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general discussion about attacking chess

Hi all!

I dont understand a point about attacking chess:

when I force some attack I figure out I lost because my king was unsafe. But when I try play 'good chess', by stabilizing the center and leaving the king in safety first before attack, my opponent takes advantage of my 'passivity' and himself attacks me.

I know his attack is unsoud, but all attacks from players up to 2000 maybe are unsoud (I guess stockfish refute each attack...).

I'm talking about blitz, of course I'm not talking scientifically, in this point I would like understand when I really should attack, if I wait for a perfect moment my opponent attack before me...

Some openings like queen's gambit I cant attack at all (unhappilly it is my prefered defence...).

In others words, I like solid openings for get my king safe fast, but that openings I cant attack at all...

If someone can give some advices or just talk about that theme and how do you handle this topic...

Thank you!

You have to make sure that there is an element of attack in all of your moves, plans, and ideas...at least...as much as is pragmatically possible. (Forcing things that aren't there, and making impossible demands of a position is not a good idea either.)

Sometimes the "imagination" part of our brain turns off, we become lazy, reactive, and mechanical, and we don't play the game on our best and most efficient level.

This video deals precisely with the question you're asking. See if it doesn't help jog the part of your brain that plays your better chess:

www.youtube.com/watch?v=IQsTh9nIFcM

I am by no means a chess expert. But, rarely do full-on attacks on the king happen. Many attacks are simply multiple pieces trained on a weak pawn, loose pieces, or even trying to gain control for key squares. In blitz games, I very often see my opponent build up an unstoppable attack on one of my pawns, or sometimes I do the same against them.

"when I force some attack I figure out I lost because my king was unsafe."
Yes, never forget the safety of your own king.

"But when I try play 'good chess', by stabilizing the center and leaving the king in safety first before attack, my opponent takes advantage of my 'passivity' and himself attacks me."
If your king is in safety and you get a grip on the center, then his attack is doomed to fail.

"in this point I would like understand when I really should attack, if I wait for a perfect moment my opponent attack before me..."
You should attack when you have an advantage: central control, more pieces available there, open file, weakened opposing pawn structure… It is not about being first, it is about to succeed.

"Some openings like queen's gambit I cant attack at all (unhappilly it is my prefered defence...)."
There are many nice attacking games also with or against the queen's gambit. It is true that there exist more slow positional games with it, but attacks also occur, albeit more rarely.

"In others words, I like solid openings for get my king safe fast, but that openings I cant attack at all…"
No that is not generally true. Often you can combine both: bring your king to safety with O-O and then open the f-file for Rf1.

"If someone can give some advices or just talk about that theme and how do you handle this topic..."
Attacking is not a goal in itself, it is a way to win if your opponent is careless about the safety of his king or about the center. There are other ways to win. Often it is more feasible to win some pawn and win the endgame than to try and checkmate a well protected king.

You get some good advices above.
A lot of low to middle elo have the same problem I think.
As everybody I'm searching for a better approach too.

Jacob Aagaard in Excelling at chess is speaking of unforcing moves. Not saying that you have to take a glass of wine and making passive moves. But he think that when we absolutely want to have a forcing one, to attack a weak point, we do not consider some obvious and effective moves.

The problem that you describe let me think that if your adversary is able to attack before you are able to do it, it is probably because you have a weakness that you did not consider. And whatever you plan is, it's too late ro react, even putting your king in a safe place...

the other guy attack first and you are not ready, so isn't it a problem of development, of bad activated pieces ? Did you play with the best tempo ?

I think that's it is Tarrasch who said that he do not prepare an attack unless his queen rook is activated.

You are speaking of a perfect move. THE perfect move does not exist in real life (even more in blitz i think). Looking for the perfect move make you losing time. And may be the perfect move is to reach a better pawn structure, not a perfect combination.

And it seems that you are not playing a lot of classic games, but it would be a good ideas training yourself in this kind of play. Formating your brain to have the good move at the right time.

@Sholmes49

"But he think that when we absolutely want to have a forcing one, to attack a weak point, we do not consider some obvious and effective moves."

Exactly.

It's all about identifying the needs of the position, and then creating a move that satisfies them.

