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Questions tagged [opening]

Questions relating to the first few moves in a game

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8
votes
4answers
3k views

Queens Gambit Declined vs Slav: Exchange Variations

I am a keen player of d4 as white. One of the things that I often read is that the exchange variation of the Queens Gambit Declined is generally considered good for white: [fen ""] 1. d4 d5 2. c4 e6 ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Traps in the Owen's opening

I recently heard about Owen's opening. 1. e4 b6 is the starting move which can transform into various lines. I am just curious about the traps (for both black and white) involved in this opening. I ...
8
votes
3answers
504 views

Scandinavian Defense with 3.c4

I've recently played some games as Black that opened like this: [White "Opponent"] [Black "Me"] [Result "*"] [ECO "B01"] [FEN ""] [CurrentPosition "rnb1kbnr/ppp1pppp/8/3q4/2P5/8/PP1P1PPP/RNBQKBNR b ...
8
votes
2answers
244 views

White's Response to the Norwegian Defense

In the Norwegian Defense of the Ruy Lopez [FEN ""] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 b5 5. Bb3 Na5 Neil MacDonald suggests 6. O-O as a response. Why isn't 6. d4 suggested in the book? Edit: 6......
8
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1answer
1k views

What are the ideas behind the Short variation in Advance Caro-Kann?

What are the main strategic and tactical ideas behind the so-called Short variation in Advance Caro-Kann? I mean this line: [FEN ""] 1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. e5 Bf5 4. Nf3 e6 5. Be2 Isn't White's ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Is there a refutation of the Muzio gambit?

Is there a 'refutation', i.e. a defense for black that leads to a guaranteed advantage assuming perfect play, against the Muzio gambit? [StartPly "11"] [FEN ""] 1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 g5 4.Bc4 g4 5....
8
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2answers
2k views

Queen's Indian Defense question that has me stumped

After the moves 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 if White plays 3.Nf3, Black often plays the Queen's Indian Defense with 3...b6. But if White plays 3.Nc3, then Black rarely plays 3...b6. [FEN ""] 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

Scotch Opening - How to play

Does anybody have some indication of a book, site, video, etc,, which explores this variation of Scotch Opening for Black? [fen ""] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4. Nxd4 Bc5 5.Be3 Qf6 6.c3 I have ...
8
votes
4answers
3k views

Why is the Ragozin 4… Bb4 not even considered against 4. Bg5?

The Ragozin variation of the Queen's Gambit starts with 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Nf3 Bb4: [StartPly "8"] [FEN ""] 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Nf3 Bb4 It seems that the Bb4 move is only sound in ...
8
votes
3answers
662 views

Why isn't Bird's Opening at least as popular as the Dutch Defence?

The Dutch Defence is a fairly popular response to 1. d4. So shouldn't 1. f4 (Bird's opening), viewed as a Dutch plus a tempo, be at least as popular?
8
votes
5answers
173 views

Is 6…Bf5 inferior to 6…Bd6 in the Caro-Kann Tartakower after 6. Bc4? And if so, why?

I'm trying out the Tartakower variation of the Caro-Kann. It begins [fen ""] [startply "11"] [startflipped "0"] 1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 dxe4 4. Nxe4 Nf6 5. Nxf6+ exf6 6. Bc4 Bf5 (6... Bd6) I have ...
8
votes
2answers
121 views

Short castle in Trompowsky

In recent 1st Match between Maguns & Karjakin, started with Trompowsky. How can Karjakin prefer catsle even g file is open ( g × f6 at 3rd move ). Whats idea behind it?
8
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3answers
956 views

A Consistent Grunfeld Repertoire

I'm starting to play against stronger competition who know how to play their openings, so I'm trying to figure out my repertoire. I have recently decided to stick to playing the Grunfeld against 1.d4, ...
8
votes
1answer
4k views

Queen's Gambit Accepted : how should White continue after 3.e3 Be6?

The Wikipedia article on Queen's Gambit Accepted simply notes that "... White has good compensation after 4.Ne2". [FEN ""] 1. d4 d5 2. c4 dxc4 3.e3 Be6 4. Ne2 (4.Qc2) What about Qc2 to add ...
8
votes
1answer
4k views

An Aggressive Response (for black) against the closed sicilian?

I am look for an aggressive response to the closed sicilian (1. e4 c5 2. Nc3 ...) in which black has strong attacking and tactical chances against white. Most of the variations I have seen result in ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

How can I play Colle System against Kingside Fianchetto?

