The annual U.S.A. vs Hungary match that's part of the Global Chess Festival pits the best ChessKids in these two countries against each other. This year, the U.S.A. team won by only one half-point. FM Mike Klein shows all the tricks and traps at play!
Isolated pawns are a very important part of chess strategy, and FM Mike Klein is here to teach you everything you need to know about these pawns without neighbors on either file.
While isolated pawns can lead to some exciting attacks in the middlegame, they are often big weaknesses later in the game, and FunMasterMike explains exactly how to destroy them.
Learn why you should usually avoid these isolated pawn structures, and the exception to this rule.
When is a pawn a super hero?
FunMasterMike shows you three ways that pawns can be as strong as any piece on the board.
But the fun doesn't end there. FM Klein also teaches you the exact opposite, when pawns are weaklings.
Watch this video to make sure your pawns are as powerful as they can be.
How did the ChessKid GeorgeTiger become a king of fast chess?
FM Mike Klein shows you exactly how he did it in an exciting comeback game.
Don't miss FM Klein finally give you permission to move your f-pawn in the middlegame!
When you're done watching, try your luck with an extra knight in our computer workout.
What happens when a chess piece swallows a fly?
IM Daniel Rensch shows you how players make this common beginner's mistake.
The error of blocking your own pieces creates a cascade of more blockages, reminding IM Rensch of the famous children's song about an old lady who swallowed a fly.
Stick around for IM Rensch's spoken-word chess rendition of the classic Burl Ives song.
Don't forget to take the ChessKid lesson on openings in the related links!
By now you should know that moving your f-pawn haphazardly can be a big mistake.
FM Mike Klein shows you exactly why in this final video in his f-pawn series, where we see FunMasterMike demolish his opponent who moved his f-pawn.
Learn the amazing trick FM Klein used to gain more than enough compensation for a nice positional queen sacrifice.
Don't forget to take the ChessKid lesson on openings in the related links.
The 2014 world chess championship starts next month, with GM Magnus Carlsen defending his title against the challenger, GM Vishy Anand.
Ever wonder what Anand was like when he was a ChessKid?
FM Mike Klein shows you a sparkling attack by young Anand where his knights and bishops work together beautifully.
Make sure to do the bishop and knight mate computer workout in the related links when you're done watching.
Who knows how to sacrifice better than the legendary former World Champion Mikhail Tal? Trick question - no one does! FunMasterMike closes his series on exchange sacrifices by showing a classic example of playing Rxe6. White gets a ton of "comp" as we say - that's "compensation" not "computers!" Watch the entire finish, where Tal reduces into a king and pawn ending, just like Benzoo has been explaining!
When is a knight better than a rook? When the rook can't find any open files on the map, that's a good bet the knight is better! Watch as FunMasterMike divulges the secrets to Exchange sacrifices, and explains why you shouldn't turn off the faucet. Well, you should when you're brushing your teeth, but not when you're analyzing. Confused? Watch and all will be explained!
Brace yourself ChessKids because FunMasterMike has delivered a big package of 1500-level material. Are you into chess enough to handle it? We hope so! He begins a series on Exchange sacrifices - rooks trading for knights or bishops. You really have to be an advanced player to know when this is the right thing to do. In this first example, we see a very common pattern - Rxc3 in the Sicilian. Watch and see how powerful this move is!
Today we go to Las vegas and hit the Jackpot! We also invert last week's lesson with FunMasterMike. This time the knight dominates the bishop! Watch how silly a bishop feels when all of his pawns are on the same color as him. You'll also see some common endgame ideas like triangulation and decoy. It takes a lot of knowledge to be World Champion, which is exactly what the White player became in this very tournament!
Would you trade a pencil for a race car? Of course you would! That trade is easy, but what about trading ice cream for cake? That one you probably have to think about a little more. In chess, knowing when to trade bishops for knights, knights for bishops, bishops for bishops, or knights for knights are four separate chess skills. Watch IM Rusa Goletiani explain how the World Champions do it!
Buckle up ChessKids - we've got a queen sacrifice that even makes masters wonder what is going on! FunMasterMike gives away his lady in the first ten moves, but it's on purpose! Can a swarm of bishops and knights mow down the enemy king before the queen overwhelms him? He hopes so - there's a few hundred dollars on the line in the final round! Watch and learn how activating all your pieces can make your piggy bank grow fat.
Knights and bishops - they look different, they move different, they're of course spelled different. So why should you treat them the same? I know that coaches (us included!) begin by teaching you that they are both worth three points. But depending on what is happening in your game, they go up or down in value. Today IM Rusa Goletiani shows you that outposts make knights jump for joy!
The next edition of the hit ChessKid TV show - Your Games Analyzed - with FunMasterMike! If you missed the live airing, watch and see whose games were chosen from the forum. The first is a really instructive knight endgame, but even before that the name of the game is: outpost! The ChessKids submitted some really high quality games this time, making the selection the hardest yet!
If a giant airplane wing could be a pawn structure, then you'll see it here today. The MusicCityMaster's second part of his show has some crazy "V" formation of pawns, and you'll see how to use them to strangle your opponent. You'll also learn how to break through a "mini-V", better known as the Stonewall pawn formation. Watch and learn!
The MusicCityMaster shows us some of his techniques that he used to get his master rating. First, he explains how to judge a new position. Then, after repeating some great advice by a famous player, he shows how a small and simple advantage of an outpost can lead to victory. Not everything in chess is pins and forks - watch how even more basic concepts can lead to your chess improvement.
Ever wonder how you can attack as Black, even after your opponent opens with his queen's pawn? Look no further - Coach Skunkfrog shows a game where he demolishes White in fewer than 15 moves. There are open files and diagonals everywhere, and plenty of discovered attacks to go around. And why oh why is White's queen on b8?!