Athletics and Recreation

Chess Masterclass: How GMs find the Best Moves? Best Tips & Ideas to Improve your Game, Play Better

Have you ever thought what makes one person
play better chess than another? What is it that Grandmasters have and you
don’t? Well, the simple answer to this is the ability
to spot good moves quickly. Selecting a good move is a remarkably complex
task. But in this video, I am going to reveal the
Shortcuts that Grandmasters use to play the best moves in any position. Over the years, I have studied numerous Grandmaster
games and this is like a summary of all my learnings. If you can implement these in your games,
then you will definitely become a better chess player. Okay, so recently I had shared this quote
on my Instagram page and it is absolutely true. Look, in any given position, you can have
30-40 legal moves. You cannot evaluate each and every one of
them. That’s where you need to understand the concept
of candidate moves. When you look at all the move options, there
are some that make your position worse so you can automatically rule them out. Then there are some moves which do not harm
you but still you can reject them because they don’t make much sense. Eventually, as you get better, you learn to
recognise moves that are possibly good. These are the ones that we call ‘candidate
moves’. They are the finalists in your move selection
process. How many candidate moves do you think Grandmasters
evaluate? Any idea? 4? 5? 6? Let’s reveal a secret, in most cases, Grandmasters
do not look beyond 2-3 candidate moves. Those experts who tell you to evaluate all
sorts of moves are just bluffing you. It is almost impossible for a human to calculate
all variations for more than 3 or 4 candidates, especially considering the strict time controls
these days. If you are wondering, how can you restrict
your analysis to just 2 or 3 candidates, just follow the Shortcuts that I am going to share
with you now. This is what the masters use to find the best
moves. The first thing that grandmasters look for
are forcing moves. A Forcing move is one which requires the opponent
to reply in a certain way, or which greatly limits the ways in which he can respond. So basically, forcing moves can be checks,
captures or threats. These are like your one-move, two-move tactics. You should always look for such moves first
because somehow, it is easier to spot them in the first few minutes. Surprisingly, this is how our brains work. The more you study a position, the less you
will see tactically. To learn more about tactics, you can check
out this video by clicking on the I button above. Let’s move on to another important technique
that Grandmasters use to find the best moves and that is relying on general principles. Grandmasters often justify their moves by
citing fundamental chess values such as pawns should capture towards the center, rooks belong
on the seventh rank, knights are most effective near the center etc etc. You can often play a “general principle move”
without much thought because its value has been proven over centuries. That’s what experts call conventional chess
wisdom. The degree to which grandmasters rely on general
principles often astonishes other players. An average player may calculate variation
after variation and still not be convinced with his move whereas in the same situation,
a Grandmaster will play a very basic but effective move and justify it by simply saying, ‘I didn’t
want to double my pawns’ or ‘my rook needed an open file’. That’s what is admirable about Grandmasters. They simplify even the most complex positions. So always remember the golden rule: ‘Keep
it simple’. This will help you not only in Chess, but
even in life. Anyways, now let’s look at another cue that
Grandmasters often use to find candidate moves. And that is to look for problem pieces on
the board. Problem pieces here refer to your opponent’s
strong pieces and your own weak pieces. For example, your opponent’s knight might
be stronger than your knight simply because it is controlling more squares or maybe it
is placed much better. You need to look for moves to exchange such
pieces especially when you cannot find any other attractive candidates. Also sometimes, when you can’t trade off your
worst piece, you should atleast try to reposition it on a better square in order to develop
& create opportunities for future moves. At times, it might become difficult for you
to analyze whether you are selecting the right candidates or not. To help you out in your learning process,
I would like to share a really helpful tool that I came across recently and It’s called
decodechess. On their website, you can simply import the
games you want to analyse. And then, once you click on this ‘Decode’
button, you will see a great explanation of what the engine recommends. The beauty about this is that unlike other
chess engines, this explains everything in simple human language. You can activate some additional features
by clicking on this + button which creates some more tabs like these. If you scroll down, you can find details of
the major threats and further down, you can understand how to find the best moves in this
position. Through these tabs, you can identify piece
roles, analyse threats, evaluate plans and understand tactical concepts. From here, you can even play against a human-like
opponent and decode each move as you play. All in all, this app provides you with a lot
of information which can be used to improve your understanding of the game. You can register for free and try it out. And if you like it, then you can buy their
unlimited access plan. We have partnered with them and they’ve agreed
on a special discount for all Chess Talk viewers. You can avail this for a limited time period
by using the coupon code CHESSTALK. All links are in the video description. Moving on, one more thing that stands out
in grandmaster games is their magical ability to play brilliant moves without much thinking. At times, they even go against the general
principles that we discussed earlier. That’s strange, isn’t it? But let’s try to understand how this happens. Yes, the great Magnus Carlsen himself admitted
that it’s the power of intuition at work. But intuition is not a gift just for the GMs. There is a lot more to it. You obviously need to have a good feel for
the game, but you can also develop your own intuitive capabilities. The best way to do this is to study the master
games. This will help you recognise critical patterns,
and eventually come up with moves that you might not have even thought of earlier. Now let’s discuss about another practice that
Grandmasters follow and that is to be consistent. Even when there are no obvious cues to justify
a move, you might feel a particular candidate is right just because it fits in well with
your previous moves. And that’s what consistency is all about. In summary, all moves that you make should
align with each other, which means they should be part of an overall plan. It sounds simple to be consistent, but it
isn’t. Sometimes while playing a game, we do not
realise whether our 24th move fits in with the 23rd or 25th for example. After the game, it’s very easy to see everything
clearly. But during the game, you have to play one
move at a time. Therefore, you should always make a conscious
effort to be consistent with your moves and plans. All these pointers are very helpful, but don’t
forget to pay attention to your opponent’s last move. Even in positions where there are no clear
tactics, your opponent’s last move can trigger a game changing candidate. I have made a complete video on this topic
so don’t forget to watch it by clicking on the I button above. Okay! Now let me give you a quick reality check. No matter how good a player you become, you
should not get obsessed about finding the best move always because at times, it might
not even exist. In most positions, there are several good
moves that look equally good but you only have to choose one of them. While playing a move, you need to balance
out between the element of risk and time. So ultimately, your aim should be to simply
find a move that you can play with some degree of confidence and hope that it is the best. Okay, so it’s puzzle time. In this position, you need to find the best
Move continuation for white. If you are able to find the solution to this
puzzle, then share it in the comments below. I am reading all your comments & will give
them a heart if your explanation is correct. All the best guys! Let’s see how many of you can solve this. Well, don’t forget to Like this video & if
you haven’t yet Subscribed, then Subscribe now. Thanks for watching & I shall see you in my
next video.

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