Originally posted by greenpawn34
Porky asked for and inspired the blog about Queen sacs.
Lo and behold. He sacs his Queen....and wins!
[White "Flying Dwarf"]
26. Rd3d8 Qc8xd8 27. Rd1xd8 Rb8xd8
I'm not sure it counts as a sac when you get two rooks for the queen, especially when you're already a pawn ahead. Still, good attack.
Anyway, about your column. I think there is another reason why queen sacs are easier to compute than minor sacs, a reason which is the reverse side to the one you mention. A queen sac has
to work, and work decisively. On a minor sac you can get away with more, and that means that you have to compute more.
You can get compensation for a minor piece sac in initiative, positional advantages, you name it. Even if you don't get a decisive attack there and then, you may be able to calculate that you will, in all versions, get some kind of advantage which may, in the long term, win you the game, or which will at least mean that you will not lose it because you are left a piece down with no compensation. It's easier to get that compensation, but that does mean that you have to look at all the ways in which you might or might not get it.
A queen sac? You win, or you lose. There is no compensation for losing the queen except two rooks, or a handful of minor pieces. And this has
to be forced. Two bishops and a destroyed king position almost never cuts it, when you have given away your queen. When it does cut it, it almost always does so in a forced path. If you cannot see, and prove, that the queen sac mates, the queen sac loses.
Case in point. In my last finished game, after a mediocre opening, I managed to sink a bishop into his h7 pawn. I did not bother to compute all variations to the end. It wasn't necessary; something else was, something harder. I knew that if he took the safer-looking path, I'd mate him (or win his queen), but if he moved his king to g6, I'd still have compensation for the bishop in a pawn, an exposed king, and an ongoing, strong attack. I was almost confident that this would be quite enough to win the game even with a bishop less, but I had to trust my intuition on this.
After the game (in which my opponent took the mating path, relieving me of having to prove my intuition correct) my computer confirmed that I would have been ahead, but as I said, during the game I did not know
this - I believed it. It was, in a way, a gamble. I found the sac, and I doubted. I couldn't prove that it worked, and I had to make a judgement call. I now know that it was correct, but it was still a will-I-or-won't-I decision.
Had it been my queen that I would have lost on h7, the decision would have been much easier. No clear win - no sac. With a queen sac, there are - at least, for us mortals who aren't Kasparov - no judgement calls. You compute that it's correct, no intuition and no internal discussion involved, or you don't do it. At least, I don't.