"The Vulture" is an off-beat line of the Benoni, and while I have seen many off-beat lines over the years, I cannot see any redeeming qualities in this opening if white plays the natural 4.Qc2.

Stefan Bucker wrote a book on it here.

Does anyone see ANYTHING hopeful here for black?

 [FEN ""]

 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 c5 3. d5 Ne4 4. Qc2 Qa5+ 5. Nd2 Nd6 6. e4 g6 7. b4 $1 Qxb4 (7... cxb4 8. Nb3 Qc7 9. Bb2 Rg8 10. Nf3 (10. Bd3 {Or this attempt to keep the N from f5.} b5 11. c5 Nc4 12. Bxc4 bxc4 13. Qxc4 $16) 10... f6 (10... Bg7 11. Bxg7 Rxg7 12. c5 Kf8 13. Rc1 Ne8 14. Bb5 $18) 11. e5 fxe5 12. Bxe5 Bg7 13. Bxg7 Rxg7 14. c5 Nf5 15. Rc1 $18) 8. Rb1 Qa5 9. Bb2 Rg8 10. Bc3 Qc7 11. Bd3 f6 12. e5 fxe5 13. Ngf3 Bg7 14. Ng5 $18 e4 15. Bxe4 $1 $18
  • 1
    I don't. I believe Black's best play is to transpose to a Czech Benoni structure with 5. ..Nf6!? and ..d6 ..e5 Commented Mar 8, 2020 at 16:06

1 Answer 1


3...Ne4 is kind of pointless. The idea is to play Nd6 controlling e4 and attacking the c4 pawn. The only other options are Nf6 losing a tempo or f5 in a weird Dutch-like position. White is maintaining an advantage after 3...Nd6 4.e4 though.

It avoids theory I guess.

  • 2
    I guess that is the ONLY reason...tries to avoid theory. I still cannot see any pure chess reason to play it. Commented Mar 15, 2020 at 12:25

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