Tuesday, July 18, 2006

More on Chess

I've played chess daily with my son since my last post about chess, which was less than a week ago, I'm sure. He seems to enjoy it, and while I don't let him win usually, I do try to give him pointers while he plays. I'm really impressed with how well he is handling himself with the game, though he's not much beyond just moving the pieces at this point. Still, someday, he'll get better, as long as he keeps wanting to try.

One opening I'd like to teach him is the Caro-Kann. It's not a terribly dynamic defense, as it sacrifices position for security, and as black, you have to be somewhat patient when you play, and allow white to overextend himself.

White opens with e4. Black answers with ... c6. White then plays d4, which is answered with a ... e5. This is the basic position for Caro-Kann. White has many options from here, but the normal variation has his Queen Knight developing, N-c3. Black then captures white's e-pawn, ... dxe4. White must then recapture with Nxe4, which gives Black a target in the middle of the board.

Black plays the ideal Bf5, developing a piece and attacking white's knight, which has no ideal defense, and must withdraw. Usually, this will be Ng3, which in turn attacks the bishop. Black likes to try to hold on to his bishop, so he will retreat, Bg6, which maintains its claim on the center. White will then develop his King Knight, Nf3, and Black will develop his, Nf6. This is where many of the variations begin to take place, so I won't go into too deep an analysis right now, but it's a solid opening with good chances for black, if he's patient and doesn't try to force the action.

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