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    BlueKnightGuy

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    Hey there Playgrounders. Recently I and some friends of mine have broken out the chess board and started getting serious about that ancient game. Unfortunately I've never been particularly good at chess so I'm turning to the Playground to see if anyone has some good advice, as well as general discussions on the game.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Badgercloak View Post
    Hey there Playgrounders. Recently I and some friends of mine have broken out the chess board and started getting serious about that ancient game. Unfortunately I've never been particularly good at chess so I'm turning to the Playground to see if anyone has some good advice, as well as general discussions on the game.
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    Default Re: Chess in the Playground

    Once upon a time I had a very intelligent person tell me chess was as easy as CAKE.

    C-Control the Center: it's the most important spot on the board, seeing as everything revolves around it. This in particular is why many people start moving the two middle pawns forward and their knights diagonally behind them; it has a pawn and a knight protecting each of the four center squares.

    A-deploy your Army quickly and effectively: a bishop in one of the center squares gets 13 possible squares to move to, while one in a corner only gets 7. This is a big reason behind the center being a powerful spot. Also, a knight in the middle 4x4 square can move to 8 possible spots, while one on the edge only can move to 4 spots, and one in a corner can only move to 2 spots. DON'T SPEND TOO MUCH TIME DEVELOPING PAWNS! That is the mistake I see most new people make, but the pawns should really only be moved in 4 situations: you need to let a larger piece move, you need to defend a larger piece, you need to defend a certain square, or you have nothing better to do (which is rare). Occasionally you can use pawns as offense, but skilled players won't get into that situation against you.

    K- defend the King: he is the most important piece in the game, so don't give your opponents a chance to mate him. Backing him into corners is generally a bad idea unless you have lots of pieces around him. And never put him behind 3 pawns in a row. Your opponent could easily end it then and there with a rook or queen. Castling is actually often a strong move early on, mainly because it puts the king behind a fairly beefy wall.

    E- Well, I can't know everything, can I?

    In any case, practice. Preferably against people better than you. You generally learn more by losing than by winning, so don't be afraid to lose the first game or hundred. You'll get better.

    Finally, learn to look ahead a few moves. Many people don't plan in chess and move on impulse. I've found that I can beat people that are more well versed in chess tactics but can't look ahead more than 2-3 moves simply because I can see 5 moves in advance. I hear the pros can see 10-15, but this is unconfirmed. If you can get this down, you'll see your W/L ratio immediately become more impressive.

    Anyways, best of luck good sir.
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    Quote Originally Posted by woodzyowl View Post
    E- Well, I can't know everything, can I?
    E-Experiance, Practice, Practice, PRACTICE!
    That is all.
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    Default Re: Chess in the Playground

    E-Exceptions: Guidelines are often helpful, but if the position demands one thing and guidelines say something else, you must listen to the position.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dragonsamurai77 View Post
    E-Exceptions: Guidelines are often helpful, but if the position demands one thing and guidelines say something else, you must listen to the position.
    Such as an exception to the pawns rule– Zwischenzug. Playing a minor and completely unexpected move to force the opponent to lose tempo and move out of whatever awesome position they had
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    Question for chess aficionados.

    I know how to play the basic rules. I know how the pieces are supposed to move and the exception to the rules and that Castle you can do with your king and rook.

    But one time in college I looked at a Chess Club just to see how it would pan out. I played against the guy trying to start the club, and he did some thing where his pawn jumped over mine in a way that there was no way I could see as legal. He used some term I never heard of and insisted that it was a legal move. I played the rest of the game, lost predictably, and ended up not joining.

    Was that actually a legal move in Chess? Are there any more of those "exceptions?"
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    Default Re: Chess in the Playground

    That was either capturing "en passant" or a fib.

    En passant is when you move your pawn 2 spaces from its beginning space, but there's an opposing pawn that *could* have captured you if you only moved 1. In that case, the opponent can on his next turn only, capture your pawn as if you had only moved 1 space. If he doesn't do it that turn, he can't do it later.

    It's pretty darn rare, but it is legal. For recording the movie, ".e.p." is appended after the standard notation.

    If he did something other than this, then shame on him.
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiscipleofBob View Post
    But one time in college I looked at a Chess Club just to see how it would pan out. I played against the guy trying to start the club, and he did some thing where his pawn jumped over mine in a way that there was no way I could see as legal. He used some term I never heard of and insisted that it was a legal move. I played the rest of the game, lost predictably, and ended up not joining.

