Archive for the ‘Adolf Anderssen’ Category

Velocity Chess Makes it Fun to be at Odds with One Another

August 27, 2014
Velocity Chess

Velocity Chess

Velocity Chess is a revolutionary new online chess platform that is making playing chess “at odds” cool again. Want to play a game against a chess master where he/she spots you a rook or a few minutes in a blitz game? Velocity Chess is the place for you. Setting up a game at odds has never been easier and you can even wager virtual coins on the outcome. By harnessing the power of Bitcoin, Velocity Chess seems poised to become the online leader in handicapping on internet speed chess. Coupled with with the best anti-cheat technology in the industry, Velocity Chess is adding a new dynamic to online chess in much the same way that poker was transformed by Planet Poker in 1998.


Setting up "at odds" chess games on Velocity Chess is easy.

Setting up “at odds” chess games on Velocity Chess is easy.

Below is my best example of a chess game played at odds on Velocity Chess:

[Event “blitz game at rook and time odds”]
[Site “”]
[Date “2014.8.2”]
[Round “?”]
[White “Chris Torres”]
[Black “Msrmsr”]
[Result “1-0”]
[TimeControl “White 5:00, Black 10:00”]
[SetUp “1”]
[FEN “rnbqkbnr/pppppppp/8/8/8/8/PPPPPPPP/RNBQKBN1 w Qkq – 0 1”]

The starting position. White had 5 minutes while black has 10.

The starting position. White had 5 minutes while black has 10.

{I enjoy playing games at odds. Many of my chess heroes played in a time
that this was common. Now, it’s rare but I am keeping the torch burning both in classrooms and on Velocity Chess .}

1. a3 {I am convinced that the main reason
Anderssen’s Opening has a bad reputation is the fault of the players
playing white rather than the opening itself. It is actually a very
flexible way to start the game as white. In addition, the white player can
play his favorite black opening with the bonus of starting with the a-pawn one square forward.}

1… g6 {My opponent’s plan is to immediately make it
hard for me to play a “b4” pawn push.}

"I shall be telling this with a sigh Somewhere ages and ages hence:	 Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—	 I took the one less traveled by,	 And that has made all the difference."-Robert Frost

“I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.”-Robert Frost


2. d4 {I grab the center while placing an obstacle on the a1-h8 diagonal.}

2… d5

3. e4 {When you are playing at rook’s odds, it is imperative to attack quickly because most early attacks are not reliant rooks and you are unlikely to win an endgame down a rook anyways.}


4. Nc3 Bf5 {My opponent makes his first strategic mistake. Generally
speaking, you do not want to bring a bishop out to the side of the board
you are preparing a fianchetto for your other bishop. Now his bishop is
limited in the direction it can retreat.}

5. f3 Bg7 {This is a seriously
interesting opening position. However, an early tactical brawl favors the
player who is a stronger tactician.}

The position after 5...Bg7.

The position after 5…Bg7.

6. fxe4 Qxd4 {I really don’t want to
trade queens as I am already down a rook. Unfortunately, my opponent definitely understands the value of trading when ahead pieces.}

7. Nb5 {Rather than trade queens, I throw more tactics into the mix.}

The position after 7. Nb5.

The position after 7. Nb5.


Qxe4+ 8. Be2 {I avoid trading queens and am hoping for a combination with Nxc7+ followed by Qd8#.}

Be5 {My opponent defends “c7” and thus stops my mating idea.}

The position after 8...Be5.

The position after 8…Be5.



9. Nf3 {I develop with a threat against the “guard.”}

h6? {Black stops my knight from jumping to “g5” but that is not what I was planning. Thus, he just
wasted time.}

10. Nxe5 Qxe5 {The queen takes the place of the bishop in
guarding “c7.”}

The position after 10... Qxe5.

The position after 10… Qxe5.


11. Be3 {I am tempting the queen to leave d5 in order to capture my bishop. Either way, the position retains just enough tactics.}

a6? {My offer confuses my opponent. Really, he should have just taken my bishop.}

12. Bd4 {Lots of tactics now.}

The position after 12. Bd4. "Lots of Tactics now!"

The position after 12. Bd4. “Lots of Tactics now!”



12… Qxh2

13. Nxc7+ {For the moment, I am threatening both of his rooks and checking his king. These are the types of positions that tend to confuse weaker players.}

13… Kf8 {And black is definitely confused. He should have simply captured the knight on “c7” with his queen.}

The position after 13... Kf8.

The position after 13… Kf8.



14. Nxa8 {Now we are even in pieces although my opponent maintains a material advantage because of his extra pawns. Still, white is catching up.}

14… Nf6

15. Bxf6 {I am attempting to expose his king further at the cost of trading pieces when I am down in material.}

15… Qh1+ {My opponent should hold off on the check until after he recaptures on f6.}

The position after 15... Qxh1+.

The position after 15… Qxh1+.


16. Kd2 Qxd1+

17. Rxd1 {He finally trades queens but it is not nearly as advantageous of a plan as it used to be.}

17… exf6

18. Bf3 Nc6 19. Nc7 {My knight exits from a dangerous corner while
threatening to win a pawn after the bishop grabs the knight on “c6.”}

The position after 19. Nc7.

The position after 19. Nc7.



