Originally posted by lukemcmullan
I have heard that in developing your chess you should learn tactics , then endgames, then openings. So what's the wbest way to improve your endgame?
If you cannot quickly deliver checkmate with a queen and king against a lone king, and if you cannot with certainty convert the last pawn on the board into that queen (when theoretically possible--and you must know the difference), then tactics in the opening and middle game are the only chance you have.
I doubt there is a sequence of instruction handed down by Caissa, but you could do much worse than to begin with Pandolfini's Endgame Course
, followed by Renaud and Kahn's The Art of the Checkmate
, then a basic primer on tactics that covers pins, skewers, forks, decoys, etc. Then, after countless hours of study along these lines, you begin your study of the openings with the Spanish, French, Italian, and Russian openings for white, and the same plus the Slav and Semi-Slav for black.
I started with Irving Chernev's The 1000 Best Short Games of Chess
, and by learning to aggressively attack the king, quickly grew stronger than my school peers. However, the success I experienced with my recklessly aggressive play cultivated some bad habits that must be broken in order to move to the next level, and I've been an average player a terribly long time.