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  1. 25 May '08 13:53
    Which do you prefer? and against which opponents (higher rated and lower rated.

    I generally like to keep the game open against "weaker" opponents and closed openings against higher rated. I strive to steer the game into high about amount of tactics against lower rated players and strive to use complex positions against higher rated - I find that a complex position twarts the higher rated that strive to break out and as they come in to try something "cute" I can use my defense to pick off - against a lower rated player I let them have all the "rope" they need.

    Thoughts?
  2. 25 May '08 13:58
    Originally posted by clivestraddle
    Which do you prefer? and against which opponents (higher rated and lower rated.

    I generally like to keep the game open against "weaker" opponents and closed openings against higher rated. I strive to steer the game into high about amount of tactics against lower rated players and strive to use complex positions against higher rated - I find that a ...[text shortened]... off - against a lower rated player I let them have all the "rope" they need.

    Thoughts?
    K.I.S.S against lower rated players and more complex against higher rated.
  3. 29 May '08 02:18 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by clivestraddle
    Which do you prefer? and against which opponents (higher rated and lower rated.

    I generally like to keep the game open against "weaker" opponents and closed openings against higher rated. I strive to steer the game into high about amount of tactics against lower rated players and strive to use complex positions against higher rated - I find that a off - against a lower rated player I let them have all the "rope" they need.

    Thoughts?
    It's not that simple. Paul Morphy was a genius at playing open positions, but played at a much lower level in closed positions. Of course, a lot has changed in theory since then, but my point is that it depends a lot on style of play, personality, and zeitgeist.

    In general I would say that lower rated players are not capable of playing closed positions.

    I've thought a lot about that lately ... has anyone ever thought about the parallels in chess theory in relation to the general theories of warfare?

    During the time of Philidor, pre-Nepoleonic era, military strategy was frontal assault in open positions. People challenged some to a duel and they accepted out of honor like a King's Gambit.

    During the time of Paul Morphy, pre-ware between the states, military strategy was becoming more developed; wing assaults were implemented. In chess, by the time of Steinitz pawn storms on a wing were common.

    By 1917 their was a zeitgeist of revolution. People didn't accept established ways and the beginning of the hyper-modern chess period started to evolve.

    There are many more parallels (War Between the States, Civil War in France, World War I, World War II, Korean War, Vietnam, Gernada,
    Gulf War, etc. -- think about how chess theory changed during these periods and how our cultures influenced this change) but you get the idea. Now, in our comptuer age we find drones gathering information on the battlefield and computers solving complex endgame problems that were not possible for humans to solve. KRRN v KRNN mate in 200+ moves.

    Chess and warfare evolve simultaneously in parallel as the ideas of politics, culture, and technology change. The development of chess ideas is all about zeitgeist.
  4. 29 May '08 02:38
    That kind of makes me wonder what the ancient Greeks and Romans would have found for chess strategies. They were geniuses in so many more ways than we can even imagine today.
  5. 30 May '08 05:25

    I generally like to keep the game open against "weaker" opponents and closed openings against higher rated. I strive to steer the game into high about amount of tactics against lower rated players and strive to use complex positions against higher rated - I find that a complex position twarts the higher rated that strive to break out and as they come in to try something "cute" I can use my d ...[text shortened]... off - against a lower rated player I let them have all the "rope" they need.

    Thoughts?
    This statement seems like it could be logical to me. Not so much for strategy, as far as the weaker player is concerned. The weaker player will likely be just as weak in a closed type game, I would think; however, an open game is a lot more fun to play, and you would likely win the game against the weaker player quicker. A King's Gambit might be a nice choice. And if the player you are playing is definitely a weaker player, aggressive offense might add some entertainment for you. Like if the weaker player semi-closes the game on you with say answering your open e4 with the Sicilian c5, after the opening lines of an open Sicilian, White's d4, attacking aggressively on the King side with your pawns would be a fun way of playing the game.

    I do see where a closed game makes sense against the stronger player makes sense and seems safer; however, another way to look at it, if you are the White pieces, getting a jump with the first move of an open game might also be considered good strategy against any opponent. I don't know. I definitely do see your point. Actually, now that I think about it, you are probably suggesting closing the game against the stronger opponent only if you are black eh? Unless you are thinking of a semi-closed type opening like the English. Sorry, I kind of just write as I think. If you were playing a stronger player as white, would you consider closing the game up tight with a 1.g3? I guess not likely eh.

    OK, sorry. You were obviously talking about a closed game against the stronger player only if you are the Black pieces, like the Pirc or King's Indian. Here's a question for you clivestraddle. If you are white, how do you prefer to open up against a stronger player? Open or a semi-closed c4 d4? Personally, though I've never given it any thought for strategy, I usually always open e4 without considering my opponent's strength. Do you think that say an English Opening might be a better choice? I know it can be tough playing against a strong player that uses a French Defense or Sicilian response to my e4. I wonder if I would score more wins or draws against tough players if I tried something different, rather than my predictable e4. What do you think Clivestraddle? (or anyone else who might have an opinion on this?)

