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In most countries,the first thing they teach beginners is to study endgames
a lot of famous players have agreed on that "the best spent time for a player to strdy...is the endgame"
The end game study that will repay your efforts most are rook endings imo. Why ? Two reasons : 1 they occur the most frequently AND they are the most difficult with even GMs often misplaying them. However, I dont recommend beginners studying rook endings, except for the lucena and philidor positions. I prefer middlegames myself but dont hate endings. I do spend much less time on endings than middlegames/tactics though. I much prefer my decisive games to end in the middlegames, win or lose, for practical reasons. I am much less depressed and drained after a 2 hour game in which me or my opponent wins in a sharp middlegame than when the game takes 4 to 5 hours and then you have no time between rounds to recover or get a bite to eat...... as I age this becomes more true than ever.
I have to side with the endgame loving folks. Most endgames are much more complicated than they look. A rook and a few pawns for each side, possibly a bishop or two thrown in, and you've got the recipe for some very demanding play. If having fewer pieces looks like a simple position then be prepared to lose.
A strong player (National Master) who's been giving me pointers tells me that when a strong player plays a weak player, it is almost thematic to see them drag the weaker player to the endgame ... kicking and screaming as this post seems to indicate. This is even more common when a titled player plays one of those children-prodigies who put Rybka/Fritz to shame tactically.
There's even a little saying he uses - "Take the little children to the endgame ..."
You might want to ask yourself why this is the case.
A strong player (National Master) who's been giving me pointers tells me that when a strong player plays a weak player, it is almost thematic to see them drag the weaker player to the endgame
Here's what GoldenDog wrote in #2:
Mistakes get smaller and winning margins subtler as skill level increases between equal opponents, and a good game not infrequently extends to the endgame
So between the two of you you're saying that the end game is the accepted norm in all circumstances.
But with all due respect, you're quoting the assertion of an unnamed national master who cannot be crossexamined - this qualifies as hearsay.
Why would a much stronger player waste time dragging a beginner to the end game. It would imply he was unable to dispatch him quicker.
In a video from IM Jesse Kraii on the Fried Liver I've watched repeatedly, he says that in exhibitions where a GM plays multiple games simultaneously, its commonplace for him to employ the Fried Liver as it will quickly weed out all the weak players.
The titled person I did not name goes by TheGoat on the ICC chess server. He is a National Master.
Sure, now if you tell me I made him up, let me do one better.
I will throw out a name of a book. Hard for me to make that one up. :)
Simon Webb's Chess for Tigers. He specifically teaches you how to tackle stronger players and even better, how to deal with "rabbits" or weaker players who are trying to get a scalp out of you. Even he describes this notion of playing "solid" and safe and winning the endgame ... and MINIMIZING RISK!
Would ANY titled player reading this post agree/disagree that the stronger players (GM vs Expert, Expert vs 1400-1600) prefer to drag the weaker players into an endgame where their knowledge is clearly superior? I fear, unless we have a titled player weigh in, anyone here, regardless of how much better their rating is compared to the original poster, is not getting through to him.
Heck, I'm USCF 1718 (Above average, statistically) and when I play a 1300-ish player who I know is tactically dangerous (as most kids in tournament halls are), why in the world would I play risky positions when I know my endgame knowledge is far superior, given the relative difference in ratings?
I see two paths:
- Take risks and win as soon as possible in a aggressive tactical line .. . like the Fried-Liver massacre example you used as your anchor to justify your reasoning. Yeah, I can make it quick, sure 9 times of 10 I will destroy him... but what if...the weaker player happens to get me into complications .. then the risks increase. Do I want that?
- Or I could play safe ... take no risks, play non-tactical, grind my opponent down to a few pieces and win in positions that I know better than my opponent.
Which of these two paths guarantees me more winning percentages? It's a no brainer!!!
If you want to enjoy tactical shoot-out chess with under-20-move massacres, please play it the way you feel it should be played.
However, if you want to get stronger and stand a chance of consistently beating strong opposition, pay attention to what many of these good people are saying to you in their posts.
For me, it depends on how the game progresses. I look to weaken my opponent's structure in some form (so that it will be a liability in an endgame), or obviously I would like to win some material. If I am up significant material (something other than 1 pawn) then I am most likely going to simplify [happily].
The time where I would avoid transposing to an endgame is where the position is roughly equal. In that case, the more pieces on the board, the more complex the position.
What will often happen is this:
Very seldom do I prefer the direct attack in the middlegame.
This is similar to saying "I stink at openings, but I'm good at endgames."
It's paradoxical. You can't play chess without "liking" the end game. There's really no room for improvement if you refuse to play it.
No one seems to be pitching in with the op's dislike/dismissal of the endgame.
Sometimes you get these threads where inexperienced players argue about chess matters with more experienced players--even masters--and other inexperienced players join in on the wrong side.
Not so here. I don't think the thread is about chess anymore since there is no debate about anything chessical.
When I first started playing chess many years ago, I "hated" endgames as well, probably because I "blew" so many "won games" because of not knowing how convert my advantage in the endgame. IM William Martz helped a young High School player by giving me 2 books that really changed my game for the better. He was giving a simultaneous exhibition, I lost to him where I couldn't convert a won position (I was a knight up). 1.Technique in Chess by Gerald Abrams and 2. Endgame Problems by Troitsky. The first book emphasized how to convert one advantage into another, choosing the easiest win, knowing general endgame winning positions, etc. The second book helped me see the true artistic nature of endgame studies.
I used to hate endgames. It was mostly because I was bad at them. I got better at them and found them more interesting(well at least the ones where I am winning:D). Most people call me a "tactical" player(sort of what you are describing in your first post as you like I venture.). But, I like to win, whether that means crushing you in the middlegame or putting the positional squeeze on. Going into a better endgame versus attacking a super solid defensive structure is much more fun. Learn to play what the position tells you you need to play and not what you want to play and you will start to play much better chess
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