Formation Attack Strategies Book (June 2012)

Formation Attack Strategies Book (June 2012)

| 5 | Amazing Games

Formation Attack Strategies

The much awaited sequel to the best selling book, “Formation Attacks”, has arrived. “Formation Attack Strategies” is another 500 page book, full of great attack information with 579 fabulous attack games from all openings and all eras. The games provided in the book came from an in-depth global search for unique, inspirational, and original attacks from some of the world’s greatest attackers. Many of the them toil in remote areas of the planet and have only a local following. Let me introduce you to attacking players like Guy West of New Zealand, Marc Esserman of Boston, MA, Liu Wenzhe of China, Kevin Seidler of Denver, CO, Manuel Bosboom of The Netherlands, Dharshan Kumaran of India, Padre Murphy of Ireland, to name a few.

The book also contains discussions about many attack philosophies, greater detail concerning attack strategy and planning, more extensive information about the identification and exploitation of weaknesses, and so much more.

If you are one of many people who love my last book, you will be ecstatic about “Formation Attack Strategies”.

For readers, here is a chapter from the book:

Lay Down Sacrifice

Lay Down Sacrifice is one of the most dangerous attack weapons in chess. However in non-master games, this powerful maneuver is rarely seen. I must confess that prior to writing “Formation Attacks”, I myself under-utilized this weapon. Since then, the Lay Down Sacrifice has become a fully integrated part of my attack arsenal.

The primary purpose of the Lay Down Sacrifice is to pry open the defensive protection in front of the enemy King. The Lay Down Sacrifice works best when the opponent is forced to accept the material. It is important to stay away from situations where the opponent can just leave the piece hanging and simply ignore your gift. Under that scenario your move would instead most likely fall into the Hope Chess category.

The above diagram illustrates a basic example of a Lay Down Sacrifice. Black has no choice but to accept the Knight sacrifice because on the move Kh8, White can either capture the Black Queen with Nxe8 or checkmate with Qxh7#.

Simple Examples

------------ Game #420 ------------

Black allows his Queen to be pushed around by White minors (all free developing moves) till he is defenseless against a Lay Down Sacrifice.

------------ Game #421 ------------

Black leaves his King open for a Lay Down Sacrifice because of a lack of defenders.

------------ Game #422 ------------

A Lay Down Sacrifice followed by a timely Bxh7+ leaves Black’s kingside completely shattered and wide open for White’s other attackers. The amazing part of this game is how fast this attack happens.

------------ Game #423 ------------

White turns a kingside space advantage and local material advantage into a Lay Down Sacrifice and a checkmate.

------------ Game #424 ------------

White forces open the Black kingside with a Lay Down Sacrifice and as a result wins the Black Queen.

Featured Game

------------ Game #425 ------------

One slight opening error by White, leads to a punishing Black attack. Of course, the key move that ignites the furious Black attack is a Lay Down Sacrifice.

Formation Attacks Examples

------------ Game #426 ------------

------------ Game #427 ------------


Model Games

In the first set of games (Games #428 to #430), a Lay Down Sacrifice is used to bust open the defender’s kingside.

------------ Game #428 ------------

White has no choice but to accept the Lay Down Sacrifice which opens up the g-file in front of his King.

------------ Game #429 ------------

Black finishes off White with a pair of sacrifices leading to a back rank checkmate.

------------ Game #430 ------------

Black has so much confidence in his Lay Down Sacrifice that he gives up his Queen to reach the position.

The next group of games (Games #431 to #435) are all Queen Lay Down Sacrifices.

------------ Game #431 ------------

White utilizes his Queen as a Lay Down gift to prevent the Black King from escaping.

------------ Game #432 ------------

"Lay Down Sacrifice or Qishing
    Pole? You make the call!"

------------ Game #433 ------------

Black ignores the White Bishop Lay Down Sacrifice so White adds his Queen to the mix.

------------ Game #434 ------------

A well positioned Knight and Bishop can work wonders for a Queen Lay Down Sacrifice.

------------ Game #435 ------------

This Lay Down Sacrifice is fueled by a subsequent discovery attack on the Black Queen and some very interesting tactics.

------------ Game #436 ------------

White plays a Lay Down Bishop Sacrifice to prevent the Black King from escaping a mating net.

------------ Game #437 ------------

A Bishop Lay Down Sacrifice exposes the weak squares around the White King.

------------ Game #438 ------------

Another Lay Down Sacrifice designed to expose the weak h7 square next to the Black King. White places his Rook on f6 to prevent Black’s best defensive try, f5.

Refer to Game #393 for an additional Bishop Lay Down Sacrifice game (with Bxh7).


