Chess Strategy and Tactics: Emanuel Lasker's Amazing Games
What you'll learn
- Ability to appreciate the strength and accuracy of Lasker
- Ability to make use of Lasker's openings and strategies and tactics
- Ability to see how Lasker's openings vary according to importance of tournament, simul or World championship event
- Ability to judge of Lasker was a "Poker Chess player" or just had a better understanding of opening theory than his peers
- Ability to improve classical opening knowledge as Lasker played 1...e5 a lot to 1.e4 and 1...d5 to 1.d4
- Ability to understand how to tradeoff structure for central control and development e.g. allowing Nxc5 giving bishop up
- Ability to see more Lasker's influence on Mikhail Tal and Viktor Korchnoi - especially as a fight - to win
- Ability to apply more Lasker's concept of the Truth in relation to it's contrast - e.g. Morphy provided contrast too
- Ability to improve understanding of the King's Gambit as Lasker played this quite a bit
- Ability to understand more why Mikhail Tal considered Lasker as the greatest of the champions
- Ability to understand more why Vladimir Kramnik considered Lasker a pioneer of modern chess
- Ability to appreciate that Lasker was also a master of the "meta game" making particular opponents feel uncomfortable in particular situations
- Ability to appreciate the Berlin defence old variation as a fantastic solid and potentially advantageous opening foundation for later play with the bishop pair
- Ability to appreciate the Berlin defence as often the bishop without counterpart advantage in exchange for some structural damage which is often not exploitable
- Ability to appreciate statistically anomoly of both Vladimir Kramnik and Emanuel Lasker actually having a positive win % with Black using Berlin defence
- Ability to improve endgames greatly from seeing amazing World championship titanic games getting a variety of endgame tips and strategies
- Ability to train your evaluation of chess positions through the rich experiences of the games and the underlying variations
- Ability to create evocative ideas and concepts and emotions from these games by gaining empathy from the insights and variations to use in one's own games
- Ability to appreciate Lasker on Chessmetrics best players ever 2 year period #2 behind Kasparov and 20 year period ranked #3 just behind Kasparov and Karpov
- Ability to appreciate the Evolution of chess style has an early link to modern chess in the form of Lasker who often had better tournaments than his successors
- Ability to see influence to World champion Capablanca taking defensive skill and endgame mastery as the specialist subset of Lasker's style
- Ability to see influence of Alexander Alekhine in terms of attacking chess and the art of Attack
- Ability to see influence to World champion Max Euwe in terms of tactical resourcefulness and solid opening variations
- Ability to see influence of World Mikhail Botvinnik in terms of professional preparation for events - e.g. kept lots of stamina in events and often won in end
- Ability to see influence to World champion Mikhail Tal in terms of being able to create complexity and win from seemingly bad positions
- Ability to see influence to World champion Tigran Petrosian in terms of logic, precision and strong tactical abilities
- Ability to see influence to World champion Bobby Fischer in terms of Universal style and chess as as fight- two cats that are very alike indeed!
- Ability to see infleunce to World champion Anatoly Karpov in terms of universal style and playing the position appropriately and the value of practical moves
- Ability to see influence to World champion Garry Kasparov in terms of exploiting the opponent's weaknesses in openings, middlegame style and personality general
- Ability to see influence of World champion Vladimir Kramnik in terms of solid aggressive dynamic style and sharing love of Berlin defence :)
- Ability to see influence of current World champion Magnus Carlsen in terms of chess as a fight - not a sport, science or Art - but a Fight primarily
- Ability to appreciate Albert Einstein's comments including Lasker "one of the most interesting people I came to know in my later life"
- Knows how the chess pieces move
Emanuel Lasker was a German chess player, mathematician, and philosopher who was World Chess champion for an amazing 27 years, from 1894 to 1921. This represents the longest reign of any officially recognized World chess champion in history.
Lasker is regarded by many as one of the strongest chess players in history. Kingscrusher chooses old masters for the greater clarity of understanding their games without the burden so much of modern technical theory. Beautiful ideas are shown in Lasker games and one can also see the influences on future World chess champions such as Mikhail Tal and Vladimir Kramnik who considered Lasker to be one of the strongest players ever. Kramnik considered Lasker to be the link to modern chess.
“I think that Lasker is the discoverer of modern chess. When you look at Steinitz's games, they have a very 19th-century feel. And Lasker had many games that could be played by any modern player. Lasker is the first link in the chain of "global" chess, where different aspects of struggle are taken into consideration. Steinitz largely emphasized only one positional element. For instance, if he had a better pawn structure and an attack on the King, he thought that his advantage was decisive. And Lasker understood that there are different components of the position that balance each other. He discovered that there are various kinds of advantages, and they are interchangeable: tactical advantage can be transformed into strategical, and vice versa. I think that Lasker was a much stronger chess player than Steinitz. It's telling that their 1894 World Championship match (let alone the return match) was completely one-sided."
