Chess Analysis Tips By DecodeChess

In the following video and article, we will take you on a system tour to show you how DecodeChess helps make sense out of chess. We will also provide general chess analysis tips to help you optimize your chess improvement efforts. Hit the play button and tune in.

Chess Analysis Tips: Video Transcript


I am Gideon and I oversee customer satisfaction at DecodeChess. In this video I’ll show you around the system, review the features and hidden gems it has to offer, and hopefully enhance your own use of the system.

I myself am an amateur chess player and a very big fan of the game. Prior to knowing about DecodeChess, I was playing lots of games online and using the standard post-game engine chess analysis to try and figure out what went wrong in my game. Needless to say, the frustration of being left with a cold move suggestion and an indication of a blunder or mistake, always left a bitter taste of inability to learn from those mistakes. DecodeChess really helps me with that and I want to share with you exactly how and also use this opportunity to provide some general chess analysis tips.

Let’s start!

So first of all, a Desktop screen is the preferred way to use DecodeChess at this point. We don’t have an app yet, and even when we do, for a comprehensive and beneficial learning process, the desktop version will always be a superior choice.

You can 1 drag the separator to adjust the size of the board. This is the decodes panel which we will dive into shortly.

The board area

Next to the board, you have the following buttons:
Arrows intensity
Rotate the board & determine whose turn it is
Setup the pieces
Toggle between FEN and Stockfish analysis modes.

The Menu allows us to choose between a few options to decode.

We’re working on featuring a PGN editor, but until it’s with us, in the meanwhile, if you 7 close the popup menu and start moving pieces on the board, they will be recorded and will be saved as a game in your History folder.

Naming a newly created game in this way is highly recommended, as you will them be able to locate it easily. Which brings us to the History folder. Here you can search for, edit, and delete games.

Now let’s look at the Import function. Here you can drop a PGN file or a FEN.
Once a PGN file has been uploaded, give the system a few seconds to populate the game’s graph, game statistics, and recommended decodes.

Use the graph and the recommended decodes to focus on 5-8 positions in the game.
and decode these positions in a row to save time. You can filter the recommended decodes by piece color to focus on your moves.

The decodes in process will show up on the Decodes panel and also below the board.
When a decode is complete, it will include a green ribbon to indicate it’s new, and a yellow underline will follow all the completed decodes.

*This part does not show up on the video but it important to note: we always analyze the next best move. so when you decode a position, you’re actually analyzing it from the previous move. That is, to decode move 30.Qa1 for white, go to 29…Bh1 and click decode. Also , when a position is being decoded, or has completed the decode process, the 16 Decode button will turn grey. If you move to new position, it will turn yellow again to indicate that you can decode it. End of missing part.

Decodes panel and explanations area

Now that a decode is complete, let’s refer to the different explanatory parts.
First, let’s collapse the other areas. The summary tab will gather information from all 6 tabs.

The explanation for the best line can stretch up to 7 plies ahead so please don’t settle with the first explanation. Travelling through the best line is of course beneficial, and many times, especially in master games, this best line is 100% synced with the actual course of the game!

Each explanation line is expandable and includes 18 annotated variations for that explanation. Make sure to use it and follow the variations on the board. You do this with the arrows of your keyboard as well, if you wish.

By the way. If you decided to decode a position which is not part of the game’s original moves, it will show up in the Decodes panel as  SetUp.

And whenever you’ve lost track of your place in the position, just click on the this arrow, or the bullet point at the beginning of the line, to elapse the position.

Idea problem solution
This is where we provide an instructional framework to guide you on how to find the best move. This is not generate for any position, and in some cases might even include more than one option. All options are always available under the Plans tab

Here again, follow the lines on the board to fully undertstand the ideas in hand. Do this with the mouse or your keyboard.

Pay attention to gathers highlighted concepts from the concepts tab. These concepts can include tactical ideas such as x-ray and control of ranks and files, and other factors that are affected by the distribution of pieces on the board.

Opponent intentions include short glances are what are the relevant threats in the position, but here specifically, I would highly recommend making use of our Threats tab. Here you can get a complete, intuitive explanation for each threat, and most importantly, see that threat’s status once the recommended move is played. I believe this is a really awesome feature changes the way players analyze threats.

Let’s move on to the Good Moves tab. Here there’s not much verbiage, but there’s something very important to say about how DecodeChess treats good moves. Imagine for example that for the next move, there are two good moves, with a small centipawn difference between them. They’re both good moves in human terms. So what we do, is that if a move in the game was played, and it is still considered good, we will favor explaining it over another slightly better move. This way, there are bigger chances that when you analyze games, you’ll get explanations for the relevant moves in the game.

Moving on to the Functionality tab, this is a great place for beginner players. Here DecodeChess maps the role of each piece on the board.

As you can see, for a single position, the system generates a lot of feedback. And after all, positions really are a miniature of chess. That’s why I would like to stress again that it’s best to focus on 5-8 positions per game and make the most out of them, instead of looking at tens of positions and gaining less from each of them. This will result in a more effective and productive chess analysis experience.

That’s it, I hope this extended tour was helpful and that you were able to grab a few chess analysis tips from it.

Have a great day!