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

Only Chess Forum

  1. 16 Nov '10 23:22
    Hi, I'm wondering if anyone has advice on how to learn openings besides simply buying opening books.

    Most of my chess is done online, but when I've tried to research openings online the best I can usually find is a few websites telling the very, very basics of the opening.

    Either that or, in CC, I sometimes just follow master games until my opponent diverges - but this obviously isn't ideal. I can learn the moves of the opening this way, but learning the actual ideas and principles this way is very difficult.

    So, how do other people learn openings? What do you find works best?
  2. 16 Nov '10 23:37
    "What do you find works best?"

    Get the boys off the back rank, castle and attack. Never fails.

    In the 10 seconds it took you to read that, you have just learned
    every opening online.

    Next question?
  3. 17 Nov '10 01:35
    Originally posted by greenpawn34
    "What do you find works best?"

    Get the boys off the back rank, castle and attack. Never fails.

    In the 10 seconds it took you to read that, you have just learned
    every opening online.

    Next question?
    except of course the french..


    Go to chessgames.com and they have a HUGE FREE database
  4. 17 Nov '10 02:42
    "except of course the french..."

    Any opening. The French included.

    Don't send people to these mind stiffling web sites they clog up
    the imagination. Most are just copied and pasted from MCO and
    we all know how naff that is.

    Pieces out, castle and attack.
    If that means giving up the Queen, then so be it.

    Here is me OTB playing the French and playing against the French.
    Two Queen sacs.

    D. Jekins - G. Chandler, Edinburgh League, 1988


    G. Chandler - S. Kellet Edinburgh League 2005

  5. 17 Nov '10 03:34
    Originally posted by greenpawn34
    "except of course the french..."

    Any opening. The French included.

    Don't send people to these mind stiffling web sites they clog up
    the imagination. Most are just copied and pasted from MCO and
    we all know how naff that is.

    Pieces out, castle and attack.
    If that means giving up the Queen, then so be it.

    Here is me OTB playing the French an ...[text shortened]... Qxe7+ {and why not?} 22...Nxe7 23.Bb5+ Nc6 24.Bxc6+ Kc8 25.Bxd5+ Kd7 26.Rc7+ Ke8 27.Bc6[/pgn]
    Hi GP,
    In regards to the first game, what was it that you saw that made you decide to sac your queen?
  6. 17 Nov '10 05:21
    Originally posted by KneeCaps
    Hi GP,
    In regards to the first game, what was it that you saw that made you decide to sac your queen?
    Boredom?
  7. 17 Nov '10 11:22
    Boredom is right.

    I get fed up carrying the Queen. She is a dead weight liability.
    Lose the Queen and you lose the game.

    So I swapped her for a Bishop and Rook. Seems a fair trade, after all
    a Queen is nothing but a Rook and Bishop combined.

    It all depends on your outlook.
    You should not play for grading points, you should play so one day
    someone might enjoy playing over your game.

    Treat every game as a blank canvas for you to leave your creative footprint
    on the board. You play to create not just to go through the motions.

    So stay away from these murky stagnent sites that feed you openings.

    You should never 'learn' an opening. You should understand it.
    And as every opening comes from the same game all openings are
    basically the same. Pieces Out, Castle and Attack.

    In Da Vinci's attic you will find thousands of 'good' drawings but only
    one Mona Lisa.

    Buy Gufeld's 'THE SEARCH FOR THE MONA LISA'

    (see review here by John Watson)

    http://www.jeremysilman.com/book_reviews_jw/jw_chess_search_mona_lisa.html

    READ THE BLOODY THING

    Then you the new you can start to create masterpieces.

    OK you may lose 100 games but that 101st one may just be the one.

    And when you are grey and old and dying in some nursing home and your
    grandchildren who have been forced to visit look at you with uncomfortable disdain.

    You can show them this game and say "I did that."
  8. 17 Nov '10 15:41
    Greenpawn, I love your posts as much as everyone else, but that really doesn't help at all! I know the basic opening principles already.

