ChessBase Tutorials: Openings Vol 1: The Open Games

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Today's way to learn chess! The ChessBase Tutorials are a new series in the publishing program of ChessBase. Every issue will consist of a DVD and a detailed accompanying booklet. The many readers of ChessBase Magazine have already come to appreciate this concept. The accompanying booklet offers both a survey and rapid starting point for the study of the individual opening variations. And then you will find on the DVD the extensive video lectures delivered by various top class trainers and grandmasters.
Every game starts with an opening - and sometimes that is even as far as it gets. That doesnt have to be the case. With ChessBase Tutorials you do not need to spend a lot of time getting up to speed. Openings # 01:
The open games (1.e4 e5) is the first installment in a series of five volumes about the fundamentals of chess openings. In it, experienced tournament players and experts in the individual openings tell you what you absolutely have to know in each specific area, which basic plans require to be followed, how to execute them and what traps have to be borne in mind. In 24 video lectures Adrian Mikhalchichin, Lawrence Trent, Lars Schandorff and Valeri Lilov show you what you really need to know about the Kings Gambit, the Vienna Game, the Giuoco Piano, the Evans Gambit, the Two Knights Game, the Scotch, the Steinitz and Berlin Defenses, the Open Ruy Lopez or the Exchange Variation, the Marshall, the Philidor and the Petroff Defenses and many others.
The Fritztrainer series, in which grandmasters or chess trainers explain the game of chess with the help of the Chessmedia system developed by ChessBase, was, when introduced, a totally new and revolutionary step in the teaching of chess. Suddenly, any chess lover could bring his personal trainer home and have the latter explain to him via his own computer how certain openings are played, how to discover the correct middlegame strategy to use or how to win his endgames.
Many great names have contributed to this series. Garry Kasparov - once again - was one of the first to recognise the new possibilities it offered to an author. His DVDs on the Sicilian Najdorf variation impart knowledge at the highest possible level. His DVD on the Queens Gambit, on the other hand, also offers normal chess lovers an instructive introduction to that opening and is already a classic.
Many great chess players have made use of the Media System to record in video format their autobiography. We only know the chess giants of the past, Steinitz, Lasker, Capablanca, Alekhine, etc. from their games, their writings and a few pictures. On the other hand, the next generation will be able to have explained on their own screens the best games of Viktor Korchnoi, Vlastimil Hort, Vladimir Kramnik, Viswanthan Anand, Nigel Short and other great players of the present day by the very players themselves.
And whereas today's young senior players had to learn painstakingly about endgames in their own youth with the help of the four-volume "Cheron", nowadays young people can acquire the necessary knowledge from Karsten Muller, who presents it in a way which makes it easy to remember. And he even does so with the voice of the terminator, as one commentator on the Youtube sample clip by Karsten Muller put it:
"Karsten Mueller is just an awesome human chess machine with Arnold Schwarzenegger's accent. If you wanna learn by the terminator's voice how to play chess, you are set. If it's still not clear: This is the best endgame course ever."
The Fritztrainer series has grown to include approx.160 titles you can buy, on almost everything - openings, several training courses, tactics, the endgame - in short everything concerning chess. In addition to the names we have already mentioned, other world-class players have contributed on various subjects. Alexei Shirov has been one of our hardest working authors with numerous game commentaries on specific themes drawn from his own praxis as a super-GM. And the FIDE World Champion of 2004, Rustam Kasimdzhanov, has revealed himself to be a brilliant chess trainer.
Unfortunately the Uzbek grandmaster who lives in the Siebengebirge near Bonn is far too good a player to become a trainer on a permanent basis. Viktor Bologan goes about his DVDs in very classical fashion. He does not demonstrate whole games, but, at a specific position, he finishes off a variation and recommendations for your repertoire, just like in books on the opening.
The new idea for ChessBase Tutorials came about based on the new format of ChessBase Magazine. ChessBase Magazine has always been a publication which consisted of a medium for data (previously a diskette, then a CD, and now for some it has been a DVD) and an accompanying brochure. In 2006 we modernized the concept of the magazine-DVD and concentrated on making it useful for training. The magazines booklet was extended in 2009 and from then on it has been, just like the DVD, bi-lingual and published in the twist and turn format. According to which way up you are holding the booklet, you can be reading either the English or the German text.
Our new, compact and improved magazine (both in content and presentation) was so well received by chess fans that we now want to offer you in our new series of ChessBase Tutorials some special themes in the same format.
One of the first comments on the new ChessBase Tutorial we received:
"I just received the first issue of "ChessBase Tutorials Openings #01," a new chess magazine put out by Chessbase for the chess novice, and all I have to say is "wow!" It has a beautiful slick green cover, professional graphics and layout, and a plastic pouch that contains an Openings DVD by several top Chessbase presenters on all the popular 1.e4 Openings. This includes 5 hours of coverage (24 videos) on: The Kings Gambit, Vienna Game, Bishop's Opening, Italian Game, Evans Gambit, Four Knights, Scotch, Ruy Lopez, etc... by top Chessbase trainers GM Mikhalchishin, IM Trent, GM Schandorff and FM Lilov.
At the risk of sounding like my grandparents, trust me kids when I tell you that 20 years ago, in 1990, when I was learning this wonderful game of chess, we had no such magazine or DVD. Note that the magazine is extremely basic (although I guess it's not that basic, seeing how I learned from it that Karpov played the Italian Opening against Korchnoi in 1981 in a World Championship game!), which makes it perfect for those new to chess. The DVD is more advanced, as it goes into much more detail about each of the openings. Highly recommended to those who don't yet have a good understanding of the main 1.e4 Openings, but would like an easy and enjoyable way to learn them." -Michael Jeffreys
And we are starting with a five volume set on the chess openings with the series title ChessBase Tutorials Openings. The area covered by the openings has been divided up according to the classical schema.

