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Post mortem: Helpful or not?


  • 5 years ago · Quote · #1

    trysts

    The "post mortem" in chess is supposed to be a friendly exchange of ideas between the two players after the game has concluded. This is something I would like to avoid, with my reasons being that I am done playing the game and would like to either play another, or I would like to reflect on this last game myself. My feelings about immediate discussions after the game are not meant to insult the other player. A nice handshake, or "gg"  is all the chess-ettiquette I think necessary. But, this is not as easy as it sounds.
     Not too long ago, I played a local tournament. A chess store in the basement of a clothing store runs Saturday, 3 round tournaments once a month, for $5.00 entry fee. The format is each side has 90min. for the game. This tournament had about twenty or so players. But this is all beside the point.
     After my first game, the opponent asked me where he had went wrong, while setting up his position of interest. I said "I don't know, I'm going to get some coffee", and started to get up from the table. He continued to ask, "What if this...?" "Maybe this...". I walked away.
     Game two was just a handshake, and a smile, after the game.
     Game three, and there were a few people watching our game as it concluded. It was drawn. Handshake. "Good game, thanks." He started saying, "You know you could have won if you would have..." I smiled and started to get up to leave. He said, "Here, sit down I'll show you." I said, "It's quite alright, I want to look around." Then he said, "You're actually really good. It's called a "post mortem". Here sit down and I'll show you something."
    I smiled and walked over to some book shelves to browse. Somebody, not my opponent said, "She's kind of stuck up, isn't she." Then my opponent, and another guy came up to me. My opponent says, "Sorry. Players here usually discuss the game afterwards. It's called a 'post-mortem'."
     He turned out to be nice about it when I told him I was aware of this 'tradition', but just wanted to browse books instead.
    I don't like how the post mortem has become part of the game. How it is insulting, or says anything at all about the player who does not partake in it.
     But the post mortem is not something I find helpful to me, it is far too soon after the game for me, and I certainly can't understand it when I watch videos of Grandmasters doing it.
    It also has this strange psychology behind it. The winner of the chess game sometimes becomes quite full of himself when showing the loser of the game his errors, as well as what he should have done. I also find the reverse uncomfortable to watch, as the loser of the game assumes the role of pupil all-too-readily.
    Any thoughts on this subject?

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #2

    mschosting

    I rarely made it don't have anything agains't I guess I just ain't too friendly a smile and an handshake is great for me, if I loose Iam fast to say my opponent is to good and when I win (rarely happens antway) I just say I got lucky because he blundered but he played much better...

    But on the theorie I guess it as to be a good thing because we get inside our opponent minds and we get to see details and ideas we have never tough about them maybe next game we can apply them.

    This is in OTB games, playing online its just ty gg and thats it.

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #3

    trysts

    Yes, mschosting. I'm just like you in that respect. I don't mean to be insulting by any means. It's just that the conversation already took place on the board, and now I just want to either rest my mind, or think about it myself.

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #4

    warcralft

    I personally do not do this with my opponents but i would review my games with my friends. I think it is beneficial to see where you went wrong(for those who lose) and which moves are the ones that lead to your win(for those who win). It could help you recognize certain patterns and help improve your path of thinking.

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #5

    dannyhume

    You sound like a hilarious @$$hole to your opponents, but I agree to a point, but that is because I am a much weaker player than you...at my level, I hardly see the point of being told that I hung my queen, fell for a 1-3 move combination/tactic, didn't know the !@#$ trap in the Sicilian, or should have recognized the mating threat arising in the 1st 6 moves of the King's Gambit Accepted, or telling my opponent the same.

    Maybe you could wear a name tag saying "no postmortem" or nicely pre-empt the post-mortem prior to the game so that your loser opponent doesn't feel like s/he is being dismissed as inferior and unworthy and your winner opponent doesn't feel like you are being a passive-aggressive poor sport (unless you do get that pissed off after a loss and don't care about such perceptions, but it sounds like you do).  

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #6

    RainbowRising

    Not conducting a post analysis is not rude.

    Walking away when someone is speaking to you is.

    If you don't want to do it all you have to do is say so.

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #7

    zxb995511

    @ trysts

    I really can't understand your sentiments. Post-mortems are awesome no matter what. If I could read minds and know what my oponent thought through a game then they would be useless, but since that is not the case its always interesting to know what your oponent saw\didin't see and how he evaluated different positions. There's nothing to lose exept a real fun and cool experience!

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #8

    trysts

    It didn't seem like he was speaking to me(the first player), as he just started to to ask questions almost to himself. He wasn't looking at me. And when I left, and he continued talking to himself. It's a small place, and you could hear him saying things like, "No, that doesn't work, cause..." It seemed like if I would have stayed, I could have participated in his 'self-post mortem analysis', but I don't think he cared whether I was there, or not. I don't think I was an "@$$hole" about it. That is, unless it's somehow assumed that I must stay because of chess ettiquite.

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #9

    trysts

    zxb995511 wrote:

    @ trysts

    I really can't understand your sentiments. Post-mortems are awesome no matter what. If I could read minds and know what my oponent thought through a game then they would be useless, but since that is not the case its always interesting to know what your oponent saw\didin't see and how he evaluated different positions. There's nothing to lose exept a real fun and cool experience!


