Finding my way in the chessdevelopment- and training jungle in order to improve my rating.
Monday, October 01, 2007
Chess is 99% strategy
Alexander Kotov was already a master with 2400 rating when he found out that he was terribly bad at complex tactical positions in comparison to his opponents. Untill then he always made his moves almost entirily based on strategical considerations.
If I combine this with my latest discovery that I can dismiss days of tactical analysis by simply choosing the right plan in seconds, it is obvious that I'm on to something.
If you see a grandmaster giving a simul, he makes his moves in seconds. But when he does so, he is in 99% of the cases not in a position that he can finish the game with a tactical blow. And thus he must make his move based on a simple strategic plan, which he recognizes to be appropriate in the given position. This means that the pattern recognition takes place on a strategical level and not on a tactical or geometrical level.
In two for the rest equal positions the difference of a mere pawn to be on a2 or a3 can make that the involved tactics are quite different. So a lowlevel patternrecognition will not be sufficient.
Actually that is very logical. My own experience with analysis of complex tactical middlegame positions by means of generalized narratives yielded in fact strategical plans which are applicable in countles similar positions. Tactics are the very basis for strategy. Strategy is the higher level cognitive knowledge of tactics.
Saying that chess is 99% strategy is quite different from saying that the amount of energy you should devote to mastering strategy in comparison to mastering tactics is 99:1. In fact that can be the other way around. Or 10:90 or so. Because almost no move can be made without tactics playing a role. Not manifest, but virtual in the background. As a precondition. After all you have to blundercheck every move.