Please turn on javascript in your browser to play chess.
Only Chess Forum

Only Chess Forum

  1. 17 Feb '10 02:37
    Hi this is my first post here. I was wondering if anyone could recommend me some resources such as books or sites. I am a new player and have only played enough games to know the basics, and a few openings. I have recently been playing about four games a day against either a human or a computer. For the most part I lose and am looking for ways to improve my game. Any suggestions?
  2. 17 Feb '10 03:00
    http://chess.emrald.net/index.php
    For training tactics problems.

    For books "Play Winning Chess" by Yasser Seirawein is very good for beginners.
  3. 17 Feb '10 03:45
    Another good introductory book is The Complete Idiot's Guide to Chess, by Patrick Wolff. (Ignore the stupid title, it's really good.)

    A good web site is Dan Heisman's site. Check out the Articles page and the Novice Nook page.

    http://home.comcast.net/~danheisman/Main_Chess/chess.htm
  4. Standard member Nowakowski
    10. O-O
    17 Feb '10 05:57
    Originally posted by KnowTheLedge
    Hi this is my first post here. I was wondering if anyone could recommend me some resources such as books or sites. I am a new player and have only played enough games to know the basics, and a few openings. I have recently been playing about four games a day against either a human or a computer. For the most part I lose and am looking for ways to improve my game. Any suggestions?
    These players...among many others... are some of my favorites to watch. Try it out,
    watch the best to ever grace the board; play some games. You'll see, it won't take
    to long before you start mimicking them. Sooner or later you'll pick up on things...
    small things, that make them better then everyone else... It'll make you better than
    everyone else too.

    Find a few players that you like - and don't look back. Don't worry about anything
    else, once you start to watch, and see them be great, it won't be long before you
    know just what to do with your chess study.

    Akiba Rubenstein and games
    http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessplayer?pid=10841

    Anatoli Karpovp and games
    http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessplayer?pid=20719

    Paul Morphy and games
    http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessplayer?pid=16002

    Robert (bobby) James Fischer and games
    http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessplayer?pid=19233

    Savielly Tartakower and games
    http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessplayer?pid=10247

    Aaron Nimzowitsch and games
    http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessplayer?pid=10249

    Richard Reti and games
    http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessplayer?pid=10626

    Emanuel Lasker and games
    http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessplayer?pid=19149

    Alexander Alekhine and games
    http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessplayer?pid=10240

    Paul Keres and games
    http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessplayer?pid=21922

    Mikhail Botvinnik and games
    http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessplayer?pid=11207

    and another...but modern... fun to watch:

    Joshua Waitzkin and games
    http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessplayer?pid=17030
  5. 17 Feb '10 13:37
    Playing through unannotated master games as a beginner is definitely not the most efficient way to learn.
  6. 17 Feb '10 14:43
    Originally posted by mcreynolds
    Playing through unannotated master games as a beginner is definitely not the most efficient way to learn.
    No, of course it isn't. Anyone new to chess should study the Planes of Opposition theorem before they do anything else. They shouldn't even look at a chess board until this basic technique has been thoroughly mastered.
  7. Standard member wormwood
    If Theres Hell Below
    17 Feb '10 15:09 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by Fat Lady
    No, of course it isn't. Anyone new to chess should study the Planes of Opposition theorem before they do anything else. They shouldn't even look at a chess board until this basic technique has been thoroughly mastered.
    😵

    well, anyway, tactics is a great place to start (the chess.emrald link). also a beginner needs to realize it takes years and persistence to get better at chess. there are no shortcuts, no miracle cures, and anybody that's any good has paid his dues. the more you immerse yourself in chess, the quicker you begin to get the hang of it.
  8. 17 Feb '10 15:27
    Originally posted by KnowTheLedge
    Hi this is my first post here. I was wondering if anyone could recommend me some resources such as books or sites. I am a new player and have only played enough games to know the basics, and a few openings. I have recently been playing about four games a day against either a human or a computer. For the most part I lose and am looking for ways to improve my game. Any suggestions?
    Get a tactics book.
    Play a lot against stronger opponents.
    Don't bother too much with the opening.
    Get a few gamescollections.I always advise to start with the old masters and work your way up to modern times.However,some people oppose this and claim those games are too old to have much value.I don't know,I still think it's best to look at the old guys first but you must make up your own mind.

    What on earth is the 'planes of opposition theorem'?? 😕
  9. 17 Feb '10 20:05
    Hello. Thanks a lot for all your input I will definitely look into all of these suggestions. I have always enjoyed the game and am now just getting serious on improving. Thanks.
  10. 17 Feb '10 20:32
    Originally posted by KnowTheLedge
    Hello. Thanks a lot for all your input I will definitely look into all of these suggestions. I have always enjoyed the game and am now just getting serious on improving. Thanks.
    Well hopefully not all the suggestions. The stuff about Planes of Opposition was just a little dig at my good friend Adoreaowski.

