Monday, April 18, 2016

Categorizing my failures

When I make an error at CT or use much time, the error usually falls in on of the following categories:

  • When I can attack with one piece in to ways, I always choose the wrong move (say attacking with knight d5 via c3 or e3 the target on d1).
  • When my king is in check and there are four escape squares, I always choose the wrong one.
  • I get easy confused in crowded situations with mutual attacks (see previous post).
  • Preliminary moves. Moves that put the attackers and/or targets in place for a duplo attack.
  • Overworked piece. I overlook those on a regular base.
  • Underestimating the power of my invasion.
  • Endgame.
  • Didn't recognize the mate pattern.
It is evident that each category of errors needs its own fix.


  1. Replies
    1. Thx for the link!
      Do you have experience with endgames at Chess Tempo?


    2. My Stats for endgame theory
      Rating: 1947.5 (RD: 91.07) (Best Active Rating: 2017 Worst Active Rating: 1633)
      Active Rank: Not Active/819 (Best Active: 1 Worst Active: 62)
      Problems Done: 6353 (Correct: 5784 Failed: 569)
      Percentage correct: 91.04%

      When i work hard at CT's endgames then i am in the top 10.

      Chesstempo does work with 5 piece tablebases so these are only the very very late endgames. The theory mode is about the "best possible move" (given by the tablebase) every other move by the user is punished with rating points reduction.

      CT better than nothing, you may exercise your knowledge you have learned by a book. To "learn" endgames ONLY with this tool would be very frustrating.

      After every CT-endgame-puzzle-loss, i was reading a few pages about this type of endgame in a book. Every few months i do a endgame or studies training session for several weeks.

  2. The list is very interesting one. However it will be nice if you could provide some additional info - the positions (the ideal - at visual form, but it may even be as FEN format). That way we can see what mistakes you are constantly making. I know it may be really frustrating.

    The range of problems you listed is really big one. In my opinion the easiest way would be to fix the last one - learning (fixing) how to recognize the mate patterns.

  3. On the first one, I had that same problem. I simply forced myself to ALWAYS look for two squares...that is most pieces (R, B, N) can attack a target two ways except the queen that has 12. The simple act of searching for both squares (or all 12) helps you see more.

    On the second one, are you actually calculating each of the four escape move candidates or purely going on instinct?

    1. When there are two possible attacking squares, it is of course a matter of discipline to analyse both. In a game I always calculate them, in blitz mode I sometimes partly follow my instinct. Both situations make me look bad, by using way too much time or by making an erroneous move.

      The same for the escape squares.

      The main problem seems to be that the standard answers to an attack aren't immediately ready for use in my mind.

  4. Here are two of mine.. Not seeing that a pin to the king will occur in the future once a king is forced to move. 2)missing sacrifices to squares that dont contain material