Some of you, who are reading this article, have faced an opponent that you couldn’t attack. Maybe from the beginning of the game, he had played very well defensively or he was playing too aggressively and you couldn’t keep up with him/her. Either way, in this article you will find some of the best tips for chess attacks that would solve this problem.
Attacks in chess are one of the most interesting and fun parts of the game. If you are interested in winning, at some point you will have to capture pieces of your opponent and there many ways that you can do that. You can use strategies, tactics, openings and many other methods in order to achieve that purpose. So, here are 10 tips that will help improve your chess attacks.
1. Use Attacking Moves in your Openings
Each player has to choose an opening in the early moves of a game. Some of them are defensive but some others are aggressive. The goal is to control the squares in the center of the board and the purpose of each opening is the achievement of this goal. By using many different pieces that create threats to your opponent, you contribute to capturing the center of the board. The way to create those threats is to move some of your Bishops, Knights, and central pawns as soon as you can. If plenty of those pieces control important squares and each one of them with an additional move can attack your opponent then it’s obvious that your opponent might struggle to defend. Keep in mind that if the opponent controls those 4 central squares then he will be able with a couple of moves to create huge threats to you. Let’s see what I am describing.
2. Discovered Attack or Any Other Kind of Simultaneous Attack
A discovered attack is a great way to simultaneously attack many pieces of your opponent. It’s an attack that can create a lot of stress to him/her because he will have to decide which of his pieces will be saved. Often it will be difficult to protect all of his pieces if more than one is under attack at the same time. Let’s see a common relevant scenario.
You can also attack multiple pieces with just one of your pieces. This tactic is called a fork or double attack and I have already written another article that describes it. It’s a very powerful technique that can give a significant advantage on its own. If you use it in combination with a discovered attack then your opponent has to defend at least 3 different pieces. This scenario can influence the outcome of a game.
3. Find Weak Spots
An attack does not need to be done on a piece that is well protected. It may well be in a small and weak part of the opponent even if this is a pawn. This kind of attack may not pay off, but it is very likely to gain an important slight advantage against your opponent. Initially, the player is looking for a piece that is unprotected and then he creates a plan. On the other, the opponent probably does not suspect this little attack and doesn’t give it much importance. This might be difficult for someone to believe it but it happens more often than you think because victory most of the time is a sum of small blows on your opponent. Let’s see what I am describing.
4. Avoid Exchanging Important Pieces That Help You Attack.
Usually, an attack requires as many pieces as possible to create a threat at a specific part of the board. When the opponent finds out your plan, he will try to avoid it. A common way to avoid an attack is to exchange pieces. This way there will be fewer pieces in the game for both players that delay or even postpone that particular attack. If your opponent is trying to exchange your most important pieces then you will have to prevent it. In case that this task is difficult, try to exchange your least valuable piece. In the next example in which White is trying not to exchange his Queen demonstrates what I am writing here. At the same time, he is trying to have his Queen as aggressive as possible because it is the most important piece for his attack.
5. Create Space for the Pieces that Support the Attack
It’s extremely important that you support the pieces that are making the attack. Those supporting pieces have to be placed in certain squares in order to help the attacking pieces. During the course of a game, those squares change and you need to have some empty spaces. This way, you will be able to move each pawn wherever it is needed. So before starting an attack make sure that there are enough empty spaces. In the next example, you will notice that having empty diagonals and files helped White to support his Knight. There’s a sense of security since there are two other pieces that can attack in case Black captures the Knight.
6. Neutralize a Piece of your Opponent
An attack may happen in a direct way or in a more discreet way. Capturing the most important piece on your opponent’s defense can be more than enough to destroy his plans. In many cases, if an important piece is captured the other pieces are more vulnerable. A well-coordinated attack towards a single piece can result in an easy victory. So, on some occasions, it’s preferable to capture a single and not many others that are less important. Let’s see this in an example.
In the example above, White captured the key defender of Black that was just a pawn. The exchange was not fair for White but in the end, it’s obvious that it wasn’t a bad choice because Black’s defense fell apart. So, he lost a battle but he won the war.
7. Castling and the Queen
A Rook and the Queen can create a big problem to your opponent when they cooperate with just a few moves most of the time. The time that is needed for the completion of an attack is a very important factor. Your opponent struggles to defend when you can complete your attack with a few moves. Both of those pieces are extremely valuable and they can move from one side of the board to the other with just a move. So, it’s a very good idea to use those pieces for quick attacks.
The problem is that Rooks are trapped in the sides by your other pieces and many players don’t use them until it’s too late. The easiest solution is to castle in case you need an extra attacker. Castling is considered a defensive move and your opponent might not suspect that you are planning an attack. It’s a great move to use when you want to use one of the Rooks for your attacks. An example will answer most of your questions.
8. Create a Plan for Trapped Pieces
As you will have noticed after a few moves, several times you cannot move most of your pieces because your opponent has played defensively well. All the pieces are well developed and both players try to find the right move. At this point, it is necessary to create a small plan of attack in order to exchange some of your pieces. Sooner or later someone has to attack but without a plan, you will have little success. You don’t want to make unnecessary moves because your opponent might not. Let’s see an example.
9. Backup Plan
A successful attack can determine the outcome of a game but a player must not depend on its success. Even a good and experienced cannot predict the opponent’s response to an attack. Therefore, there is a need for a backup plan when creating a major attack. The backup plan may be associated with an additional sub-attack or a defense plan.
10. Confuse your Opponent
Many times our opponent figures the plan that we are trying to implement and he prevents us. An experienced player usually finds out easily what we are planning and he stops the attack. During an attack, many pieces are concentrated on a specific part of the board while at the same time there are empty spaces in other parts. Empty spaces are an opportunity for a successful attack. So, if you make your opponent believe that you are about to attack one side but you are attacking the other side then, the chances that your attack succeeds go up. Let’s see this scenario in an example.
Books And Other Recommendations
Attacks are a big part of chess and I cannot write every detail about them. However, I can give you some recommendations for books if you want to take serious action. Those books have received great reviews, they contain many examples and they will give you the whole picture. So, as long as you keep using them, you will improve in chess.
- Attacking the Chess King Workbook: Patterns and Strategies for Successful Attacks
- Art of Attack in Chess
- On The Attack: The Art of Attacking Chess According to the Modern Masters
If you don’t like reading, there are video courses that will give you condensed knowledge without tiring you with unnecessary information. If you are struggling to win in chess, it’s a great way to rapidly improve your skills and learn your mistakes from the courses’ exercises. You can check out the following courses.
Final Thoughts and Tips
I have written a lot of ways to attack your opponent in this article and I hope you understood the concept behind them. Like everything in life practicing will only help you improve your skills. Always keep an eye for ways to attack but don’t forget that this game is not all about it. You can’t disregard other parts of the game. So, don’t be stressed in always finding the best way to attack.
Feel free to check my other articles on this website like a guide on how to win in 4 moves. You can also check my recommendations about the best chess products in the market right now. I would like to read in the comments your opinion about this article and how it has helped you. If you think that it contains useful information then please share it with friends. Enjoy chess.