Why is it that most amateur chess players love opening and middlegame tactics but hate endgames? Why do you usually look at only a couple of pages in any endgame theory book you see? Sit back, forget about theoretical endgames, and enjoy the entertainment of real life chess in Endgame Tactics !
There is no substitute for hard work in getting better at chess, as a wise grandmaster once said. But you always work harder at something you enjoy. Make the first step towards improving your endgame play (and beat more opponents) by learning to love the endgame. Endgames are fun, and the examples from everyday practice in Endgame Tactics prove it.
'Endgame Tactics' is the result of approximately 30 years of collecting, analysing and categorising. It has grown into a collection of endgames that have a particular charm for me on account of their special character. I have cast them into a framework and lit-tle by little, a course of instruction developed, treating manyl varieties of tactical possibilities that occur in endgame practice. I have drawn on every source I could find. Original analyses I have often rewritten or placed in a different context. I have used the original manuscript for a series on the endgame in the Dutch correspondence chess magazine Schaakschakeringen. Relevant reactions by readers I have later incorporated in this book.
Many players consider the study of the endgame a necessary evil. Resignedly, they plough their way through one or more standard works, restricting themselves to basic positions or, on the contrary, a few exceptionally ingenious studies. Most of them do not find it very exciting.
Actually this is a pity, for in the endgame, too, there is a lot to be enjoyed and a thorough study of a great number of practical fragments has taught me that even this phase of the chess struggle can produce many different types of drama. Clever tactical tricks, gruesome blunders and other tragicomic scenes, it's all possible. When after many hours of toil the end of the game is nigh, it is a difficult task for many to keep a clear head, to control their nerves and to make optimal use of the opportunities that present themselves.
Especially a well-developed feeling for the multitude of tactical possibilities contained in the endgame often signifies the difference between a full point and an annoying zero!
Of course, an investigation like this can always be continued, supplied and extended with new and previously undiscovered older material. I don't know if I will be able to do this, or if others will take over. But it is clear to me that it is important that the entire field of tactical possibilities is charted and will be in the future.
I owe many thanks to the New In Chess staff, who have cooperated with me, screened my work scrupulously and moulded it into a form which suited my purposes perfectly.
I sincerely hope that the reader will derive as much pleasure from studying the presented material as I have derived from writing it.
G.C. van Perlo