The Chess Wanderer

"Les pions sont l´âme du jeu" Francois-André Philidor, 1749

Sunday, June 19, 2005


An IM I consulted has recommended I not use CT Art at this stage in my development. Instead he recommended Polgar’s book. Spending about 30 minutes a day on doing problems. Primarily, however, he said the main thing to improve my game right now is to play more games. He said my weaknesses stem from my lack of experience. Therefore I am going to take his advice and put CT Art on the shelf for now, right beside Soltis’ book. I am still going to finish Chess Mentor because it offers a lot of good advice like “Logical Chess Move by Move”, but that will take third behind playing games and doing problems from Polgar’s book.

Even though I will still be posting, I won’t be doing Don’s Inferno anytime soon. Please feel free to put me on your hiatus list if you feel it is more appropriate. Hopefully I will get to the level where I can tackle the problems soon.


At 6/20/2005 3:44 AM, Blogger Blue Devil Knight said...

Sad to see you go: hopefully you can check up on us every now and then. That Polgar book is on my shelf now, taunting me.

Blue Devil, are you too cowardly to open me? Maybe I should get you a bib you baby, because there is no way you can handle me! Girlie Man!

That's weird, the Polgar book has an accent like Arnold Schwartzeneggar.

I have wondered about some of the things you mentioned: I clearly need more experience in chess, so I try to play games fairly frequently to gain it (though I have learned frequent games is different from blitz games). On the other hand, I look at my tactical puzzles as gaining experience playing chess as well (even though it ain't real game experience). I have a feeling, though, that Tasc Chess Tutor is a lot more like Chess Mentor than it is like CT-Art (it has opening stuff, endgame, in addition to straight tactics).

At any rate, good luck whatever you decide to do. My view is that if someone puts in lots of effort to improve at chess (and they are not following a stupid path like only studying K vs K endings :)), they will improve at chess.

At 6/20/2005 4:20 AM, Blogger CelticDeath said...

Definitely keep up the Chess Mentor. I think the more you work at that one, the better your game will get. Also, I hope you continue to post. I don't plan to take you off my Errants list any time soon.

At 6/20/2005 1:04 PM, Blogger Pale Morning Dun - Errant Knight de la Maza said...

You're on my list for the duration. In my opinion as long as you're about chess improvement and helping others you are a knight errant.

Experience is key I think. You have to work through you're games and study them to get better.

What is the Polgar book title by the way? I take it that's the one Margriet is using.

At 6/20/2005 6:30 PM, Blogger fussylizard said...

Yeah, which Polgar book? The big huge one- 5334 Chess Problems or something like that? It is kind of fun, but it is so big that it is kind of a pain to sit down with it...

I need to follow your lead and play more myself. Now that my sparring partner is back that will help, but I don't think one slow game a week is enough. I need to play a bit on FICS so I can join the team play which should be a good motivation to play more...

Anyway, good luck with it all and keep us posted!

At 6/20/2005 8:46 PM, Blogger Pawnsensei said...

Thanks for the encouragement guys. Yes, it's the 5334+1 book. The brick that they charge you extra shipping for. I will keep everyone posted on my progress.


At 6/21/2005 6:02 AM, Blogger Temposchlucker said...

Once a Knight, for ever a Knight. (Once a fat guy. . .)

At 6/21/2005 1:40 PM, Blogger knightwiz said...

So you will be doing just mate exercises? Do you think it can improve your overall tactics too?

I think I'm about the same level as you, so maybe I should follow the same advice, concentrate just on mate problems(if that's the case) and start playing more.

At 6/21/2005 3:57 PM, Blogger Pawnsensei said...

Hey Knightwiz,

Good question. If I'm not mistaken, mate exercises are a form of tactics. They also show you how the pieces work together to attack something (in this case the King).

Main thing is more experience. That way I can see what types of tactics usually show up in games at my level. I can study super advanced tactics for months and months, but if I lose to a simple mating attack, dropping a piece or an opening blunder.... Diminishing returns I guess. All the studying in the world is no replacement for a good 'ol battle over the 64.

BTW, if you haven't read it, Seirawan's WCT has helped me out a lot with understanding basic tactical motifs. I still go through it every once in a while and before important matches.

Hope this answered your question.


At 6/21/2005 10:36 PM, Blogger JavaManIssa said...

I'm keeping you on my list for sure.

Anyways, i've done about 1800 and many of them more than once tactics in that big fat book and im not so sure how much i've benefitted. I think it does help you with visualization and calculation. I also think that some of the problems <1500 (don't quote me) have quite good patterns to learn!


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