King safety during attacks need not come at the cost of the speed and force of your attack - castling your rook into a semi-open/open file is an amazing resource to both develop and put your king to safety at the same time. Another piece of advice I can give is to tuck your king away into a closed/safer diagonal before going all out - weaknesses along the diagonals to your king can be exploited in certain openings very easily e.g. Dutch

In blitz, attacks that work need not be the soundest because the defender does not have the time to think of a refutation/defense - I would say I win nearly all my blitz games because I can make an unsound sacrifice and/or a highly speculative combination (or even just threaten such things) which my opponent doesn't have the time to think of a perfect defense against.

As such, it will seem a lot easier to attack than defend in blitz - but your attack must be engineered such that your opponent is **prone to go wrong**.

About WHEN to attack, my understanding is that an attack only works when your opponent fails to stop your threat - so I would say the process of attacking really starts from the very beginning of the game - building up threats, developing pieces towards the centre/enemy king, preparing pawn breaks to open up lines - the attack seems to only be the most explicitly realized and succeeded when your opponent blunders, fails to see the threat or defends imperfectly. I am sure you had experiences where your pieces were adequately developed and when your opponent blundered to complications, your attack played out nearly by itself!

Last thing I want to say is that you have attacking chances in most openings. Even the QGD which you like! In fact, in more closed and more solid openings, often you have the chance to keep more pieces on the board to create an attack. It's just that some openings create open lines to the enemy king/clearer plans of attack earlier. For instance if you were to think of a stereotypical King's Indian Defense game, despite all the maneuvering and closing of the center in the opening phase, the attacks are often more explosive and romantic! Moreover, when you play openings that open lines of attack super early (e.g. King's Gambit) you trade off the safety of your king, and the attacks could (potentially) be more telegraphed. Play the openings you enjoy :)

Hello,
I have carefully read all the comments, but I do not think it is correct because of the context: blitz game.

I have an acceptable chess culture and I know what is to play solid, what means to take risks, what is modern chess and classic chess.

The point is that in blitz we do not have time to make the game a science in 'steinitz/tarrash' fashion, we are playing against Tal (obviouslly in low level, but we are low level too). The most important is how much we can 'hurt' the opponent. Action is the most important part in our level (1800+ up to 2100+).

For some reason 1900+ up to 2000+ (2100+!?) players seem to play by following classic chess rules and I feel more comfortable playing against these players! But players 1800+ and sometimes 1700+ are impetuous, they advance their rook-pawn until they open lines, they use maneuvers like rook-lift, and they play Ng5 looking h7-pawn and if you play h6 they support with h-pawn and when you least expect your position is already worse.

A 2100+ or ​​2200+ player is able to refute these impetuous and audacious attacks, but a 1900+ player does not have the time to do the same.

I have MANY difficulties in dealing with the black pressure in the benoni structure and especially in the volga / benko gambit. Against King's Indian Defense I'm mated about 60% / 70% before I can impose my game on queen-side only when my opponent is too weak to attack. (my progress against KID have get better when I understand black NEED his light bishop! Now I have won some games by try forcing gain that bishop instead rook or pawns on queenside with some success! that is a deep understanding for me!)

The truth is that I have won some games against 2100+ players simply by ruthlessly attacking by sacrificing material without calculating or fear if my attack is 'unsound'.

What happens is that when the opponent decides to attack in this way we no longer have the luxury of playing 'cute' trying to keep everything stable and solid, we have to 'pay with the same coin'.

And it is much easier to be the first to bring chaos than to be forced to be active after his opponent have made some sacrifices... A 2200+ player can win each game if theys use some crazy gambit openings against a 1900~2000 player!

My problem, I guess, is study of theory, I want play like I was a topGM, trying boring and sound openings, dont playing gambits and attacking chess... And now I would like play attacking chess and know what I need to do...

In few experiments I see if I sacrifice pawns or pieces in blitz, since I can make my impetuous rook-lift and Ng5 stuffs after, my sucess is big I would think! It is just a lack of courage!!!

lichess.org/sn5AT2bC/white

Look how I was impetuous I how I was better in some moments, maybe wining (ok, I'm a not the more faster player of the world, but If I did, I would just flag my opponent!)

I NEVER in my life I had played that fast e4-f4-e5 with Bb5. I know that setup exists, but I never had the guts to play. But by playing I was able to draw a 2100+ player...

I dont know... Someone sayd some day: "before postional-strategic play, one need learn combine first".

Chess is concrete. Asking "general" questions is wrong from scratch in a certain sense.

50.g6 is a elementary simple win, isn't it? Chess is very concrete.

Reconnecting