Preface      9
    Kudos       9
    Purpose of the Book     10

Harry Lyman      9
    Education     10
    Chess In The Schools     10
    Chess Friendships and Sportsmanship     10
    Eulogy for Harry Lyman (by Shelby Lyman)     10
    Harry Lyman Games     10
Passing The Torch      9
    Joshua Zhu          10
    Richard Cowan     10
    Matthew Miller     10
    Luke Miller           10
    Noah Raskin         10
    Eric Hammond     10
    Jimi Sullivan       10
    Phil Terrill         10
    Austin Terrill      10
    Bailey Vidler      10
    Clark Vidler       10
    Michael Oldehoff  10
    Bogdan Anghel     10
    Jamie Aronson     10
    Rich Desmarais     10
    Nick Desmarais     10
    Joe Range           10
    Bernabe Garcia    10
    Nancy Jones        10
    Adam Nehmeh     10
    Paul Nehmeh       10

Section A – Attack Philosophies    11

Personal Development     12
Frame of Mind     15
Dual Aspects of Chess     30    

Chess Mechanics      30    

Chess Strategy      32
Chess Openings     41
Work on Weaknesses    44
Player Influences    49
The Legend of John Curdo    49
Time Pressure    49
Intimidation    49
Relentless Attack    50    
Out of Ammo?     50    

Out of Control?     52

Section B – Attack Strategies    59
Computers     60
How do computers affect a game of chess today?      61    

Using my computer as a tool      61
Checking your analysis      63    

Working on new opening lines      63    

Computer abuse      63    

Interpreting computer output      63
Preparing for an Opponent     68
Most Thrilling Game Ever?     78
Amazing Endgame Mates     81

Section C – Attack Motifs    87
Opening Strategies     88    

Games #048 - #088      88
Smothered Mate     88    

Games #048 - #088      88

Knightmares    133    

Games #089 - #093     133

Windmill Attack    139    

Games #094 - #103     139

Back Rank Misery    151
    Games #104 - #115     151

Minors for a Queen    165
    Games #116 - #119     165

Fishing Pole    172    

Games #120 - #125     172

The Wedge    177    

Games #126 - #129     177

Separation of Forces    181    

Games #130 - #150     181

Play My Opening    204
        Games #151 - #251        204

Opposite Colored Bishops    204
        Games #151 - #251        204

Fatal Weakness    204
        Games #151 - #251        204
    Capture on f6 (f3) or h6 (h3)
        Games #151 - #155        204

    Capture on h7 (h2)
        Games #156 - #173        210

    Capture on g7 (g2)
        Games #174 - #187    226

    Capture on f7 (f2)
        Games #188 - #193        239

    “Laying” a Bishop or Knight on f6 (f3) or h6 (h3)
        Games #194 - #211    245

    Force weakness by threatening checkmate
        Games #212 - #235    262
                 Queen and Bishop Point at h7 (h2)
                 Games #212 - #222    262
                 Queen and Knight Point at h7 (h2)
                 Games #223 - #229    272
                 Queen/Rook and Bishop/Knight Point at g7 (g2)
                 Games #230 - #235    279

    f6 (f3) to weaken Pawn formation
         Games #236 - #241    284

    Overwhelming force at the point of attack
        Games #242 - #251    291
Open f-File    303
    Games #252 - #261    303

Indexes    467

Glossary of Terms    467

Players Index    470
Openings Index    488

What people are ssaying about Formation Attack Strategies:

Formation Attack Strategies

Life Master Brian Wall, seven time Colorado State Champion:
"I think I've died and gone to heaven. It's terrific to see Joel succeed with another instant classic."

Randall Hoch (USCF: 1891) - Texas:
"I am finding it as enjoyable as your first one. The games you have chosen are not only instructive, but also very entertaining. Your books have given me appreciation and motivation to play attacking chess from move 1. ... So I have to credit you with showing me the way!"

Michael Stewart (USCF: 2267) - Mississippi:
"I got your new book, outstanding work!!! Better than the first if that's possible. Both books are attacking classics and should be on every chess players shelf."

Anthea Carson, Denver, CO,

author of "How to Play Chess Like an Animal":
Joel Johnson has written another helpful book to improve your chess. I highly recommend this sequel to Formation Attacks, Formation Attack Strategies. This book helps one to know what kind of plans work with certain tactical motifs including ideas I had never heard of before such as "lay down sacrifice," an idea that is truly helpful to be aware of in order to look for it. Without the concept of strategies like these, and a name to associate with it, it is harder to find these ideas over the board. Johnson uses very instructive examples from games, and the way the examples are presented is easy to understand and doesn't require hours of searching through the text and following along with a board to study, but can be grasped quickly, or explored in depth if you choose. He uses examples from interesting games, and these are real games too, many of which are from top players, world class players, as well as games from ordinary players. There are several games from "fishing pole expert" Brian Wall, so if you like to play that fun system of surprise attacks, you'll especially love this book. This book is a comprehensive and thorough look at tactical motifs, strategies and ideas that you definitely should have in your chess library, if you want to improve.

Thomas M. Peterson, Madison, WI
Excellent Attacking Guide

This book is excellent. The games are mostly grouped by themes under individual attacking skills (tools); attacking strategies; and attacking motifs. The book is really a coaching guide to instruct people how to play successful attacking chess. For me, this book is like a gift from heaven. I don't want to read dry technical treatises, and this book is not one of them. It is written in accessible language, is not overly technical, and is written in a friendly open manner; however, this book is very dense in ideas. The author has found outstanding examples for what he is teaching.

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Thanks for your support, Joel Johnson

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