|Diagram 1 - white to move|
The black king looks like a duck, it sits like a duck and it quacks like a duck. So it is probably a sitting duck. So the main goal is clear: mate the king! If the opponent feels compelled to postpone his demise with a piece sac, I'm fine with that.
I tried from here on to solve the matter with trial and error, but I failed. We need a clear goal here that gives direction to our calculations. What can that be?
What can we say in general about this position? White has 4 attackers (Bf6, Rf4, Qh4 and Ne4). Black has 3 defenders (Bg7, g6,h6). The most likely scenario is the trade of the bishops, saccing the rook or the knight for one or two pawns to get access to the king and give mate with the queen and the remaining piece. Beware that Qc2 and Rf8 don't enter the defense.
I'm not sure where this is going. I'm going to investigate it and will update this post later. Comments in the meantime are helpful!
Great comments! It took me quite a few hours before I even knew where to start. I think I have an idea now. The black king is protected by a fortress of 3 pawns: f7, g6, h6. The base of this fortress is f7, which is bolstered by Rf8 and Be6. We must ask the question: which defender is the weakest?
At the moment f7 is well defended.
g6 is protected by f7. Notice that f7 has a double function: protecting g6 AND Be6. So g5 can be weakened by attacking Be6.
h6 is definitely the weakest point. If it is pushed to h5, g6 will get a double function: defending h5 AND keep the g-file closed.
1.Bxg7 Kxg7 is simply undermining h6
2.Qf6+ is designed for three things.
- It prevents that f7 is pushed, which would open lines for black for counterplay OR for adding defenders from aside.
- It clears h4 for the rook
- It forces the black king in the path of the black rook, so it takes more time to let Rf8 defend h6
3. Rh4 Rh8 forgets its function to protect f7
4. Ng5+ double attack K and B the rest you can find yourself.
Now we have found already two universal questions to guide our calculation in the case of a mate attack:
1. Which piece is the sitting duck?
2. Which defender is the weakest?