Attacking Chess - an Introduction

Attacking Chess - an Introduction

Jul 7, 2016, 8:19 AM |

Hello! Always dreamt of annihilating all your opponents with brutal attacks? So have I. So, as any chess player would do, I grabbed books to get started on my journey to ferocious attacking skills. The first one is Jacob Aagaard Attacking Manual 1. I want to share the lessons with all you amazing people on this site. So over the next few posts, I will be going over the different strategies, rules and lessons I learn from this book, and posting my insights here along with a nice puzzle(s) so that you can come along with me in this journey. Without further ado, let’s get started.


In this book, Jacob Aagaard outlines 7 ‘global principles’ of attacking chess relevant in “all kinds of positions”. They are colourfully titled as:

  1. Bring all your Toys to the Nursery Party
  2. Don’t lose your Breath
  3. Add some Colour to your Play
  4. Size Matters!
  5. Hit ‘em where it hurts
  6. Chewing on Granite
  7. Evolution/Revolution

Doesn’t it make you want to just grab this book out of intrigue? He is a clever author not only in his choice of words, but also his wonderful annotations. Here is a sneak peek – a small game from 1980 which beautifully exhibits some of the principles in the book. Enjoy!

As we see, Black is having a quite pleasant game, being ahead in development. So what does Black do? A tempting sacrifice of course!

9… Rxe3?!?!

Junge has decided to exchange his rook to disturb White’s development. This creates a quite interesting imbalance. Black is up on time and development, a dynamic advantage, and must work quickly to win. White on the other hand, is winning by material, a static advantage. If Black cannot pull off a convincing attack or at least draw compensation, he is doomed for disaster in the later stages.

White has committed the sin of granting Black a tempo by this move. Had he played 12. Ne5, he could have provoked conflict and lay to sleep Black’s plans. Alas, not so. Now we see the second principle of momentum being beautifully exploited by black. His moves come with tempo.



This game illustrates the application of quite a few principles, such as bringing all your pieces to attack, attacking the weak squares and a sense of momentum. This is common in a lot of games and positions and needs to be keenly understood to march forward in our chess skills.

In my next post, I’ll be going over Principle 1 – Bring all your Toys to the Nursery Party. Meanwhile, if you want 2 more games of Jacob Aagaard, including a 2007 Sicilian game where the author goes into an exclamation frenzy as Black capitalizes on a bad positional decision to brutally force a mate on White, check out his book here. Until then, see ya! Cool