Tabletop games like Chess have entertained board games enthusiasts for decades. The puzzle-like nature and various ways to win give Chess an edge over some other classic games that have been around just as long as Chess. As with any classic tabletop game of logic and strategy sometimes unique ways to completely dominate your opponent are overlooked for more tried and true options. Let’s take a look at chess pawns and how you can use them to claim a victory your board game opponent probably won’t see coming.
Using Pawns As Barriers
Chess is all about assigning value to key pieces and developing strategies to protect them for as long as possible. In this method your first goal is to place pawns in front of key pieces. Decide on a piece you value the most and place a line of pawns there. Don’t worry if an enemy pawn sneaks into that lineup, because part of the beauty of this approach is that you can take care of that as the game progresses. Don’t forget to build a barrier around your king while you’re working on the initial barrier building phase.
Using Pawns To Bait And Capture
Now that you have some barriers built up it’s time to enact your next step in this unconventional approach to this beloved board game. This is the time to start using your pawns to capture, and as sacrificial capture bait. Since you’ve built up some barrier pawn groups it’s time to start taking out some of your opponents pieces. Keep in mind that your approach is also to encourage your Chess partner to go for the easy capture. Remember, if they capture a pawn, you still have a barrier built up and this is the key to keeping larger more important pieces safe while your partner goes for the easy kill. (Keep in mind that you should still have at least 2 pawns ready if you are attempting to use pawns as bait.) When they go to capture your pawn you’ll already have another piece ready and waiting to capture the piece that captured yours. The key here is to make sure you aren’t afraid to sacrifice those pawns. Remember, we’re using them in 2 ways- capture bait, and to actually capture pieces themselves. Yes, capturing with a pawn is difficult but that’s part of the beauty of this approach. Outside the board game box thinking is what’s going to keep people guessing and ensure you continue to hold the advantage even if your opponent doesn’t see it yet.
Go For The King
If you’ve reached a point where you’ve correctly used your pawns ans bait and to capture, it’s now to move in for the kill. Again, this is going to require patience. But as a classic game enthusiast it’s likely you have acquired a large amount of patience already. This capture will appear to be a game of cat and mouse at first. Move your rook across from their king. It’s likely your opponent will move their king to another row, and this pattern will repeat many times. Their king will move to another row, and you’ll continue to move with them. Eventually, this will allow you to declare checkmate, leaving your opponent in shock at how you just changed up a run of the mill tabletop game with an entirely new strategy they didn’t even see coming.
Things To Keep In Mind
Each Chess player is unique in how they approach this board game. This type of changed strategy can take some practice. If it doesn’t work the first time, or even the 10th time, that doesn’t mean the approach is a failure. Try changing up which pieces you build your pawn guard around. If your pawns aren’t protecting pieces and allowing you to capture, take a look at creating different groupings so you have more protection and pawns left to capture whatever piece your opponent just used. Don’t forget that a key part of this strategy is strength in numbers while you make your pawns look like easy targets that must be captured. Other strategies may tell you that grouping pawns creates weaknesses within your plan of attack. Use this knowledge to your advantage and stay confident. This isn’t a strategy for the Chess beginner so you just have to remember you know what you’re doing. Don’t be your own worst enemy and second guess yourself halfway through the game. Stick to your guns and keep the original plan in place.
Some Final Tips
– If you are a visual learner, check out some websites with graphics detailing pawn based groupings and their efficacy.
– Keep your poker face ready. It’s another key step in not tipping off your partner that you know exactly what you’re doing. The element of surprise will be key.
– Practice, practice, practice. This is a new tactic to win a classic board game. You might not get it right the first time but having a new strategy under your belt will be well worth the effort.
What To Take Away From This Article
Don’t neglect your pawns. They can and should be used to your advantage, even if everyone else you’ve ever played Chess with has told you they are worthless and shouldn’t be used in a serious approach to winning the game. There are as many ways to approach Chess strategies as there are Chess players themselves. If you can learn to value pawns for what they truly can be, you are one step ahead of those who just can’t think of more creative approaches. At the very least you’ll have a plan that a lot of your opponents won’t see coming. As you continue to build on this strategy your understanding of how to effectively implement it will only increase. Treat your pawns as the valuable pieces they really are, and you could be unstoppable in your next game of Chess. if you want to be the next Chess genius out there, pawns might just be your key to success.
This article was written in collaboration with an outside author.