GW-KW, Point Count Chess Raw Discussion, File #6:
Part of the Advanced Beginner's Chess Guide (Section 2)

Game 1 with KW's Notes added to GW's Opening 6 Moves, Attempting to Understand Control of the Center
[June 3rd 2011]


5. d3 Nc6
(GW, June 2nd) But, now Black's got a Pawn on 4th (c5) v. Pawn on 3rd (d3). This is where I grind to a halt, or end up moving material without certainty that I'm making the correct move / least-bad move.

Ken's Comments ...

(KW, June 3rd) Please review 4 on 3. This is not a 4 v. 3, as the pawn in front of the c5 pawn (c3) is still there. One pawn (the c3 pawn here) must be absent before you can count the point. If you look at H&M-S illustrations, you will see this is true. But if that were the case, then it would be a 2 v. 1 in the center. So the d5 pawn for Black needs to be gone as well.

Remember our definition of 4 v. 3 in our discussion: "To sum up, 4 v. 3 means the opposing pawn must be on an adjacent file, and must be on the 3rd rank (not second), and the single square to the diagonal of the pawn on 4th, ahead of the pawn on 3rd, must be COA Center Dominated. If all three of these criteria are met, count yourself a point for 4 v. 3. If you reread PCC p.25 and p.26 with this in mind, I believe it will make more sense." To reiterate, "In 4 v. 3, opposing Pawns must be on adjacent files".

I don't even have to look at the COA Center Domination to see Black is already ahead in dominating the Center.

Ken's Comments ...

(KW, June 3rd) Remember that OCCUPATION of the center does not mean CONTROL of the center (any square OCCUPIED in the center is not CONTROLLED by the pawn or piece - the pawn or piece controls other squares - that is, where it can attack - as the pawn or piece cannot attack its own square).

This was the great advancement promoted by the Hypermodern school of chess (See the Larry Evans book - New Ideas in Chess - for some history here that would be useful) It should be in the first section). Some of the Hypermoderns didn't make a pawn move for at least the first 6-8 moves, yet they did not feel dominated in the center.

The only thing that's stopping me from starting again is awareness that beginning with a Flank Opening, like the Barcza Opening, lets the opponent gain a lead in development in the center, while I complete Castling and safeguarding my King.

Ken's Comments ...

(KW, June 3rd) Black has a lead in PAWN development, while White has a lead in PIECE development. If I have a choice between the two, I would take piece development any day, because pieces have greater MOBILITY than pawns. As well, pawns tend to create structural weaknesses (think Holes and Weak Square Complexes) which pieces do not.


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