Sunday, April 03, 2005
I played at FICS for the first time yesterday. I didnt know how to play a match or anything, so I just doodled around until I found the "seek" command. Fortunately, three players answered. Here are the results of the games:

1101 Player:
Two games, both of whom I won in tactical fashion. Under 30 moves. He was too weak for me tactically. So I run the seek again to seach for better opponent.
2000 Player:
One game, I won the exchange in the middlegame. Maybe I'm a 2000 player? Not, as he proceeded to checkmate me in another 15moves. I wanted a rematch but he seemed to have immediately logged-out. Chicken! => But I lost darn!!!! loosing really sucks. Even if it is against a higher rated opponent.
1650 Player:
I have a winning position, I am up a piece, plus a continuing mating attack. Then my kid pulled the computer plug. Dope! What would my opponent think if this happened in a loosing position?

I had a provisional rating of 1750. Seems about right to me. But I can understand now, the obssesion with ratings. It seemed to me that when I lost, it was a little bit harder. And when I won, I was a little bit happier. It's amazing what those little numbers can do to your emotions.

I have been thinking about why study endgames. Why not concentrate on tactics until I can blow all opponents tactically? We'll for me, studying endgames has something to do with increasing the scope of my attacks. What is that, study the endgame to get better at attack? Yes, thats right. You see, right now my attacks have only two objectives, 1. Mate and 2. Material advantage. Nothing irregular about this, but I hope that by studying endgames, my attacks can gain another dimension - 1. Mate 2. Material Advantage and 3. Better endgame.

Having lots of options during a game woudnt hurt. I could start trying a mating attack, then suddenly shift to simplification if I know that I can win the ensuing endgame. Well thats my theory anyway. Putting it in practice is another matter altogether and one which I'm not qualified to discuss right now (Which means I'll discuss it after all, hehe!)

In another note, I think I know now why I didnt improve as much as I could have when I tried to study positional concepts, particularly "judgement and planning" in chess by Max Euwe. I mean, really. The style of play discussed there has something to do with getting a positional plus that you can exploit in the endgame. This is very plainly shown by the discussion about the minority attack, and the queens gambit exchange variation. I mean, here is an opening system that is all about the endgame.
No sacrificial attack, no tactical melees, just attempt to swap pieces as much as possible, do the minority attack, then go into a pawnup endgame. And, at this point in my chess development, I can't win a pawn-up endgame. I lack the necessary technique.

So I should just forget tactics now and concentrate on endgames? Goodness no! As I've just said, the endgames are for me just a means of increasing my attacking dimension. Its not the main role-player in how I want to play a game of chess.

Conversion of a pawn: Starting circle 1 of this chapter. I noticed that this mostly
involves tactical tricks in conjunction with a pawn on the 7th or 6th rank. A very good chapter as I have picked up a lot of tricks already on how to use such pawns.
posted by Nezha at 7:33 PM | Permalink |