    I wish I could share your sentiments. "Cool experiences" in life are always desired. But, I can't do immediate analysis of my games without feeling it is not helpful to me. And I won't sit there and fake it. Reading Grandmasters books and their thoughts during a game is fascinating to me. I don't get the same feelings at all, about my own games.

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #10

    dannyhume

    The whole thing still sounds hilarious regardless of your @$$#01e status.  

    I said "I don't know, I'm going to get some coffee", and started to get up from the table. He continued to ask, "What if this...?" "Maybe this...". I walked away. 

    I have this image of an eager developing player frantically setting up pieces with a hurried voice as he begins to perceive your impending eternal departure, hoping to rope you in for just one simple question that he knows you have absolutely no interest in answering, and as he sees his urgent impassioned plea soundly rejected, he pretends to auto-analyze out loud in order to save face...phenomenal.  

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #11

    trysts

    dannyhume wrote:

    The whole thing still sounds hilarious regardless of your @$$#01e status.  

    I said "I don't know, I'm going to get some coffee", and started to get up from the table. He continued to ask, "What if this...?" "Maybe this...". I walked away. 

    I have this image of an eager developing player frantically setting up pieces with a hurried voice as he begins to perceive your impending eternal departure, hoping to rope you in for just one simple question that he knows you have absolutely no interest in answering, and as he sees his urgent impassioned plea soundly rejected, he pretends to auto-analyze out loud in order to save face...phenomenal.  


    That was hilarious!Laughing

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #12

    Chess_Enigma

    Seems like a miscommunication, just say after the game that you are not intersted in post-mortem analysis.

    I personaly find post-mortem a great way to cool down after the game and make new friends. There will always be the weird ones and the cocky ones, but those risks are always there whenever you meet new people.

    Maybe you should try it a few times before you completley dismiss it.

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #13

    trysts

    I did.

    I like your Tal pictureSmile

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #14

    dannyhume

    trysts wrote:

    That was hilarious!


    Thanks! (and for your anecdotes, which brought me great joy)

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #15

    MyCowsCanFly

    [COMMENT DELETED]
  • 5 years ago · Quote · #16

    Tricklev

    Post mortem is great, I usually enjoy them alot, usually gives me another 2-3 ideas to think about when I look through the game later on.

     

    Unless it's with one of the aforementioned fellas who get's a bit to full of himself and takes the teacher role. But those aren't the worst, the worst fellas are the one that shots of tactical combinations so quick that you can't follow the move order, and he clearly hasn't seen it all, rather he just shows the first thing that comes into his mind. It's even worse when you stop him the second time, go back and try to follow the combination, only to find that he has just hung a piece if I reverse the move order, and they still continue to shoot of combinations at the speed of light.

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #17

    trysts

    Tricklev wrote:

    Post mortem is great, I usually enjoy them alot, usually gives me another 2-3 ideas to think about when I look through the game later on.

     

    Unless it's with one of the aforementioned fellas who get's a bit to full of himself and takes the teacher role. But those aren't the worst, the worst fellas are the one that shots of tactical combinations so quick that you can't follow the move order, and he clearly hasn't seen it all, rather he just shows the first thing that comes into his mind. It's even worse when you stop him the second time, go back and try to follow the combination, only to find that he has just hung a piece if I reverse the move order, and they still continue to shoot of combinations at the speed of light.


    I experienced the exact thing, where the speed of the combinations they are showing me is incomprehensible. Where they play lightning chess while showing me how pregnant with possibilities a given position has. This is totally useless to me, unless I get upgraded.

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #18

    Faries

    I never considered someone who doesn't want to do one at the end of the game rude. I enjoy doing them myself because I am very eager to learn more about chess and getting inside someone's head who you just played can often show you a lot of things that were going on in the game that you didn't notice from your side it is also a good way to get to know people since the post mortems rarely are 100% about the game but a lot about yourselves at the same time. but there are also times you have a long grueling game and you just wish to relax and i tell them i am going to relax instead of doing more chess and no one yet has seemed offended by that.

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #19

    trysts

    Tonydal has brought up another point that I think is interesting:

    "people who have lost and yet seem to feel compelled to show you how many different ways they might have won and so forth."

    It's like starting some new game. An ego-damage-control game, where one has lost, but, they almost continue to play. They have not only seen where they have errored, but they point out 'something deeper' behind it all that you, in inadvertantly winning, may not be aware of. 'Look what you could have done had you seen that!' One is forced to sit there, plunging the depths of the endless possibilities that your opponent had to consider. Your win is reduced to luck. Your opponent was calculating combinations so profound, that it is mere happenstance that the order became confused. Of course they lost the game...BUT, what does that mean really when you consider what they had seen?Laughing

  • 5 years ago · Quote · #20

    Elubas

    Post mortems are nothing special, and if you don't want to do them there is nothing wrong with that.

    They're usually not especially helpful, I look at them more as sort of small talk (usually we don't actually analyze moves on a board, though sometimes when there is a crowd of strong players they play moves they think were good). I do highly prefer to go over them myself, but I don't consider a post mortem to be a real reflection of the game.


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