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  1. 27 Dec '13 09:59
    Hello.

    I'm a 1700 Elo player and I wondered if looking at super-GMs games without analyzing them at http://www.chessgames.com/ would be usefull or would only be a waste of time. And I'm just talking about playing through the games very fast (taking only approximately a minute per game), without thinking at all.

    Since I'm a Caro-Kann player, I could select "Player Black is: Karpov" and "Opening is: Caro-Kann". And then I could play through 273 games, which would take me almost 5 hours.
    Would that make me improve a lot?

    Thanks in advance for your answers.
  2. Subscriber Marinkatomb
    wotagr8game
    27 Dec '13 10:18
    Originally posted by Marc Benford
    Hello.

    I'm a 1700 Elo player and I wondered if looking at super-GMs games without analyzing them at http://www.chessgames.com/ would be usefull or would only be a waste of time. And I'm just talking about playing through the games very fast (taking only approximately a minute per game), without thinking at all.

    Since I'm a Caro-Kann player, I coul ...[text shortened]... ake me almost 5 hours.
    Would that make me improve a lot?

    Thanks in advance for your answers.
    I definitely think that looking through GM games is invaluable but spending just one minute on the game might be going a little too fast. I generally spend between 10 minutes to an hour on a game and look through it at least twice, though whether it did me any good is up for debate.
  3. 27 Dec '13 10:26
    Going through a game quite quickly first of all is one way to learn from it. You get a feel for the overall picture of what the winner's plan was. However this is only of limited use and you need to go through the game slowly as well, preferably with either 1) a fellow player to bounce ideas of 2) some written notes by the player or a IM/GM 3) A computer program which can explain why certain moves fail tactically.

    Personally I only use the "going over lots of games quickly" technique as a method to learn a new opening.
  4. Subscriber moonbus
    Uber-Nerd
    27 Dec '13 14:11
    Originally posted by Marc Benford
    Hello.

    I'm a 1700 Elo player and I wondered if looking at super-GMs games without analyzing them at http://www.chessgames.com/ would be usefull or would only be a waste of time. And I'm just talking about playing through the games very fast (taking only approximately a minute per game), without thinking at all.

    Since I'm a Caro-Kann player, I coul ...[text shortened]... ake me almost 5 hours.
    Would that make me improve a lot?

    Thanks in advance for your answers.
    For more in depth understanding of the CK, have a look at Karpov's book on it (co-authored with Belyavski).
  5. 27 Dec '13 14:37
    Hi Marc

    Who knows until you have tried it.
    You never know what what the brian may pick up subliminally doing that.
    You can force yourself to remember things (dates of battles, phone numbers etc)
    using memory aiding tricks. But can you force yourself to learn?

    Chess patterns I know aid one in looking for and seeking out combinations.
    The more patterns you can call on (and they are not always of a tactical
    nature) the better you shoud be.

    Unless you are gifted (the Carlsens and Shorts) then IMO the best way
    to improve at playing the game is actually playing the game. (experience.)

    You also need a strong sense of self discipline when studying a game. (well I do anyway.)
    Alone I very often get side-track with one of my own ideas.
    "Why not this?"
    And before you know what has happened I have spent the last 30 minutes
    looking at a completely new game learning nothing but feeding my own fantasy.

    As Fat Lady says studying with a friend helps a great deal, especially if he is good player.
    I was fortunate to look at games with some very good players.
    They would tolerate my flights of fantasy because they knew sometimes
    I'd be spot on. (it worked!!!) But most times they would pour a bucket of cold water
    on me and bring me back to earth with a one move refutation.

    However, if you think you can play over a load of games (Caro Kanns) in a five
    hour stint without your brain turning to water and losing the will to live
    then give it a try. As I said it may be the way to go.
    Let us know how you get on.
  6. 27 Dec '13 15:27
    Originally posted by Marc Benford
    Hello.

    I'm a 1700 Elo player and I wondered if looking at super-GMs games without analyzing them at http://www.chessgames.com/ would be usefull or would only be a waste of time. And I'm just talking about playing through the games very fast (taking only approximately a minute per game), without thinking at all.

    Since I'm a Caro-Kann player, I coul ...[text shortened]... ake me almost 5 hours.
    Would that make me improve a lot?

    Thanks in advance for your answers.
    I don't think it would help you.

    Funnily enough you could always try the forgotten old technique of actually playing some games - you've been a member here for 6 months and never made a move even.. not going to get much better endlessly procrastinating..
  7. 27 Dec '13 23:56
    What would be the point of playing fast games on Yahoo.com or some other chess playing area? My experience in play fast games, 5 minute games or even 25 minute games with 15 seconds added per move, doesn't seem to teach me much. For me, I want to study a game so that I memorize a move order and learn from mistakes.

