Which openings and middle game tactics are highly used when a player utilizes a hypermodern style of gameplay? What particular tactics are most effective when playing hypermodern?

3 Answers 3


This website does a good job of explaining some principles:


as well as this piece by Eric Schiller:


  • 4
    Schiller's Unorthodox Chess Openings received a noted two-word review from Tony Miles in Kingpin: "Utter crap." Carsten Hansen wrote of Schiller's book on the Frankenstein-Dracula Variation of the Vienna Game that it was the worst book that he had ever seen. (from his wikipedia) Don't read anything by Eric Schiller. And don't use wikihow to learn how to play chess.
    – Aushin
    Commented May 5, 2012 at 14:11
  • @Aushin - so you downvoted me because I recommended something by Schiller.
    – xaisoft
    Commented May 5, 2012 at 16:52
  • @Aushin Have you read the booked linked above? Do you know of any reviews? Will you post your own answer to the OP's question?
    – Tony Ennis
    Commented May 5, 2012 at 17:29
  • 4
    Telling someone "you can find the answer here" shouldn't be regarded as a great answer. It's just a link to look elsewhere, which does not bode well for this site. Commented May 8, 2012 at 19:55
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    Usually on SE we summarize the information in links. Eventually those links will go dead and your answer will be useless. As it stands, it's not that great anyway - the content in that link requires signing in to WikiHow. Commented Jul 16, 2017 at 18:59

One of the early pioneers, if not the actual founder of the Hypermodern style was Richard Reti, early in the 20th century. An example of this kind of play is his own Reti Opening.

The theory behind this is that center pawns on the fourth rank (or further) can become weak as well as strong. So the idea is to move out knights first, then pawns to the third rank, followed by bishops, etc. Then wait till the opponent commits his pawns to (his) fourth rank (your fifth) before deciding when to move yours to your fourth rank.

An "extreme" example is Alekhine's defense, when Black plays 1... Nf6 in response to 1. e4, to provoke further White advances, and (presuambly), weaknesses. The disadvantage to Black of moving the knight around seems to offset whatever disadvantages White may incur by advancing his pawns. Alekhine's Defense variation, understanding white's overextended pawns, black's multiple early knight moves

But if White opens 1. Nf3, he deters ...e5, and limits Black to playing ...d5 (or ...d6, if he wants to enforce ...e5). Hence, "hypermodern" openings beginning with knight moves seem to work better for White, who has the advantage of the first move. This advantage does give White a number of options, including playing "colors reversed" openings with an extra move that Black doesn't have.


Richard Reti's book 'Modern Ideas in Chess' can be read in full here.

It is an amazing book!

Disclaimer: I am among the authors of the site ;)

  • That's a very cool site. I hope it continues to grow.
    – ETD
    Commented Nov 15, 2013 at 0:59
  • Thanks @EdDean. Unluckily the second book is taking ages... I am too busy with day job.
    – eolo999
    Commented Nov 15, 2013 at 9:01

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