    Was that actually a legal move in Chess? Are there any more of those "exceptions?"
    Do you remember the term? If it was en passant and he was using it correctly, it's a legit move.
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    Default Re: Chess in the Playground

    There is the "en passant rule"- that works as follows.

    Your pawn makes the double move that pawns on their starting square get.

    Their pawn was where it could have taken yours, if it had moved a single square rather than two.

    They can take your pawn as if it had only moved a single square.

    It doesn't happen very often though.
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiscipleofBob View Post
    Was that actually a legal move in Chess? Are there any more of those "exceptions?"
    There are four special moves in Chess:

    Pawn Double Move
    • Pawns can move two squares forward if they have not previously moved.
    • There must be nothing in either of the squares the pawn tries to move to.


    "En Passant"
    • French for "in passing", this is a move that can be used against a pawn that double moved.
    • En passant allows capturing a pawn that double moved with your own pawn from the square it moved over. Basically, I move pawn from e2-e4 and you have pawn in f4; you can capture my pawn from f3 after my turn. The idea is that the pawn moves through said square, just accelerated by the "doubling", so it can be captured from either of the two squares it moved into.
    • You can only en passant for one turn, and only with a pawn of your own.


    "Castling"
    • Castling requires you to not have moved your king or rook previously.
    • Your king cannot move over squares threatened by enemy pieces while casting.
    • There must be no pieces between your king and your rook.
    • When castling, king moves two squares towards the rook and the rook moves over the king.
    • You can castle on either side of the board though queen-side castling is obviously more rare since it leaves your king a bit more in the middle of things and requires moving your queen in addition to moving your bishop and knight.


    "Promotion"
    • If your pawn reaches enemy back row (8th row for white, 1st row for black), it can become any other type of piece other than King.
    • Generally choice other than Queen or Knight very rarely makes sense (few cases where you have to avoid the stalemate can make Bishop or Rook the optimal solution).



    Oh, and a word on the rules for ending the game; winning and losing are simple enough. You win if you can checkmate enemy (king has no legal moves and is being threatened) and you lose if you get checkmate'd. Similarly, if the game is timed, the player who runs out of time first (if either) loses.

    Draws, however, are a bit more complex matter. There are 4 major reasons for a draw to occur:
    1. Players agree to a draw. Simple and most straightforward; if both players conclude the game is going to end to a draw from the present position, they agree to draw it instead of spending hours reaching the legal draw.
    2. Stalemate. If the player whose turn it is has no legal moves but the king is not being threatened, the game is a stalemate. This is generally the last straw for a badly losing player; try to trick the opponent into a stalemate to achieve draw.
    3. Threefold repetition. If the same exact position (including castling rights and rights to capture en passant) occurs 3 times on the board, the game is a draw. Commonly occurs when one player has blocked e.g. enemy pawn advance with a piece that, if it moves out, allows enemy to promote but enemy cannot force it to move out. It's also common in cases where one player can keep enemy king permanently in check but is unable to force a mate unless the enemy king moves out of the position it's currently occupying; if the player who keeps checking enemy is in a disadvantageous position otherwise, this is a common way to force a draw.
    4. Fifty-move rule. If no pieces have been captured or no pawns moved in the last 50 moves, the game is a draw. This is generally to force even endgames that cannot be won to end (same position is very unlike to repeat 3 times in a reasonable timeframe in an open endgame between e.g. Queen+King and Queen+King but it's a draw anyways).



    I could certainly write a small article about chess strategy if there's truly interest for it but really, there are billions of books on the topic and I'm not that good; I was a competitive player 10 years ago but my elo was never much above 1600 and the only big competition I've ever played were the Finnish School Team Championships.

    While I learned basic strategy, did some puzzles and gained a game eye good enough to easily beat anybody who hadn't read chess literature, I was never actually good at the game; it would've taken many years of dedication to reach master level and I wonder if I could've ever become a grandmaster (Tomi Nybäck, the highest ranked Chess player in Finland & a Grandmaster, was a classmate of mine in high school and I've never beat him in a real game, not for the lack of trying either; for comparison, his current elo is 2600).
    Last edited by Eldariel; 2012-12-11 at 01:23 PM.
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    Default Re: Chess in the Playground

    En Passant was the term the guy used, but from what it sounds he was using it incorrectly.

    His pawn was never in a position to take mine, and in fact the pawn approached from head on.

    I'm glad to hear that there's only one of those moves I didn't know previously though. I was afraid there was a whole mess of French terms or something to move chess pieces in movements that would seemingly be random to an outside observer.

