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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

One of the first attacking lessons you get from a chess teacher is the idea of playing Bxf7+ against an uncastled king. The usual first lesson you get goes something like this: 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d6 3.Bc4 Bg4 4.Nc3 h6? 5.Nxe5! Bxd8 6.Bxf7+ Ke7 7.Nd5 mate. Sometimes, though, the position is less clear, and you have to make a decision: “Do I take on ...

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Word Gender

Games / Brain Teasers /

The following ten words can be divided into two groups of five words. The words within each group will share a common characteristic. What are the two groups? Which words belong in those groups?

dam late lice linger per son stern tent under use

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Coral Dragon

Games / Brain Teasers /

Which word in Group B can be added to Group A? Why?

Group A: coral, dragon, holy, wed
Group B: basin, liter, music, paten, syrup, talon

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Ana-Grammar

Games / Brain Teasers /

Each of the following sentences contains clues to a set of three words that are anagrams of each other (each sentence describes a different set).

1) George threw his extra javelin through two fleshy fruits related to an apple.

2) Mary had to halt the food preparation because she found a stain on each of the cooking utensils.

3) Per the negotiation, Isaac agreed to guide the troops through the valley.

4) How would you respond if the container of supplies had disappeared without a vestige?

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Word Fusion

Games / Brain Teasers /

Each statement describes two words that when fused together create a new unrelated word (not a compound word). The clues do not necessarily indicate in which order the two words are attached. Example: This is the average oldness of a tablet (pill + age = pillage).

1) This is an automobile's domesticated animal.
2) This is a group of wolves, much like stone or bronze.
3) This is an alcoholic beverage that is made from a part of a fish.
4) This is a volume's military partner.

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Black to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

While browsing through Lev Alburt’s Chess Training Pocket Book II (quite as good as the first!), I ran into this position which requires you to think through several lines. It’s from Volkov-Rublevsky, 2007.

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Operation Sharp-ectomy

Games / Brain Teasers /

Six words have had their sharp things removed. The sharp things have been placed into Group A. The remaining letters of each word have been placed into Group B. Your task is to reconstitute the words by merging each sharp thing with the proper set of letters. Other than merging the two groups together, there is no rearranging of the letters. Example: sand + pne = spanned (SpANneD).

Group A: brad, nail, pin, piton, spike, stake
Group B: eeve, insrai, raha, rnlr, ufesbe, waebst

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More Twisted Personas

Games / Brain Teasers /

The names of four famous people have been scrambled. They are: an athlete, an entertainer, a leader of a country, and a scientist (though not necessarily in that order). Who are they?

1) gong, hero gets a win
2) oh, a jet man
3) sly peer lives
4) ten elite brains

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Black to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

One of my favorite attacking players in chess history is Rashid Nezhmetdinov. Some of his combinations are so complicated and brilliant I can’t really show them here. This position is fairly straightforward, though.

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Animal Life

Games / Brain Teasers /

Which animal in Group B can be added to Group A? Why? It has nothing to do with spelling or pronunciation.

Group A:
garter snake
giraffe
goat
guppy

Group B:
gar
gecko
golden eagle
gorilla

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Anagram Riddle

Games / Brain Teasers /

I am a set of three words, all with the same four letters.
First I am a type of carriage.
Then switch my middle letters, and I am a cover often useful on a diamond.
Now switch my end letters ...
When you see me, you also see hair.

What are the words?

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

On my facebook page, one of my posters put up the end of a 3-minute game they played. Wolff King Morrow was pretty deep into the game with probably a healthy chunk of his 3 minutes gone, yet he found a very pretty finish. You have less than 3 minutes to find it!

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Greek Mythology

Games / Brain Teasers /

Complete the series by making a selection from the pool.

Series: Hermes, Aphrodite, Gaea, Ares, Zeus, Cronus, Uranus, Poseidon, ?

Pool: Athena, Dionysus, Eros, Hades, Hephaestus, Hera

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Words with AB

Games / Brain Teasers /

Five words that contain AB as a letter-pair have had all of their other letters removed and placed into a pool. Put those letters back in their proper places. What are the words?

-AB--, ---AB, AB----, AB-----, -AB----

Pool: C, E, E, I, I, I, L, L, N, P, Q, R, S, S, T, T, T, U, U, Y

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Persons of Interest

Games / Brain Teasers /

What is the meaning of this rebus?

marcus Brutus
john wilkes Booth
Billy the kid
Bonnie parker
clyde Barrow

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

An exciting way to finish the week—a slash and burn kingside attack by Boros over Szabo back in the 1930s.

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Motherly Love

Games / Brain Teasers /

Black as night I can be,
Until my Mother sits on me;
Then clear as ice I become
In the rough, thank you Mum.

What am I?

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Mono-Grammar

Games / Brain Teasers /

Each of the following sentences contains clues to a set of three words that are spelled the same, except for one letter (each sentence describes a different set). Example: malt, melt, molt.

1) Billy discovered a cylindrical chest buried beneath the knoll.

2) The only evidence found by the detective was some adhesive in the chimney passage.

3) The bashful bovine rested on the small bed.

4) The latest fad was for people to desire the ingestion of a tall wading bird.

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White to Play

Games / Chess Puzzles /

This composition was one of Irving Chernev’s favorites. There is a humorous point to it at the end. It’s White to play and draw. Composition by Bogdassaryanz.

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One Letter of Separation

Games / Brain Teasers /

1a) to wriggle 1b) a member of the British gentry 1c) a small forcible stream of liquid

2a) this color is a blend of red and yellow darkened by black
2b) the top of the head
2c) to cover with water

3a) more recent
3b) rubbish
3c) a written communication

4a) free from color
4b) a high-pitched plaintive cry
4c) although

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