17 September 2014

Losing Time

Time, that is, efficiency, is a central strategic and tactical element in the game of chess. A player who wastes time quickly finds him- or herself in a worse position even without material loss. Moving one piece repeatedly in the opening usually wastes time.

Two games illustrate this problem. The first was played against some version of Crafty embedded in the Chessimo training app for iPad more than a year ago. The second was played on the Game of King's iPad app and finished yesterday. In both cases, Black was much worse a few moves into the game as a consequence of moving a bishop several times.

Stripes,James -- Crafty (Chessimo) [A46]
Rating Estimation, 01.02.2013

1.d4 e6 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.e3 Bb4+

A silly check.

4.c3 Bd6?

4...Be7 was sensible.

5.Bd3 0–0 6.0–0 Be7 7.Nbd2 d5 8.Re1 Nc6 9.Qc2 Bd6?!

Another time wasting move that makes White's plan even better than it would have been. The bishop is now vulnerable to attack.

10.e4 dxe4 11.Nxe4 Nxe4 12.Bxe4

Black to move


I suspect that Crafty fell prey to a limited search horizon, believing that it could trap the bishop if White played as he did.

13.Bxh7 g6

White's bishop is trapped.


White should have played 14...Ng5.


Black recovers from early errors with another bishop move: 14...Be7. Instead, Black has moved into a forced checkmate.

15.Bf6+ Kxh7 16.Qe4 Bf4 17.Qxf4 Qd7 18.Qh4+ Kg8 19.Qh8# 1–0

Stripes,J (1974) -- Nomen Nescio (1929) [D24]
Rated Match Game of Kings - Online Chess, 16.09.2014

1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Bf5

Not a terrible move, but not best either. 2...e6, 2...c6, 2...Nf6 are all better.

3.c4 Nf6 4.Nc3 dxc4 5.e3 Be6?

Black moves the bishop a second time.

6.e4 Bg4?

And a third.

7.Bxc4 Bxf3 8.gxf3 e6

White to move

White already has a clear advantage. The rest of the game demonstrates White getting an easy win despite playing less than optimal moves.

9.d5 e5 10.Qb3 b6 11.d6 Qd7 12.dxc7 Qxc7 13.Bg5 Nc6 14.Rd1 Nd4 15.Nb5 Nxf3+ 16.Ke2 Qb7 17.Qxf3 a6 18.Nc3 b5 19.Bd5 Nxd5 20.Rxd5 f6 21.Bxf6 gxf6 22.Qxf6 Bg7 23.Rxe5+ Kd7 24.Re7+ Kc8 25.Qe6+ Kb8 26.Rxb7+ Kxb7 27.Qd7+ Kb6 28.Nd5+ Kc5 29.Qxg7 Rhe8 30.Qc7+ Kd4 31.f3 Rac8 32.Rd1# 1–0

No comments:

Post a Comment