  • 01 - Open games
  • 02 - Semi-open games
  • 03 - Queens pawn games
  • 04 - Indian openings
  • 05 - Flank openings

One volume of the ChessBase Tutorials will be devoted to each of these areas.
The first volume in the ChessBase Tutorials: Openings # 01 Open games is now available. The second volume, on the semi-open games, will also follow in the course of this year. In volume one a total of eight different authors, four in German and four in English, introduce all the important openings which are classified as open games and provide you with a compact but very informative overview. The task which was set for the authors was to outline in a competent manner their chosen opening in approximately 15 minutes. Anyone who has already done intensive work on the opening knows how easy it is to introduce an opening or a variation in, for example, two hours. However, dealing with the most important information in a mere 15 minutes or so was an enormously difficult challenge, but one which all our authors were well up to.
The goal of the Openings Tutorials, at least in this initial overview series of all the opening complexes, is to convey to the normal club player a maximum of knowledge in a pre-set stretch of time. Due to this very restricted time period, the authors were obliged to concentrate on the essentials. If you view one of these clips, you will be aware after 15 minutes of all that you need to know to make a start in that opening and you will be able to play it without nasty surprises. There is also no need to overload yourself with variations which you will probably never have to face at that depth at normal club level.
To reach this result, many of the authors were occasionally obliged to do some overtime and record the clips several times, until finally the desired result had been achieved. But you will hardly be able to notice this. To have the Kings Gambit, the Marshall Attack, the Scotch Game, the Ruy Lopez Exchange Variation and all the other openings under the heading Open games explained to you by, as it were, your own personal trainer like Jan Gustafsson (several times runner-up in the German championship, member of the national team, national trainer for Denmark), Niclas Huschenbeth (reigning German champion), Dr Karsten Mller (grandmaster and top level trainer) and Elisabeth Phtz (twice world youth champion) or in English by Lars Schandorff (Danish champion 1988, member of the Danish national team), Valeri Lilov (Bulgarian chess trainer), Adrian Mikhalchishin (reckoned to be one of the best chess trainers in the world) or Lawrence Trent (IM and participant in the youth world championships) is not only effective, but is frequently also purely and simply a delight.
The ChessBase Tutorial also has its booklet. It contains twice 28 pages and in its description of all the openings which are treated in this volume, it supplements the video clips. In its layout, the booklet is strongly reminiscent of the recent booklets which accompany ChessBase Magazine and is just as lavishly conceived. If you are looking at a new opening, then in the booklet you will learn a lot about its history, variations and characteristics.
And in conclusion, it would be wrong not to mention the database with its 100 sample games. In these important games from the history of chess tournaments, you will see the openings which are being presented being used as weapons by world class players.
ChessBase Tutorials come with a ChessBase reader program and can thus be used immediately without the need for any other program. If you already own an up-to-date version of ChessBase or Fritz, you can also use it to work with the Tutorial.


System Requirements: PC with Windows XP (SP3), Vista, Windows 7, or Windows 8, Windows Media Player and DVD-Drive


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  • 5
    ChessBase Tutorials: Openings Vol 1: The Open Games 5 Stars

    Posted by Leonard from Sun Lakes on 28th Apr 2013

    Best tutorials ever