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A Passed Pawn is a pawn which is not blocked by any other opponent pawns on its path to promotion.

Usage[]

a b c d e f g h
8 a8 n b8 c8 k d8 e8 f8 g8 h8 8
7 a7 n b7 p c7 p d7 p e7 K f7 g7 h7 7
6 a6 p b6 p c6 p d6 p e6 f6 g6 h6 6
5 a5 p b5 p c5 p d5 p e5 f5 g5 h5 5
4 a4 b4 c4 d4 e4 f4 g4 h4 P 4
3 a3 b3 c3 d3 B e3 f3 g3 h3 3
2 a2 b2 c2 d2 B e2 f2 g2 h2 2
1 a1 b1 c1 d1 B e1 f1 g1 h1 1
a b c d e f g h
Despite being 7 points of material ahead,
Black is still worse because of white's
passed pawn and active pieces.
Once the pawn promotes,
it can threaten checkmate.
a b c d e f g h
8 a8 b8 c8 d8 e8 f8 r g8 k h8 8
7 a7 b7 c7 P d7 e7 f7 g7 b h7 p 7
6 a6 b6 r c6 d6 p e6 p f6 n g6 h6 6
5 a5 N b5 p c5 d5 e5 f5 g5 h5 5
4 a4 p b4 c4 d4 e4 P f4 g4 p h4 n 4
3 a3 P b3 c3 Q d3 e3 f3 g3 h3 B 3
2 a2 b2 c2 d2 e2 b f2 g2 P h2 P 2
1 a1 b1 R c1 d1 e1 f1 g1 K h1 1
a b c d e f g h
a b c d e f g h
8 a8 b8 c8 d8 e8 f8 g8 h8 8
7 a7 k b7 b c7 d7 e7 f7 g7 h7 7
6 a6 b6 c6 d6 e6 f6 g6 pl h6 6
5 a5 r b5 c5 d5 e5 N f5 p g5 h5 5
4 a4 b4 p c4 p d4 N e4 f4 P g4 h4 4
3 a3 b3 c3 P d3 e3 K f3 g3 h3 3
2 a2 b2 c2 d2 e2 f2 g2 h2 2
1 a1 b1 c1 d1 e1 f1 g1 h1 1
a b c d e f g h
1.g7 Bd5 2.Ndc6+ Bxc6 3.Nxc6+ forks the king and rook.

Passed pawns are very powerful and important during the endgame; the phase of a game when many pieces are off the board, and pieces can move freely. No opposing pawns are blocking and challenging on their way to the last rank for promotion, when they will most likely be promoted to a queen, which sabotages any hope of your opponent winning. Your opponent will need to employ tactics like Blocking, Sacrificing, or counterattacking to save themselves from losing and try to last the game for just a little bit longer. They might also resign if they know that your passed pawn is literally unstoppable.

If you plan to invest in a passed pawn, make sure that its promotion path is clear, ranged pieces can defend it when it's under attack, and not many enemies can stop it. Promotion is not necessarily obligated to gain an advantage, but rather, the mere threat of promotion. For example, in the right example, you can use the threat of promotion to lure the Bishop to defend the Promotion square, and use your Knights to fork the King and Rook.

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