I enjoy the Colle System as white, because it often leads to a strong Kingside attack for white without exposing my own King to significant danger. However, when my opponent castles behind a ...
8
votes
2answers
292 views

Openings in King of the hill

As you probably know, "King of the hill" (KOTH) is a variant of chess where one can win either like in classical chess or by putting the king in the central squares, namely d4, e4, d5 and e5, by a ...
8
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1answer
273 views

Accelerated Dragon, Modern Bc4 Variation (B35) 10.Ndb5!

After: [FEN ""] 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nd4 g6 5.Nc3 Bg7 6.Be3 Nf6 7.Bc4 O-O 8.Bb3 a5 9.O-O d6 It appears 10.Ndb5 is difficult for Black to play against. I only found some games from 2008. ...
8
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2answers
1k views

Aggressive Line against Alekhine's Defence?

I am looking to patch up a lot of my holes in my opening repertoire. One of them is the Alekhine's Defence. Do any of you know a good, aggressive line against the Alekhine's Defence? (If there is no ...
8
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2answers
325 views

What are some stronger moves I can play next time in the King's Indian Defense?

[fen ""] 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 d6 5. Nf3 O-O 6. Be2 e5 7. O-O Nc6 8. d5 Ne7 9. Ne1 Nd7 10. Be3 f5 11. f3 f4 12. Bf2 g5 13. b4 Nf6 14. c5 Ng6 15. cxd6 cxd6 16. Rc1 Rf7 17. Nb5 a6 18. Nc3 ...
8
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1answer
1k views

1. e4, 1. d4, 1. c4, or 1. Nf3? Which opening move has given the greatest scoring percentage for White in World Championship Matches?

Which opening move out of 1. e4, 1. d4, 1. c4 and 1.Nf3 has given the best scoring percentage for White in World Championship matches? What are the percentages?
8
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1answer
1k views

Early f3 in d4 openings?

Are these openings playable for white? I use the first move order to counter my friend's very well prepared Benoni, and manage to whoop him many times, but its only in blitz. I was wondering if early ...
8
votes
1answer
299 views

How to take advantage of under-development of opposing pieces?

Gambit openings are usually based on sacrificing pieces to have much better piece development. Some gambits, like Queen's gambit, or King's gambit, I can understand the idea. However, I cannot ...
8
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2answers
1k views

What are the main strategic concepts in the Grunfeld?

I recently picked up on the Grunfeld and I am quite pleased with this opening. To improve my skill at playing this opening; What are the most important strategic/thematic concepts that I should ...
8
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2answers
674 views

Do professional level chess players mainly stay consistent in their opening play?

I know that professional chess players obviously have to have a wide repertoire and try to know as much as they can, but I was curious if they mainly stay consistent. The reason for asking this was ...
8
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3answers
634 views

Is the open Catalan a gambit?

I have been looking at the open variation of the Catalan game, where White seems not to extremely worry about conceding the pawn with 4...dxc4, going for calm development instead. One notorious ...
8
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1answer
305 views

Evans Gambit variation

The generally very useful and interesting book Bologan's Black Weapons suggests the following line as a practical way to meet the Evans Gambit. [FEN ""] [Title "Evans Gambit"] [Startply "12"] 1. e4 ...
8
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5answers
967 views

In an opening tree on ChessBase, how can we fix the statistics so that transpositions are not taken into account in the total number of games?

In an opening tree (also called "opening explorer" or "openings book") on ChessBase 12, here are the statistics that we get after 1. Nf3 c5 : So it seems that after 1. Nf3 c5 White will play 2. e4 93%...
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4answers
501 views

Computers finding computer moves

There are positions in chess where the only good move (e.g. only move that preserves equality) is very unnatural for a human player. For instance if this move goes against common principles or if it ...
8
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1answer
514 views

Scandinavian: 2. Nc3 d4

I started out with a simple opening: 1. e4 d5 2. Nc3 and then the computer played 2... d4, surprising me, as I had never encountered it before. Since then, I've been trying to analyse the possible ...
8
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2answers
666 views

Is the advance Caro-Kann becoming less popular?

In my own games I have seen fewer advance Caro-Kann games (1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. e5) than the semi-open games (3. Nc3 or 3. Nd2) or the Botvinnik systems (3. exd5 cxd5 4. c4 or 2. c4). My questions ...
7
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4answers
2k views

Does 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 f6 have to be a bad opening?

