Tempo, also known as time or initiative, is a tactical concept in chess that refers to the advantage of making the first move or the ability to control the pace of the game. Tempo tactics involve the use of these advantages to gain an advantage over the opponent.
One of the most common examples of tempo tactics is the “tempo move.” A tempo move is a move that is made with the intention of gaining a tempo, or an advantage in time. One of the most common examples of a tempo move is the “developing move,” where a piece is moved to a more active square, allowing it to control more of the board and putting pressure on the opponent.
Another example of tempo tactics is the “time-wasting move.” This is a move that is made with the intention of wasting time, such as moving a piece back and forth between the same squares. This can be used to slow down the game and to prevent the opponent from making an advantageous move.
Another way to gain an advantage in tempo is by creating “threats.” A threat is a move that forces the opponent to react, which can give the player an opportunity to gain a tempo advantage. For example, a player can create a threat by attacking an opponent’s piece, forcing them to move it, which can open up a new area of the board for the player to exploit.
Tempo can also be regained after it is lost. For example, if a player is forced to waste a move to defend a piece, they can often regain the lost tempo by making a move that puts pressure on the opponent and forces them to waste a move.