Middlegame Databases



The Art of Exchanges

When the main goal of our play is to checkmate the opponent's king, one of the main ways to achieve this is to reach a material advantage. Every beginner is taught to count pieces and do not allow obviously disadvantageous exchanges (such as rook for bishop or knight for pawn). And while beginners often continue despite large material imbalances, this is much less often seen among tournament players. Here the fight usually revolves around strategical and tactical ideas. Players strive for situations in which their pieces are superior to their opponents'. One of the most important tools to achieve this goal is the exchange. The famous Soviet author Gennady Nesis has written a few books about the art of exchanges, both in middlegames and endgames. They were popular in their times and can still be useful for players today. Yet if we look at their contents, we will find that exchanges are not categorized by their themes and their goals there. The current database is designed to fill this gap.

Features:     Downloadable in PGN      Interactive tests

Dynamic Play

The dynamic phase tends to have a global character, with piece and pawn tensions all over the board and with the enemy kings only as a possible collateral victim. It does not have the linear and logical course of a combination and it is hard to anticipate its end. While the accurate calculation is useful, it is usually impossible to exhaust the position analytically, thus intuition and understanding play a very important role. A moment of crucial importance is when dynamic fireworks come to an end. If played perfectly, the evaluations of the end position and the initial position (before the fireworks) should be the same. In practical games, however, this rarely happens since dynamic play offers the stronger player countless possibilities to outplay his opponent.

Features:     Downloadable in PGN      Interactive tests

Attack

This database is designed to develop your attacking skills. Besides explaining the typical attacking methods, true to his style, GM Mihail Marin deals with the psychological aspects as well. This is a highly interactive product since the reader is supposed to learn through practice. At the beginning of each section, you are invited to think upon the most critical positions in the section. The database consists of 17 extensively annotated games (divided into 9 sections) and 29 interactive test positions (divided into 9 sections).

Features:     Downloadable in PGN      Interactive tests

Calculation

With such a quantity of (many of them excellent) books on tactics, one may ask himself whether anything new can be said on this subject. Nevertheless, in many cases, the system of classification used in such books fails to reveal some essential aspects. Sorting the examples according to the central theme of the combination (a system used on most occasions) is sound, but offers only an "outside image". GM Mihail Marin considers that there are books offering a very abstract, apparently logical explanation of the tactical events, but not necessarily one corresponding to the thinking process of the players. In the current database, you will find 18 examples which are divided into 5 sections as well as 30 test positions which are divided into 6 sections. Every test position is backed up with extensive analysis and explanations that you can check after solving.

Features:     Downloadable in PGN      Interactive tests

Learn from Magnus Carlsen - Strategic Planning

This database deals with Carlsen's most important skill - his long-term strategic vision. He has an outstanding feeling of the factors which are important for the evaluation of the position. In the current database, GM Mihail Marin throws some light on the strategical thinking of the World Champion, The database includes 10 chapters and 30 test positions.

Features:     Downloadable in PGN      Interactive tests

Learn from Magnus Carlsen - Prophylactic Thinking

One of the things that impress me in Carlsen's play when in top form is his apparent invulnerability. No matter how much time his strongest opponents dedicate to preparation against him, no matter how dangerous (or simply bad) his positions look at times, the reigning World Champion proves the ability to hold his own, like a cats' reflex to fall on its feet. One reason for this is Carlsen's strong sense of danger, which often leads to unexpected or apparently modest moves, parrying the threats or anticipating the dangers before they even become real.

Features:     Downloadable in PGN      Interactive tests