Learning Chess Part IV - Planning

With the recent Anand vs. Topalov world championship games going on right now, it seems right that we practice on what they make seem so simple:


What would you do with the following position?


(This was a well played game I had against a skilled individual) The question here is what to do? Now some may come up with some certain moves, but in ESSENCE, anything chosen can be said to be wrong. Why?

The goal here isn't in some tactical or progressing move specifically, but (as the title states) rather making a plan. How do we do that?


Proper analysis is key when making a plan. Take the above diagram and go about doing some personal analysis. When done, continue on reading....Some of the things you should notice:

1) White has more control of the queenside.

2) Black has a good Bishop while Whites is extremely poor.

3) The a-b-c files all have potential of opening up.

4) White's Rooks are connected, Black's are not.

5) Holes in front of some of Black's pawns.

You may have noted more, in which case very good!! Now, with EACH of yours (and mine) listed notes of analysis of the position of the board right now, list steps towards solving or enhancing the listed analysis notes. This can be specific moves, or a concept.


1) White has more control of the queenside.

Keep Black's attention on the Queenside. We'll want to stick with moves like Rfb1 or Rfc1.

2) Black has a good Bishop while Whites is extremely poor.

Definitely a problem, if we could rid ourselves of our d-pawn, or manage a way to push it up, our Bishop would hold a great position on Black's Knight and King. We could let Black take, or cxd5 with supporting moves after like Qb5. This seems difficult, but let's keep it in mind.

3) The a-b-c files all have potential of opening up.

4) White's Rooks are connected, Black's are not.

Both of these points can be made differently. Either 1) We force open a file and double up the Rooks, or 2) Let Black try to force through and then support against it. Preventing Black from making an opening will make our task more difficult, we definitely want Black to help open up if we choose this option.

5) Holes in front of some of Black's pawns.

There are nice holes at b6 and c5 for our Knights. Luckily it only takes two moves two for Nc5. Do you notice what else it helps with? If we can get Black to swap his Bishop for our (rather nicely) posted Knight, we can capture with our pawn opening up our Bishop!!

------Making the Right Move------

Well we know what we want in our example provided. In opening the proper file and placing our pieces in the right places, we should be on our to making are already pleasant position a winning one.

For us to make the right moves though, we'll have to make the right moves in the right order. We can't go over that for this game, as doing a full analysis would take forever. BUT, when doing this make sure you have a reason for putting one move you chose ahead of another one.  "Just cuz" doesn't fit the bill.

I have presented my own analysis to give an example.


Now this game goes on for another 25 or so moves, but we have turned our what was potential into an actual winning position!

With proper planning (and analysis) we can come up with the moves and concepts that will not only help throughout the middlegame, but provide us with a much more preferred endgame as well!!

--------Practicing for Yourself!--------

Below we have a situation that me and a friend of mine ended up with. Try coming up a plan for the diagram.

Enemy Weaknesses: Black's Knight is currently stuck guarding the weak c6 pawn, which also means the Black's Rook is currently trapped. (That's 3 weaknesses there)

Possibilities: The b-file, b1-h7 diagonal, the d4 and e5 holes.

Plan 1: Pushing through Black's defense with a3-b4-Rb1-b5 etc etc.

Plan 2: Attempting to attacking Kingside by outmaneuvering. One method being a3-b4-Bb2 (to target diagonal as well as make room for)-Qb1-Bc2. We can also include Ng3 and replace previous with Nce2.


  • 7 years ago


    great explanation... nice work

  • 7 years ago


    A bishop sacrifice as well!  Wow.. I never thought I would see the day!


  • 7 years ago


    Very nice post!! Thx for sharing.
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