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Bishop or Knight?

  • #1

    When you approach the end game with a few pawns and a king, which piece would you have preferred, knight or bishop?  And why?

     

    I generally prefer knight over bishop because I feel that the knight has more leverage.  I have seen bishop doing slightly better depending on where opponent pawns are.  

     

    Would love to get some inputs from you guys!

  • #2

    Depends on the position...

  • #3

    I like the knight because it can attack every square on the board, the bishop has a longer range, but can attack only half as many squares as the knight. 

  • #4

    I favor the knight in the endgame as well. I feel like it has more mobility, and the bishop is limited to projecting power only on one color square.

  • #5

    Another naive chess player asks the question.  It depends on the position!  I want the piece that is better for the position at hand!  I have had numerous games with B vs N endings, and won many times with the Bishop, and won many times with the Knight.  You show me a position, and I'll tell you which piece I prefer!

  • #6

    ThrillerFan : I had to ask the question and learn from the answer.  Your answer is very helpful.  I would love to see a few positions that favor one bishop over one knight.  I still have a long way to learn!  happy.png 

  • #7

     

    One trivially easy example to show that the bishop is better than the knight is as above.


    A lot of considerations are involved in determining whether the bishop or the knight is superior. Each piece has its own area of strength and its fair share of weakness. For example, a knight cannot lose or gain tempi. A dark-squared bishop cannot occupy light squares. And so on.

     

     

  • #8

    eric0022 - thanks for the example and explanation.  Very helpful!

  • #9
    I like having both, so I can do long range and jumping.
  • #10

    I just came across the game where my position appeared to be less favorable; my knight versus his bishop.  It's really nice to know that the bishop can have an advantage over knight in some positions! I'll be more than happy to share the screen shot after I finish the game.

  • #11

    This question massively depends on the position.

    Assuming there are no immediate tactical threats then who is better depends on if there are pawns on both sides of the boards, king activity and what colour squares the pawns on both sides are on.

     

    Most of the time with pawns on both sides of the board if you have the bishop and your pawns are on the opposite colour to your own bishop then it's normally a win against a knight but not always, a knight if often better in closed positions however in rare open positions a knight can be stronger. 

     

    If you have a bishop and your pawns are fixed on the same colour to your bishop then that's pretty bad.

    If you're opponents pawns are on an opposite colour to your bishop then that's bad for the bishop as well.

    Bishop vs knight:

    Bishop: aim for play on both sides of the board, try keep your pawns on the opposite colour to your bishop and your opponents pawns fixed on the same colour as your bishop. And of course you need king activity to convert.

     

    Knight

    Try to have pawns on one side of the board, try to keep your opponents pawns fixed on the same colour as their bishop and your own pawns on opposite colour to the oppoents bishop and of course king activity.

    Things to look for when defending against a bishop with a knight, look for tricky tactics, forks and try to create blockades on the opposite colour to the bishop and look for a kind of "wall" you can build with your king and knight to try and stop the enemy king penetrating your position.

     

    I usually prefer a bishop.

     

     

  • #12

    Everyone always says it depends on the position. And sometimes that is probably true. But I think it depends on the player, not the position. A great position with a bishop will easily be defeated by a poor position with a knight if the person with the bishop doesn't know what to do.

  • #13

    So delighted to get some answers here.  You guys have been making many valid points.  I will check to see if Chess.Com's Drill offers bishop vs knight so I can practice each side.  If you guys know any web site that allows me to practice then please do share with us!

  • #14
    iceman073 wrote:

    So delighted to get some answers here.  You guys have been making many valid points.  I will check to see if Chess.Com's Drill offers bishop vs knight so I can practice each side.  If you guys know any web site that allows me to practice then please do share with us!

     

    Just get an endgame book, their the best for actually learning bishop Vs knight if you're committed.

    Fundamental Chess Endings 

    And

    Devoretsky's Endgame Manual are very good and very well known.

     

    They have loads of analysis so don't follow them on a chess board, follow them on an online board. 

  • #15

    Perfect!  Thank you, OverGrownPawn!

  • #16

    I found the article about Devoretsky's Endgame Manual.  I'm sharing the link here:

     

    https://en.chessbase.com/post/dvoretsky-s-endgame-manual-chessbase-edition

  • #17

    No problem happy.png

  • #18
    lfPatriotGames wrote:

    Everyone always says it depends on the position. And sometimes that is probably true. But I think it depends on the player, not the position. A great position with a bishop will easily be defeated by a poor position with a knight if the person with the bishop doesn't know what to do.

     

    WRONG!  You can't tell me the position is great for White because player X is playing White and then say the same position is bad for White because player Y sucks at Bishop endings.

     

    If you suck at Bishop endings, you suck at chess!  PERIOD!

     

    You do not need to know every opening.  If you don't know the Najdorf, and you don't play 1.e4 as White or Sicilian as Black, there is no reason to know it.

     

    However, you need to know all endings.  Does not matter if you play the French, Dragon, or Alekhine against 1.e4.  You still have to know what to do when your game reaches a rook ending!  At that point, who the f*ck cares whether you got there via Latvian Gambit or Colle System?

  • #19

    i like bishops

  • #20

    they can trap knights and can go futher

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