Strong and valid: Karsten Mueller's endgame course

7/13/2007 – With his four training DVDs German grandmaster and endgame expert Karsten Mueller provides a full endgame course, covering the whole scope of the field. The final vol. 4 is the most important one, since here Mueller discusses more complex endgames and thereby extends current endgame theory . Buy it now or read this review with sampler.

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Loading up on endgame ammunition

“Chess Endgames 4—Strategical Endgames” (GM Karsten Mueller) reviewed by Bob Long

This one is really loaded (6 hours). There are not only a boatload of videoclips, there is a big procession of endgames you can play through (as if it were a CD and you were using ChessBase9).

He starts out by emphasizing the “Cochrane Defense” which is used as a Rook and Bishop vs. Rook. The weaker side (lone Rook) tries to get the B between its Rook and the opposing King. In some situations it is a draw, in others, White can win. But his illustrated examples show how to converge on the enemy K, and with it on the back rank, how many of Black’s options are severely reduced.

He starts his collection of complicated endgames with Fischer-Taimanov (game 4), 1971.

On an open board, a Rook can pick up pawns and be stronger than minor pieces.

There is a section of “pawnless endings,” second rank defense, and also R + minor piece vs. R + minor pieces.

One of the GREAT features of Mueller’s DVDs are his “rules.” When Karsten gives you a rule, it tends to be STRONG and valid. He’s big on activity, especially in Knight endgames.

There are also double R endgames because there is a lot of firepower present.

Is Q + N stronger than Q + B (there are conditions)? He discusses this. However, he is clear that R + B tends to be much more stronger than R + N.

Click here to view the first lecture on Queen + Knight vs. Queen + Bishop.

What I like about watching and listening to Mueller is his definiteness. He’s not into waffling and he thinks very well on his feet.

“A middlegame is not an endgame” he says. Take your time and think.

Finally, he closes the video with a very instructive endgame won by Ulf Anderssen as both sides are using two Rs. Lots of jockeying, always threatening mate in order to get what he wants (win a pawn and then go after another one). There are more than 50 separate sections on these varied topics.

Original review at www.chessco.com

GM Karsten Muellers complete endgame course on four DVDs:

Endgames 1 - Basic knowledge for beginners
Endgames 2 - Rook endgames
Endgames 3 - Major piece endgames

Edngames 4 - Strategical endgames


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