Is my King in check?
- We don’t want to lose anybody on the touch move rule. If you touch a piece and then notice you are in check, if you can, you have to block or capture to stop the check with the piece you touched, even if you end up losing your queen for free! Your opponent must play touch move also, remember to yell TOUCH MOVE on them!!
Can I say checkmate in one move?
- Look carefully at your opponent’s king. Where can their king move to safely in 1 move? What does the squares that their king can safely move to have in common with the square their king is on now? If the answer is: Same file? Get a rook or queen on that file. Same rank? Get a rook or queen on that rank. Same diagonal? Get a bishop or queen on that diagonal, notice that a knight can attack two squares on the same rank, file, or diagonal. If the king cannot move anywhere, then any safe check will be CHECKMATE
Can my opponent checkmate me in 1 move?
Aske the same questions about your king that you did about their king. If they have an important checkmate square threat on your king, just let them have it. Your king is not that important anyway.
Do I have any gave any good checks on their king?
Remember that eight out of nine checks are bad moves. A good check is one that leads to something positive, it is a move that will definitely improve your position and make their position worse, like the gain of material (double attack on their king plus one of their pieces with the same move) or checkmate. It is often a good idea to save up and not spend your checks. Let the opponent’s king stay in bad danger until you gain something by attacking it. Eight out of nine checks are bad because they either lose the checking piece, or your opponent is able to block the check in a good way for them and a bad way for you, or we will just chase the king to a safer or more powerful square then they were living on already, or lastly we would accidentally move a piece that is really powerful where it is now, to a square where it is not very powerful, just to say check. Think before you spend your checks!!
Does my opponent have any good checks on my king?
Some checks are very dangerous look at each one carefully. Do you need to make some more protectors to set sneaky booby traps for your opponent? Do you need to start a “Save your king plan?” Try hard to use the idea that 8 out of 9 checks are bad to your advantage. Especially in the endgame. For example, let your opponent waste time checking your king and let them chase your king across the board where your king can help your pawns get new queens, or let your king be chased into being able to stop them from getting queens with their pawns, or let your king be chased into being a helper for you to make a checkmate on their king.
Can I win any points (material) in one move?
Can you take any free pieces from your opponent? Can you make any good trades that wins points? Can you checkmate any of their pieces, then take them for free next move? Can you pin, double attack, or remove the defenders of their pieces by capturing or chasing away? Consider all material threats. Notice all three of their targets, King Material, and checkmate square. What do they have in common? Same file, rank, or diagonal? Can you double attack any of these targets with one move?
Can I lose any points (material) in one move?
If you have even one unprotected target, (king, material, checkmate square) you can expect that I as you opponent is staring hard at it, trying to figure out a way to capture it for free. Look carefully at your king. Look carefully at your pieces. Expect me to and be prepared for me to attack and try to capture them all!!! My first plans as your opponent is to take all of your pieces and to checkmate your king!!! Then after I checkmate on you, I plan on taking home YOUR trophy and putting it in MY room!!!
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