    Playing fast games and trying to learn to play better fast games don't seem like good ideas when you don't take the proper time to learn after them. Playing fast doesn't give you enough time to analyze different progressions while you are playing. Then it can be no wonder you made errors. And what is the point of studying errors over and over?

    Investigation through taking your time to learn seems more logical. If you play fast games, then take a logically longer time to learn your good moves, bad moves, patterns, and even positions.
  8. Subscriber Paul Leggett
    Chess Librarian
    28 Dec '13 06:04
    Originally posted by KingOnPoint
    What would be the point of playing fast games on Yahoo.com or some other chess playing area? My experience in play fast games, 5 minute games or even 25 minute games with 15 seconds added per move, doesn't seem to teach me much. For me, I want to study a game so that I memorize a move order and learn from mistakes.

    Playing fast games and trying to l ...[text shortened]... take a logically longer time to learn your good moves, bad moves, patterns, and even positions.
    I'm not sure if this was intended to be a response to anyone's post or not.

    It is definitely NOT a response to plopzilla's post, and he raises a good point, originally referred to by Greenpawn34. You can get better by playing, especially in combination with other training methods, including what you suggest.
  9. Subscriber Paul Leggett
    Chess Librarian
    28 Dec '13 13:38
    Originally posted by Paul Leggett
    I'm not sure if this was intended to be a response to anyone's post or not.

    It is definitely NOT a response to plopzilla's post, and he raises a good point, originally referred to by Greenpawn34. You can get better by playing, especially in combination with other training methods, including what you suggest.
    My apologies, I thought I was reading a response from the OP. I should avoid posting during the holiday season...
  10. 28 Dec '13 14:35
    Could I possibly ask a question and I hope the OP does not mind, when working through games which I have been trying to do, would you not have to know the rationale and reasoning behind each move? Would you not have to know the players assessment of each position too?

    Willy....
  11. 28 Dec '13 14:41
    Hi Paul,

    You are correct.
    The OP is considering playing quickly through 270+ games,
    not play 270+ games at blitz.
  12. Subscriber Paul Leggett
    Chess Librarian
    28 Dec '13 19:44
    Originally posted by greenpawn34
    Hi Paul,

    You are correct.
    The OP is considering playing quickly through 270+ games,
    not play 270+ games at blitz.
    Thanks, that was the distinction I was trying to make.

    GM Nigel Davies offers this advice in the introduction to his book The Dynamic Reti (and I should add that he offers this advice in the introduction to several of his opening books):

    1) Familiarize yourself with the opening by playing through all the games at speed. At this stage you should ignore the notes and sub-variations so as not to miss the wood for the trees.
    2) Experiment with the Réti in quick games, at your local club or on the internet (www.freechess.org or www.chessclub.com)(or redhotpawn.com- Paul!).
    3) Look up the lines that occurred in your games and cross-check your play against the lines given in the book.
    4) Repeat steps 2 and 3 for a month or two.
    5) Study the book more carefully, working from cover to cover and making notes about any points of interest. Analyse the positions that interest you with a friend or chess engine.
    6) Adopt your new weapon in tournament games and matches, but not in every game at first.
    7) Analyse your tournament games to establish what was happening and whether you or your opponent could improve.

    GM Davies is also one of those GMs who will graciously accept a facebook friend request, and he seems like a genuinely nice guy.
  13. 28 Dec '13 21:28
    Originally posted by Paul Leggett
    GM Davies is also one of those GMs who will graciously accept a facebook friend request, and he seems like a genuinely nice guy.
    I thought he came across as a bit of a knob in the spat he had with the Streatham and Brixton lot a few years ago.
  14. Subscriber Paul Leggett
    Chess Librarian
    28 Dec '13 21:31
    Originally posted by Fat Lady
    I thought he came across as a bit of a knob in the spat he had with the Streatham and Brixton lot a few years ago.
    I've never met him personally, and I am sure you guys on the island all know each other far better. I envy you all a bit.
  15. 28 Dec '13 21:37
    Originally posted by Paul Leggett
    I've never met him personally, and I am sure you guys on the island all know each other far better. I envy you all a bit.
    I've never met him either, my opinion is based entirely on how he conducted himself when a club player criticised one of his books. You can read some of it here:
    http://streathambrixtonchess.blogspot.co.uk/2008/05/nigel-davies-emails.html