Mastering Chess Tactics – Remote Chess Academy

No chess player can be considered complete without a mastery of tactics. Mastering tactics is a must to become a great chess player!

Well, what do we know about chess tactics? They are a sequence of moves in which you force or limit your opponent into responding to them.

The end result of performing tactics in a chess game can be a material gain or even the extent of checkmate or pleasure of seeing your opponent resign.

Mastering Chess Tactics

In total there are 16 tactics which we know; these are:

  1. Annihilation of Defense
  2. Blockade
  3. Double Attack
  4. Demolition of Pawns
  5. Discovered Attack
  6. Decoying
  7. Deflection
  8. Zwischenzug (Intermediate Move
  9. Interception
  10. Overloading
  11. Pawns Breakthrough
  12. Pursuit
  13. Passed Pawn
  14. Pin
  15. Space Clearance
  16. X-ray Attack

These tactics have got their own unique ways of giving you an advantage. Let’s look at them all in greater depth:

1. Annihilation of Defense

There are certain positions that have a defensive structure. Annihilation of Defense is a tactic that finds a player destroying the core of the defense. In doing so, you will either gain material or even deliver a checkmate.

The following is an example of a tactic that involves Annihilation of Defense:

2. Blockade

A block is a chess tactics that finds a player preventing an opponent’s piece from advancing. Blockades are done to prevent passed pawns from advancing.

The following diagram illustrates how a block occurs and the end results of it:

3. Double Attack

A double attack occurs when a piece attacks two enemy pieces simultaneously. This usually leads to a loss of material for the enemy.

The double attack is one of the most useful tactics. You must learn it for mastering tactics.

The following diagram is an example of a double attack:

4. Demolition of Pawns

This term stands for the destruction of pawn structures. Your opponent will be having a strong defensive structure.

So, when you sacrifice pieces in order to remove the defensive structure, it’s called the demolition of pawns.

In the video lesson below, GM Igor Smirnov will show you the top 5 openings that are aggressive and surprising for your opponents:

The long-term gain from utilizing this tactic can be a material gain or a checkmate. The following diagram illustrates exactly how that can occur:

5. Discovered Attack

This term is used when a piece is moved out of the way to reveal an attacking piece. Most discovered attacks usually lead to material gains.

The following diagram illustrates the material gain that can occur from a discovered attack:

6. Decoying

This is basically luring an enemy piece into a bad squareusually via sacrificial methods. The pieces most lured are usually the king or the queen due to their value.

The following diagram illustrates how decoying occurs:

7. Deflection

This is a tactic that forces an enemy piece to evade the square, fileor rank that it currently occupies. This regularly occurs due to an attack or a combination.

The following diagram illustrates how a deflection can occur in a chess match:

8. Zwischenzug (Intermediate Move)

This tactic comes into place when a player makes an unexpected move. In most chess positions, when an opponent capture a piece, they expect you to immediately capture back.

Now, instead of doing that, you respond with a Zwischenzugwhich will pose an immediate threat which your opponent has to deal with first.

The following diagram illustrates an intermediate move position:

9. Interception

This occurs when a file, rankor diagonal in which an attacking and attacked piece residence is disturbed by another piece.

The piece that interrupts the position will typically be sacrificed to reduce or increase the overall damage. The following diagram illustrates how interception occurs:

10. Overloading

This occurs when a piece that is protecting more than one piece is pressurized into leaving the less important piece to be captured.

The following diagram shows us an overloaded piece and how it is manipulated:

11. Pawns Breakthrough

This is an endgame tactic where you sacrifice other pawns in order to gain a passed winning pawn.

The following diagram illustrates how this tactic is utilized in order to win the match:

In Theory of Pawn Breaks Explained! you can learn more about pawns breakthrough, which is a must for mastering tactics.

12. Pursuit

This is a tactic used to prevent the enemy king from casting or finding shelter. The end result of this can be a checkmate, gain in materialor even finding a draw via perpetual checks in a lost position.

The following diagram illustrates how pursuit occurs:

13. Passed Pawn

These are pawns that have no enemy pawns in front of them or are capable of preventing them from promoting. In endgame positions, they can potentially decide the game.

Conclusion

You will encounter most of these tactics in your chess games. The secret for mastering tactics is to practice more puzzles that reflect their different positions.

Notable missing tactics are:

  1. Pin
  2. Space Clearance
  3. X-ray Attack

For more about mastering tactics, you can see Chess Tactics Galore.

Leave a Comment