    To be honest, you could do a lot worse than spending a few days on the chesskids site - www.chesskids.com

    I've been playing chess for almost thirty years, but even I learnt a few neat tricks there. This is a good place to start: http://www.chesskids.com/lessons04.shtml
  11. Subscriber Paul Leggett
    Chess Librarian
    18 Feb '10 01:49
    Originally posted by Fat Lady
    No, of course it isn't. Anyone new to chess should study the Planes of Opposition theorem before they do anything else. They shouldn't even look at a chess board until this basic technique has been thoroughly mastered.
    I started studying the Planes of Opposition, and now chess has a mortgage on my body and a lien on my soul. And as I get older, I find that the mortgage is one of those adjustable-rate jobs with a balloon payment I'll never make.

    That voodoo chess stuff is some bad mojo. Run while you still can.
  12. 18 Feb '10 09:43
    "Looking for Trouble" by Dan Heisman will help lessen your own tactical errors as well as suggesting a simple and effective thought process for every chess move you'll ever make (unless in time trouble when you have to rely on instinct and intuition).

    Most other stuff by Dan Heisman is aimed at beginners also.

    Best Wishes
    Latent Potential
  13. Standard member Talisman
    Time traveller.
    18 Feb '10 11:52
    Originally posted by Nowakowski
    These players...among many others... are some of my favorites to watch. Try it out,
    watch the best to ever grace the board; play some games. You'll see, it won't take
    to long before you start mimicking them. Sooner or later you'll pick up on things...
    small things, that make them better then everyone else... It'll make you better than
    everyone else ...[text shortened]...

    [b]Joshua Waitzkin
    and games
    http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessplayer?pid=17030[/b]
    I personally have serious doubts as to whether studying other peoples games is of any benefit for improvement! It's an enjoyable way to spend a spare hour or two and i still indulge at times for the sheer pleasure of it. Rather like listening to music or watching a good film. However master games or otherwise, i think studying them for the sake of improvement is likely to be a fruitless pursuit.
    It's only my opinion and i speak form much experience. The countless hours i've spent swallowing master game collections is beyond belief and i still find myself at the lower end of the chess spectrum. It's generally accepted that there are two ways to coduct the master game study exercise.
    1. Cover the moves of a player you want to follow and try and guess the next move. When you find you choose the wrong move you have to hope there is a comment or annotation explaining why your move wasn't up to it.There very often isn't so you end up running the game through Fritz or similar to get an answer.At least i do.

    Why not just train against a programme! You get to play your move and if it's that bad you will soon find out why. Also when the game is over you can play through the game taking the side of the Artificial Intelligence and you really get a feel for how it used a particular tactic or positional theme to bust you. You learn from it! Having to keep taking your move back and playing the masters move always made the whole process seem a little disjointed to me. Obviously some would disagree.
    The technique for playing over games i've used lately was recommended by David Bronstein in is book The Sorcerers apprentice. he says you should play over every move of the game in quick time, only pausing very briefly between moves, even if you feel you want to pause longer, DON'T. Take notes if you wish.
    Second try and play through the game form memory trying to work out why each move was played. Then: Go through the game again making notes of anything you didn't see the first time. Finally, head straight for those pencil marks. Try and play better than the masters!! Look for missed lines, tactics, positional ideas, anything you want. Basically let your imagination run free. make your notes in a notepad and keep coming back to them, especially if it's a game you like. Bronstein states he studied thousands of games in this way.

    Now this all seemed a bit long winded to me but i've tried it none the less and i find it more beneficial than the first approach which was recommended by CJS Purdy.
    However, it can be a little laborious and i still feel the effect of devouring games in this way to be minimal. Stiil it's only my opinion.

    Right now i'm trying to aquire more tactical awareness and i'm finding that studying chess problems and training against computer programmes is engaging my brain more than anything i've tried before. As long as you're not playing against one of those super programmes, you know you have at least some chance and the game can be analysed afterwards with the big boys, Fritz, Rybka or whatever you want. I'm currently playing agansit Fritz 1800 level for training purposes. At least i am when it works!
  14. Donation ketchuplover
    G.O.A.T.
    18 Feb '10 14:59
    IMO the most important thing to learn in chess is how to mate.
  15. 18 Feb '10 15:57 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by Talisman
    I personally have serious doubts as to whether studying other peoples games is of any benefit for improvement! It's an enjoyable way to spend a spare hour or two and i still indulge at times for the sheer pleasure of it. Rather like listening to music or watching a good film. However master games or otherwise, i think studying them for the sake of improveme g agansit Fritz 1800 level for training purposes. At least i am when it works!
    i dunno, i am studying master games which highlight some aspect of middle game strategy. i think it is good for one can recognise the basic conditions and plan accordingly. for example at the moment i am looking at direct attacks on the king and the different types of positions which may arise and the dynamics which made those attacks successful. In the last weeks i have covered isolated queens pawn and how one plays with them or against them, hanging pawns and the different techniques for playing with them or against them, now i am studying attacks of the king,

    1. Weaknesses in the opponent's castling position

    2. Lack of piece protection of the opponent's king or opportunity to push the defenders away

    3. Opportunity to include the heavy pieces in the attack

    4. Opportunity to launch a pawn offensive

    all of which are studied through annotated master games. its really awesome to see the masters apply these strategic principles in their games. The hope is that i too shall one day come to appreciate and recognise these dynamic elements and use them in a constructive and concerted way. I have supplemented this with tactics also and have probably completed over the last two or three weeks, bordering on 600 mate problems, but its the outworking of strategy which brings the greatest joy, in fact i dont really like it when the game is decided by a tactical combination to be honest 🙂