Bishops or Rooks in exchange for material.
116 ( +1 | -1 ) Psychology of chessI've heard that the KGB used to have a person play chess in order to make a psychological evaluation of their personality.
Ask yourself these questions:
Are you someone who likes to take risks? ...likes things fast-paced? Which impresses you more? Well executed tactics or strategy?
The generic distinction between the open and closed game is actually a good one. The player who likes a closed game wins by restricting his opponent slowly, methodically, and by maintaing long-term strategic control of strong points while defending as best as possible his long-term weak points. The player who likes an open game wins with lightning fast development, continually creates new tactical threats, and doesn't mind some hanging pawns or pieces (sometimes) because he relies on the strength of his direct threats.
Well, that's a rough and semi-accurate description of two playing styles. No one will be completely on one side or the other (except Morphy, perhaps). I'm more of a closed game type, and have been one ever since playing through the breathtaking games of Steinitz.
73 ( +1 | -1 ) ThanksI think chess is something that we play, but we can not really ever find the true meaning of it... Ill try to play a bit like Bobby Fischer...I like his idea of sticking to a kind of opening and mastering its variations...But for now...ill just experient around to find my spot which the positions i feel more comportable around in which i can tell myself...that was a beatiful chess game...or even if i lose or win...ive played good chess...Thanks to all to help my in my quest...Im also looking forward to buying a few books such as
-winning chess tactics -amateurs mind -how to reassess your chess
Can anyone give my some insights from this book ( i already read the ones posted on gameknot)
61 ( +1 | -1 ) youngglorI have read "Amateur's Mind" and "How to Reassess your Chess", both by IM Jeremy Silman. There are simply excellent. Silman is one of the best chess teachers of the world (I'm not exagerating).
"How to Reassess you Chess" gives you a first class bibliography at the end of the book, in order that you can continue your studies.
One final point, I don't know if you have read "Logical Chess, Move by Move" by Irving Chernev. This book inspirated Silman in his youth and you can note the great influence even in his cristal-clear writing style. A must for every beginner.
18 ( +1 | -1 ) youngglorI almost forget it! If you buy "How to Reassess your Chess", 3th Edition send me a message. I found, when I read it, a very big mistake (maybe typoghraphical) in the analysis of one of the diagrams.
387 ( +1 | -1 ) YongglorMy two cents...just some thoughts and opinions...
I certainly qualify as a player who "found my own style" too soon! :-) For some reason I have liked positional play and simplified positions from early on, and as a result began to play openings that usually lead to semi-closed positions I like (I DID manage to avoid spending too much time for opening variations...but then again I never spent much time for studying chess anyway :-))) I value lasting advantages like pawn structure etc. As a result I play badly whenever it is ME who has initiative or attack as a compensating weak pawn structure etc. Even if my position is better I always manage to exchange pieces, saying goodbye to promising initiative that any dynamic player would have converted to a win. My attacking skills are poor and when position calls for concrete tactical threats I keep looking for positional moves. Give me an equal position where my opponent has isolated queen pawn and I have good chances to win (if my opponent is not stronger player than I am!). Reverse colours and I will surely lose...
I never tried to seek my own style, but nevertheless, a result of "finding my style" is lack of flexibility and poor playing skills in positions that are not to my taste. Plus countless lost games :-)
I know some players live in illusion of finding their style and spending endless hours with ECO series to guarantee whatever their opponents play, they can always find a variation that leads to the kind of position they like. Then they ask "I spent weeks studying all the variations of hyper-agressive X opening but some of my opponents found a forced line that leads to an endgame...I hate endgames, what do I do?" They keep seeking for a perfect opening repertoire until they throw ECO to the closet and read a good book on endgames :-) Otherwise they keep suffering every time the exchange of queens is the best way to go.
So, like preachers used to say - "do as I say, not as I do!" :-)
It may be too early to "seek your own style" - it is more important to learn how to play all types of positions, open...closed...semi-closed...eventually you will find your style but ideally it happens only after you master all styles :-)
"Ill try to play a bit like Bobby Fischer...I like his idea of sticking to a kind of opening and mastering its variations..."
Fischer, like Spassky, Karpov, Kasparov, Kramnik and other "modern" champions was all-around player, strong at all styles. They all "stick to their openings" because at the top level that is the only way to know them as well (or preferably better) then other 2700+ players. But before "sticking to a kind of opening" they tried everything and became more or less familiar with ALL openings, and of course before "mastering (detailed) variations" they became strong at more important things like tactics, strategy and endgames.
There is nothing wrong in using the same methods Fischer used - if you are 2700+ that is. Otherwise it makes more sense to ask what Fischer was studying when his playing strength was similar to yours? Yeah maybe Bobby was perfecting his "style" and studying the nuances of Sicilian Najdorf when he was 2700+ and already brilliant at tactics, strategy and endgames. But he certainly wasnt doing that when he was at our level (as a REALLY young boy!) and paradoxically that is why he became so strong. One cannot learn how to run before learning how to walk (I always knew this and simply learned how to walk...too bad I learned to walk only to one direction :-))) One cannot start from things Fischer studied when he was 2700+ and skip all the things (between 2700+ and your level) that MADE him 2700+
16 ( +1 | -1 ) "I think chess is something that we play, but we can not really ever find the true meaning of it..."
