I couldn't find much sources on this opening.

I'm teaching my young students for them not to bother with opening theory in their early chess experience.

I push it as far as playing it black or white. Having this position no matter what (if the opponent is playing decent moves) with white:

[FEN ""]
1. g3 e5 2. Bg2 d5 3. d3 Nc6 4. Nf3 Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. c4 Be6 7. Nc3 O-O
8. a3 a5 9. Rb1

Same goes for black (g6 etc ...).

The idea behind this is securing our king fast, and launching an attack on the queenside while strenghtening the diagonal of our bishop on the kingside.

Next we want to prepare b4. I don't really know what to do with my dark-squared bishop though.

If some of you could give me some good advice or insight on this opening (is it good? Bad? What are the plans?) that would be awesome.

  • 2
    Why can't Black win the c4 pawn? Jul 1, 2016 at 10:14
  • They can indeed I have to admit I played black a bit quickly :( Jul 1, 2016 at 11:26
  • 2
    There are grandmasters playing 1.g3 occasionally, but, if you're going to play Nf3 anyway, it is a bit illogical not to play it on move 1, thereby reducing black's options (no 1...e5).
    – user332
    Jul 1, 2016 at 12:28
  • 2
    I don't understand. You say you don't want to teach your beginners opening theory but then you're advising them to play lines that seem to be more about memorization (or, at least, specific plans for specific pieces) than general principles. Wouldn't it be more consistent to teach them to open with 1.e4, develop knights and bishops, castle, and so on? Jul 1, 2016 at 12:30
  • 1
    One objection I have to only teaching this system is that it's not suitable for everyone's style. What you have in the diagram above is sort of an English opening structure, but some students will be able to play much better in for example king's pawn opening structures intuitively.
    – Scounged
    Jul 1, 2016 at 18:06

2 Answers 2


 1. g3 is called the Benko opening or the King's fianchetto opening. It usually transposes into other systems where White plays g3 in the opening (e.g. the English or the Catalan), but the position you're showing reminds me of a reversed Sicilian Dragon (if White plays cxd5) or a reversed King's Indian / Pirc (if Black plays d4).

You could do a couple of things with your dark-squared bishop, e.g. exchange it for the knight on f6, to strengthen your grip on the light squares. You could develop it to d2 to support the b2-b4 push, or (after cxd5) to e3, as you're not likely to move the e-pawn very soon.

As most system openings, it is not really a bad opening. But you're giving away the initiative White has - essentially, you're playing with Black all the time.

  • Thank you I'll look into these opening. I like the uses of the dark bishop/ especially the change with the knight ! Jul 1, 2016 at 9:19
  • Slight tangent, but the Meran has a good reputation for Black and many lines come down to a single tempo; but the Colle System for White has a poor reputation when it is exactly the same as a Meran with extra tempo!
    – M.M
    Jul 7, 2016 at 0:30

Glorfindel provides an excellent answer, especially the light square strategy.

I would also suggest that playing the KIA, the proper course is to exchange the dark square Bishops, with Bg5, Qd2, and Bh6 and to attack on the Kingside. The variation which the Kingside attack is most powerful is when White advances the e pawn instead of the c pawn.

Dunnington's book "The Ultimate King's Indian Attack" suggests that if you plan on the Queenside attack, the Bishop is best left on c1 and moved to b2 or a3 after the pawn expansion. John Hall's "Modern King's Indian Attack" does not even mention Queenside play.

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