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  1. 04 Jul '07 00:53
    While I know of many training problem books for tactics, are there any good problem books for middlegame strategy and the endgame?

    Specifically, all I can find for strategy are books like "It's your move" by ward, which give only 50 problems, and they are tainted by hints and other things. I need something like Reinfeld's 1001 problems, but for middlegame strategy.

    Suggestions?
  2. 04 Jul '07 04:36
    How To Re-Asses Your Chess by Jeremy Silman
  3. 04 Jul '07 12:18
    Originally posted by Golub
    How To Re-Asses Your Chess by Jeremy Silman
    Or modern chess strategy by Pachman if you're rating is less than around 1500 at the moment.
    It's a classic & is a bit more simplistic than HTRYC.
  4. Standard member Dragon Fire
    Lord of all beasts
    04 Jul '07 12:46 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by pwnguin
    While I know of many training problem books for tactics, are there any good problem books for middlegame strategy and the endgame?

    Specifically, all I can find for strategy are books like "It's your move" by ward, which give only 50 problems, and they are tainted by hints and other things. I need something like Reinfeld's 1001 problems, but for middlegame strategy.

    Suggestions?
    Strategy is a long term thing unlike tactics so there is no immediate and obvious best response.

    In any given position there may be a number of strategic ideas that come into play such as doubled or isolated pawns, open files (for Rooks), exchanges of N for Bs because the pawn structure prefers the one or the other. Depending on the dynamics of the position there may be an obvious best play but very often these change move by move.

    Strategy is harder to get right than tactics. Tactics is immediate and tactical plays can win or lose quickly. Tactical plays tend to arise as a result of adopting correct strategic principles earlier. tactics being short term lends itself to puzzles in a way strategy does not.

    With strategy you need to study a position and see how a subtle play now has a dramatic effect later in the game. Some openings particularly aim for this, for example the Ruy Lopez Exchange in which black hopes to benefit from the B pair and will seek to open lines for them whereas white hopes to capitalise long term on blacks ruined pawn structure - the benefits of this stategic play may only become apparent 30 moves later when the pawns are weak and fall or the strong B pair creates tactical opportunities that wins material.

    So books on strategic puzzles probably do not exist other in the most general of ways.
  5. 04 Jul '07 13:28
    You encouraged me to get "Chess Strategy In Action" by John Watson down from the shelf, knock the dust of it and take a peek. A highly acclaimed book but incomprehensible last time I looked...here is sample:

    1. e4...c5
    2. Nf3...Nc6
    3. Bb5...g6
    4. 0-0...Bg7
    5. Re1...e5
    6. Bxc6...dxc6
    7. d3...Ne7

    In general Black has a solid position that is difficult to attack. If white tries to enforce d4, he will run into the ...c5+ ...e5 bind along with pressure down the d-file.

    8.a3

    This move intending b4 is the key idea we will investigate, one that white here initiates before developing any other pieces. It has been quite successful in practice, and I believe that it is superior to the other plans more frequently employed in these types of positions.

    .......................................................................................

    Anyway if you liked that you may well like the rest! I think it's aimed at higher rated players than myself.

    Yasser Seirawan has a book - "Winning Chess Strategies" which should be worth investigating as his other titles are excellent. You will get discussion about positions but I don't know of any strategy puzzles as such other than ones like you mentioned (Chris Wards book) where there is discussion about a position - unlike the exact win or lose nature of a tactic puzzle.
  6. 05 Jul '07 01:33
    Dvoretsky's "Strategic Play" is very good.
  7. 05 Jul '07 03:11
    the art of attack. was way too hard for me to read a long time ago. is it on how to attack? or how to sacrafice and get a positional advantage?
  8. 05 Jul '07 04:06
    Originally posted by Squelchbelch
    Or modern chess strategy by Pachman if you're rating is less than around 1500 at the moment.
    It's a classic & is a bit more simplistic than HTRYC.
    you can be under 1500 and benefit from Reassess (it's not a complicated read at all)
  9. 05 Jul '07 07:24
    I can't think of any books that lay out strategic problems in the manner that you ask. You could try Nimzowitsch's My System which breaks down the various strategic elements and discusses them at length. Another book I quite like is Nunn's Understanding Chess Move by Move. It isn't a strategy book but covers a lot of different aspects in an easy to understand manner. Each time you read it you'll pcik up new aspects that didn't sink in previously.

    The Art of the Middle Game by Kotov/Keres is a good little book. There's a chapter on pawn structures by Kotov in this book. (Pawn structure plays an important part in strategy and so a book such as Dynamic Pawn Play in Chess by Drazen Marovic would also be a good bet.)

    I am struggling a bit to improve my own strategic thinking. You need to take the whole position into account and I find it difficult to break down into bite sized chunks that you can with tactics.

    Like Dragon Fire says, the concepts are more subtle and can be very specific to a particular opening. Perhaps the ways forward would be to identify the openings you wish to play and then look at the pawn structures that they generate. By playing through such games annotated by grandmasters you should be able to gain a greater understanding of such positions and apply this to your own games.