Question regarding tempo/time (playing black)

KevinWood44

Newbie question:

Obviously white has the advantage having the 1st move bc he can dictate the opening, but if he makes one move to lose time, does that advantage swing to black?   Or does it make it even? 

 

Seems to me blacks goal in the opening should be to force white to lose time just once (or more than once) and be ready to immediately take control with the next move.  Is this pretty much the strategy playing blacks opening?  

 

This is probably a ridiculously obvious question or a stupid one.....but I've only been playing like 3 months.  I've looked at a few openings but Im trying not to memorize lines right now, just focusing on making the best move, controlling the center, protecting my pieces, threatening his pieces, etc.   So strategy-wise (bc Im NOT memorizing openings) it seems my goal when I play as black should be to force my opponent to lose time so Im not constantly responding to his moves, is that correct?  

 

Thanks 

IMBacon

Unless youre an elite player, havng the first move is not an advantage.  And no, white does not dictate the opening.  Both players dictate the opening.

KevinWood44
FishEyedFools wrote:

Unless youre an elite player, havng the first move is not an advantage.  And no, white does not dictate the opening.  Both players dictate the opening.

 If having the first move is NOT an advantage.....why is it better to be white??   I mean, its  clearly better to be white, (especially with Trump as the presdient LOL) but  seriously can you explain why its not an advantage?   

IMBacon
KevinWood44 wrote:
FishEyedFools wrote:

Unless youre an elite player, havng the first move is not an advantage.  And no, white does not dictate the opening.  Both players dictate the opening.

 If having the first move is NOT an advantage.....why is it better to be white??   I mean, its  clearly better to be white, (especially with Trump as the presdient LOL) but  seriously can you explain why its not an advantage?   

I just did explain why.  Unless youre an elite player, the only advantage to having white is you get the first move.  I think the allure with white is the first move.  But us regular playrers have no idea how to take advatage of the first move.  We muck up the game by blundering, missing a tactic, not following opening principles, placing our pieces/pawns on the wrong squares.

catdogorb
FishEyedFools wrote:
KevinWood44 wrote:
FishEyedFools wrote:

Unless youre an elite player, havng the first move is not an advantage.  And no, white does not dictate the opening.  Both players dictate the opening.

 If having the first move is NOT an advantage.....why is it better to be white??   I mean, its  clearly better to be white, (especially with Trump as the presdient LOL) but  seriously can you explain why its not an advantage?   

I just did explain why.  Unless youre an elite player, the only advantage to having white is you get the first move.  I think the allure with white is the first move.  But us regular playrers have no idea how to take advatage of the first move.  We muck up the game by blundering, missing a tactic, not following opening principles, placing our pieces/pawns on the wrong squares.

It's a small advantage at any level. Even if players are bad at chess, their similarly opponent's are equally bad so a small plus tends to matter even if the player is clueless.

Yeah the advantage as white matters MUCH more to pros, but if you check random people's stats, you'll see a large majority of them score slightly better with white.

For example your 2000 bullet games:

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IMBacon
catdogorb wrote:
FishEyedFools wrote:
KevinWood44 wrote:
FishEyedFools wrote:

Unless youre an elite player, havng the first move is not an advantage.  And no, white does not dictate the opening.  Both players dictate the opening.

 If having the first move is NOT an advantage.....why is it better to be white??   I mean, its  clearly better to be white, (especially with Trump as the presdient LOL) but  seriously can you explain why its not an advantage?   

I just did explain why.  Unless youre an elite player, the only advantage to having white is you get the first move.  I think the allure with white is the first move.  But us regular playrers have no idea how to take advatage of the first move.  We muck up the game by blundering, missing a tactic, not following opening principles, placing our pieces/pawns on the wrong squares.

It's a small advantage at any level. Even if players are bad at chess, their similarly opponent's are equally bad so a small plus tends to matter even if the player is clueless.

Yeah the advantage as white matters MUCH more to pros, but if you check random people's stats, you'll see a large majority of them score slightly better with white.

For example your 2000 bullet games:

 

My bullet games were not won or lost because of color.  They were won or lost because of blunders.

catdogorb
KevinWood44 wrote:

Newbie question:

Obviously white has the advantage having the 1st move bc he can dictate the opening, but if he makes one move to lose time, does that advantage swing to black?   Or does it make it even? 

A true wasted tempo wouldn't be something like 1.a3, but would be something like taking 2 moves to move a pawn or bishop where it could have gone in 1 move.

But if by "wasted tempo" we mean like a basically meaningless move that still partially changes the position usually that just makes it immediately equal.

Although this is a little misleading... because pros can (more or less) equalize in any opening as black if they've done enough homework, but it's true that white has more room for error.