    Sorry guys, this post is a bit long as I tend to ramble when I'm tired.
  6. Standard member wormwood
    If Theres Hell Below
    30 May '08 14:07 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by nator78
    That kind of makes me wonder what the ancient Greeks and Romans would have found for chess strategies. They were geniuses in so many more ways than we can even imagine today.
    well, if the arabs and/or indians had played chess, the greeks could've *found* quite a lot.



    I try to play exactly the same against all opponents. closed keeps the position nice, tense and filled with potential, and when I'm ready I'll blow it open.
  7. 30 May '08 23:35
    I'm at my best in closed position, where tactics tend to be more of a focus.
  8. 31 May '08 06:13
    Originally posted by wormwood
    well, if the arabs and/or indians had played chess, the greeks could've *found* quite a lot.



    I try to play exactly the same against all opponents. closed keeps the position nice, tense and filled with potential, and when I'm ready I'll blow it open.
    play the same against all opponents seems to be very solid.
    Stick to your strongest theory, and you'll be playing to your strengths. I think steering a game in any other direction is just dissolving your own talents.
  9. 31 May '08 06:21 / 1 edit
    Play to your strengths. It's probably not good to base your decision on how a player is rated compared to you. Playing a closed game against a stronger opponent may only give an illusion that you are doing well because closed games are naturally slower in pace. Playing more tactically/open against a lower rated player may be a mistake because you could be underestimated him/her and he/she could be on the rise and playing at a higher level than their rating.

    Play your game....if you are more comfortable in open positions, play openings that lead to open positions, even if they are rated much higher; if you like closed strategic games, play for those types, regardless of your opponents rating. If you change your style because of somebody's rating you are already losing the psychological battle.

    If you are playing somebody that you know and you know what their strengths and weaknesses are, then the situation may be a bit different, but I still wouldn't stray from what you know are your strengths.

    As to my preference...I'm trying to balance my style and learn both types of play. I do prefer open/semi open positions, but welcome closed positions if I feel the position dictates it. I normally play 1.e4, but am dabbling with 1.d4. As black I like the Caro-Kann against e4 and usually a QGD, tartakower against d4, though I am looking into the QGA and Benoni.
  10. 31 May '08 20:03 / 3 edits
    Originally posted by passedpawn22
    Play to your strengths. It's probably not good to base your decision on how a player is rated compared to you. Playing a closed game against a stronger opponent may only give an illusion that you are doing well because closed games are naturally slower in pace. Playing more tactically/open against a lower rated player may be a mistake because you cou t e4 and usually a QGD, tartakower against d4, though I am looking into the QGA and Benoni.
    I too always play the board and not the player. I'm not capable of doing that, but Morphy did! He played the player and not the board!

    Against weaker player he sac'ed pieces to open the position quickly for attack. He did this OTB, blindfolded, and even at odds. He never did and of this with stronger player.

    The only quirk he did was a single simultaneously exhibition against 5 strong players and he never repeated it again.

    Of course, styles change; fashions change.

    I don't think I've ever played an odds game.

    I have played up to 5 blindfold games simultaneously against weaker players. That was really great!! I won all 5 games. After the games I let them take off their blindfolds.
  11. Standard member wormwood
    If Theres Hell Below
    31 May '08 22:09
    Originally posted by petrovitch
    I too always play the board and not the player. I'm not capable of doing that, but Morphy did! He played the player and not the board!

    Against weaker player he sac'ed pieces to open the position quickly for attack. He did this OTB, blindfolded, and even at odds. He never did and of this with stronger player.

    The only quirk he did was a singl ...[text shortened]... eally great!! I won all 5 games. After the games I let them take off their blindfolds.
    next time: blindfolded chess boxing simultan!
  12. 03 Jun '08 15:14 / 1 edit
    It doesn't matter who you're playing against, just play in the whichever way(open or close) you feel comfortable and play best.

    FYI: Don't underestimate weaker players, they might surprise you, especially when they are against the wall
  13. 15 Jul '08 19:48
    Originally posted by clivestraddle
    Which do you prefer? and against which opponents (higher rated and lower rated.

    I generally like to keep the game open against "weaker" opponents and closed openings against higher rated. I strive to steer the game into high about amount of tactics against lower rated players and strive to use complex positions against higher rated - I find that a ...[text shortened]... off - against a lower rated player I let them have all the "rope" they need.

    Thoughts?
    In CC games I like very closed games, I don't mind "grinding it out" because I tend to look for very small advantages.
  14. 15 Jul '08 20:06
    I like closed positions if I have the spacial advantage but not so much if I am crammed in.

    Open are nice, and most fun to play in correspondence games as you can give them a full analysis to be sure the best sequence is found (or hope that is is found).
  15. 15 Jul '08 20:24 / 1 edit
    Definitely open. I recently played an OTB game against a player who was rated 100 points over me. The opening went as follows: 1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. d5!?. I thought I was going to puke...