Ten Tips for Just-Beginning Players

Mar 6, 2018, 2:08 PM |

These are a couple of tips I made that helped me way back when XD

Just really simple things to help you out.


1) Always remember piece values. You can probably tell that a queen for a pawn is a bad trade, but you also need to know how much each piece is worth. The Queen is worth nine points; a Rook five; Bishops and Knights are both five; and pawns are one. Kings are not assigned a rank as when they are Checkmated the game is over.


2) Get your pieces out. First Knights, then Bishops. Develop the pieces on the side you want to castle first. For example:


3) Don't play fast games -- longer than ten minutes. You learn more if it's not speeding by at light speed and you can look at what your opponent is doing. If you lose, then you can find a defense or replicate that attack. 


4) Don't double your pawns. When your pawns are stacked on top of eachother, then they can't protect eachother, making them harder to defend. Maybe you think it isn't important to defend pawns, but in the endgame when you be needing a Queen, you'll be wishing for some pawns. 

     For example, if your opponent captures your Knight with their Bishop, you have an option to take it with your pawn or another piece, and taking with a pawn will double up, then always take with the piece (unless you have less defenders, then take with the pawn or you may drop a piece!). The same is true if capturing will move two pawns away from eachother:

Rather than taking with the g2 pawn, which would have doubled or 'stacked' the pawns.
5) Do tactics. Everyday. Without a membership you can do five tactics per day. Do these. If you have a membership, try to spend at least half an hour doing them each day.
6) Play often, and don't be discouraged. Get in your practice, even if it's frustrating. Even if it looks like you're never going to win a game. You will eventually, if you're trying.
7) Take lessons. If you have a coach, that's great. Otherwise, watch videos and analyze your games (mostly the ones that you lost or that were close games/draws).
8) Play people that are better than you, even if you probably can't beat them. You'll learn from it (and even if you don't, just imagine the look on their face when you finally win!)
9) Think about every move. Why did they do this? Are they threatening a piece/pawn? Do they have Checkmate? Also your moves. Do I have an attack? Can I checkmate? Can I win a piece/pawn? Do this before every move.
10) Have fun.
I hope these helped! If you have any to share, put them in the comments.