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Combination Challenge [Paperback]

Lou Hays , John A. Hall
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Dec 1992
A definitive volume of diagrammatic displays of great tactical plays! Will help polish skills to a fine, new degree that will increase enjoyment of the game and opportunity for triumph. Categorizes basic motifs, contains a plethora of instructive examples.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 231 pages
  • Publisher: Everyman Chess (Dec 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 188067386X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1880673867
  • Product Dimensions: 22.6 x 17 x 1.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,277,322 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

3.5 out of 5 stars
3.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
I have a chess library of approximately 100 different books covering all aspects of the game of chess.
After years of playing in, and directing tournaments, as well as teaching scholastic level chess- I have concluded that tactics are the most important part of the game of chess. They are also the most exciting! The best part is, you don't have to be born with tactical ability; you can learn it.
By practicing tactics through the method of diagram training you can become a much stronger player.
This book is the best algebraic notation book available on the market today. It is very similar to Reinfeld's 1,001 chess sacrifices and combinations in the old descriptive notation.
It is preferable to solve problems in the notation currently used by a majority of players today because it will transfer to your over the board play and help you visualize the board better.
I would recommend this book strongly for players rated between 1400 and 2000 USCF. Players rated below 1400 would do better to find a more basic book, and players rated above 2000 USCF would do better to find even more advanced books.
P.S. I have no relationship to the author or publisher.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Save Your Money 3 Jan 1998
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
More than 900 of this book's 1100+ problems appear in Reinfeld's "One Thousand and One Winning Sacrifices and Combinations," also available from Amazon.com. That book is available for approximately half the price of "Combination Challenge," so unless you absolutely cannot handle descriptive notation, buy the original.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A must read book for Great Tactics!! 26 Jan 1999
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Combination Challenge is the best book I have ever seen for studying chess tactics. I like the way the book is formatted and I use the study method described in the book. I see more tactics and win more games than I used to. I try to work on the problems every day just like the book recommends. I haven't done all of the diagrams yet, but I plan to keep going until I have finished the book. Then I plan to do it again! This is a fun and inexpensive way to learn chess.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great value 23 Mar 1999
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
An absolutely great bunch of combinations. It boosted my ELO-rating with 200 points (1494-1712) in less than 4 months! Thumbs down. Right now I'm reading it for the third time. Just to have fun and keep in shape!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.6 out of 5 stars  16 reviews
24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Save Your Money 3 Jan 1998
By gqwy01a@prodigy.com - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
More than 900 of this book's 1100+ problems appear in Reinfeld's "One Thousand and One Winning Sacrifices and Combinations," also available from Amazon.com. That book is available for approximately half the price of "Combination Challenge," so unless you absolutely cannot handle descriptive notation, buy the original.
29 of 34 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars not worth the money 14 Sep 2001
By louis smith - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I looked forward to getting this book. Imagine my regret when I found out that most of the positions in this book come from Fred Reinfelds combination books such as 1001 combinations and sacrifices. I thought I was getting a book that would offer ORIGINAL material. If the book was original this book would be a sure classic, but its nothing of the kind. I gave the book to charity and hopefully some good will come out of it. I should have listened to the previous reviewer about saving your money. If you want combination books Reinfelds are the best. Read his chess books and you will see why he was an early inductee to the chess hall of fame. He was an original and not taking material from other writers.
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best single volume tactics review book available today! 3 Sep 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I have a chess library of approximately 100 different books covering all aspects of the game of chess.
After years of playing in, and directing tournaments, as well as teaching scholastic level chess- I have concluded that tactics are the most important part of the game of chess. They are also the most exciting! The best part is, you don't have to be born with tactical ability; you can learn it.
By practicing tactics through the method of diagram training you can become a much stronger player.
This book is the best algebraic notation book available on the market today. It is very similar to Reinfeld's 1,001 chess sacrifices and combinations in the old descriptive notation.
It is preferable to solve problems in the notation currently used by a majority of players today because it will transfer to your over the board play and help you visualize the board better.
I would recommend this book strongly for players rated between 1400 and 2000 USCF. Players rated below 1400 would do better to find a more basic book, and players rated above 2000 USCF would do better to find even more advanced books.
P.S. I have no relationship to the author or publisher.
14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good, but try Winning Chess Tactics for Juniors first 1 Dec 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
If your rating is below 1700, try Winning Chess Tactics for Juniors first. It's an edited version of Combination Challenge, but with just 1-3 move problems from that book. It's not in a kiddie format, althought it's a smaller book-- the problems just have fewer moves than Combination Challenge and there aren't as many problems in it. In the forward of Winning Chess Tactics for Juniors it says to do this book 3 times and not to move on to Combination Challenge until you're around USCF 1700.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good non-beginner tactics book 27 April 2004
By Alan Ward - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This is a book with 1100+ tactical problems, arranged by theme, with solutions provided in algebraic notation (the easiest kind to read). I've been told that a lot of the problems here are identical to those in Reinfeld's 1001 Brilliant Sacrifices and Combinations, so if you own that book, you might want to spend your money elsewhere.
This is a very good book for intermediate players who want to improve their computational and pattern recognition abilities. The book presupposes that you already have a firm grasp on the fundamental tactics (pins, forks, skewers, elementary checkmates, etc.) , as many of the solutions involve the use of such simple tactics to get to the final solution. If you do not have a firm grasp on the fundamentals, don't expect to get better with this book; rather, expect to get annoyed and frustrated.
As mentionned earlier, the problems of the book are divided by tactical theme, making it ideal for those who have mastered basic tactics but who want to work on specific areas of tactical study intensely or who are just not good enough to dive into random positions and figure out what the appropriate tactic is. Having said that, the book does not indicate how hard any of the problems are. A two move mate can be followed by a 7 move tactic designed to win a pawn. Thus, this book is really the opposite of Lein's "Sharpen Your Tactics", which indicates the difficulty level without telling you what type of tactic is involved. It's really a matter of the reader's preference when deciding which style of book he/she wants.
The book does not get five stars because of
1)the size of the book. It's annoyingly large. In fact, it's a square. What's more, the cover, introduction and basically all the text is cheesy. Fortunately, the meat of the book is simple diagrams
2)the fact that there are errors in the book. Some of the solutions can be "busted" by a computer program (or a keen reader). In other words, if you were to play out the "winning" side of these problems according to the solution provided, your opponent would still have the resources to mate you or come out with a material advantage
If your skill level is appropriate, I recommend this book.
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