Chess is usually divided into 3 main phases with very different strategies:
- 1. Opening: each side must try to develop a strong position quickly, placing pieces on squares where they can have maximum impact and synergy between them.
- 2. The mid-game: here players try to make attacking combinations to win pieces, or follow a defensive game plan to stifle the enemy and gain a strategic advantage.
- 3. The end-game: when few pieces remain, The situation is generally more clear: the side that took the advantage and gained most pieces, must convert into a win, while the depleted side must try to force a draw. It is generally pure technique.
- move the center pawns of your columns D or E or C
- quickly bring into play your 4 minor pieces (knights and bishops) always trying to control the maximum number of central squares
- protect your king, castle early, do not move the 3 castling pieces without good reason
- you can move your rooks on the front row in order to refocus for example, but the cannot advance until other pieces have moved
- avoid your moving your queen beyond the second row. The queen and rooks are high value pieces that are prime targets early in the game for opposing attacks.
It is better to them to support rather than attack, although if you see a loophole to exploit, the queen can quickly infiltrate an inexperienced opponent and can cause major damage.
- generally avoid playing the same piece more than once during the opening
For information most Grand Master games begin like this:
- 1. E2E4, black responds E7E5 or C7C5
- or 1. D2D4, black responds D7D5 or Knight G8F6
The middle game
gain pieces by a combination of tactics:
Against beginners you can often just take the pieces you are offered on a plate.
But once the level rises, you must be a little more imaginative and make combinations of several moves in which you seek to exchange material for your benefit.
Here is a table showing the commonly accepted value of pieces the unit of comparison being the pawn:
Do not give your rook to capture the opponent's bishop !
By contrast, give without hesitation, a bishop or knight to capture a rook.
In general, do not give up any piece, not even a pawn without obvious compensation.
For some examples of of tactics such discovered attacks, forks, pinning, the skewer, please consult the following link:
Wikipedia: middle game
Take strategic advantage:
When two opponents are of good standard, it is very difficult to surprise the other on a combination. Each will attempt to accrue some small strategic advantages that will eventually help to crack the other's position.
This is where the real chess game begins.
Some things to consider, although nothing is absolute:
- Pawn structure: the pawns are the backbone of your position, pawns are strongest when protected in two adjacent columns and one behind the other.
Avoid doubled pawns (one directly behind the other following a capture).
Avoid isolated (backward) pawns (a pawn with no friend in the adjacent columns)
Definitely avoid doubled isolated pawns!
Conversely "passed" pawns are a formidable weapon: they are pawns that can not be intercepted or blocked in their advance by enemy pieces and threaten to become a Queen,
they are stronger, the nearer they are to the last row
- Take up space on the chessboard: Advance your pawns or pieces (except from the castling side!) deep into the enemy camp
- The hole squares: These are boxes in the enemy camp where you can install a knight or (less often) a bishop without risk of being threatened by a pawn
- "Bad Bishop": A bishop is weakened by the presence of his own blocked pawns on the squares of the same color, because they reduce movement. Especially since often the opponent will then have the "good bishop"
- Opposite Castles : if your opponent has castled on the opposite side to yours, the strategy is always the same: push your pawns to his castling to uncover and weaken his king, before attacking it with your pieces
- Security of the king: Keep your king absolutely safe as there are still many pieces on the chessboard
- If you have the material advantage (most pieces) feel free to exchange more pieces or pawns to simplify the position,
otherwise avoid exchanges and try to complicate the and use your remaining pieces to maximum advantage
- Initiative: Do not waste time playing useless moves, give real meaning to each of your moves (following a plan), try to put pressure on the opponent every time by creating threats.
- The king can and must emerge: the remaining pieces are no longer sufficient to guarantee his defence.
You should be prepared to use your king offensively and defensively
- Try to place a rook on the 7th row any pieces in their original positions will be difficult to defend. Avoid letting him do it to you!
- Your rooks should be as active as possible: use them to threaten enemies pawns rather than defend your own
- If you have a passed pawn advance it quickly as possible, use your turn to support the passed pawn if necessary
- It is essential to master at least two classic finales
- Pay attention to check: You're in strong position, for example King against King + queen, you should win easily but be careful - if you opponent is not in check
not in check but has no legal moves the game is a stalemate
and ends as a draw despite your overwhelming material superiority.
- Be sure to retain enough material to checkmate: only King + Pawn versus king can win (usually), while King + Knight versus King, King + bishop versus king, or even 2 Knights are a draw.