The beginning of a chess game and the initial moves you make can make all the difference in a game of chess. Whether you are an experienced player or a beginner, your opening strategies are always important. So much so, that professional players all over the world continue to modify and improve their chess opening strategies. With that in mind however, I would like to provide some helpful insight for the beginner to intermediate chess players; a basic chess openings guide if you will. Each players should have all the basic information in order to maximize their game.
Your opening moves are designed to either put your pieces in an offensive or a defensive position (depending on what team you are on). The opening is usually considered to be the first ten to twenty moves made by each player. It may not seem like very many moves, but sometimes can take up to 35 minutes to finish. During the opening you will be spending most of your time developing and placing your pieces quickly and effectively, keeping your long term goals in mind of course. In learning the basics for chess openings, there are essentially four things every player needs to do.
1. Develop your pieces
2. Control the center of the board
3. Pawn Structure
4. Keep your king safeguarded
Let’s discuss some basic goals that you want to achieve during the opening moves.
1. Developing your chess pieces. As a beginner or advanced player you need to make sure that you develop your pieces quickly and effectively. Each piece needs to have a place on the chess board where they will maximize their movement rules and help the other pieces do their job. Your sequence of movements and piece positioning will of course differ from game to game, but the ultimate piece development with stay. Keep yourself in check as you don’t want to make any moves you will regret and during the opening try to only move your pieces one time.
2. Control the center of the board. Most if not all experienced chess players know that if they take control of the center board early in the game they will most likely take control of the entire game. As a beginner you will do well to take this piece of advice to heart. The center board is considered to be the four most middle squares. The twelve squares adjacent to those four are known as the extended squares. The reason you want to take control of the center of the board is because this is where most of the “warfare ” happens. Pieces move back and forth through this area the entire game. You can see that if you control the area that gets the most traffic you control almost everything. This can only work to your advantage in capturing a victory.
3. Pawn Structure. Each opening strategy will have you pawns situated differently, but the point is that you need to take time to give them some structure. Just because pawns are the least valued piece on the board doesn’t mean they are the least valuable. If you structure them properly they can add needed protection to other important pieces; especially the king.
4. Keeping your king safeguarded. As a guide to beginner chess players keep your king safeguarded. This goad should be quite obvious because if you lose your king, you lose the game. There are a number of different strategies to use in your game to ensure that you king stays safe. It’s important during your opening plays to position your pieces in such a way that the king is guarded and will hopefully remain as such.
Now that you have a basic chess openings guide you can begin to study and implement some different strategies. Don’t be overwhelmed with all the information that’s out there to choose from; pick one at a time, try them out and see what works best for you. The key to finding a good strategy is how well you can pull it off.