Monday, February 17, 2014
What’s Your Chess Personality?
Here’s a fun test consisting of 20 questions designed to tell your ‘chess personality.’
I was rated a Technician which seems to be pretty accurate - Technicians are the quietest and calmest chess players. Strategists who rarely attack directly and prefer to quietly exploit positional advantages, Technicians utilize their exceptional intuition to guide their positional play. Rarely losing control, the Technician exploits almost invisible positional weaknesses to win in the endgame. Technicians do not like to take many risks, and therefore rarely lose - but also win less than more aggressive players.
Vladimir Kramnik (born 1975) of Russia, the fourteenth world champion, is the ultimate Technician. Known for his great endgame skills and excellent opening knowledge, Kramnik became the world champion by defeating Garry Kasparov, who had reigned for fifteen years. Despite being seen as unstoppable, Kasparov was unable to win a single game against Kramnik's iron play in their London 2000 match, while Kramnik exploited small mistakes to win two games. Now if only my moves were as good as his.
Just as a comparison I re-took the test and answered the questions the opposite from the way I did the first time and the result was a Romantic. Romantics are full of good ideas. These ideas might be either positional or attacking, but they are always unusual and unique. The Romantic doesn't usually win by out-calculating his opponent, but rather finds some unexpected and unusual concept that his opponent didn't expect. Romantic players are very emotional and therefore can be very distraught when they lose, but their moodiness also means that when things are going well, they can be unstoppably brilliant.
Vassily Ivanchuk (born 1969), the Ukrainian grandmaster, is a good example of a modern-day Romantic. A moody, brilliant genius, Ivanchuk is capable of beating anybody on the right day, but his results can be erratic. Ivanchuk's play is typified by its great humanity, and many call him one of the most talented players ever, ranking as high as #2 in the world at one point. Anand said of him: "You never know which mood he is going to be in. Some days he will treat you like his long-lost brother. The next day he ignores you completely. His playing style is unpredictable and highly original, making him more dangerous but sometimes leading to quick losses as well."