Cycle 5 Complete
Now to explain some of the cool things happening from doing these simple little mate exercises.
1) There are only so many patterns that occur in the mates-in-two. It really gives you a good way to practice learning how the pieces interact and support each other while constructing mating nets.
2) While working through the problems I was amazed to see how many examples where both sides are threatening mate. Neat to see top players going for each others throats only to see one move decide the outcome.
3) Time and time again while searching for the mating combinations I spotted variations that would force the second player to jettison decisive amounts of material just to stave off mate. There were tons of examples that even if the second player were given the luxury of moving first or I found a move that on closer examination turned out to be second best, they would still have to jettison decisive amounts of material to avoid the mate. It just goes to show how important it is for players to recognize mates and mate threats.
In conclusion I’m really starting to view these problems as just an extension of the inherent abilities of each piece. Let me rephrase that last sentence and hopefully make it less confusing. No longer do I have to search and waste time thinking about whether or not mate exists in a given position. I now know the answer. Just view the Mate-in-X problems as a form of "check" (of course not all mate threats start with check) that will force your opponent to respond accordingly. If they don't see the threat then it just makes the execution of your plan that much easier. (I’m not talking about playing “Wish” or “Hope” chess.) Because the longer I practice these simple little exercises the faster I begin to see them, and continue to learn ways to utilize just the threat of mate to my advantage.
Cycle 6- 0 Down 600 to go.
Cycle 1-Completed. Points Reached 1838/1842=99.78%
Cycle 2-Completed. Points reached 2052/2052=100%
Cycle 3-Completed. Points Reached 3624/3648=99.34%
Cycle 4-Completed. Points Reached 3640/3660=99.45%
Cycle 5-Completed. Points Reached 3582/3600=99.50%
3,000 down-4,000 remaining
70 Days down 71 to go