# Plans in the Petroff Defense

What are the typical middlegame planes for black/white in the Petroff defense, more specifically in the variations:

1. Petroff three knights: 1. e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nc3.

2. Classical Variation: 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. Nxe5 d6 4.Nf3 Nxe4 5. d4 d5.

2.1. Classical Variation with 5. Nc3.

3. Steinitz Variation: 1. e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.d4.

• I think you should divide this into several questions. Also, explain what you mean by the `1. d4` variation and `1. Nc3` variation. Aug 28, 2014 at 13:17
• The text editor had some problems. I hope this clarifies it. Aug 28, 2014 at 13:45
• This can probably be answered by a quick look at Wikipedia if you are just looking for the basic ideas and plans: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Petrov's_Defence Sep 21, 2014 at 12:58
• John Shaw's new book looks at some ideas in the Petroff that seem good for white. It is called Playing e4, Caro-Kann,..e5 etc.. It is worth a look. Jul 31, 2016 at 21:29

ad 1: First of all, it's not necessarily Petrov's anymore. `3. ... - Nc6` transposes into Four Knight's / Scotch for example (yeah, entire books here as well). `3. ... - Bb4` is a bit more "Petrov's" move. Then something like `4. Ne5 - 0-0 5. Be2 - Re8 6. Nd3 - Bc3 7. dc3 - Ne4` and we have a kind of Ruy Lopez with a tempo more.
ad 2: a) I think there's no point in typing here whole lines of theory. In this variation, IMHO, you need to prepare `c4` sooner or later. Otherwise it's unlikely to get advantage. The second line you mentioned `5. Nc3` is about getting ahead in development. The cost of it isn't that high. It's doubled c-pawns which are not an issue as long as there are pieces on board. (Fortunately, black has `d-pawn`. With `e-pawn` those structures might be problematic when it comes to endgames. So a tip from this sentence might be "rather don't exchange on e5 letting black capture with d-pawn"). Usually White is able to launch some attack on black's kingside castle.