There seems to be a pretty nifty attack for White after 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 f6: [FEN ""] 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 f6 3.Nxe5 fxe5 4.Qh5+ g6 5.Qxe5+ Qe7 6.Qxh8 I've played as White with this opening several times, ...
7
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7answers
2k views

Are there known opening gambit lines for black in the French defence?

I play the French defence with both colours (white and black) and generally play any of the orthodox main line openings (there are many eg Advance, Exchange, Classical,Tarrasch etc giving rise to many ...
7
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7answers
10k views

Ways to quickly beat beginners

Are there any common tactics or combinations used to beat complete beginners quickly (or gain large material advantages)? By "beginner" I mean someone who is good enough not to get caught out by ...
7
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4answers
1k views

In Bb5 systems against the Sicilian, why does White exchange their b5 bishop without playing a6?

Isn't White giving up too much, i.e. one tempo in the opening and the bishop pair, for too little, i.e. doubled pawns? For example, after [FEN ""] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 g6 Bc6 is the second ...
7
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3answers
2k views

How does one respond to 3.d4 after playing the Sicilian?

I was black in this game, and white went ahead and played 3.d4 even though I clearly had it guarded, however once played, white now has the queen as an additional defender, and the queen was able to ...
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6answers
2k views

Feeling cramped in the Najdorf

I played this game recently at a tournament, and lost pretty decisively. I thought about it a bit, and I think it's representative of something that happens somewhat often in my games when I play the ...
7
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4answers
740 views

As black, how should one respond to 4. Qe2 by white in the Russian Game, Damiano Variation?

I recently played a game on as black. My opponent and I transposed into, according to Lichess, the Russian Game, Damiano Variation, when white played Qe2 on move 4. I wasn’t sure how to reply, and I ...
7
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1answer
1k views

Why is 14..Qd8 the most popular move in this variation of the Caro Kann?

According to chessbase, 14..Qd8 is by far the most popular continuation in this position (196 games), even though Stockfish 8 seems to prefer 14..Ngf6 (1 game). I'm struggling to understand the ...
7
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6answers
1k views

Why are opening books so popular?

As title above, why are opening books so popular? I am sure that most players know that middlegame and endgame books are ultimately much more important for improving one's chess strength. That is not ...
7
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5answers
1k views

Is it always better to accept gambits?

Among chess players circulate the idea that any gambit should be accepted. It's an old and popular idea; if you don't want trouble, accept the gambit. Should this be consider a valid principle?
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4answers
1k views

Is there an opening where both knights get behind c4 and f4 pawns?

I like to get my knight behind c4 and I don't mind exchanging that pawn, I just don't like it to get stuck behind my knight, therefore I often play the English opening. Is there an established ...
7
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2answers
2k views

What to do when your opponent doesn't play along in the opening?

I looked around and could not find an answer for this. I've studied a pretty good amount of opening theory and so I know the "correct" moves for some basic lines. Most e4 openings and a fair amount ...
7
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2answers
974 views

Chess traps without positional loss

Most of the common chess traps are ill advised (at least in standard games), as you sacrifice better moves. Traps that I have tried out with some success are the fishing pole, and the blackbourne ...
7
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4answers
13k views

Is there any good app for learning openings

My great fail is that I cannot learn opening or initial play. Normally I only play when I can connect to my mobile app (Chess Free on iOS), and play at a very low level (adjusted as a single bar), ...
7
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5answers
2k views

Introduction to the Sicilian

I am trying to work on my openings and start playing the Sicilian as a response to 1. e4 but I am slightly overwhelmed by the huge amounts of resources available. I am rated around 1850 FIDE and I ...
7
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3answers
2k views

What is wrong with f2-f4 against the French Defense?

[fen ""] [Startply "3"] [Title "2.f4 against the French Defense"] 1.e4 e6 2.f4 What is so obviously wrong with this approach? I ask because it is not even mentioned in the complete Black repertoire ...
7
votes
2answers
3k views

Gambit openings for black recommendation?

I recently started to learn chess, but I play mid to advanced Chinese chess. So to get the most out of transferable skills, I would like to avoid positional/pawn play, but prefer aggressive openings ...
7
votes
1answer
615 views

Why is the Advance Variation considered strong vs the Caro-Kann but not vs the Scandinavian?

As title above, why is the Advance Variation in these recent years considered strong vs the Caro-Kann, especially owing to White's early space advantage in the center, but not vs the Scandinavian? In ...
7
votes
2answers
9k views

List of how AlphaZero evaluates openings

In his process of learning Chess and getting stronger and stronger each second AlphaZero learned openings. Some were played often at the beginning, but lost in AlphaZero's popularity over the time (e....