Ten Ways to Succeed in Chess

Ten Ways to Chess Success

These pages go with some books written by Tim Onions and Dave Regis.

The books are for young chess players interested in improving their game -- and for adults who know players like this!

If you haven't seen the books there are sample pages on Tim's site: Openings / Middlegame / Endgame / Puzzles 1

[cool blue cat] All our books have a large clear layout illustrated with many diagrams to make them easy to follow and cartoons to lighten the mix.

 Our rather cool blue cat is always on hand to give you advice.

 The books have had consistently good reviews and are one of the best sellers on book stalls for young players.

Two things happen when we write books:
  1. We always have some things that we wanted to fit in but didn't have room for, and

  2. If we recommend some other books, they go out of print by the time you are reading our book.

So, we have listed our favourite books on Tim's website, and given you the extra bits here!  The extra bits don't have the same sort of comments and layout that we put into the books , but we hope you will learn something from them.

You can see all the examples and play them on your own computer using a chess programme, then you can download: all the Game(s) in PGN format.

Ten ways to succeed in the Opening
What to read next
What was squeezed out
Ten ways to succeed in the Middlegame
What to read next
What was squeezed out
Ten ways to succeed in the Endgame
What to read next
What was squeezed out
Chess Puzzles 1
What to read next
What was squeezed out
Chess Puzzles 2
What to read next
What was squeezed out


Ten ways to succeed in the Opening: What got squeezed out

Example games to show:

All the basic ideas of how to play as White:

Taking over the centre:

Attack on the uncastled king:

Weakening the castled King:

Getting the Queen out too early:

Attacking too early:

Fischer fails against our Black opening!

The Ruy Lopez for Juniors:

Ten ways to succeed in the Middlegame: What got squeezed out

Example games showing typical tactics:





Discovery (jump):

Tie (undermining):

Tie (overloading):






Example games showing typical strategies:


King safety:


Pieces good and bad:

Forcing moves (breakthroughs, initiative):

Lines (files, ranks, diagonals):

Centre and space:

Ten ways to succeed in the Endgame: What got squeezed out


How to win a Rook ending a pawn up (Lucena):

How to draw a Rook ending a pawn down (Philidor):

How to lose a Rook ending a pawn up! (Speelman):

Queen's-side majority:

Chess Puzzles 1: What got squeezed out...

...mostly went into the second book!

But if you've come this far, here are a set of our favourite combinations.  They're much harder than anything you find in the book, and are really to be enjoyed and not solved.

Alekhin-Feldt 1913:

Levitsky-Marshall, 1912:

Bernstein-Capablanca 1911:

Petrosian-Spassky, 1966:

Alekhin-Yates, 1922:


Rotlevi – Rubinstein, Lodz, 1907:

Chess Puzzles 2: What got squeezed out...

Some lessons about what sort of moves are especially hard to spot:

Backward moves:

Long moves:

New moves:

In-between moves:



Collinear moves:

Switchback moves:

Hesitation moves:

Some last encouragements to keep looking:



Alekhin and the General:



Game(s) in PGN

Chess Quotes

A quote from Richard RETI's Masters of the Chessboard(p 395):
"In general, it can be established that there are two defenses against 1. e4, which make it absolutely impossible for the first player to take any initiative, and which give Black such an even game, without any difficulties at all, that it has now become useless in practice, since these defenses are generally known. They are the Caro-Kann Defense and the variation of the French Game: 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5 dxe4."
Glad that's settled! :-)
— Randy Pals