Finding Good Moves

  • KingLeopold
  • | Dec 30, 2008

Finding good moves to play in a game is what we all strive for. Yet over and over we repeatedly make blunders and bad moves.

Finding good moves have been written about by the likes of Capablanca, Lasker, Tarrasch, Pachman, Kotov, Dvoresky and many others, but these all seam too complicated to me. Thats why I have come up with the ACTION moves for my students to use. These are steps that you have to memorize, but they are easy and will help you in your play.

The ACTION moves series:

(For every action there is a reaction)

1.CHECKS: A. Look to see if your king can be checked. If so, make sure you can escape. B. Look to see if you can check your opponent. If so, how will he react? Will you be able to check him again? What will he do then?

2.CAPTURES: Can you capture a piece for equal or better material? What will your opponent play after you capture his piece? Will you be able to check him after his play?

3.PIECE ATTACK: Can you attack any of his pieces? What will his reaction be? Will that allow you to check him then, or capture one of his pieces for free?

4.MATE THREAT: Can you threaten mate in one? (This has gotten me out of many perdicaments)

5.IMPROVEMENT: The above 4 steps will help you in identifing good moves, yet if you are unable to play any of the above, that means your pieces are either not developed or are not on good squares and you will need to improve the position of your piece before being able to find a good move. Remember, Bobby Fischer said; "Tactics flow from a superior position."


  • 3 months ago


    Nice read..!! never give up never surrender..

  • 8 years ago


    I'm fairly new, but this is single handedly the most helpful thing I've ever read about chess.



  • 8 years ago


    Some days back when I was starting out to play chess a little seriously, I was on the lookout for something like this and kind of arrived at a similar conclusion. It is very useful for beginners like me to help focus on every move rather systematically.

  • 8 years ago


    rather than try to attack a piece, see if there are any double attacks out there. A piece attack can be evaded, but a double attack is what leads to tactics :)

  • 8 years ago


    Nice job!

  • 8 years ago


    awesome ! Thanks and a happy new year

  • 8 years ago


    Good points made to remind and appreciate the game chess. thanx.

  • 8 years ago


    never hurts to be reminded to calculate the forceful moves-good post

  • 8 years ago


    check to see if there is a mate in one already... :)

  • 8 years ago


    This is helpful.  I'll recommend your post to my friends on this site.  Others see Susan Polger's Power Principles of Chess:

  • 8 years ago


    Thank you very much!

  • 8 years ago


    thanks this can help a lot. can you have an article on how to have a good position then

  • 8 years ago


    Thank you - I just started playing and am looking for tips like this that are easy to remember and keep you thinking. Happy New Year

  • 8 years ago


    Perhaps it is my PC but I cannot see my text as I type it in this window - switched pc's and opearting systems and browser versions and all seems well.

    I also like the Avoid, Block, Capture or ABC's when in check.  So now there are two for me to use - the Action Series and ABC. 

  • 8 years ago


    A helpful article, thanks a lot!

  • 8 years ago


    wow! thank you . have a very prosperous new year!

  • 8 years ago



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