20 Ruy Lopez Puzzle special (+ bonus opening index!)
By William T. Harvey   
June 1, 2006

This puzzle series is aimed to acquaint you with typical tactics in the Ruy Lopez. If you don't play the Ruy, you'll still find the exercise useful for general tactical training.

They're all from real Ruy games, and there are some recurring patterns. Notice how frequently the light squared Bishop plays a leading role in the tactical death of white. This should give you an idea of why it's uncommon for white to give up this bishop, even when it seems that it's not doing much. (problems 1- 4,6,9)

Watch how black often punishes white for slow development. Despite being the most popular opening against 1.e4 e5, many of the main lines of the Ruy, and not just the Marshall gambit, give black a temporary lead in development. (Problems 12-14 + 17-19)

The 20th problem is an opening trap first executed by Paul Keres that arises from a line in the Steinitz Deferred: 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 d6 5.d4 ed4 6. Nd4?? Nxd4 7. Qxd4...

Browse through Harvey's opening index for an overview on Ruy Lopez

Finally comfort yourself with the thought that in addition to improving your tactical skills, you might also be improving your Ruy!

Puzzles compiled by W.T Harvey.