# chess online

## CHESS PUZZLE #5666

 Added by: kingdawar Added on: 16-Aug-08 Description: Laslo Tot - Lajish Astalosh, Ljubljana 1938. Difficulty: online chess puzzle #5666 Attempts: 1621 Solved: 1436 (88%)
Black to move, mate in 2
From Comment
 billydjr05-Mar-13, 05:56

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New rule...
Ok...From now on, I'm just going to try the line that starts with a Q sac.
fezzik
05-Mar-13, 07:14

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Good rule!
That will work for a plurality of easy puzzles.
thereaper1
05-Mar-13, 07:29

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dam without even thinking i just played Nf3+ intending to follow up with Qxh3# not noticing that that move order gives the king an escape square.
05-Mar-13, 09:00

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@thereaper1
I did exactly the same thing (thought i had visualized it alright)

And to billydjr and fezzik : it might be a statistical rule that Q-sacs with check occur relative much in easy puzzles, and it might therefore be a good strategy to try that move first. But it is the method of trial and error and that does not really train your ability to analyze a puzzle position. I admit that also use the trial-and-error method a lot, but there might be so many possibilities that you will have to go deeper than that and really analyze the position with questions like:

- where can the king move?
- which of my pieces can limit the kings moving space?
- which of my pieces are limiting the kings moving space now?

And of course many more ...
 paldan8405-Mar-13, 09:37

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you can do it in three and not lose your queen.. i like that better..
05-Mar-13, 09:50

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I actually love (sound) sacrifices: the higher the piece the better. And with checkmates it is the other way around: the lower the piece the better (pawn mates are my favorite). The mate in 2 in this case has both: a queen sacrifice and a checkmate with a knight
3quarks
05-Mar-13, 16:50

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I think the point was not that a queen sac gives a statistically high chance of being right during trial-and-error. I think billydjr and fezzik were giving commentary that so many puzzles use a queen sac in attempting to make an "interesting" puzzle, that it has become a cliche that is no longer interesting.
odysseuszero
05-Mar-13, 18:47

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OMG!
That was slick. very nice. you get props.
fezzik
06-Mar-13, 06:05

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Analysing Q sacs
3Quarks was right, my original comment was more about the prevalence of Q sacs in these easy puzzles.

As it turns out, analysing forcing moves, such as Queen sacs, first is recommended by no less an authority than John Nunn in *Secrets of Practical Play*. He's not only a grandmaster who was truly world class for a while, he is also the current (recurrent) World problem-solving champion.

Charles Hertan recommends analysing forcing moves first in his rather over-stated book, *Forcing Moves*. He goes too far, and tries to make even quiet moves appear to be forcing moves. But the principle is still generally correct.

There's a new book out that argues the "trial and error" method that you disapprove of is actually the *only* method guaranteed to work. Trying to come up with the best move through a scaffold of analytical ideas doesn't work, except after the fact.

So, yes, I do look at Queen sacs and checks first in many positions, and especially in most beginner's puzzles.
06-Mar-13, 09:12

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@fezzik
If you read well, you might understand that I do not "disapprove" with the the trial-and-error method. I even admit using it myself. I just argue that by analyzing the position, one can develop a better insight in the problem, than by just trying out moves. Trial-and-error without analysis might lead to exponentially high number of alternative lines to try out, just like a dumb computer-program that just generates moves and validates the resulting position. These programs can easily be fooled by skilled players
 twoclouds10-Mar-13, 03:41

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My puzzle view ...
I agree with the analysis approach over the trial and error or using 'conventional wisdom' such as sacrifice the queen in an easy puzzle. The reason is that in a real game I can't use trial and error nor will I lead with tossing the queen  . I have to think it through and make the move count on the first (and only) try, in a real game I mean, so in a puzzle I try for the same mind set I would have if confronting the situation in a real game. That's just me though. Anand I'm not ..
fezzik
10-Mar-13, 06:34

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Twoclouds
I think we aren't talking about the same thing....

You say that you can't use trial and error in a real game because you only have one try. That's absolutely true! But trial and error is a method you can (and should) use in your real games! I don't mean to try out several different moves physically. I mean, try them out in your head!

John Nunn argued that you should "ALWAYS ANALYSE FORCING MOVES FIRST" (AAFMF) in your *real* games. In this case, the Queen sac should be one of the very first moves you should look at if you reach this position in a real game. It's the most forcing move available.

Rashid Nezhmetdinov once said that on every move, he looks first for a way to sacrifice his queen. If that doesn't work, he looks for ways to sac his rooks, then minor pieces, then pawns. If he couldn't find any way to make a sac work, then he'd look for a more quiet move.

That is a bit extreme, but the spirit of that ideal is what creates beautiful attacks. Just because you analyse a move does not mean you have to play it! But you should definitely include forcing moves in the list of moves you seriously consider in your *REAL* games!