    I have one more question. This was from a game back in grade school when I actually was in a chess club. I was mopping up my opponent's pieces until all she had was her king, which for some reason she was moving to the other side of the board towards my king. I was completely lost as to what she was trying to do. Eventually she moves her king adjacent to mine and declares it a draw. She claims that even though I can move my king out of check, she'll just pursue with her king, and for some reason I'm not allowed to take her king, but she's allowed to put her king next to mine and call that check versus me. Mind you I still have about half my pieces on the other side of the board. She fast-talks her way past a judge, says it's a draw, leaves early, and then the next day I lose against her. Kind of pisses me off because it was my one chance to actually go to a chess tournament if I won.

    My question is: was that legal or was she full of it?
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    Default Re: Chess in the Playground

    Quote Originally Posted by DiscipleofBob View Post
    I have one more question. This was from a game back in grade school when I actually was in a chess club. I was mopping up my opponent's pieces until all she had was her king, which for some reason she was moving to the other side of the board towards my king. I was completely lost as to what she was trying to do. Eventually she moves her king adjacent to mine and declares it a draw. She claims that even though I can move my king out of check, she'll just pursue with her king, and for some reason I'm not allowed to take her king, but she's allowed to put her king next to mine and call that check versus me. Mind you I still have about half my pieces on the other side of the board. She fast-talks her way past a judge, says it's a draw, leaves early, and then the next day I lose against her. Kind of pisses me off because it was my one chance to actually go to a chess tournament if I won.

    My question is: was that legal or was she full of it?
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    Last edited by Winthur; 2012-12-11 at 07:22 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Winthur View Post
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    You can't move your king in check, plain and simple.
    You can't move your king into check. You can move your king when it is in check, however.

    In other words, yes. She was totally full of it.
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    Default Re: Chess in the Playground

    As the others said, BS.

    That said, were it me, I would have just captured the King, since capturing the attacking piece is a perfectly valid way out of check. Then I would have packed and left, 'cuz [REDACTED] is that messed up when the judge forgets one of the fundamental rules.
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    Default Re: Chess in the Playground

    Never underestimate the power of the pawn. It's quite adept at providing cover to other pieces, and most mid-level players are reluctant to sacrifice a more powerful piece to take one, making it situationally quite potent in building an offence or throwing a defense together. They're also quite good for ambush threats, which involve moving a pawn to threaten one piece, while a more important one is threatened by a bishop or queen that was just unmasked by the pawn movement.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gnoman View Post
    Never underestimate the power of the pawn. It's quite adept at providing cover to other pieces, and most mid-level players are reluctant to sacrifice a more powerful piece to take one, making it situationally quite potent in building an offence or throwing a defense together. They're also quite good for ambush threats, which involve moving a pawn to threaten one piece, while a more important one is threatened by a bishop or queen that was just unmasked by the pawn movement.
    Pawns are the soul of Chess! They provide the landscape for the game; since pawns can't move backwards nor capture forward, they create formations which define how other pieces can move. Pawns are chess; there's a reason the only piece that can break the 50-move rule is pawn. It's because pawn moves are irreversible and pawns near the enemy end of the board become huge threats and a pawn that's passed enemy pawnline can be game-ending. Pawns are also generally the pieces that ultimately begin the attack and break enemy's defensive formation to open up the assault on the king.

    Not only that but single pawn advantage is often enough to win the lategame thanks to promotion so high level play is often based around capturing that single pawn and forcing piece trades so you win. Pawns are really what the game is mostly about; sacrificing pawns to gain edge, winning a pawn to secure the game, getting a passed pawn to just win and closing or opening the position depending on what kind of a game you want to play. They're also the key pieces for controlling the center.


    And to be clear, this is what en passant means:


    If the white pawn takes the double move (green arrow), the black pawn can capture it during the next turn (along the line of the red arrow - also, this option exists the next turn only; the right to capture this way does not remain afterwards since the turn after this turn the white pawn is considered to have "passed" that square).

    Since double moving pawns is a rule that was invented to speed up the slow early game (halving the number of pawn moves needed to face the opponent and thus halving the number of pawn moves before the main game starts), a rule was needed to prevent misuse of this rule by "bypassing" enemy pawns without ever facing them. En passant-rule is the result.
    Last edited by Eldariel; 2012-12-11 at 09:11 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elimu Marimech View Post
    Zwischenzug.
    I love that word but how does one even begin to pronounce it?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stu42 View Post
    I love that word but how does one even begin to pronounce it?
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    Default Re: Chess in the Playground

    For people who are just learning the rules and starting to play, I suggest you find a copy of these books.

