chess strategy

Chess Strategy

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spurtus 117 ( +1 | -1 )
Bad Moves In The Opening When researching openings all is fine until somebody plays something out of book.

When this occurs you often need to know why this move is a bad one to capatalise on it. Often I do realise why a move is bad, but a few moves down the line the position gets complicated and unusual I can easily falter and overlook aspects.

I also often find that when an opponent plays a sub-optimal move that is out of book they too realise it when I show it to be slightly bad in my responses to it. Often a player will lock up the position and recover somewhat.

I'm looking for the 'can-opener' plans.... the plans that turn a simple slightly off move into doom. This is what happens to me fairly much when I play a computer, I end up retracing my steps to when I pretty much went out of book.

Are there any works on openings that actually research the bad lines properly?

I ask this since I find so much material that assumes the best moves but nothing much on taking the advantage of common mistakes in some openings. For my level of chess I think such works would be quite interesting to me.

apastpawn 34 ( +1 | -1 )
Try Victory in the Opening by Gary Lane. The book covers exactly that, second best or mistakes in the opening and how to spot and take advantage of them.

I like his style of writing in other books and on Have not read this book yet but its now high on my list after researching your question.

Good Luck
drtimer 24 ( +1 | -1 )
Excellent question Spurtus, I've been having similiar problems, though I usually find the old advise of "just continue normal development" usually does me OK and the weakness in my opponents move will reveal itself eventually
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wschmidt 163 ( +1 | -1 )
spurtus, I think there are really two "out-of-book" moves that need to be addressed. The first is the out-right blunder that allows for a killer tactical shot. Two types of books deal with that - general tactical books and collections of "miniature games", the latter because in them the winner is always punishing the loser for those early bad moves.

The second type is what I think you're referring to though, and that's the out-of-book move which, while not a blunder, allows the other side better development or the initiative, or somehow creates a long-term weakness. It doesn't make the assessment +-, but maybe +=. AS you say, sub-optimal. In those cases, unfortunately, there isn't always a clear plan that leads to victory. Sometimes, if you're familiar enough with your opening you have a sense of why that move was sub-optimal, and you can form a plan around that understanding. Othertimes, it just doesn't show up in "the book" but it isn't really clear why it's not so good. (Unfortunately, that happens to me often enough).

One thing I have done in an attempt to create my own "book" in such cases is to have a chess engine analyze my games after the fact and I pay particular attention to that "last book move" of my opponent. I look at the sequence of moves that the computer sees as optimal for both sides from that point. Sometimes I get a sense of why the computer sees the first nonstandard move as a weakness. And I keep a database of those analyzed games for later reference.

Good luck. Let us know if you find the solution. There are plenty of us who would like to know! ws
tyekanyk 65 ( +1 | -1 )
Just an example For instance in the Grunfeld after 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.c5?! is a move you're most likely to find nowhere you search. So Your opponent has taken you out of the book on move four(!) and you have to think on your own. Wilst admiting that 4.c5 is not such a good move that really doesn't help you if you don't take appropriate measures. That's the main problem with off-beat moves.If you're not familliar enough with the opening or have a good deal of experience it will be very hard to capitalise on them. My personal recomandation is to study Morphy and Capablanca games for their crystal-clear style of play against opening mistakes might rub-of on you.
peppe_l 33 ( +1 | -1 )
Maybe You cannot find the answer from opening books? There is no way anyone can memorize all the bad lines or find specific strategic plans against them. But if we assume those sub-optimal moves are for example strategically weak, surely better understanding of middlegame strategy must help (not to forget tactics, of course)?
jstack 20 ( +1 | -1 )
Game collections My personal feeling is studying game collections of fameous grandmasters is the best way to go. This is because ussually there are examples of the grandmaster playing a much weaker opponent in the early chapters.
loreta 71 ( +1 | -1 )
Weak moves When yoy oponent went 'out of book' you have to understand:
1) principles of position;
2) why 'book moves' are good;
3) what makes 'unknown' move weak.
If you fail in any of these, opponent's move is GOOD! Or even perfect (as you don't understant it and you'd think how to resign - just know, chess is game against opponnent at other side of board and not against theory)...
As I made long break in chess playing, my understanging of chess 'theory' is as many years ago... And I'd say, in these years in fashion went moves marked previously as bad...
So 'weak' move could be a swallow of new coil in chess fashion...
As you remember last Leko-Kramnik, when Kramnik introduced a novelty just in ... 6th move.
ccmcacollister 220 ( +1 | -1 )
I view it like loreta it appears, regarding what makes the book move good, and the other choice weak. That is why my first question after such a move would tend to be, "what does the BOOK move DO, that the other Fails to Do?!". That would be my starting place in that situation, assuming there is not outright tactical refutation available. I recall having read several books that say to spend extra time upon your followup to the first out-of-book move as it may be the turningpoint of the game. I believe Alex Dunne is one who has said this. And I feel that it is Very true. (Incidentally, other moves that I would spend more time upon are all King, Queen or centerpawn moves, as well as any to force line opening, or that relieve the tension.)
As for opening of lines, it would pay you to study the games of Mikhail Tal, who played his pawns such that it was nearly impossible to deny him line opening moves. For instance, suppose white has pawns on b2,c3,d4 & e5 then a typical Nimzovichian approach might play BL pawns to e6,d5 and a lever-pawn at c5. But Tal would probably prefer his to be at d6,c5 and maybe even b4. See the difference in how much more line opening options occur from opposed rather than faced-off pawns.
Also general line opening technique is one of The most important things you can know, and all Master's will be able to. Basically, to guarantee a line opening (without a piece sac) you must be able to use one of your pawns to attack either
a)an immovable pawn or piece, or b)two men simultaneously
(Well okay, or one Man and a Queen simultaneously. :)
Doing this may involve sac'g one pawn at times to accomplish it however. Such as supposing BL has pawns on f7,g7,h7 and white has them on g5 & h5. Then he can open by pushing g6. Now if BL captures , WT can capture back to open a line. OR he could sac by pushing past: EG 1.g6 fxg6 2.h7 and thus open TWO lines if this is more favorable to his attack. Of course if BL didnt capture then gxh7 or gxf7 open. And the move h7 can also be looked at there instead. But somehow a line SHALL OPEN !
And 1.h6? fails to simply 1...g6.