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Normal Topic Kaufman's book as a starting point? (Read 2776 times)
HgMan
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Re: Kaufman's book as a starting point?
Reply #8 - 08/10/05 at 18:46:29
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I would second that.  Much more up-to-date than Fine's Ideas Behind the Chess Openings, and also just plain better, is Gabor Kallai's two-volume set, Basic Chess Openings and More Basic Chess Openings.  The first is all about 1. e4; the second about everything else.  

But there are other, similar summary works that would help you much more than learning a certain repertoire.

The main thing is to try to understand the principles and to play a lot of chess.


Thanks--I was blanking on the title of the Fine book, for which I do have a soft spot and if you can find a copy it's well worth the investment.  I don't doubt, however, that the Kallai books are indeed stronger...
  

"Luck favours the prepared mind."  --Louis Pasteur
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Markovich
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Re: Kaufman's book as a starting point?
Reply #7 - 08/10/05 at 14:25:59
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I'd be very wary of adopting a repertoire book at this level.  Reuben Fine wrote an excellent book on chess and chess principles about the opening.  Before you start investigating particular openings, study their rationale.  After understanding opening principles (and Fine is only one of many available), then you can examine openings more carefully on your own...


I would second that.  Much more up-to-date than Fine's Ideas Behind the Chess Openings, and also just plain better, is Gabor Kallai's two-volume set, Basic Chess Openings and More Basic Chess Openings.  The first is all about 1. e4; the second about everything else. 

But there are other, similar summary works that would help you much more than learning a certain repertoire.

The main thing is to try to understand the principles and to play a lot of chess.
  

The Great Oz has spoken!
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HgMan
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Re: Kaufman's book as a starting point?
Reply #6 - 08/10/05 at 09:51:05
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I'd be very wary of adopting a repertoire book at this level.  Reuben Fine wrote an excellent book on chess and chess principles about the opening.  Before you start investigating particular openings, study their rationale.  After understanding opening principles (and Fine is only one of many available), then you can examine openings more carefully on your own...
  

"Luck favours the prepared mind."  --Louis Pasteur
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Willempie
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Re: Kaufman's book as a starting point?
Reply #5 - 08/09/05 at 16:29:28
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Well a decent repertoire book is always a good thing to start with. I started with a now ancient repertoire book by Euwe. It had two main options options for white and for black, so he had a repertoire with e4 (based on the Giuoco) and one on d4 (based on the QGD exchange), plus on either e4 or d4 the e4/d5 option plus another (iirc the Alekhine and the dutch). I of course chose the e4 based one. It was light on theory especially if you compare with some fritz dumps you get in certain books, but it served me a very long time. I didnt follow the entire repertoire (how often you get a Caro or 1 c4 when 12?), so certain variations I had to make up as I went. That helped me a lot in gaining insight in openings I would normally never have bothered about and see new ideas for combinations.
So in short I dont like his e4 based choices for tactical play, but the book may still serve you well as long as you are willing to put your own ideas into your repertoire. So if you find out you dont like the ruy exchange or the Bb5 sicilian, switch and try something else. Just dont do it after 3 games.
  

If nothing else works, a total pig-headed unwillingness to look facts in the face will see us through.
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Scott Rex
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Re: Kaufman's book as a starting point?
Reply #4 - 08/09/05 at 12:24:53
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Willempie,

Thanks for the response.  I'll try to clarify the type of openings I'm looking for.  I've often been advised to play the open games for several years before trying other systems.  Thus, the Spanish would more clearly illustrate the importance of the basic opening principles (control the center, castle early, develop your pieces, etc.), than the French, say, with its blocked bishop, cramped positions, and games in which castling is delayed or omitted.  In short, I've been told by more experienced players to play 1.e4, and meet e4 with e5 and d4 with d5.  The Kaufman book does exactly that. 

Another concern is that I don't feel like I have a "style" at this point.  I seem to favor positional games slightly, but that may just be a fear of getting destroyed by brilliant combinations early in the game (slowly getting squeezed to death in 45 moves feels like a closer game than resigning on move 18 facing mate in 2).  It's difficult for me to say that a particular opening is too positional/tactical or that some lines in repertoire are not to my liking until I play them for a while.  But, then, how do I choose the openings to test out?  The Kaufman book seemed to provide a very solid foundation in one volume.  I can say, for the time being, "this is my repertoire" and feel secure that I can look up lines that trouble me and be prepared for most things that my opponent will throw at me. 

Thanks again,
Scott 

  
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Willempie
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Re: Kaufman's book as a starting point?
Reply #3 - 08/09/05 at 09:48:27
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What do you mean with a classical opening system and develop chess understanding and become a stronger player tactically? Do you mean you want to play an opening where the strategy is relatively easy to understand and where the initiative is important?
If that's the case, I wouldnt go with this repertoire. The Ruy exchange and Berlin are not really known for their combinations. The other choices seem reasonable from your perspective, though I suspect some of his anti e4 choices may not go well with your broader stated goal as I interpret it. The slav and other non e4 stuff seems a good choice. Then again I have never seen a repertoire book which is perfect, usually a quarter or a half of the variations will not fit your style. So maybe you should complement it with one or two other books, like maybe "attacking with e4".
One last point, if you have picked a repertoire chances are that certainly in the beginning you get some rather depressing results. In that case dont write off the variation, but try to find where you did go wrong, preferably with the book and/or a stronger player.
  

If nothing else works, a total pig-headed unwillingness to look facts in the face will see us through.
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Re: Kaufman's book as a starting point?
Reply #2 - 08/09/05 at 06:31:58
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Go buy the book.  It is very good and doesn't cost much.  You'll be happy.
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0812935713/qid=1123586695/sr=1-1/r...

Or go to a bookstore and browse through it.
  
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Re: Kaufman's book as a starting point?
Reply #1 - 08/09/05 at 00:01:35
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It depends. Kaufman's non-e4 black repertoire is very sharp and 1.e4 and 1.e5 e5 are highly positional and often end game oriented. If you follow the repertoire verbatim, you will probably develop a universal playing style. But I doubt it would be to some one's taste to follow the repertoire cover to cover.

I personally bought it for its 1.e4 e5 treatment and coverage of sundry lines against 1.d4. Well, I have to say, I am not disappointed.

I know this is not terribly helpful. But... that's it from me, I'm afraid. ???
  

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Scott Rex
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Kaufman's book as a starting point?
08/08/05 at 20:26:56
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Hi everyone,

As somewhat of a beginner (a couple of years playing seriously), it's been recommended to me here and elsewhere that sticking to a fairly direct, classical opening system for several years is probably best way to develop chess understanding and become a stronger player tactically. 

With that in mind I've been looking at books to help me in that goal.  I'm wondering what you think of the repertoire presented in Kaufman's book "The Chess Advantage in Black and White."  (1.e4 as white with the French Tarrasch, CK advance, Bb5 Sicilian, Spanish exchange; as black Ruy Lopez Berlin and Semi Slav, and he provides coverage of nearly every other defence).  It seems like the book would be good place to start as it provides a complete repertoire keeping with the recommendations I've been getting.  As I gain experience, I can then change lines where I see fit.  I'm not planning to spend my time memorizing lines, but it will be nice to have a book to consult on the lines I face most.   

If any of you have a better idea for a repertoire book for either side for someone at my level of experience, I'd love to hear suggestions.

Thanks,
Scott
  
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