Watch How to Play Chess: Lessons from an International Master

Add to Watchlist

Chess is a sport, a science, and an art. The fun of the game is that anyone can play, and there is always something more to learn-especially with the right guide. From the basics of the game to advanced strategy and tactics, and everything in between, How to Play Chess: Lessons from an International Master is any chess enthusiast's opportunity to enhance your understanding of the game.

How to Play Chess: Lessons from an International Master is a series that is currently running and has 1 seasons (24 episodes). The series first aired on September 25, 2015.

How to Play Chess: Lessons from an International Master is available for streaming on the website, both individual episodes and full seasons. You can also watch How to Play Chess: Lessons from an International Master on demand atAmazon Prime, Amazon, The Roku Channel online.

The Great Courses Signature Collection
1 Season, 24 Episodes
September 25, 2015
Ad
i
Watch Episodes

How to Play Chess: Lessons from an International Master Full Episode Guide

  • As you've seen throughout the course, the chess greats all have a unique approach to the game and a sense of style. Round out the course by studying four final champions-JosÌ© Ra̼l Capablanca, Vera Menchik, Bobby Fischer, and Hou Yifan-to analyze their style of play and begin thinking about your own favorite chess hero.

  • See how amateur chess players tend to approach the game-giving away pieces too fast and neglecting to defend against enemy attacks. By studying several common amateur mistakes, you'll strengthen your own chess skills and get into the mindset of thinking through your opponent's best reply to every move.

  • Chess is riddled with psychological traps-particularly if you find yourself playing a superior opponent. Mr. Silman offers insight into several of these traps and helps you maintain your confidence, whether you're playing a peer on your level or one of the most sophisticated computers on the planet.

  • Many people believe openings are the most important part of the game, but as you'll learn in this lesson, this belief is wrong on many levels. Here, you'll encounter a few simple strategies for developing your pieces and getting to the middle of the game. Learn a few opening repertoires to get into the game rather than just memorizing a sequence of moves.

  • Round out your study of endgames with an examination of triangulation, a key tactic for gaining the opposition in a king-versus-king standoff. Then turn to two common endgames: the Lucena Position and the Philidor Position. Mr. Silman offers several general rules for handling these situations.

  • Continue your study of endgames, especially those involving the king and one or more pawns. Here you'll find out how to avoid-or create-stalemates and draws, as well as the critical techniques for getting pawns to the end of the board-or blocking those dangerous pawn movements.

  • While you must know tactics to be a formidable chess player, learning the strategy behind a successful endgame is crucial to bringing your skills to the next level. This first of three lessons on oft-neglected endgame strategy introduces you to the powers of the king. Mr. Silman shows you how to take control of the board.

  • Meet several key players who advanced the game from the Romantic to the Modern era. In addition to learning about the personalities of players such as AndrÌ© Philidor, Wilhelm Steinitz, Siegbert Tarrasch, and Aron Nimzowitsch, you'll study some of their most interesting games to get a feel for their style of play.

  • This course has covered much ground, and in this lesson, you'll begin putting all the pieces together. Learn to read the board for imbalances, and then discover how to put those imbalances to work. A wealth of examples teaches you to understand "the body language of the board"-a skill that separates the amateurs from the players.

  • Much of chess boils down to the tension between static play versus dynamic play. Static play encompasses the long game of development and positional advantage, while dynamic play is all about tactics and aggressive attacks. Find out when to rely on each approach-and when you need to create a dynamic situation.

  • One very important strategy in any game is to develop your pieces as quickly as possible. Once developed, open and closed board positions require very different strategic approaches. Study these differences and find out how to use your knights, bishops, or rooks for greatest success-and how best to get those pieces into play.

  • In this lesson, you'll find out why "pawns are the soul of chess." Train your eye to see the pawn structures of a game and their strategic implications. After honing your ability to read a position and see patterns, study a few strategies for making the most out of the pawns-including pawn chains, the passed pawn, the Grunfeld Defense, and more.

  • Step back to an era of gaslights and chess cafes in old Europe. The €œromantic era of chess€ of the 18th and 19th century was filled with raucous characters who employed swashbuckling tactics to please a crowd. Meet three famous players-Joseph Henry Blackburne, Adolph Anderssen, and Baron Ignatz von Kolisch-and study their games.

  • Errors are common among players at all levels. We fall into traps, walk headfirst into an opponent's tactic, or simply miss a good move or hidden vulnerability. Review several ways a game can go wrong, from the quick "fool's mate" to many of the short, brutal takedowns from famous matches.

  • Famous chess players are some of the most fascinating figures in history. Pause from the tactics of the game to learn about four of the most famous players who ever lived: Paul Morphy, Alexander Alekhine, Mikhail Tal and Garry Kasparov. Examine several of their games to get a feel for their playing style.

  • Continue your study of patterns-this time with combination moves that require crafty calculations. Whether you're wondering when (and why) to sacrifice a piece, or you're looking to trap kings in tight corners, or you simply want to unleash a torrent of carnage on the board, the tactics from this lesson will help you become a more formidable player.

  • Build your arsenal of tactical skills by looking for winning patterns on the board. After covering three go-to punches-pins, skewers, and forks-Mr. Silman turns to decoys, double attacks, discovered attacks, and more. Armed with these patterns of play, you now have a major tactical advantage.

  • Complete your review of the basics of chess-including how to castle, the difference between checkmate and stalemate, and the etiquette of play. Then shift your attention to the mythic side of the game and find out about simultaneous exhibitions, blindfolded play, and chess computers.

  • Although humble, pawns are the most complex pieces on the chessboard. Meanwhile, the leaping knights are perhaps the strangest pieces. Learn how these two pieces move and what strategies to employ with them to control the board. Look at a few situations that test what you've learned.