Friday, October 27, 2006

Special Case Triggers

Recently I've noticed yet another weakness in the way I prioritize when looking for a tactic. The special cases, meaning the actions which should be triggered in certain situations or after some moves the opponent makes. Mostly the weaknesses the last move created, but of course the threats also.

It seems to me there are certain cases that deserve special attention:

  • Did the move check or pin? (I miss surprisingly many checks, and only realize my king is checked after wasting time on other aspects of the position)
  • Queen en prise, check for alternative mating attacks.
  • A piece moves, did it leave something unguarded?
  • A pawn moves, did it leave something unguarded? (these I miss a lot)
  • Chasing a piece away, does it have an escape square with a check?

I'm sure there are a lot more, but these are some that I seem to have problems with. I don't mean I miss them alltogether, but I don't process them right away as I should, only after wasting valuable time on 'normal processing' of the position. -We all know these things, but I just realized I actually don't have a subconscious 'trigger' for them, and only spot them randomly, often as a last check before moving, if ever.

There should be some mental red lights flashing overriding everything else every time you get situations like these. So, from now on, I'm going to try to consciously focus on these things, until they become subconscious reflexes. After all, noticing any of these things take practically no time, but give your brain that missing block of information to guide your search into the right direction.

CTS: 1577, 66373 tries, 77.7%, session 12/77 = 84.4%