- Vladimir Kramnik
Indeed it seems many of Lasker's games even incredibly in simultaneous displays show very high levels of accuracy when checking with the state-of-the-art modern engines such as Stockfish with neural network technology. Between Steinitz and Lasker, the foundations of modern chess were arguably set. The Romantic era of chess was well and truly over, and chess was played in a more principled accurate way. Lasker in particular seemed to be less dogmatic compared to Steinitz, and used "patterns" more in preference to strict principles or ideals, and used these patterns to win games - and generally maximize win probability. Chess for Lasker was primarily a "fight" and not so much a science. Lasker factored in the frailties of being human and appreciate the difficulties of playing certain positions and certain opponents playing certain positions. Taking into account more variables such as the opponent's strengths and weaknesses made Lasker a more dangerous fighter and warrior of the chessboard.
“A chess game, after all, is a fight in which all possible factors must be made use of, and in which a knowledge of the opponent’s good and bad qualities is of the greatest importance.”
There is a claim that Lasker used a psychological approach to the game, and whilst this is true to some extent, the fundamental accuracy of Lasker's play is undeniable. If Lasker tinted his game towards particular strengths and weaknesses of repeat opponents, then this just seems standard nowadays, and follows the Art of War principles in particular:
“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”
―Sun Tzu, The Art of War
In this period of time as an example, we see how Lasker defeated Steinitz in two key matches, and Lasker tended to encourage Queenless positions where he felt that Steinitz was not optimal within. This strategy paid off very well, and in fact, Lasker completely crushed Steinitz in the rematch. Lasker went on to prove himself with some major tournament victories establishing his credibility as the World chess champion. This search and eagerness for credibility meant that this was a rich period of playing activity. Lasker himself is quoted as saying:
“... in itself, the title of world champion does not give any significant advantages if it is not acknowledged by the entire chess world, and a champion who does not have the chess world behind him is, in my view, a laughing-stock.”
-- Emanuel Lasker
This course time period of Lasker's chess between 1889-1999 shows the world at the time starting to take Lasker very seriously and accepting his legitimacy as World chess champion. It shows very high accuracy chess and very instructive chess. Kingscrusher has sought the key matches and tournaments which highlight the amazing gifts and advances that Lasker created for the world of chess, and which many of us should pay attention to greatly as Lasker's play passes the test of time like no other master in his Era. He was truly a link to the modern game. Prepare to be amazed if you study the games in this course!
Who this course is for:
- Beginner to Intermediate level players
Tryfon Gavriel, also known as "Kingscrusher" on the Internet. I am a FIDE Candidate Master (CM), British Regional Chess Master, and run a popular Youtube channel for many years with over 114k+ Subs as of 2021 and a Silver Button Award.
I have done many shows on commercial chess servers. I am also the Webmaster of the correspondence style chess server Chessworld which emphasizes game quality and research.
Over 35 years of playing activity both online and offline. Peak ICC blitz rating of 2625 (18-Jun-1999). Peak ICC 5 min auto-pairing of 2383 (29-Jun 2012). ECF Grading peak classical: 212 (A) ECF. Peak Rapid rating: 217 (C). Lichess marathon top 10 finishers in 3 marathons so far. In the other two, top 50 finishers. Won quite a few tournaments at lichess
One of my earliest Over-the-board achievements in Chess was winning the Lloyds Under 18 national UK tournament in 1989. My trophy was awarded to me by Grandmaster and Ph.D. Mathematician Dr John Nunn.
I have done teaching in Schools and also have done teaching online with several Lichess students on a regular basis, and have a very good coaching rating at lichess.
Played twice in the main British Chess championship. Many of my Youtube viewers claim big rating increases after watching my videos.
I particularly love chess tactics and combinations, and it is probably no accident that my "Complete Guide to Chess Tactics" has been a best-seller since near inception here at Udemy.
In general, I will try and give you greater enthusiasm for the game and in particular the dynamic aggressive tactical aspects of playing chess. My favorite heroes are Paul Morphy, Bobby Fischer, Garry Kasparov, and Mikhail Tal. if you want to be a dynamic aggressive player, I may be able to encourage you and find you relevant resources on that path. The dynamic aggressive were particularly strong tactically and would often trade off pawn structure neatness and material to try and checkmate the opponent's kings. Checkmate does win the game :)
In terms of concrete openings to make use of potentially teaching here at Udemy through courses, I like Solid openings on such as the London System. I also like provocative openings like the Knight's Tango systems to encourage weaknesses from opponents. I am also at faster time controls especially, particularly fond of aggressive openings and gambits. As an example, the Smith-Morra Gambit vs the Sicilian Defence, and other gambits can be used aggressively even with the black pieces such as the Albin Counter Gambit. Gambits vary of course in soundness and it is important to teach what "ticks many boxes" for use in various time controls. In the search for the ideal courses to provide you, I like to search within myself for my core strengths and passions within the passion of Chess.
I truly hope you enjoy my courses and they improve your chess and your enjoyment of chess generally - and life generally :)