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Chess Tactics Trainer



"Chess is ruthless —
you've got to be prepared to kill people."
Nigel Short (b. 1965)
British chess champion
Observer (London, 11 Aug. 1991)


Tactical combinations are the weapons of chess by which we "kill" our opponent. Tactical preparation is the most important training you can obtain to improve your game. Until you are a rated master, you should study tactics more than any other part of the game. Tactical ability is the most significant difference between the beginner and the advanced player. I recommend that you:
  • Solve chess problem diagrams like the ones presented below.
  • Analyze games scores with other players higher rated than you.
  • Study the games of the great masters. Their accuracy is legendary. You will see chess at the state of the tactical art.
  • Play against computer opponents set to a slightly higher skill level than you. Computers rarely make serious tactical blunders and will make you earn every point.

Many of the problem diagrams presented herein are from real games from the past. Some have a story.

Please read the caption of each diagram first. Then try to solve the tactical problem by mental effort alone. If you are still unable to solve the problem after a few minutes, then set the board position up on your practice set at home. Move a few pieces around if necessary, but don't be too quick to give up and look at the Hint or Solution.

Tarrasch, a brilliant tactician once said, "You must see!" With practice, you will learn to quickly "see" tactical combinations. This is the moment of the "kill."

Choose Your Weapons

Easy
A selection of easy tactical problems.

Moderate
A selection of moderate tactical problems of average tournament difficulty.

Tough
A selection of difficult tactical problems.

Toughest
If you think you're tough enough.

Mixed
Good practice for all. Real tactics from real games randomly selected from our Logical Chess tactics database of easy, moderate, and tough problems.

Fun
The lighter side of some tough tactics.




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