    I was wondering how other people learned their openings, because it feels like the way I do it isn't very good. I end up not knowing a lot of the ideas behind the opening, and in blitz and OTB I'm not well prepared for surprises.

    @Erikido, thanks, that's the kind of response I was hoping for 🙂 I use the chessgames database already though.
  9. 17 Nov '10 16:00
    Originally posted by SheepChess
    Greenpawn, I love your posts as much as everyone else, but that really doesn't help at all! I know the basic opening principles already.

    I was wondering how other people learned their openings, because it feels like the way I do it isn't very good. I end up not knowing a lot of the ideas behind the opening, and in blitz and OTB I'm not well prepared fo ...[text shortened]... hat's the kind of response I was hoping for 🙂 I use the chessgames database already though.
    1. Pick your opening.

    2. Find a player who plays that opening.

    3. Play through their games. Not just the opening, the whole game.

    You will learn much more than just openings with that system. You learn where the bits go at each stage of the game. More important, you learn why they go to those places. Chess is like mathematics, you learn by doing so follow some worked examples (the games) then go do some yourself.
  10. 17 Nov '10 16:29
    you need a mixture of playing and studying.
    decide what opening you want to try and then play it for a season otb, or a year online.
    learn from each game.
    the study can be from a book or from what you find on-line or a database.
  11. Standard member Thabtos
    I am become Death
    17 Nov '10 19:53
    The second queen sac is nice.


    The first made me shudder.

    If white would have bothered to look two moves ahead, the results would have been quite different.
  12. Subscriber Paul Leggett
    Chess Librarian
    17 Nov '10 20:31
    Originally posted by Diophantus
    1. Pick your opening.

    2. Find a player who plays that opening.

    3. Play through their games. Not just the opening, the whole game.

    You will learn much more than just openings with that system. You learn where the bits go at each stage of the game. More important, you learn why they go to those places. Chess is like mathematics, you learn by doing so follow some worked examples (the games) then go do some yourself.
    This is exactly what I do, and I think it is very effective for your whole game, not just the opening moves. You learn the resulting middlegame positions, and also the typical endings that come from the opening.
  13. 18 Nov '10 07:03
    I think your chess worries are over if you follow the following 3 steps.

    This works for the entire game ..Opening middle game endgame its all chess.

    1. Use all of your pieces....in the opening this is called developing but all through the game use all of your pieces.

    2.Control the centre....every phase ..opening middlegame and endgame.

    3.Never make a useless move....try not to play h3 or h6 or a6 or a3. Instead allow your opponent to move away from the centre by moving his knight to b4 or g4 or b5 or g5.



    Thats it just do that every single move.
  14. 18 Nov '10 10:04
    You can try with some free chess masters advices. For example I use IM Kalin Karakehajov opening analysis, which you can find here - http://online-chess.eu
  15. 18 Nov '10 10:18 / 4 edits
    Originally posted by greenpawn34
    "except of course the french..."

    Any opening. The French included.

    Don't send people to these mind stiffling web sites they clog up
    the imagination. Most are just copied and pasted from MCO and
    we all know how naff that is.

    Pieces out, castle and attack.
    If that means giving up the Queen, then so be it.

    Here is me OTB playing the French an ...[text shortened]... Qxe7+ {and why not?} 22...Nxe7 23.Bb5+ Nc6 24.Bxc6+ Kc8 25.Bxd5+ Kd7 26.Rc7+ Ke8 27.Bc6[/pgn]
    Hmm, I figured you would have a better sarcasmdar. I was referring to the fact that both sides in the french many times don't castle....

    And after reading my post(i thought I already said this-but we can get in a rush at times) I want to add that chessgames.com has a great database with lots of games an opening explorer and kibitzing if you have questions. Find an opening you are interested in and play over the games which run most similarly to a game you played recently in the opening. When did you divert-why? look at when exchanges are being made and try and figure why. Are there "mysterious pawn moves"-figure out the reason why etc...etc...