Pawn Endgame: Using An Extra Passed Pawn

You have an extra pawn, but do you know how to use it? Mastering the ideas in this drill will help you win many otherwise drawn endgames! You have an extra passed pawn on the queenside, far from the other pawns, and he will likely need to be used, at some point, as a decoy. While your opponent's king must stop that pawn from queening, your king can consume the pawns on the kingside, like a fox in a hen-house.

Pawn Endgame: Creating An Outside Passed Pawn

This tough endgame will make you a better all-around chess player! Here White must learn that even though the number of pawns are equal, not all pawns are created equal! White is better equipped to create a healthy and distant passed pawn, and if he uses his outside passed pawn in conjunction with activating the king, White should be able to gobble up the kingside pawns while Black is worrying about the queenside pawn.

Pawn Endgame: Using The Active King

This drill teaches you a great endgame lesson: The more active king can dominate and win an otherwise equal game! Here White needs to force Black's king into a passive position by attacking the queenside. Swapping off pawns at the right time should then open up a route to the other side of the board without allowing Black's king to ever become active.

Pawn Endgame: Using An Outside Passed Pawn

How can you possibly win an endgame when your opponent's king is so active? Use the force! Or the outside passed pawn! Your pawns cannot always promote on their own, but you can use them as decoys to draw the enemy king into a bad position. How can White set things up so that you capture the c-pawn at the same time as Black captures your a pawn, where you will then be closer to the kingside than your opponent?

Pawn Endgame: Creating Zugzwang

Ordinarily, you would not want to make your opponent move, but here it's the key to victory! Note that if either king moves, the moving side will lose their b-pawn and with it, the game. Therefore, whoever runs out of pawn moves on the kingside first will lose. Choose carefully, and you can make sure it will be Black.

Pawn Endgame: Three vs Three

Are you certain you can draw this entirely equal position against the indefatigable engine? Here are some things you should learn about king and pawn play from playing this out a few times. First, it is important to have your king as far advanced as possible. Second, your pawns are strongest when they are side by side or defending each other. Third, moving your pawns far from each other creates weaknesses, or gaps, that a king can penetrate in order to attack the pawns.

Pawn Endgame: Opposing Majorities

We know the queen is more powerful than king, but did you know the queenside usually beats the kingside?! The queenside majority is often an advantage because it is more likely to create an outside passed pawn. Despite this, White is still a bit better because of the active king, but you will have to make good use of your own kingside majority here to maintain the advantage.

Knight Endgame: Symmetrical Pawns

How's your dressage? You have some advantage here, but the point is to practice playing knight endgames against the computer. It's going to try plenty of tricks so play strong sound chess, activating your king and your knight, and be especially careful about knight forks.

Knight Endgame: An Extra Pawn

Have you heard that knight endgames are essentially pawn endgames? Seems silly, right?! However, if a pawn endgame is winning, adding knights should not change the evaluation. Practically though it is much harder to win knight endgames. The ponies are tricky and create many forks. Be wary and you will reap the win.

Knight Endgame: Few Pawns Remain

Do you know the biggest difference between knight and pawn endgames? When only a few pawns remain, you can sac the knight for the last pawns and draw. Careful attention to that resource should secure the draw here.

Knight Endgame: Space Advantage

*Gasp* You are smothering Black here! Winning with a space advantage is a matter of patience. Don't rush, but use your bind to pressure Black on both sides of the board. In a cramped position, your opponent will be unable to defend both wings.

Knight Endgame: Queenside Majorities

Make the most of your overpowered queenside! A queenside majority often provides a good plus since it is easier to create a passed pawn, and the passed pawn can be dangerous on the far side of the board.

Knight Endgame: Kingside Majority

Blech! It stinks to play a worse position, but this position can definitely be held. Your knight can't improve right away so address your king first. Your kingside pawns won't mobilize as easily as Black's queenside pawns, but don't forget about them.

Same-Color Bishops: An Extra Pawn

Do you know the winning strategy with same-color bishops? Look to keep your pawns on the opposite color of your opponent's bishop and lock Black's pawns on the same color as the bishops. Avoid too many pawn trades, and don't allow your opponent to sacrifice the bishop for your last pawns!

Same-Color Bishops: Gruenfeld Endgame

We could have a long conversation about this position (I'm sure you are a scintillating conversationalist!), but I just want to say one thing: king activity.

Same-Color Bishops: Queenside Majority

It's a dark-square duel between the bisohps! The queenside majority is a nice advantage. Create a passed pawn and you will be doing well. Don't forget to activite your king in the process.

Same-Color Bishops: Kingside Majority

This time it's a light-square duel between the same-color bisohps! In this case, you have to defend against the potent queenside majority. Get your pieces to the scene of the action before things become dangerous and, in the right moment, look to use your own kingside pawn majority.

Same-Color Bishops: Centralization

Can you give the engine pawn odds?! Here you are actually better thanks to your central control and central passed pawn. Make them count!

The Bishop Pair

Mastering the bishop pair will bring you many points in your chess career. White can press for a long time. Make confident, patient progress knowing that as the game progresses, your bishops should only get stronger. Avoid the exchange of either bishop unless you get something concrete in return. The bishops are stronger together!

Opposite-Color Bishops: Making A Blockade

Can you draw two pawns down? What about three?! You must first recognize and choose the only correct drawing move order for White. Then practice holding this tough endgame while down several pawns.

Opposite-Color Bishops: Drawing Technique

Have you mastered opposite-color bishops? If not, you are leaving many half-points on the table! An endgame where each side has only one bishop left, and they are moving on opposite-colored squares, often means a draw even if one player has an extra pawn. Here, you will need to stop Black's dangerous a-pawn with your bishop at first, but then follow the normal strategy for these kinds of positions: blockade the most dangerous pawn with your king and use your bishop to defend your own pawns. If you...

Opposite-Color Bishops: Down Pawns On Two Wings

Draw this and show that you have truly MASTERED opposite-color bishops. Position your kingside pawns correctly to get the best exchanges as Black advances. Be wary of a timely a5-pawn sacrifice to distract your bishop.

Opposite-Color Bishops: Two Extra Pawns

Not all opposite-color bishop endgames are drawn! You already have an extra passed pawn on the queenside, but you need one on the kingside too. Create it, and Black must slowly succumb, unable to defend both wings.

Rook vs Knight: Two Pawns Each

The rook rumbles and defeats the nimble knight! Leverage the power of the king and rook, and Black will soon end up in zugzwang. Just keep closing in until Black is out of moves.

Rook vs Knight With Pawns

Why is the rook better than the knight? It has long-range mobility! Use that mobility to attack on both wings. The slow-hopping knight will not be able to keep up.