I am approximately 1500 OTB (Lichess Classical 1750, chess.com 1540, internal rating in my club ~1500), and of course I would like to improve. Work and family are demanding, so naturally I would like to make the most of my limited study time.
I do not think that I gain a lot by spending time on studying openings. On the other hand, I want to and like to play tactical lines in order to improve my tactical vision.
Currently I play 1.e4 as white (Evans Gambit, Fried Liver, Open Sicilian, Korchnoi Gambit, improvise on everything else), and as black I play the Qd8 Scandinavian against 1e4 and QGA against 1d4.
I wonder whether I should switch to more tactical lines as black, for example the Portugese Gambit against 1e4 as presented by Smerdon ("Smerdon's Scandinavian) or recently Vincent Moret in "My first chess opening repertoire for black". Moret also suggests the Albin Countergambit against 1d4.
I do feel however, that these openings are far from trivial. For example in the Evans Gambit, a lot of good moves come quite naturally, whereas in the Portugese Gambit there are a lot of nuances and move orders to remember (should I put the queen on f5 or on h5?) etc., and if you make one bad move you are very quickly on the losing side. And there are lots of chances to make bad moves.
So in summary: To improve my tactical vision and my game in general, should an amateur like myself invest time in studying these sharp and aggressive offbeat opening lines, or rather play more solid lines and spend the time on studying the endgame and middlegame?
I'd be especially interested in stronger players experience, i.e. how they improved.