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Chess Grandmaster

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roland_l 29 ( +1 | -1 )
What is it about the old games? ... That make them more interesting to study than current games?

I mean ... seriously, are most people out there studying games by the 'oldies' like Alekhine, Tal, Botvinnik, Fisher etc. etc. ? I don't think I've even looked at a GM game after 1990.

Comments on this?
daverundle 13 ( +1 | -1 )
old games I agree they do seem more interesting i am currently reading Tal's book again & never stop marvelling at his genius.
honololou 14 ( +1 | -1 )
It is possible that old games are better… because they were played in the free-wheeling pre-computer era, before extensive analysis
refuted most of the risky lines.
honololou 41 ( +1 | -1 )
also… in the old days there was likely a wider range of skill separating grandmasters than there is
today, giving the best players more opportunities to "beat up" on their less-skilled
contemporaries.

Noted evolutionary biologist, the late Stephen Jay Gould wrote an interesting paper on a similar
topic attempting to explain why there have been no 400-hitters in baseball since Ted Williams.
leo_london 40 ( +1 | -1 )
honololou.. " because they were played in the free-wheeling pre-computer era, before extensive analysis refuted most of the risky lines ".

I think you are spot-on there.
I think it may well be true in other games/sports, you touched on that in your last post. The search for perfection, endless analysis, may take away the spontaneity that makes the game or sport great.

ccmcacollister 151 ( +1 | -1 )
It is fortunate ... that studing those players/games IS more interesting! Because they will be the ones to show the skills needed to defeat most of the players we will ever meet, eh? :)
IMO it is an entirely different proposition to play vs the top level for a draw or whatever result becomes deserved, and to be able to Defeat equal or lesser players when you find yourself in a position where you are virtually forced to play for a win. So you either enter something a bit risky, or you wait for your opponent to do something a bit wrong. So where better to find things "a bit wrong" happening then in the games of the preceding generation. It seems reasonable to me that the mistakes of yesterdays GM's might relate to the mistakes of todays Master, or Expert level!? In some ways.
Fischer spent much time studying the greats of the turn of the century and before. Morphy, Steinitz, Lasker etc. And I have to wonder if it was not to refine his tactical techinique and ability to Win vs those who would still make Yesterday's mistakes ? Certainly those things will turn up somewhere, at somelevel, in our monthly local swiss?!
On second thought, yes they probably will show up and it will probably be me that falls into them :) So there you go~ I better go enjoy studying those to quit falling into yesterdays mistakes }8-))
[Tal and Pillsbury are my favorite studies. But there are some other great swashbuckling games out there too. Spassky-Bronstein KGA, Bronstein-Tal, and got to love Mednis and Vehlimirovic for tactical fun from around the 70's]
roland_l 75 ( +1 | -1 )
Tal's book Yeah, I'm reading Tal's book and playing through his games right now myself. It's amazing how many times he entered an inferior line because the tactical opportunities appealed to him. Game 3, Tal-Pasman is a good example. The line would have a refutation somewhere, but it was often incredibly different to find. His opponent most often WOULDN'T find it, and Tal would go on to win the game.

It's games like this I guess we won't see today because the GM's of today are incredibly prepared (usiing computers) and don't enter risky lines.

So, would you say moves that have a refutation actually lead to an inferior game, or a possibly a more delightful game?

I like ccmca's point about the kind of skills we can aquire from these games.
ionadowman 34 ( +1 | -1 )
Are the oldies so golden...? ...and the moderns so...not? I've recently had a look at the Kasparov-Topalov game 1999, which seems pretty spectacular. There has been quite a few exciting games since 1990 methinks. I gather Topalov's play in the first half of the the recent "world champ" tournament was pretty classy as well. But it is hard to go past Tal at his best...
wulebgr 19 ( +1 | -1 )
The championships in San Luis had some terrific games, and at least four of the games from the Leko-Kramnik World Championship are well worth time invested in studying them.

anaxagoras 22 ( +1 | -1 )
A really great read is Reinfeld and Horowitz's "Chess Traps, Pitfalls and Swindles." With numerous examples from the older masters, you learn how chess games are *really* won and lost between humans.
fudeematt 34 ( +1 | -1 )
I like older games because there were almost no draws, and the players both went all out for the win, ya know? Morphy's and Alkehine's games glue me the the chess board for hours. Nowadays people play boring, dull openings like the Bogo-Indian or the French etc. And it seems as though all tournament games end in draws.