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  1. 14 Mar '07 20:32
    How do I go about this?

    Are there any resources that you guys can lend into helping me know what I'm looking for in past games? Naturally, I'm looking for better combinations and better positions... but there's such a ridiculously large amount of possible combinations -- any of which take the game in a completely different course than actually happened.

    I hear of people using chess engines to help analyze, and I've played around a bit with the Analysis tool on Chessmaster -- but all it seems to give are occassional missed combinations and notes like "moved to safety". Surely there's more to be learned -- as to which square is best to move to safety, or why moves that receive no comment are made.

    Any suggestions are appreciated.
  2. 14 Mar '07 21:02
    Originally posted by JimSardonic
    I hear of people using chess engines to help analyze, and I've played around a bit with the Analysis tool on Chessmaster -- but all it seems to give are occassional missed combinations and notes like "moved to safety". Surely there's more to be learned -- as to which square is best to move to safety, or why moves that receive no comment are made.
    I think what you're asking for is a chess program or engine that can point out positional mistakes. Engines are great at pointing out tactics, but afaik, they all suck at positional guidance. If any engine can do this, I'd like someone to tell me, because I'd buy it in a heartbeat. (Vasik Rajlich, are you listening?)

    I guess that's what chess books and instructors are for. (And post game analysis with higher rated opponents.)
  3. 14 Mar '07 21:12
    Probably best is to find someone higher rated than you by a good margin and go through the game with them.
  4. 14 Mar '07 21:12
    Not so much that...

    I want to be able to analyze my games, and understand where I went wrong. The problem in this, lies in the fact that if I knew of a better move -- I'd have made it in the game.

    I don't really even know anyone who plays chess that has the capability of going over games. I always thought it was something you could do yourself, perhaps with some help from a person/engine/other, to fully understand what was 'missed'... or what could be done better.
  5. 14 Mar '07 21:32 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by JimSardonic
    Not so much that...

    I want to be able to analyze my games, and understand where I went wrong. The problem in this, lies in the fact that if I knew of a better move -- I'd have made it in the game.

    I don't really even know anyone who plays chess that has the capability of going over games. I always thought it was something you could do yourself, pe ...[text shortened]... person/engine/other, to fully understand what was 'missed'... or what could be done better.
    If it's just tactical blunders that you want pointed out, yeah, using an engine is the quickest way. I use Fritz; I'm not familiar with Chessmaster, but I'd think the analysis function is similar. I don't get overly fancy. I just pull up an old game, set the engine for infinite analysis, and start stepping through the moves one-by-one. By watching the numerical evaluation for the principal variation (PV), it's easy to see when someone blunders - the eval will change dramatically. Then just look at the PV for the previous move to see the best move.

    My only problem with using an engine in this way is that, because I'm rated so low, the engine quickly reaches many more plies (half moves) than I'm able to comprehend. So to get around this problem, I typically manually stop the infinite analysis when it reaches a ply count that I can deal with (usually 4-8 plies). So I'm constantly starting and stopping the infinite analysis for each move to limit the ply count. You could probably also do a blunder check with a ply cutoff value, but I prefer the infinite analysis mode.
  6. 14 Mar '07 21:50 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by JimSardonic
    Not so much that...

    I want to be able to analyze my games, and understand where I went wrong. The problem in this, lies in the fact that if I knew of a better move -- I'd have made it in the game.

    I don't really even know anyone who plays chess that has the capability of going over games. I always thought it was something you could do yourself, pe ...[text shortened]... person/engine/other, to fully understand what was 'missed'... or what could be done better.
    For me, I think one of the main benefits of reviewing past games has been retaining and regurgitating the lessons learned. The ol' "don't make the same mistake twice" is often lost in the moment, and you can see it more clearly after the game.

    The obvious benefit of hindsight helps in locating where an opponent has taken advantage of a move to win a piece or gain a stronger position. In a game you lose, advance through the game until you see a point where your opponent has made a strong move (ie a revealed check or fork) and identify how this could have been prevented. During the game, you may not have seen the attack or understood where you were vulnerable, but seeing how you were taken advantage of might make the move easy to spot. Try flipping the board around, too!

    This has helped me a lot, although I'm very new to it as well. Good luck

    edit: if you're doing a google search, I think the more common synonym is "analysis" rather than "analyzation" but I think the latter sounds better too. Might make a great porn movie too
  7. Standard member Hindstein
    Finish Him!!!
    15 Mar '07 00:22
    Originally posted by JimSardonic
    How do I go about this?

    Are there any resources that you guys can lend into helping me know what I'm looking for in past games? Naturally, I'm looking for better combinations and better positions... but there's such a ridiculously large amount of possible combinations -- any of which take the game in a completely different course than actually happen ...[text shortened]... fety, or why moves that receive no comment are made.