What would it be to know the "true meaning" of chess?
10 ( +1 | -1 ) RefuterI try to refute every attacking or defensive move my opponent makes... is this a style?... or lack of it?
Your approach resembles Tigran "Iron Tiger" Petrosian's: He killed his enemies attaking intentions many moves before they can even be awere of that. That was one of the characteristics of Petrosian's style. That was the reason he was not a very popular World Champion. But, let me quote these opinions:
"Whoever that thinks that Petrosian can not combinate is totaly wrong. He can see what one pretend to do 20 moves after and kill our intentions"
Mikhail "Misha" Tal
"I like Pestrosian style because he plays very well!, period"
Robert "Bobby" Fischer
"Yes, I can play more aggresively, but can lose, too"
To finish, don't stereothype Petrosian's Style, he dominated all facets of game, when he had the oportunity, he attacked like a daemon.
Maybe you want to read: "Petrosian's Legacy" by himself and If you like that kind of play: "How Karpov Wins" by Edmar Mednis. Spassky once said: "Karpov is an enhanced Petrosian". Paradoxicaly, once someone asked Karpov what was his style, Karpov answered: " Style? I have not style". :)
47 ( +1 | -1 ) karpov's answerI like karpov's answer the best. I'm rarely picking between attacking or defending or launching into a combination or subtlely developing my position. I try to stick with the best theory as long as I can then make what I think to be the objectively best move based on what I know about chess. The position always calls for something. That's what I will play. If it's an attack or a defense then that's what it is but that isn't why I play it.
23 ( +1 | -1 ) you could saythat someone with a specific playing style is someone channeling their mind through chess and for a lack of playing style it's the opposite. chess is channeling it's whims through someone who plays objectively.
52 ( +1 | -1 ) youngglorA player starts to develope a style when he starts analyzing his own games and starts drawing conclusions about his play. He discovers that he is more comfortable playing certain positions and then studies openings that will get him to similar positions. He studies the endgames resulting from his favorite positions putting it all together he finds that his pratical playing strength improves. From here he works to eliminate the weak points in his game and if he is sucessful he becomes a strong player.
120 ( +1 | -1 ) Thanks againThanks again for your helpful comments... I do understand that my rating is quite low. Therefore I have to agree with peppe_l with the fact that i should try to play around to round out my edges. I just started this post...really to find out a way to play effectively...Sometimes i find myself in a postion that i don't know what i should do...which weakneses to look for. I often look at the number of games I have to complete, and then feel bored. It's always this way when i don't know what quite to do.
One question...does anyone have any problems with resigning with rage such as I? Sometimes i lose material and get in such anger i resign...How should i control my anger?
Message to Macheide; Im planning to buy the books Reassesing your chess Ill notify you when i get it...it should be around the following week p.s. 3rd edition??? do i have to look for something specific or it's just the latest version
Thanks for everyone in these forums that help out newbies in chess like I and make it such a enriching experience. We don't mention it much but you guys are really awesome help... THANKS You guys all deserve a round of applause ;)
Don't be affraid to buy the 3rd Edition. It is wouth every cent you pay for it. I only found that mistake and was in the evaluation of only one diagram.
I'm at my bussiness at this time, but but tonight I'll will post my little correction here in order that you print it and put it in the book as a bookmark.
When I found that lonely mistake I sended an email to Mr. Silman in order that he can correct it for the 4th Edition but I never recived a reply. Maybe my email bounced.
66 ( +1 | -1 ) Anger Management"One question...does anyone have any problems with resigning with rage such as I? Sometimes i lose material and get in such anger i resign...How should i control my anger?"
I too have experienced this problem. After long and careful self-analysis and thousands of dollars in therapy, I am happy to report that help is closer than you think! The root of my problem, I realized, is that losing material and losing games is bad. Consequently, I found that avoiding those errors leaves me much happier and in much more cheerful spirits. Good luck to you in your pursuit of tranquility of mind in chess!
231 ( +1 | -1 ) YoungglorI am not a strong player so I can be wrong - please dont assume my "advices" (I consider them just opinions and thoughts...I am not good enough to tell others what to do) are good! Anyway, more opinions and thoughts...:-)
"Sometimes i find myself in a postion that i don't know what i should do...which weakneses to look for. I often look at the number of games I have to complete, and then feel bored. It's always this way when i don't know what quite to do."
