Best Chess Puzzles

by clement
Chess puzzles

In this article, we delve into the fascinating realm of chess puzzles. These puzzles are not just mere exercises; they are the keys to unlocking the deeper aspects of chess strategy. From historical positions crafted by chess legends to modern-day conundrums designed by grandmasters, each puzzle is a story waiting to be unraveled, a mystery begging for a solution.

Whether you’re a seasoned player looking to refine your tactical prowess or a beginner eager to understand the nuances of the game, these puzzles offer something for everyone. They are mind-benders that challenge your foresight, test your analytical skills, and improve your game in ways that playing alone cannot.

As we explore some of the best chess puzzles, from the classic to the contemporary, prepare to embark on a journey that will not only test your chess skills but also enhance your love for this timeless game. What are the best chess puzzles?

Chess Puzzles

The Evergreen Checkmate Puzzle

  • Origin: Adolf Anderssen vs Jean Dufresne, Berlin, 1852
  • Description: A brilliant display of tactical prowess, this puzzle showcases a stunning combination leading to checkmate, illustrating the power of sacrifice and piece coordination.

The Evergreen Checkmate Puzzle, also known as the Evergreen Game, is a famous chess game played by Adolf Anderssen against Jean Dufresne in 1852. This game is renowned for its brilliant display of tactical prowess, particularly the stunning combination leading to checkmate, illustrating the power of piece coordination and sacrifice.

The game started with Anderssen’s opening move of 1. e4, setting the stage for an Italian Game. A key moment came with the Evans Gambit at 4. b4, a move that, while unconventional, remains a potent weapon in chess. The game unfolded with a series of aggressive plays by Anderssen, culminating in a sequence of checks and sacrifices that led to a dazzling checkmate.

The final combination involved a stunning queen sacrifice and a checkmate involving two bishops and a pawn. This game is a testament to the enduring appeal of chess and continues to captivate chess enthusiasts with its rich history and timeless lessons in strategy and tactics.

For more detailed analysis and to view the positions from this historic game, you can visit the resources where this information was found:’s articles on the Evergreen Game and its Masterpiece of Sacrifice and Attack, as well as the Wikipedia page on the Evergreen Game.

Reti’s Endgame Study

  • Origin: Richard Réti, 1921
  • Description: A famous endgame puzzle demonstrating the importance of king activity and triangulation. It teaches a vital lesson in endgame strategy, especially in pawn endings.

Reti’s Endgame Study, composed by Richard Réti and published in 1921, is a classic chess endgame study demonstrating how a king can pursue multiple objectives simultaneously and take more than one path to a given location, using the same number of moves. This study is a brilliant illustration of the king’s mobility and strategic depth in endgames.

The scenario presents a seemingly hopeless position for White, where the king is far from both supporting its own pawn and intercepting the opponent’s advancing pawn. However, the solution lies in the king’s ability to make moves with dual purposes. The key is to reach a position where the white king can either intercept the black pawn or support its own pawn’s promotion.

The study proceeds with White’s king moving to gain enough tempi to reach the critical squares. The black king must choose between stopping the white pawn from promoting or advancing its own pawn, but it cannot do both simultaneously. This dilemma leads to a position where either both players promote their pawns, resulting in a draw, or neither does, also resulting in a draw.

The Reti Endgame Study is a prime example of endgame strategy, emphasizing the importance of king activity and the concept of tempo. It’s a foundational study in chess endgame literature and is admired for its simplicity and profound insight into endgame tactics.

For a detailed breakdown of the study, including the specific moves and positions, you can refer to the resources provided by Wikipedia,, and Alaric Stephen’s article on the study.

The Opera Game Mate

  • Origin: Paul Morphy vs Duke of Brunswick & Count Isouard, Paris, 1858
  • Description: An elegant example of attacking play, this puzzle features Morphy’s brilliant sacrifices to expose the enemy king and deliver checkmate.

The Opera Game is a famous chess game played by Paul Morphy against the Duke of Brunswick and Comte Isouard in 1858 at an opera house in Paris. This game is renowned for its brilliant demonstration of attacking chess and is often considered one of the most famous, if not the most famous, chess games of all time.

In this game, Morphy, playing with the white pieces, faced off against two strong amateur players who jointly decided on moves for the black pieces. The game is a classic example of Morphy’s exceptional skill in rapid development and masterful use of sacrifices to gain a decisive advantage. It’s particularly notable for its queen sacrifice, leading to a checkmate that has become a textbook example in chess literature.

The game, played in the Philidor Defence opening, is used by chess instructors to teach various concepts, including the importance of piece development, the value of sacrifices in mating combinations, and other fundamental chess principles. Morphy’s tactical prowess and understanding of these principles are vividly illustrated in this game, making it a perennial subject for chess books, articles, videos, and other literature.

For a detailed view of the game, including move-by-move analysis, you can visit the Wikipedia page on the Opera Game and’s article on the Opera Game. These resources provide in-depth insights into the game’s strategy and significance in the history of chess.

Lasker’s Double Bishop Sacrifice

  • Origin: Emanuel Lasker vs Johann Bauer, Amsterdam, 1889
  • Description: Known for its stunning bishop sacrifices, this puzzle epitomizes the idea of using tactical means to achieve a strategic goal.

Lasker’s Double Bishop Sacrifice is a famous chess tactic that was showcased in a game played by Emanuel Lasker against Johann Bauer in Amsterdam in 1889. This game is celebrated for its brilliant demonstration of tactical play and the effectiveness of bishop sacrifices in attacking the opponent’s king.

In this game, Lasker, with the white pieces, executed a double bishop sacrifice to open up the black king’s position. This tactic, where both bishops are sacrificed, is a powerful tool in chess, allowing other pieces like the queen and rook to penetrate the opponent’s defenses and deliver a decisive blow.

The Double Bishop Sacrifice is not only a historical milestone in chess but also an important concept for players to understand and utilize in their games. It exemplifies the strategic use of material sacrifice for positional advantage and has been emulated in various forms in numerous other games since then.

For a more detailed analysis of this game and the concept of the Double Bishop Sacrifice, you can explore the resources and articles available on, which provide insights into the game’s strategy and the broader application of this tactic in chess. The game is often used for educational purposes to teach important principles of attacking play and sacrifice in chess.

For a deeper exploration of Lasker’s game and the Double Bishop Sacrifice, you might want to visit’s articles discussing the Double Bishop Sacrifice and its strategic significance.

Kasparov’s Immortal

  • Origin: Garry Kasparov vs Veselin Topalov, Wijk aan Zee, 1999
  • Description: A modern classic, featuring a series of sacrifices leading to a phenomenal endgame advantage, showcasing Kasparov’s deep calculation skills.

Kasparov’s Immortal is a highly acclaimed chess game played by Garry Kasparov against Veselin Topalov at the Hoogovens Wijk aan Zee Chess Tournament in 1999. This game is renowned for its brilliance and complexity, and it is often cited as one of the greatest chess games ever played. The game is characterized by Kasparov’s aggressive and imaginative play, including a series of bold sacrifices. The culmination of the game showcases Kasparov’s extraordinary tactical skills and deep understanding of chess, making it a masterpiece in chess history. For a detailed view of the game and its analysis, you can refer to the Wikipedia page on Kasparov’s Immortal.

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