    Any suggestions are appreciated.
    if you were a subscriber, I would definitely recommend joining up with one of the many clans here in this fine site. There are many clans whose main aim if for improvement and advice. Here are a few that spring to mind:

    Clan 24509 (Analysis Clan)
    Clan 24529 (Kings Gambit Players)
    Clan 24492 (French Defence Lovers)
    Clan 24444 (Chess Club)

    ...I'm sure that there are more themed clans offering advice on specific openings, but I can't remember all of them - suffice to say that many of the clans offer a safe learning and improvement environment. Well worth the small site subscription, IMHO.
  8. 15 Mar '07 01:01
    Originally posted by Hindstein
    [b]if you were a subscriber, I would definitely recommend joining up with one of the many clans here in this fine site.
    I may just consider that, honestly.

    Thanks for the advice, everyone.
  9. 15 Mar '07 01:09
    Originally posted by JimSardonic
    I may just consider that, honestly.

    Thanks for the advice, everyone.
    Here's a game that I analyzed without the help of an engine:




    [Event "Challenge"]
    [Site "http://www.playtheimmortalgame.com"]
    [Date "2006.12.24"]
    [Round "?"]
    [White "cmsMaster"]
    [Black "whirlpool"]
    [WhiteRating "1689"]
    [BlackRating "1663"]
    [Result "1-0"]
    [GameId "2929024"]

    1. e4 e5 2. f4 exf4 3. Ng1f3 g5 - {Orthodox Defense, in my opinion blacks toughest
    response to the KNG, white's three main options here are 4.h4 4.d4 and 4.Bc4, but
    I chose 4.h4 aiming for the Kieseritzky Gambit}


    4. h4 g4 5. Nf3e5 {Kieseritzky Gambit}


    Ng8f6 {In my opinion 5...d6 seems to be the tougher move for white to deal with,
    although 5...Nf6 is still strong and offers black chances for equality if white
    doesn't play very accurately}


    6. Bf1c4 d5!
    7. exd5 Bf8d6 8. d4 O-O 9. Bc1xf4 Nf6h5 10. g3!


    f6 11. Ne5xg4 Qd8e8
    12. Ke1d2 Nh5xf4 13. gxf4 Qe8e4 {This was the last book move for me, but this move
    seems strong, I can't give a fair objective opinion until I've looked further into this
    line}


    14. Kd2c3 Qe4xf4 15. Rh1f1?? {Terrible, an obvious blunder, a situation where I made the
    move quickly without checking for threats - the number one cause for lost games, as this one
    should be for white at this point. I prefer the move 15.Rg1 when white should have winning chances}



    Qf4xg4??{Bxg4-+}


    16. Rf1g1 Bd6g3 17. Qd1xg4 Bc8xg4 18. Rg1xg3 h5 19. d6+! {Discovered check to win a pawn and
    create a dangerous passed pawn}


    Kg8h7 20. dxc7 Nb8c6? +-{I don't get the idea, clearly white will play d5 here forcing black
    to waste another tempo and allowing white to connect his passed pawns on thh c and d files}


    21. d5 Nc6e7 22. d6 Ne7f5 23. Bc4d3 Kh7h6 24. Bd3xf5 Bg4xf5 25. Rg3f3 Bf5g4 26. Rf3d3 Ra8c8 27. Nb1d2 {Looking at either Nc4 or Ne4,
    planning to double the rooks, and developing the knight}


    Bg4f5 28. Rd3d4 Rf8f7 29. Nd2c4 b5 30. Nc4e3 Bf5e6 31. Ra1d1 Rf7d7 32. b3 {For two reasons, first,
    to block the bishop, and the other purpose is clear with my next move}


    a5 33. Kc3b2!{Protecting the king from potential checks after Rxb7 and making the connected
    passed pawns even more dangerous}


    Be6g4? 34. Ne3xg4 hxg4 35. Rd4xg4 Kh6h5


    36. Rg4e4 Kh5g6!{Because now if 37.Re7?? Rxe7 38.dxe7 Kf7!}


    37. h5!{Black can't take or he loses,
    if he chooses not to take it adds another passed pawn for him to defend against and is more than likely too
    difficult for black to handle}


    Kg6xh5?? {Losing immediately} 38. Re4e7 1-0


    Most of my games I just run through Fritz to see where I missed tactical blunders, but doing this doesn't teach nearly as much as going through the game yourself and analyzing it. The best way to do it is to look through the game and look for tactics. Mark those tactics down, then go through again looking for more tactics and adding comments, finally running the game through Fritz to find anything you missed.
  10. 15 Mar '07 01:10
    Originally posted by Hindstein
    if you were a subscriber, I would definitely recommend joining up with one of the many clans here in this fine site. There are many clans whose main aim if for improvement and advice. Here are a few that spring to mind:

    Clan 24509 (Analysis Clan)
    Clan 24529 (Kings Gambit Players)
    Clan 24492 (French Defence Lovers)
    Clan 24444 ...[text shortened]... fer a safe learning and improvement environment. Well worth the small site subscription, IMHO.
    Thanks for the plug.