She looked him squarely in the eye. “Checkmate.”
We learn at the very beginning how powerful the queen is and that fascinates us for a long time. The queen dominates beginner’s games to such extent many a time it wins the game on its own by capturing most of the opposing pieces. On the other side of the board not having the queen is like a death sentence. You can see the player in that situation feeling lost at words and will power to keep on fighting. Here is one interesting situation from a friendly game played this past week at the club where the queen was front and center.
You might say this is not much of a game. The important aspect to add here is these kids barely new how to checkmate and play basic moves about 2 years ago! Hope this clarifies it a bit and makes you look at it with different eyes. Did not follow it up longer to see how Black managed to win the game in the end. It is not that important even if it sounds far fetched. We all need to go through that stage of vacuuming opposing pieces if we have our precious queen or watch in horror how to it does that if we are on the other side of the board. Hey, it might be more or less distant memory but we all thought 1. e4 e5 2. Qh5 or Qf3 followed by 3. Bc4 and 4. Qxf7# was a deadly way to start the game.
Now it is easy for me to talk; however back then I was pretty much the same. It took me a long time to even consider sacrificing my queen for compensation. Below game has remained for me one of the few sticking with me and you for the rest of our chess life. It is the game when for the first time I could have sacrificed my queen for compensation and I did not. It did not even cross my mind even if I was about 1800 rated. Here it is:
In the post mortem a couple of members from our club pointed that to me. At first I did not understand what they were talking about. How could 2 knights and a bishop be enough compensation? It did not make any sense. Luckily the truth is in life once someone points to something new you have never known or seen before, you are changed forever. From that point on I would consider it as anyone should. I always liked this quote by Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr:
“A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.”
Your mind is being stretched by new experiences too. All I can say is embrace it and go with the flow. It always leads to better situations.
Valer Eugen Demian