Analysing the position - Tactical Element
As amatuer players the vast majority of our games will be decided because of a tactical element, because tactics are ultimately decisive. It makes sense therefore that we scan the position for tactics first and foremost.
Although we tend to think of tactics in terms of motifs like pins, skewers, forks etc they can be readily divided up into three categories.
1. Tactics which result because of the position of the pieces, things like a king and queen on the same semi/open file or two rooks on the same diagonal. One only need to envision a bishop on the same diagonal to see the tactical potential.
2. Tactics which result because of the dynamic potential of pieces. One simply needs to think of a passed pawn on its way to the queening square, or a discovered attack and its the dynamic potential of the pieces which result in the tactic being executed.
3. Tactics which result because of some strategic weakness. We only need to think of tactics like a back rank mate, or an exposed king to realise that these strategic weaknesses can be a very powerful way to exploit tactics in a chess position.
Of course tactics may result as a combination of all of these features, however its up to the chess player to attempt to discern what is the most prominent feature of a chess position, whether strategic or tactical and to formulate his plans and ideas along these lines.