The Chess Exchange

The Chess Exchange - To Your Chess Success!

Skip to content

It is currently Sat Dec 16, 2017 7:18 am 






This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 9 posts ] 

Previous topic | Next topic 

  Print view

Author Message
 Offline
Rook
 
Joined: Fri Jul 03, 2009 9:47 pm
Posts: 83
 Post subject: middlegame theory
PostPosted: Tue Mar 09, 2010 6:08 am 
I've noticed that the theory of openings is always changing and evolving. Is the theory of the middlegames static? When was the last time someone came up with something new in the middlegame? :shock: At one time rooks on the 7th must have been a novelty but it proved to be strong and everyone started doing it. The same can be said of rooks on open files---it enhanced the theory of the middlegame. Is such evolution in the middlegame still continuing? :? Why oodles of opening books every year and very few middlegame books? Is there such an animal as "The Theory of the Middlegame"?


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
User avatar  Offline
Site Admin
 
Joined: Mon Aug 25, 2003 2:20 pm
Posts: 907
Location: Maryland
 Post subject: Re: middlegame theory
PostPosted: Tue Mar 09, 2010 7:46 pm 
raul wrote:
I've noticed that the theory of openings is always changing and evolving. Is the theory of the middlegames static? When was the last time someone came up with something new in the middlegame? :shock: At one time rooks on the 7th must have been a novelty but it proved to be strong and everyone started doing it. The same can be said of rooks on open files---it enhanced the theory of the middlegame. Is such evolution in the middlegame still continuing? :? Why oodles of opening books every year and very few middlegame books? Is there such an animal as "The Theory of the Middlegame"?


I wouldn't dare try to answer all of those questions (you have a lot there!) but this one resonated with me:

raul wrote:
Why oodles of opening books every year and very few middlegame books?


The very short answer is that opening books far outsell middle- and endgame books by a comfortable margin, so more of them are published (after all, chess publishers are "publishers" and are thus in business to make a profit).

Which leads to the short answer: far too many chessplayers are operating under the false assumption that games are won or lost right in the opening, that memorizing and playing an opening variation evaluated in ECO/MCO/NCO/xCO as "+/=" somehow leads to an "automatic win" if you play it right. That bizarre assumption persists, even though said players still lose games even after reaching that "autowin" position.

Which in turn leads to a somewhat more complex answer: many chessplayers are lazy and prefer rote memorization of opening variations to the much harder process of 1)learning to recognize themes and patterns; 2)learning the proper playing technique for when those themes and patterns are reached; 3)putting that proper technical knowledge into practice in actual play. I've met far too many players who have memorized entire pages of MCO but who still can't force mate with a single Rook or win a King and one pawn vs. King endgame.

Many players seem to look upon middle- and endgame training as similar to taking some bad-tasting and unpleasant medicine. So chess publishers are more than happy to oblige them with endless "Winning with the __________" titles, which are half-right: they are about the "________ Opening" but at the end of the day really don't have much to do with "winning".


Top
 Profile  
 
User avatar  Offline
Rook
 
Joined: Tue Jun 02, 2009 11:38 am
Posts: 97
Location: UK
 Post subject: Re: middlegame theory
PostPosted: Wed Mar 24, 2010 1:05 pm 
I agree with Steve there - You find a lot of players, especially lower graded ones will not settle on an opening and attempt to master it (as far as an amateur can at any rate!) Players often blame bad results on the opening they play (and in some cases, if they are using “unorthodox” - i.e. bad openings which make no positional sense, this is probably true) - usually though it’s because of fundamental mistakes in the middle game (or just because they are terrible players!).

I made the switch from 1.d4 to 1.e4 about a year ago (the reason for this was d4 just didn’t suite my style in general - while draws were very easy to come by, I wasn’t winning enough) and I’m still playing exactly the same responses I prepared when I first started, apart from a switch to the Kieseritzky from the Bishop’s gambit - the reason for this was very specific, there was a certain line getting played against me a lot, which I didn’t like and the book wasn’t very convincing on - one thing you never want to read in a Chess book is “unclear position” :lol:

Too many players are seduced by flashy new opening books with tittles like “Win with the…” and “Beating the…” When you actually open the book it’s never as good or different as it’s made out to be - usually just a few tweaks here and there to established lines, which are only going to matter to GM’s. Plus modern opening books are stuffed with hundreds of pages of dull information printed from a database - I personally prefer to get hold of older books from the 80’s and 90’s - yes they may not have the latest fashionable moves, but you do tend to find they have been lovingly written by the author, just using his own knowledge and research - it usually makes for a much easier and enjoyable read.

