Position vs. Tactic Observation

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Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by chesskang on March 21st 2011, 12:38 pm

Is anyone else playing OTB games and having problems missing tactics in games? The minus side is I am missing some tactics in long OTB games that could end them in a flash, but the plus side is my opponents have little to no counter play and I have been getting and winning, "winning positions" with little "stress". I have always played open positions considering myself an amateur tactical mastermind, LOL, and I don't necessarily want to change my openings, so I thought I would ask you veterans how you handle Tactics in your thought process, or maybe it is just me getting older and having less nerve against stronger competition.
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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by PawnCustodian on March 21st 2011, 2:46 pm

I make it a practice to never look at my opponent's rating when I check the pairings.

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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by Blue Devil Knight on March 21st 2011, 2:56 pm

It is imperative to look for threats first before doing any namby-pamby positional evaluation. Why start by looking at threats? Discussed here:
http://chessconfessions.blogspot.com/2007/08/why-start-by-looking-at-threats.html


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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by chesskang on March 21st 2011, 3:05 pm

I don't look at their rating either, I use to fall into that trap as well.
However, to your point, since I am playing up to get better competition maybe I am thinking sub-conscienceless that these players will play tougher.
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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by chesskang on March 21st 2011, 3:11 pm

Blue Devil Knight wrote:It is imperative to look for threats first before doing any namby-pamby positional evaluation. Why start by looking at threats? Discussed here:
http://chessconfessions.blogspot.com/2007/08/why-start-by-looking-at-threats.html


You know I just realized something...the first thing I look for is Threats (THEIR THREATS). Which is possibly why 'so far' my opponents have been able to set-up little to no tactics. HOWEVER, maybe I should look for Threats, not just mate threats but tactical threats I CAN create, before I start my evaluation. Good Point BDK!
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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by HangingKing on March 21st 2011, 6:41 pm

Well the rating of the other player is important or at least its streak (lately he has won everything, or lately he has lost much), because you could afford little mistakes against a lower rated player (not too much of course, but it helps keeping your nerves when you made a mistake to know that your opponent is going to blunder too sooner or later, else he wouldn't be that low rating).

So you can play such players with less tension.

Against a higher rated player, you know from the beginning that you need to secure your opening, because any imbalance in favor of your opponent will be exploited properly and there is the risk of a K+P vs K endgame, so i would say that more or less you play first for a draw and if there is a good occasion in middlegame.

Another option would be the opposite, risk everything with fancy oppening and see what happen, after all there are chances your opponent even higher rated may not know much of the line and you have your chances.

Regarding tactics (that YOU start, it is obvious that if opponent starts a fight you have no other choice than to respond) i would say it is all about tempo, you would play strategic until there are no good move to play, pieces are placed at best given the current conditions, king is safe, etc... then you know it is time to break something with a pawn, or sacrifice, or exchange, etc...

Until recently i was doing too much mini-tactics, but i noticed it leads to nothing, exchanging pieces continuously ends in a draw, immediately agressing a piece that just found a square to sit just impair your pawn structure and let your opponent reorganize behind the lines.
Preferable is to arrange your pieces calmly, raising pressure on some points, then when all pieces are ready, start the tactical line, you will found yourself not automatically with more material, but with better placed pieces at the end of the exchange that will allow you to go further.

Rather than exchanging 4 times 1 piece every 3 moves, try to exchange 2 times 2 pieces every 6 moves or do a big tactical blow with lot of exchanges after a 12 moves preparation.


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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by BorgQueen on March 21st 2011, 7:17 pm


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Blue Devil Knight wrote:The danger of studying positional chess at the expense of tactics is that you will spend a half hour thinking about where a Knight belongs, and then proceed to put it on a beautiful square where it is en prise. Smile
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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by chesskang on March 22nd 2011, 9:17 am

BorgQueen wrote:Drill them.

www.chesstempo.com

Thanks for the link BQ. Any more Blitz titles lately?
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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by Blue Devil Knight on March 22nd 2011, 11:15 am

For the simplest tactics, the software 'chess tactics for beginners' is good to whet one's appetite. Nothing fancy in the first few levels: 1 to 3 move tactics that are usually easy to spot.

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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by chesskang on March 22nd 2011, 11:22 am

CT ART (software) is still one of my favorites, as well.
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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by HangingKing on March 22nd 2011, 3:55 pm

CT ART is very good (not focusing only on mates in N but also on pieces winning), but quite a few solutions are flawed : the move proposed is just simply loosing (i exposed one once in this forum) or is still much more difficult to defend than some other less powerful moves in apparence but leading to easy endgame.
Convetka proposed an update through Peshka, but this was just interface enhancement, no change in the material.




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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by BorgQueen on March 22nd 2011, 7:23 pm

chesskang wrote:Thanks for the link BQ. Any more Blitz titles lately?
No, but our "Easter Cup" starts this Friday, so hopefully I will do ok in it this year... maybe a little better than last year!

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Blue Devil Knight wrote:The danger of studying positional chess at the expense of tactics is that you will spend a half hour thinking about where a Knight belongs, and then proceed to put it on a beautiful square where it is en prise. Smile
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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by PawnCustodian on April 20th 2011, 1:38 pm

I came across a free pawn endgame studies file that you may find interesting to practice endgame calculation. Some of the positions are only useful to problemists, but there are plenty of practical problems as well.

http://www.arves.org/English/index.htm

Scroll to the bottom of the page and you will find a download file pawnendgamestudies with over a thousand positions to try.

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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by HangingKing on April 21st 2011, 3:15 pm

I got virus alert on this link ?!

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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by PawnCustodian on April 21st 2011, 3:39 pm

Hmmm..

It was clean for me with Norton. Did you get a named virus?

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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by HangingKing on April 21st 2011, 5:29 pm





I have Avast, i tested with URL Void to be sure and it seems to be positive for some antivirus and not for others.
Maybe it is a false positive and Avast detection flawed, but who knows.



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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by PawnCustodian on April 21st 2011, 7:11 pm

Thanks. I'll double check my system just to be sure.

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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by Ron Suarez on April 23rd 2011, 4:49 pm

I have had the same problem of hanging pieces in the long games since starting this program. I would hang stuff because I would shorten my actual thinking before I moved. What I left out at that specific move was to visualize my move and look for refutations by my opponent. I had winning positions in 3 out of 4 in these losses, too.

I realized that something was wrong with my thinking. I then got the book Searching for Chess Perfection, which is a compilation of Cecil Purdy's articles. In there I read and realized a couple of crucial things for playing:

1. Look for tactics first before even thinking about positional stuff.

2. If my opponent has a threat the first thing I should look at is if I can ignore that threat to make a stronger move. Often times when the opponent makes a threat he has opened a weakness in his position. If I realize that I can't ignore the threat, then I spend my time on handling the threat.

3. Yes, before I make a move I must,...I must visualize the board and position as if my intended move is made and look at the WHOLE board for my opponent's possible responses.

My next rated games start in a couple of weeks so I hope this fixes it.

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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by HangingKing on April 24th 2011, 11:36 am

I have problems with 3. too, lol.

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Re: Position vs. Tactic Observation

Post by BorgQueen on April 26th 2011, 5:54 am

For anyone who is interested, I did a little better than last year... I WON IT!!

I'll give the credit to ICS :-)

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