    Start with this.
    http://www.amazon.com/Bobby-Fischer-.../dp/0553263153

    Move onto this when you've mastered what's in the first.
    http://www.amazon.com/My-Memorable-G...439377-8198600

    There are lots more good beginners books, but you'll want to move on to more intermediate material after a few months. One of the most important is Modern Chess Openings. There are new editions released about every seven or eight years, but you don't need to get the latest one.

    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_no...chess+openings

    Chess puzzles are other good books.

    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=sr_kk_1?...qid=1355412615

    I played chess in high school for a team on the second of four boards that placed 3rd and 4th in the state team high school tournament during my 11th and 12th grade years and I placed 9th in the state individual high school tournament my 12th grade year. I used all the books linked in this post to even get to that level.
    Last edited by JSSheridan; 2012-12-13 at 10:33 AM.
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    Hey there! Not sure if anyone else said this already, but I'd recommend Chess.com if you're wanting to improve your game. It took me from someone with no idea what he's doing to someone who still doesn't know what he's doing, but can spot a good move every now and then!

    Plus, it records every game played, meaning I can link you to things like this!
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    Default Re: Chess in the Playground

    How long did it take before you noticed 13. Nxh4 ?

    I do like chess online, although I didn't know it had that feature. While we're posting games, http://www.chess.com/livechess/game?id=415074235.

    I love it when people haven't seen Danish Gambit before.
    Last edited by Studoku; 2012-12-20 at 08:35 PM.
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    Default Re: Chess in the Playground

    Well, are we going to start a group for playing on chess.com? I'm game, if everyone else is.
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    Default Re: Chess in the Playground

    If anyone here's a premium member(which you need to be to form a group), I'm up for it.

    If not, maybe we should put a list of Giantitp players' usernames in the first post. I'm Studoku on chess.com.
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    Default Re: Chess in the Playground

    I'm (surprisingly) named Woodzyowl on chess.com. I'm sure nobody would have ever guessed
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eldariel View Post
    Draws, however, are a bit more complex matter. There are 4 major reasons for a draw to occur:
    1. Threefold repetition. If the same exact position (including castling rights and rights to capture en passant) occurs 3 times on the board, the game is a draw. Commonly occurs when one player has blocked e.g. enemy pawn advance with a piece that, if it moves out, allows enemy to promote but enemy cannot force it to move out. It's also common in cases where one player can keep enemy king permanently in check but is unable to force a mate unless the enemy king moves out of the position it's currently occupying; if the player who keeps checking enemy is in a disadvantageous position otherwise, this is a common way to force a draw.
    Is it even possible in three moves, or any number of moves, to reset the board in a way to get the same exact en passant?

    I used to love chess, but I never was good at it. Now I am on chess.com, name is BobVosh. Anyone play go? I have the same relationship with it.
    Last edited by BobVosh; 2012-12-22 at 04:25 AM.
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    Default Re: Chess in the Playground

    Quote Originally Posted by BobVosh View Post
    Is it even possible in three moves, or any number of moves, to reset the board in a way to get the same exact en passant?
    Nope. However, it means the first iteration of that board state with the right to capture en passant does not count towards the 3-time limit.
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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Silfir's Avatar

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    Default Re: Chess in the Playground

    Quote Originally Posted by Stu42 View Post
    I love that word but how does one even begin to pronounce it?
    Tswea-shun-Tsoog. Approximately.

    "Free" pawn moves that attack already developed opposing pieces in the opening aren't zwischenzüge, however; the term is reserved for surprising, but forcing moves played in the midst of tactical complications. They tend to be surprising because they often happen in other areas of the board entirely, but shift the outcome of the combination completely. They look like moves you make simply "in-between" the moves of a combination, but are crucial to its success.

    I've always been taught that you cannot, by definition, develop pawns. Development is all about the pieces. All pawn moves in the opening should assist in developing a piece, or at least disrupt the development of the opponent. That's why pawn moves that attack an opponent's piece (that force him to waste a tempo in response to the tempo you "wasted" to move the pawn) are often considered acceptable, though that's only true if you didn't weaken your pawn structure or force the opponent to improve the placement of the piece that was attacked.

    To all rules, there are exceptions; sometimes pawn moves are made very early on with the goal of taking away a crucial square from an opposing piece. In Sicilian openings, for instance, Black will often play ...a6 to deny the b5 square to the opposing knights or bishops.
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