A Puzzle That Tells If YOU Have The “Chess Talent”

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Do you have what it takes to become a strong chess player? Do you have the so-called chess talent? In this video lesson, GM Igor Smirnov shows you an interesting chess puzzle which was used by the former Soviet Union chess coaches to determine whether their students have the so-called chess talent or not.

This old Russian chess puzzle (also known as the “Soviet Test of Chess Talent”) consists of a White queen and 4 Black pawns. The task for you, as White, is to capture all the Black pawns before or when they get promoted.

By the way, a question that you would probably have is “Is it true or a myth? Can chess puzzles determine if one has the so-called chess talent or not?” Well, watch the video lesson as GM Igor Smirnov has answered that as well with a nice story.

Feel free to pause the video, try to solve this puzzle, and see if you have the “chess talent”.

► Chapters

00:00 Chess Talent Test
00:12 Soviet/Russian Chess Puzzle
01:03 Can you solve this puzzle?
01:39 Is it true or a myth?
03:38 Which pawn should the queen capture?
06:25 If White plays Qxd3
08:04 Did you solve the puzzle?

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  1. I've seen this puzzle before, but the first time it took me like 5 minutes to work all of the scenarios out. This time it took like 1 minute because I remembered Qxd3 was first.

  2. This is like the test the main character solves at the end of episode 2

  3. Move diagonally left and then go back a fourth

  4. Awesome puzzle. Took me around 2 mins but i used a chessboard

  5. Me fueling my crippling chess puzzle addiction…

  6. Queen to d3 and then pawn to a2 then queen to c3 that's the winning move for me

  7. I already play chess so I guess that's why it took just a few seconds?

  8. I managed to solve the puzzle pretty fast,so I hope to have some chess talent!?

  9. Move the queen from B1 to D3 taking that pawn.

    If they move C3 to C2 then move queen to D2 if they move C2 to C1, take C1 with the queen, if they move B3 to B2 move to C2 with the queen and if they move B2 to B1 take it with the queen, then the pawn must move from A3 to A2 and be taken by the queen,winning the scenario.

    However if after the first move they move B3 to B2 go to D3 so they have to go and move their A3 to A2 they or move their C3 to C2, then take the pawn they move, if they after that move their B2 to B1 take it with the queen then they are going to need to move their final pawn down the board and put the queen Infront of it and they can't do anything making white win but if they instead move the other pawn to row 2 then take B2 and when they move their final pawn to row one, take the pawn making white win.

    They're way more scenarios then that but I can't be bothered typing anymore and trying to find a way to word it right

  10. literally got it in like 2 minutes and im playing chess like 2 times a year

  11. ClassicPrince الأميرالكلاسيكي says:

    Qxd3 black plays b2 & Qb1 black c2 , Qxc2 black a2 Qxb2 , black a1 Qxa1 , that's it

  12. This puzzle is a joke. These puzzles are completely irrelevant if you don't have a realistic setup

  13. I solved the puzzle in 10s. I instinctively saw the best possible moves for both white and black. However, I did not look into the other variants because I had a "feeling" my first solution was the best outcome. I consider not analyzing other variants a weakness.

  14. I only know what the pieces do in chess and I got the answer within a minute, guess I'm lucky or smthn

  15. I was under the impression that you had to take all the pawns before any could be promoted to queen. Had the goal been more clear, i wouldve figured this out wayyy faster than taking 1min and 30secs. Definitely wouldve had a time near 25 seconds

  16. Never played chess before but figured this out in roughly 20 seconds…

  17. No all answers are incorrect, because black doesn't have a king as well as white

  18. Ok YouTube,are you telling me that i should learn how to play chess? If not, why do you show me this video knowing that I can't understand shit, i dont even speak english, i barely can translate what i hear, and I DONT FUCKING KNOW HOW TO FUCKING PLAY CHESS, I only know the game checkers like every kid despite being 24 years old

  19. fun puzzle. spent about 5 minutes and was following the right line but then 2nd guessed myself and started to focus on the 2nd pawn.

  20. I somehow forgot that the pieces can't move all four at the same time 🤣

  21. When black moves the pawn to c2 if white moves Queen to c4 Black is screwed they have to move but anything they move you immediately capture a pawn

  22. I solved it before the video started but im only ranked 700 what does that mean!?! 😭

  23. Wow I felt like crap until i solved this in my head and was told it was kind of advanced.
    I feel like i'm worth existing.
    Thanks man

  24. I solved the puzzle in 0.1 seconds because I watched the video

  25. I guess I have chess talent. Not sure if I'm gonna do anything with it or not, though.

  26. I thought that was a king but ince i knew it was a Queen it took me 6 seconds😅

  27. I didnt solve it cause I thought we were supposed to play as black

  28. It wasn't that hard as he was saying tho

  29. Found 3 solutions in about a minute and I play chess once a year. Queen goes d3. If pawn goes c2 then kill it and you win. Queen goes d3 again. If pawn goes b2 then queen goes b1 and you win. Queen goes to d3 again. If pawn goes a2, then queen kills pawn on c1 and you win.

  30. Midnight and the second the video started I said to myself what my first move would be, and apparently it was right 🙂

  31. He talked about the goal for the puzzle but I didn't hear him say who we were as a player. I was like "Am I making black or white win?" So I went ahead and calculated both xD

  32. Solved, used the same method as in the vid, it was fun

  33. That’s what I came up with but I suck at chess haha

  34. Well, I would start killing the one in the right side, then getting above them and killing them byt their backs

    Edit: I saw the video now, and lol, that just would be pretty dumb to get above them, that's not necessary

  35. I solved the puzzle almost immediately. I figured I would have missed something, but it's pretty straightforward! Gotta love these kinds of puzzles.

  36. Took me about 5 seconds, seeing optimal moves isn't that complicated as you want to deny progression but removing each pawn immediately. There are only two valid movements for taking a pawn, one being what most may consider which is a trap as the next move would make your queen defend while not capturing a queen, meaning only one other option seems optimal, so…

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