Also both players slowly dictate the opening. In the main openings there are maybe half a dozen main moves for each player during the first few moves, and the players slowly narrow it down into something they've essentially both agreed on. This is a bit of an oversimplification, but whatever, you're not asking us to write a book on the subject tongue.png

 

 

KevinWood44 wrote:

Seems to me blacks goal in the opening should be to force white to lose time just once (or more than once) and be ready to immediately take control with the next move.  Is this pretty much the strategy playing blacks opening?

If you can force your opponent to lose time, that's obviously good. Usually this happens when you attack a piece with a piece of lesser value, forcing it to retreat. Unfortunately this isn't possible unless your opponent screws up.

So black's opening goal (more or less) falls into one of two separate categories. The first is to equalize. Classically, black will stake some control of the center with a pawn, get all the minor pieces off the back rank, castle to safety, move the queen a few squares away from her starting square, and now that development is complete the first move advantage is basically gone (as long as black hasn't made any other consessions to accomplish this, like pawn structure, king safety, material loss, etc).

The second appraoch for black in the opening doesn't try for equality at all, but for a position with practical chances. Even professionals with hours to play will struggle to find the best moves in a complicated position, so this appraoch aims to pose white difficult problems to solve even though the objective evaluation is white is always maintaining a small plus. A good example may be something like the Benko gambit. Black gives up a pawn, but it's white who has to solve the practical problems of how to defend against the resulting active pieces.

 

 

KevinWood44 wrote:

 This is probably a ridiculously obvious question or a stupid one.....but I've only been playing like 3 months.  I've looked at a few openings but Im trying not to memorize lines right now, just focusing on making the best move, controlling the center, protecting my pieces, threatening his pieces, etc.   So strategy-wise (bc Im NOT memorizing openings) it seems my goal when I play as black should be to force my opponent to lose time so Im not constantly responding to his moves, is that correct?

It's smart to avoid the common pitfall of memorizing many moves. Even so, it's useful to memorize a few moves for the openings you most frequently play. Lets say until move 5, even if you don't understand why the moves are being made. Since you'll only be doing this for a few openings, it wont take much time.

But the goal during a game is to follow the opening principals as well as you possibly can, and not to miss any tactics. This sounds simple, but all the time you'll see new players waste time with moves like a3, h3, a6, h6... sometimes these moves are good, but many times not, and it takes time to learn.

Also many beginners start off developing just like they're supposed to... but after a few moves they get distracted and try to start attacking. So really focus on the opening principals.

https://www.chess.com/article/view/the-principles-of-the-opening

catdogorb
FishEyedFools wrote:
catdogorb wrote:
FishEyedFools wrote:
KevinWood44 wrote:
FishEyedFools wrote:

Unless youre an elite player, havng the first move is not an advantage.  And no, white does not dictate the opening.  Both players dictate the opening.

 If having the first move is NOT an advantage.....why is it better to be white??   I mean, its  clearly better to be white, (especially with Trump as the presdient LOL) but  seriously can you explain why its not an advantage?   

I just did explain why.  Unless youre an elite player, the only advantage to having white is you get the first move.  I think the allure with white is the first move.  But us regular playrers have no idea how to take advatage of the first move.  We muck up the game by blundering, missing a tactic, not following opening principles, placing our pieces/pawns on the wrong squares.

It's a small advantage at any level. Even if players are bad at chess, their similarly opponent's are equally bad so a small plus tends to matter even if the player is clueless.

Yeah the advantage as white matters MUCH more to pros, but if you check random people's stats, you'll see a large majority of them score slightly better with white.

For example your 2000 bullet games:

 

My bullet games were not won or lost because of color.  They were won or lost because of blunders.

Isn't it interesting though? Check many people's stats. A great majority score slightly better with white.

Even if players aren't aware of it, objectively speaking, white can afford to make more inaccuracies.

And even if the players aren't aware of it, it's easier to find good moves in comfortable positions.

For these two reasons, even very low rated players tend to score slightly better with white... but yes, this only shows up after a large number of games for amateurs. For pros it matters every individual game.

SmyslovFan

Sadly, FisheyedFool is wrong.

 

Statistically, White has an advantage whether the players are both rated 800 or 2800. In fact, the advantage of the first move is more obvious at lower levels where attacking skills are learned before defensive skills.

 

The advantage can be measured statistically. White wins about 55% to Black's 45% (if draws are factored in as half points). The advantage can also be shown by the simple sequence in the Petrov line below:

So, White has a statistical edge at all levels. White has the advantage of attacking first, and if Black tries to mirror White, they will almost always eventually end up losing.

IMBacon

"Sadly, FisheyedFool is wrong."

Not sad, and not the first time :-)

Having the first move didnt help here.