Very good point...I commend you for being honest, very few chess players are willing to reveal why certain positions feel boring to them. If we exclude clear draws I claim a person who likes chess can find ANY position (excluding clear draws etc) interesting. Most cases where a chess player says endgames/queenless middlegames/closed positions are boring" simply does not know how to play such positions. We want to know what to do! We want to play our pet openings and KNOW the thematic plans we have in our disposal. We play "our" Sicilian Dragon, play by the book till move 15 and go for the king, trying to mimic GM John Smith who mated his opponent with spectacular queen sacrifice at the page 356 of "Crush Your Opponents With Sicilian Dragon" (By GM Smith, of course). But what if you get to a position where you dont know what to do? The only advice I can give is - take it as a challenge! How can it be boring? Isnt seeking a good plan in unfamiliar position more interesting than automatically going for the same mechanical kingside attack GM Smith taught you at the page 20 of his magnificent book? Perhaps you cant find a good plan and your opponent wins the game, but at least you had fun playing and learning. After the game you can study how to play that type of position and next time you WILL know what to do :-) One more thing - take your time! If you cant immediately see what to do, use few days for simply trying to assess the position...are there tactical possibilities, important weaknesses, advantages/disadvantages you can exploit...and so on. An opportunity to do that is one of the greatest virtues of correspondence chess, you dont have to "just move something" because of time pressure...
85 ( +1 | -1 ) GM John Smith and real chesspeppe_l I am deeply sympathetic to your remarks. I sometimes feel as though I would be at a disadvantage if I did not familarize myself with the current ideas about an opening or its transition into a middle game. Either the effort pays off, or it leaves me stranded and my opponent has a clear advantage in positional understanding of the game or opening at hand. Heck, that even happens when I don't look at the games of GM Smith. Which leads me to say that the result of my own hand and imagination can also leave me with *the feeling of being mystified.* The challenge is not only the courage to think independently about every position, but also to know exactly why you make each and every move--not to rely on same vague idea or half-evaluated plan. We mystify ourselves otb because of inferior analysis and (what should be) unconvincing explanation.
63 ( +1 | -1 ) youngglorThere is one aspect to chess style that I don't see touched on above. If this is already here, sorry.
I think chess style comes mostly from temperment. As others have stated you have to be able to play all types of positions as your opponent has some say in things. The big question is if you played a peer a 2 game match, someone that you would expect to split with, would you be happier with a score made up of a win and a loss or one made up of two draws. The two draw group tends to be made up of positional players while the win and loss group tends to be made up of the sharp tactical players.
30 ( +1 | -1 ) bogg, it's temperamentThe manner of thinking, behaving, or reacting characteristic of a specific person or excessive irritability or sensitiveness.
You are usually very thorough(painstakingly careful) but you left out the two loss group I usually fall into....Play on, Play well, Play hard..we will leave you bread crumbs....
7 ( +1 | -1 ) dervishthanks, in the past I have always pronounced it lacking the 'a' as well.
I don't not feel secure to give you this sort of "advices", but I promised, so: As I recommend you before, buy Silman's "How to Reassess your Chess", 3rd Expanded Edition, I have found only the following mistake:
In page 181, diagram (112) from Fischer-Spassky, Return Match 1992, Silman writes:
"...According to Seirawan, White's best move was 3.exd5 Qxd5, 4.Ne4 Ned7, 5.Nf6+ Nxf6, 6.Rxe8 Rxe8, 7.Nf3 with a likely draw."
But that's very wrong because after 6.Rxe8?? white losses to the obvious 6...Qxg2++
Except for this, the book is excellent. I hope that my almost 40 years of chess practice make me qualify to give you this kind of "advices"
Post scriptum: I hope this is the only mistake. Unfortunately I read the book once in two days without a board at hand. As I said you, I emailed Mr. Silman but I didn't recive a reply. Maybe you'll be luckier: firstname.lastname@example.org
145 ( +1 | -1 ) Macheide, thanks for your comments about the book... I doesn't really matter to me if there is an error or not... Im basically buying to book to improve my tactics, endgames and such...one error won't bother...unless if Silman has a serious spelling problem ;) Ill check in the book when ill get it.
About the temperment issue; I would too be much happier with a win and a loss...where i can study my well doings and also my wrongs... 2 draws seems like the games youve put your head to was worthless...
to peppe... I like to study openings and games by GMs but my memory isn't excactly powerful as Phildor's, but I do try to get creative. Some openings I just dont understand...for example I still don't understand the Ruy Lopez that much...i mean if your don't mean to eat the horse why go there in the first place to get pushed back...Im trying to stick with the openings that make my brain work...I feel a few good openings for this are the french...scots...Giuco King side attacks are awesome...if i just learned how to do it ;) Judit Polgar sure has it going !
I was reading a chess book the last few days and i passed the explanation for the ELO clasification... It seems it goes like this; Diff. ELO Probability 0-3 .50 .50 4-10 .51 .49 99-106 .64 .36 303-315 .86 .14 735 .100 .0
It seems every point ELO point counts greatly...Is this really accurate...i mean if they count in the people like my who resign after they have a disadvantage this could be totally wrong...