The only book I’m studying at the moment it Silman’s Endgame Course and my Chess has improved dramatically - the thing is the size of a phone book and not flashy or dramatic in the slightest, but it is full of practical and useful information.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
User avatar  Offline
Site Admin
 
Joined: Mon Aug 25, 2003 2:20 pm
Posts: 907
Location: Maryland
 Post subject: Re: middlegame theory
PostPosted: Wed Mar 24, 2010 5:13 pm 
Norman_T_Whitaker wrote:
one thing you never want to read in a Chess book is “unclear position” :lol:


I usually end up clarifying them the hard way.

"Steve! What happened to you in that last game, man??!!??"

"I'm still not sure but whatever it was, it wasn't good..." :|


Top
 Profile  
 
 Offline
Rook
 
Joined: Fri Jul 03, 2009 9:47 pm
Posts: 83
 Post subject: Re: middlegame theory
PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2010 5:51 am 
Is anyone going to answer my question? I'm talking middlegames and you guys are talking openings. My question was---" Is the theory of the middlegames static? When was the last time someone came up with something new in the middlegame?" Is there anything different in the way Capablanca played the middle game and the way masters play it today? If not, that probably explains the dearth of middlegame books. :)


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Offline
Pawn
 
Joined: Sat Nov 20, 2004 8:23 am
Posts: 15
 Post subject: Re: middlegame theory
PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2010 2:03 pm 
I can't really answer your question but want to point out that whereas there are specific books about openings there could not be as specific books about the middle game. This explains for a big part why there are not as many books published about the middle game that are about openings.

Really, the middle game is dealt in books of chess tactics and strategy, in books dealing with defence or attack in chess. To my knowledge, there is not really anything new in tactics. I'm sure there are some refinements made in strategy after the time of Capablanca. So maybe a more fair comparison would be between the amount of new ideas in the opening and the amount of new ideas in strategy. So have there really been much more new "opening principles" than new principles that apply to the middlegame? I don't know. Is there not books in both fields that qualify the theory that was taught in the time of Capablanca and Nimzowitsch?


Top
 Profile  
 
User avatar  Offline
Site Admin
 
Joined: Mon Aug 25, 2003 2:20 pm
Posts: 907
Location: Maryland
 Post subject: Re: middlegame theory
PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2010 2:43 pm 
Tactics are pretty static. I'm pretty confident that all the tactical motifs have been identified and catalogued.

If we're talking about general middlegame strategy principles, I think you could limit your reading to Steinitz, Nimzovich, Pachman, and Kmoch, and be pretty certain you've been exposed to most of it.

Considering that I have a friend (a correspondence master) who once proudly showed me an "opening novelty" in the Scandinavian which occurred somewhere near move 30, I think the line between "opening" and "middlegame" is not just blurred, it's getting close to "obliterated". :lol:


Top
 Profile  
 
User avatar  Offline
Rook
 
Joined: Tue Jun 02, 2009 11:38 am
Posts: 97
Location: UK
 Post subject: Re: middlegame theory
PostPosted: Thu Apr 01, 2010 11:25 am 
A good book to get hold of is The Art of the Middle Game by Keres - even years after publishing it hasn’t got dated and its still packed with everything a club player is going to need to know, it's the only MG book I've ever felt the need to use. Plus it can be had for peanuts on Amazon at the moment as well:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Art-Middle-Game-Paul-Keres/dp/0486261549/ref=pd_sim_b_2


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Offline
Rook
 
Joined: Fri Jul 03, 2009 9:47 pm
Posts: 83
 Post subject: Re: middlegame theory
PostPosted: Thu Apr 01, 2010 11:14 pm 
Couldn't agree with you more. What would really be neat is to have several guys read chapter five "The Art of Analysis" right here at chess Exchange with lively discussion as we proceed! Now that would be interesting! :!:


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 9 posts ] 

You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:

Who is online

In total there is 1 user online :: 0 registered, 0 hidden and 1 guest (based on users active over the past 5 minutes)
Most users ever online was 193 on Thu Jun 28, 2007 1:40 pm

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest





cron

ChessCentral - The Leader in Cutting-Edge Chess * Buy Fritz 12 * Buy Rybka 4 * Buy Fritz Powerbook DVD


Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group

Style based on Andreas08 by Andreas Viklund and created by Elizabeth Shulman, Stop Animal Rights, Dog Training by corgipower