Aries and their strategy

by Dagmar Seifert
3/31/2022 – If we were to assume that there really is something to astrology — that people born in autumn really do tick a little differently from those born in spring — might we have a useful clue to our opponent’s strategy in a chess game by asking about their star sign? Perhaps we would also involuntarily expect for a typical Dutchman to prefer a different strategy than a full-blooded Sicilian.

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Star sign of the current weeks: Aries

Garry Kasparov has said that a brilliant strategy certainly needs intelligence, but intelligence without audacity is not enough.

Kasparov, by the way, has Mars in Leo, the Ascendant in Sagittarius, Mercury in Taurus. This means that not only his sun sign Aries, but also his fighting power, Mars, and his destiny, the Ascendant, make him fiery, hot-tempered and aggressive. Very usefully, though, his thinking (Mercury) can be decidedly deliberate and security-conscious. Kasparov has a built-in brake, which grounds him for all his enthusiasm and always keeps him sensible.

The epitome of the fiery Aries - Garry Kasparov | Photo: Saint Louis Chess Center

How should one assess the typical Aries chess player?

First of all, it must be noted that an Aries, more than any other, does not play for fun, but to win. His sign is the first in the zodiac, and he is imbued with the idea of being first and the best. Other very ambitious Sun signs, such as Capricorn, are pushing just as inexorably to the top. They just think in entirely different terms of time. The Capricorn plans and learns and works for years to achieve success. A true Aries, on the other hand, never doubts for a moment that he will make it in a few weeks. Patience is not one of his strengths. He is more courageous than most, but perhaps also fleeting.

Humpy Koneru is currently the best female Aries player | Photo: David Llada / FIDE

It is said that Aries are the best soldiers, generals and army commanders. Closely followed, by the way, by Scorpios. (The difference between the two is that the Aries enjoys fighting, while the Scorpio is deadly serious).

Aries’ preferred form of conquest is blitzkrieg, the hasty, unexpected, surprising kind. Not infrequently, they confuse the enemy by advancing quite foolhardily without paying much attention to cover. They see themselves in the open, like Wyatt Earp when he ran into the Clanton gang shooting at him, and miraculously only his long coat was riddled with bullets. Such a thing is much more in keeping with Aries’ nature than any guerrilla tactics. He trusts almost superstitiously in his invulnerability.

Determined — Daniil Dubov | Photo: Niki Riga

The opponent is still racking their brains as to where the ambush might actually occur, and in the end perhaps realizes: there wasn’t anything scary happening at all. It’s just that someone has dared to gallop across open terrain without regard for the losses of one or the other piece, with a sword between their teeth, as it were, and is now limiting the moves of the opponent’s queen — in defiance of all logic.

Aries is much less inclined to sophistication than it appears. And in their haste and enthusiasm they can even make serious mistakes, neglect or forget king safety and pitilessly sacrifice their pawns (perhaps even the minor pieces).

Knockout victories under 20 moves are typical for true Aries. They appreciate the excitement, the risk, even the danger and the quick decision. They often act instinctively rather than thoughtfully — but they have excellent instincts on which they can rely. Since slowness bores them, they also think quickly. Sometimes too quickly.


The creative and combative Richard Rapport | Photo: Mark Livshitz (FIDE/ Worldchess)

There lies the opportunity for the opponent. It may well happen that such an ingenious, daring move was a little too daring. In any case, it might be worthwhile not to be infected by the rush, but to check whether Aries has not overlooked something essential in their frenzy.

To be honest, the first Sun sign in the zodiac tends towards selfishness to the point of egocentricity. Which means, the talent to think oneself into the opponent is mostly missing. Because they themselves are not inclined to traps and tricks, they don’t necessarily suspect them in their chess opponent.

And if they don’t happen to be an Aries themselves (and therefore can’t fight against them), they are advised to keep calm. Firstly, because there may really be something to discover that the lightning warrior themselves missed or that they simply wanted to risk. Secondly, because it makes an Aries angry when you slow them down. Their hot-blood bubbles and their temper will be hard to contain. Then they might flop. And if they aren’t well-trained in keeping it together, they might even throw the whole chessboard down...

Viktor Kortchnoi had a tantrum or two at the board | Photo: Rob Croes / Anefo

Famous Aries chess personalities

Master Class Vol.7: Garry Kasparov

On this DVD a team of experts gets to the bottom of Kasparov's play. In over 8 hours of video running time the authors Rogozenko, Marin, Reeh and Müller cast light on four important aspects of Kasparov's play: opening, strategy, tactics and endgame.


Dagmar Seifert is a North German journalist, author and astrologer. She loves chess, but is by no means an overly good player. After all, she was the one who taught ChessBase staff member Arne Kähler how to move the pieces, when he was six years old.


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