chess tips

Chess Tips

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estebanw 54 ( +1 | -1 )
"Analyze the board" curse I enjoy tremendously playing at GK. It is great to play at your own pace and not having pressure with time. My ranking has been steadily rising lately (> 1550) and you know how happy that makes us feel.
However, one of the main reasons for my success is my frequent (addiction) use of the wonderful "Analyze the Board" feature. I do not have the opportunity to play a live person, but I am sure that the quality of my play would decrease significantly in a live tournament.
Am I condemned to be a GK player?
Can someone else tell their experiences and opinions?
sf115 40 ( +1 | -1 )
I wouldn't worry about it too much. Although you're not allowed to use an "analyze the board" feature a match, actual chess pieces are easier to analyse (English spelling). Also all you need is experence on the chess board. If you play a lot you can analyse in your head just as well as you can now on GK.

If you are worried then maybe analysing the position as much as you can in your head and then use the "analyze the board" feature.
lighttotheright 80 ( +1 | -1 )
There is something about physical 3-D pieces that makes is easier to find good lines of play. Whenever I find myself in a difficult situation in one of my GK games, I sometimes break out one of my umpteen gillion boards and set-up the position. This helps me. But make sure is is the exact position. Set-up mistakes of this nature can be costly.

I also practice quick 10 minute time limit chess, every now and then. The GK experience is actually improving my chess skills tremendously in quick chess. Maybe because I'm forced to analyse more carefully. Quick play on GK can be an asset too. People not used to playing fast will sometimes try to mimic the fast play and get themselves into trouble. Playing quick and slow improves both kinds of play in my experience.
wschmidt 72 ( +1 | -1 )
estebanw, I'm a much weaker player OTB. Nerves, time-trouble, oversights and opening problems - I suffer from them all. I still enjoy the battle though, especially as I get a little older and I have less ego involvement in the event.
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I'll second sf115's suggestion that you can use the GK experience to strengthen OTB play. Using the analysis board only after I do the visualization myself is something I do a lot. Another, which someone suggested on these pages long ago, is to strengthen your opening play by replaying the opening moves of the game each time you look at a GK game. It is a great help in learning a repertoire.
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I haven't tried light's suggestion of setting up a board for GK analysis, but I like that idea too. I'll be giving it a try. ws
suzyfromflorida 112 ( +1 | -1 )
Analyse the Board I use the "Analyse the Board" feature BIG TIME! I never said this to anyone, but, in my heart of hearts, I feel like it's cheating -- even though I know it's not cheating. Now please understand, I use it and will continue to use it and love it very much because it's really a great learning aid. But I think it's cheating -- well let me rephrase that!: I suspect it's a KIND OF cheating, or a COUSIN to cheating because suppose I'm playing chess in real life and then my opponent makes his/her move. Now suppose I pull out another board and start making all the moves I look at in the "Analyse the Board" feature. I can't imagine the look on my opponent's face if I did that!

WAIT!!! I JUST FIGURED IT OUT! But what if my opponent could do the same thing and what if we agreed beforehand that we would allow practicing on the side? Then, it would NOT be cheating, because this would become the new RULE of our game. And each side could practice and we would accept it as part of the game.

Okay, thanks! I feel better now! Using the "Analys the Board" feature here is definitely NOT cheating! Thanks for clearing this up in my mind for me!
ssisyphus 56 ( +1 | -1 )
OTB I use the 'analyze the board' feature a lot too - most of my time online on GK is spent on it. I love the new version. But I have the same apprehension that I would not be good enough for OTB. For example, I cannot spot a mate four moves ahead unless I spend 15 minutes on analyze the board, physically moving pieces around & thinking.
How does this work in OTB? Do experienced players spot patterns/mates etc out of experience/memory or are their brains/eyes just quicker? Having never played serious OTB I have no idea how this works.
spurtus 11 ( +1 | -1 )
I must say I've been playing OTB once and suddenly been frustrated I couldnt move the bits about!
sf115 42 ( +1 | -1 )
In reply to the comment by ssisyphus, when good players play OTB they have lots of patterns that they remember. This helps them to find mating patterns. To find more patterns and generally improve you need experence and you need to study. GK gives experence.
kewms 54 ( +1 | -1 )
I'll repeat the advice others have given. Analyze as far out as you can in your head, then use the second board to check your analysis and/or go out even further. Over time, your visualization will get better.

FWIW, I scored a significant upset in my last OTB tournament. For me, being able to look at a position very deeply at GK helps me analyze more efficiently OTB. Because I've gotten used to looking at all of the options, it's easier for me to prune the analysis tree and spend the limited time looking at the most important lines.
premium_steve 36 ( +1 | -1 )
being able to calculate variations well is probably one of the most important skills to learn in chess, i think.

for that reason, i try to keep away from using the 'analyze the board' option altogether. i'd hope that having to calculate on my own would help my vision in OTB chess, where you can't move pieces and time is more of a factor.



estebanw 60 ( +1 | -1 )
Thanks for the comments As I imagined, many of us have the same mixed feelings about the feature. I think that "Analyze the Board" is great and has allowed me to increase my level and learn much and have more fun. I love it and plan to use it in the future. Susyfromflorida has a good point, but if the opponent is using it half the time as we use it, it would make a big difference in OTB where time is a factor.
In the end, I have to agree (and admire) with premiun_steve. If he can beat me in GK, imagine what he can do in OTB!
The point is that I can't go around saying that my ranking is 1550 because if I play a "real" 1550 in OTB, I will probably lose. I guess I need to try.
ganstaman 84 ( +1 | -1 )
Well, you could never equate the ratings on this site to ratings anywhere else. We are a different pool of players (most likely) than another group of rated players. Also, the format of the game does matter -- correspondence ratings differ from standard OTB time controls which differ from rapid which differ from blitz.

I see you are from the US -- as far as I know, your USCF rating wouldn't even be the same as your FIDE rating if you have them.

Also, different people do better with different time controls. My USCF rating is 1538, and that's based on only some G/30 tournaments against mostly the same 10 or less players. Here, I'm over 1800, and I think I'll probably stay hovering around there or 17XX.