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<h1 style='margin-bottom: 0px;'><a href="http://www.wikihow.com/Calculate-Chess-Tactics">How to Calculate Chess Tactics</a></h1>
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Can you think three moves ahead in chess? It's harder than it sounds, but you can learn to do it. Once you do this visualization excersize you will realize you can calculate much further than you ever knew you could, and you won't settle for less, next time you play chess.
<a name="Steps"></a><h2> Steps </h2>
<ol><li> Set out a chess board. Make sure you are using a set that has algebraic notation on it.<a href="/Read-Algebraic-Chess-Notation" title="Read Algebraic Chess Notation"> Algebraic notation</a> is a way for you to read the moves and then play them on the board for each side so you can follow a game and study what each side played, and analyze the moves. Across the bottom will be the letters from "a" to "h." the letters will not be capitalized. There will be numbers going up the sides from "1" to "8." Each square has an address. The first square on the board is "a1." To represent a move you start with the first letter of the piece, capitalized, then you write the square you moved it to. If two different pieces that start with the same letter can move to the same square then you include the square the piece originated from. Each piece starts with the first letter of its name, except the knight, which starts with a capital "N." If it is a pawn then you just write the name of the square it moves to with no capital letter. Castling is written 0-0 for kingside castling and 0-0-0 for queenside. There is more to explain about how to read a chess game, but for now, just follow the directions to get to a certain position where the visual excersize will begin.
</li><li>Play the following moves, moving for each side. 1.e4 is a white move. 1...e5 is a black move. In a scoresheet it looks like this: 1. e4 e5. Next play 2.Bc4 Qf6. Next 3.Nf3 Qg6. 4. Nc3 Qxg2. When there is a small letter x it means capture. So the Queen has captured the pawn on g2. Now you begin the excersize, and though you will be calculating white's move, you will be visualizing for both sides.
</li><li>First let's analyze what has happened. The queen has taken a pawn. It's not good to lose pieces or pawns willy-nilly, but it's also not generally a good idea to move the same piece twice, nor to move the queen out first, as she is such a powerful piece that she becomes a target and can get trapped. Greed can also get you into trouble, especially if you go attacking before your pieces are developed. Also there is a saying, "Loose pieces fall off, meaning that pieces that are not protected can become targets of fancy tactics. So knowing these things, let's see if you can find a way to punish black.
</li><li>Let's calculate. Find five candidate moves. You will go down the branch of just one of them. This is what it means to calculate three moves ahead. You don't just pick one move and follow it. You pick as many as you can, and then you analyze each one, finding the best possible moves for your opponent as you can, and seeing if you have a good response to it. There is a rule among strong chess players that says "Look at all checks and captures." There is a move here that satisfies both. Look for a moment at the board and see if you can figure out what it is, and then go on to step 5. But first look for it.
</li><li>Did you you find Bxf7? That's the one. So now comes the visualization part. Don't touch the pieces. Do this in your mind. Visualize what the board is going to look like after you play Bxf7. See the piece there. While visualizing the piece there, ask what are all of black's options for getting out of check. How many are there? That's right, there are three. The king can capture the bishop on f7, or he can move to where the queen used to be, on d8, or it can move forward one square to e7. Visualize the king capturing the piece on f7. See in your mind the new position after these two moves have been made. Hold the image in your mind as clearly as you can. Now ask what white can do from here. What moves can white make in this new position where black's king is on the f7 square. Name several possible moves, and look for one that check's because you always want to look at all checks and captures first. See anything good? You could check by Ng5 but there is a problem with that. The queen is guarding that square and will capture. So how can you move the queen away. How about put the rook on the g-file. Visualize the Rook moving to g1. Now where can the queen go. Only one square. Now visualize the queen moving to h3. Now you can check with the knight. Notice anything else about Ng5? That's right, it's a fork. You win the queen. So you sacrificed the bishop to win the queen. Not bad. Do you see any better moves for the black queen? No. Probably just to take the rook on g1 to get as much as he can out of it. Can you reverse the order of these moves so he can't do that? How about instead of Bxf7 first you do that second, after chasing the queen to h3. Now you can get the queen with a minimum of losses. Of course, you also may have tipped off your opponent to your plans by chasing his queen to the forking square.
</li><li>Now you have visualized three moves ahead for one move. In a real game you want to analyze more than one move. So you would go through this process for each of the moves that you are considering. The further you are able to go, and the more vividly and accurately you are able to visualize the positions two or three, or even four moves ahead, the better chess player you become.
<a name="Tips"></a><h2> Tips </h2>
</li><li>Look at all checks and captures
</li><li>Try to see tricky plans for your opponent, so you can prevent them in time.
</li><li>Loose pieces fall off, so when a piece is unguarded, be aware of possible tactics that might occur.
</li><li>Don't go for "cheapos." A cheapo is a trick that only works if your opponent makes the worst move. Always assume your opponent see your trap, and if your plan fails, and it makes your position worse, you can lose the game. Only go for cheap tricks if they improve, not worsen your position.
<a name="Things_You.27ll_Need"></a><h2> Things You'll Need </h2>
<ul><li>A chess board with algebraic notation
<a name="Related_wikiHows"></a><h2> Related wikiHows </h2>
<ul><li><a href="/Begin-Mastering-Chess" title="Begin Mastering Chess">How to Begin Mastering Chess</a>
</li><li><a href="/Become-a-Better-Chess-Player" title="Become a Better Chess Player">How to Become a Better Chess Player</a>
</li><li><a href="/Play-Chess" title="Play Chess">How to Play Chess</a>
</li><li><a href="/Read-Algebraic-Chess-Notation" title="Read Algebraic Chess Notation">How to Read Algebraic Chess Notation</a>
</li><li><a href="/Set-up-a-Chessboard" title="Set up a Chessboard">How to Set up a Chessboard</a>
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