19… Kg7{Black could have saved a pawn by playing “a5.”}

20. Bxc6 Rd8+ {My opponent is still trying to trade pieces even though the position no longer calls for it.}

21. Kc1 Rxd1+

22. Kxd1 bxc6

23. Nxa6 {At this point, my oppnent’s
clock reads “6:18” and my time left is just “1:36.” No worries.}

23… Be4 

24. Nc5 {Rather than save my pawn on “g2,” I elect to blockade his pawn on “c6” with my knight in order to facilitate my a-pawn queening on “a8.”}

24… Bxg2

The position after 24... Bxg2.

The position after 24… Bxg2.

25. a4 Bf1

26. a5  f5? {I am not sure why my opponent decided that the
f-pawn is more of a threat than the a-pawn because it is not.}

27. b3 {Now
my plan is to place a pawn on “c4” and then my a-pawn will be home free.}

27… f4

28. c4 f3

The position after 28... f3.

The position after 28… f3.

29. Ke1 Bg2

30. Kf2 {This move was really not necessary but I was playing purely by instinct. It certainly doesn’t hurt my cause at all.}
31… h5

31. a6 h4

32. a7 h3

The position after 32... h3.

The position after 32… h3.

33. Kg1 {This move wasn’t necessary but just
“felt correct.” Again, it doesn’t hurt my cause.}

33… Bh1

34. a8=Q  h2+

35. Kxh1 f2 {This looks like trouble but all my pieces and pawns have been perfectly placed for victory. To quote John “Hannibal” Smith, “I love it when a plan comes together.”(A-Team reference)}

The position after 35... f2. "I love it when a plan comes together."- John Hannibal Smith

The position after 35… f2. “I love it when a plan comes together.”- John “Hannibal” Smith


36. Qa1+ f6

37. Qf1 g5

38. Qxf2 Kg6

39. Kxh2 {I have just 7.4 seconds left on the clock. No worries!}

The position after 39, Kxh2. "I have just 7.4 seconds left on the clock. No worries!"

The position after 39. Kxh2. “I have just 7.4 seconds left on the clock. No worries!”



39… f5

40. Nd7 g4

41. Qd4 Kg5

42. Qf6+ Kf4

43. Kg2 g3

44. Qe5+ Kg4

45. Qxg3+ Kh5

46. Qe5 Kg4

47. Nf8 f4

48. Nh7 f3+

49. Kf2 Kh3

50. Qg3#

Victory Achieved with 2.8 seconds to spare.

Victory Achieved with 2.8 seconds to spare.


For more info on Velocity Chess, please read:

My First Impressions of Velocity Chess 


Velocity Chess

For more info on Bitcoin, I recommend reading:

Why Bitcoin Matters by Marc Andreessen 

Paul Morphy’s Christmas Miracle

December 26, 2012
Position after 20...Nd5?White to move and win.

Position after 20…Nd5?
White to move and win.

When Adolf Anderssen arrived in Paris on December 15, 1858, Paul Morphy was gravely ill. Doctors were treating his influenza with leeches and blood-letting. Despite Morphy being too weak to stand from his bed, the two strongest chess players in the world decided to play a chess match as this encounter would likely be their last. No money was at stake, only honor. While very ill, Morphy outplayed Anderssen and eventually recovered his health. Below is game 7, “The Christmas Miracle”:

[Event “Anderssen-Morphy”]

[Site “Paris FRA”]

[Date “1858.12.25”]

[Round “7”]

[White “Paul Morphy”]

[Black “Adolf Anderssen”]

[Result “1-0”]

[ECO “B01”]

[Opening “Scandinavian”]

[Variation “Anderssen Counterattack, Collijn Variation”]

1. e4 {Notes by Chris Torres.} d5 {Anderssen, perhaps wisely, avoids 1 e4 e5 against which his opponent had a reputation of superior knowledge. Instead black chooses the Scandinavian Defence.} 2. exd5 Qxd5 3. Nc3 Qa5 {On a5 the black queen is hard for white to attack and if white plays d4 will be pinning the knight on c3.} 4. d4 {Black’s most aggressive reply and a specialty of Adolf Anderssen.} e5 5. dxe5 Qxe5+ 6. Be2 {Neither man wanted to trade Queens on e2.} Bb4 7. Nf3 {Paul Morphy prefers sacrificing a pawn to obtain a more speedy development of his pieces. Of course his pawn sacrifice is correct.} Bxc3+ 8. bxc3 Qxc3+ 9. Bd2 Qc5 10. Rb1 {Now we can clearly see Morphy’s lead in development.} Nc6 11. O-O Nf6 12. Bf4 {I would have played Bg5. But I am not the greatest attacking chess player who has ever lived.} O-O {Anderssen makes a wise decision not to bother with attempting to defend the c pawn. Doing so would have resulted in too much initiative for white’s attack.} 13. Bxc7 Nd4 14. Qxd4 Qxc7 15. Bd3 Bg4 {That pins nothing. Better would have been rook to e8.} 16. Ng5 Rfd8 17. Qb4 Bc8 {I can not think of any other way of saving the pawn on b7. If Anderssen plays …b6, Morphy could have swiped the h pawn with the knight. Perhaps best was kicking the knight away with …h6.} 18. Rfe1 a5 19. Qe7 {Always be suspicious when Morphy is willing to trade queens.} Qxe7 20. Rxe7 Nd5? {Adolf Anderssen makes a serious mistake. Nd5 may look as though it forces Morphy’s rook to leave the seventh rank but this is not the case. Better was …Rd7.} 21. Bxh7+! {Paul Morphy delivers a very instructive combination and a true Christmas miracle.} Kh8 22. Rxf7 Nc3 23. Re1 Nxa2 24. Rf4 Ra6 25. Bd3 1-0

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