bullet is more of a variant than the real thing.
Quite a discovery.
Well said. I don't always have time for a longer game , even 5 mins and bullet is my chess fix in those times. Is it serious chess... No but so what, life is short have fun and play fast. It seems to me in an evenly matched game it comes down to the last few seconds and putting your opponent in check with "suicide" chess can mean the difference. Screws up all their pre- moves and makes them think for 1.7 seconds.
Bullet is a complete waste of your time, and simply nothing more than a chess variant such as crazyhouse, Atomic, or Losers. some people can get good at it, but this is at the expense of development of your real game, long tournament time controls. If you really want to get better at bullet, increase your strength a few hundred points in real chess, then return to bullet and you will see the results you want. They don't give FIDE titles for bullet chess, that should tell you something right there.
So the openings are mostly memorized?
Either memorised or just sensible developing moves I'd guess.
I have no desire to be better at bullet. Any attempt to increase your bullet game is detrimental to your chess game. When I play bullet it solely to get a feel for my opening game. I play strategical openings which don't lend themselves to bullet, but the winning or losing a meaningless bullet game is secondary to learning opening patterns.
I've read that bullet chess is one of those variants that reveals a person's innate talent more than what they have learned through long slow study and application. Prodigies and those who were prodigies tend to do better at it than those who have climbed the ranks over many years of struggle.
Any thoughts? Does this apply to you or to those you know?
Bullet strengthens chess instinct which is very important in standard chess. Of course, some analyses is required. Bullet teaches you what is the most important thing to look during a game but since the time is very short in bullet, that process becomes instinctive. That's the principle of bullet.
The problem is, there are so many specific things you do in bullet that are just not so necessary in a long time control game. Bullet basically is about priorities. A lot of times just being able to move quickly without making obvious blunders, such as dropping pieces, or hanging mates in 1, is a good combo, especially since you may see many players who make exactly those kinds of obvious blunders for you to take advantage of. However at the same time, it's a large advantage to be in a position where you have a very clear plan -- where there isn't much going on, but you know how you will build your position, such as a pawn storm idea. If you know exactly what you are doing, you can move just as quickly if not faster than your opponent, and still end up with a much better position.
Generally if you don't know what to do, try to concentrate your pieces towards the kingside -- if your opponent is moving back and forth, eventually you will have a lot of pieces on the kingside and will be able to make threats.
However, I will repeat again: focus heavily on not making blunders. You don't need to play great moves; as long as you don't blunder, you're doing quite well in bullet.
You should also appreciate the importance of time: an endgame with an extra rook for you, where you have 2 seconds left and your opponent has 20 seconds, could very well be winning for your opponent, practically speaking, since it won't be long before you run out of time, even if you move quickly. So when you are ahead in a game, continue to make threats, so that your opponent can't move faster than you unless he blunders more pieces. Usually in bullet you win (besides on time) not so much by converting small advantages, but by consistently taking your opponent's pieces, because blunders are so common. In many games you may end up getting the equivalent to a queen advantage or more.
Finally, as I alluded, threats are key. As long as the threat is not obvious to meet, it doesn't have to be the best. The point of threats is that your opponent is likely to either A: spend too much time trying to meet it or B: move too fast and make a large blunder. Again, if you have an easy position where you can make threats very naturally, you can get a huge positional advantage yet still being able to move very quickly because the moves flow with each other.
Msteen: It depends on your particular skill set and experience with bullet. Some styles of play will do much better with bullet than others, even if in long time controls they are equally effective.
Good bullet players can see things quickly, can plan quickly, so they often have some good familiarity with the game, but there are lot of skills that shine in long time controls that are underscored in bullet too, so it will never be more than a rough (though passable) estimate.
Heres a link http://www.chess.com/forum/view/game-analysis/how-to-win-in-bullet Its more for begginers if you are one
btw, wafflemaster, thanks for the tips -- you seem to have a very systematic way of playing! I'll keep them in mind.