Upgrade to Chess.com Premium!

Anyone play the Blackmar-Diemer Gambit (BDG)?


  • 7 years ago · Quote · #1

    Fromper

    Anyone here play the Blackmar-Diemer Gambit (1. d4 d5 2. e4 dxe4 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. f3 exf3 5. Nxf3)?

     

     

    I've been trying to play some gambits lately to get better at attacking and tactics, but I found that there were too many ways for my opponents to respond to 1. e4, so I had to prepare for way too many openings. The BDG seems to be a good solution to this, as d4 is met by d5 more often than anything else, and there are fewer exceptions to have to prepare for, some of which can even transpose back to the gambit some of the time.

     

    So at my last tournament (the Florida State Championship on Sept 1-3), I bought The Blackmar-Diemer Gambit Keybook II by Tim Sawyer. At the time, I mentioned to the tournament vendor that I've met a chess player named Tim Sawyer, and that he was even there at that tournament. The info about the author in the back of the book says that he lives in Pennsylvania, but that was written in 1999. The Tim Sawyer I know lives in the Orlando, Florida area, which is where I met him at a chess tournament last year. On the USCF web site, there's only one Tim Sawyer listed with a high rating (class A at the moment, but previously in the expert range), and he has rated tournaments in his history from Pennsylvania back in the 90's and recent tournaments in Florida. So it appears that by pure coincidence, the book I purchased was written by someone I've met.

     

    Anyway, it's a pretty good book. Some would call it a "database dump", since it's mostly just variations and games, without that much text explanation. But with 100 main games to illustrate the main lines, and another 2700+ games in side variations, it does a pretty good job of getting the point across. I'm just playing through the main games quickly right now, to get a feel for the opening as a whole. I've tried it a few times so far with decent results, but most of my opponents so far have been relatively low rated. I need to try it against some tougher competition.

     

    The one thing I don't understand is that the BDG seems to have an almost cult-like status in chess. There have been magazines dedicated to just this opening. There have been correspondence "theme" tournaments where every game is in this opening. There are many openings that are more popular than this, but none of them seem to generate such devout followers, for lack of a better term. Does anyone else think that's weird? Should I not drink the Kool Aid and not play this opening out of fear that it'll warp my mind and turn me into a BDG zombie?

     

    --Fromper 

     

  • 7 years ago · Quote · #2

    billwall

    I think the BDG is good.  Thee are a lot of tactics and combinations, with lots of traps, so you need to know all the lines very well.  It has been studied alot, so it is not as popular at IM level or above.  BDG can be played alot if you are a 1.d4 player, and is probably the most popular gambit among 1.d4 players.  You can get into a BDG through the Alekhine, Caro Kann, French, and Center Counter openings.  Most people accept the gambit pawn, otherwise, White gets good control of the center.  Most 1.d4 players are positional, so this is different to 1.d4 players as well as those who play 1...d5.  I knew Tom Purser well, and familiar with many of the older BDG magazines, and wrote a book on the BDG.  It was pretty easy to find 500 miniatures in that opening.  I like the 5.Qxf3 line just as well as the 5.Nxf3 line.
  • 7 years ago · Quote · #3

    Fromper


    Sawyer says that Qxf3 instead of Nxf3 is known as the Ryder Gambit. I would think it should be called the Blackmar-Ryder Gambit, since it's still based on the original Blackmar Gambit of 1. d4 d5 2. e4 dxe4 3. f3. He says it's not as good theoretically, but it still scores well because so few people have studied it enough to know the best play against it.

     

    I actually used the Qxf3 move in a game here, but that was because my opponent played 3. ... Bf5 instead of 3. ... Nf6 to protect the e4 pawn from my knight on c3. Putting my queen on f3 attacked that bishop and threatened the undefended b7 pawn at the same time, although I left my d4 and c2 pawns hanging to do it. It was pretty complicated, but my opponent simplified things by retreating his bishop to its starting c8 square.

     

    So how do you think I should have played from there? I played Be3 to defend my d4 pawn, then castled queen side and went on to win the game. But the Be3 move just felt too passive for such an aggressive opening. I really feel I won because my opponent didn't defend very well, not because I played particularly well. I still think I could have attacked more aggressively, but I'm not sure exactly how.

     

    Here's the full game:

     Any tips would be appreciated.

     

     --Richard

  • 7 years ago · Quote · #4

    Phobetor

    Hey Fromper! Wink

     

    I think the Blackmar Diemer Gambit is pretty easy to play for black if he knows what he's doing. I analyzed it a little with Rybka and an openings book, and my conclusion was that if black plays accurately for the first 5-10 moves, then he just ends up with a clear advantage. However, if your opponent does NOT know how to play it, and white (you) does, then it will also take you about 5-10 moves to get a clear advantage. But that's about the general description of a gambit Smile

  • 7 years ago · Quote · #5

    Crash

    http://geocities.com/~blackmar/

    &nb" target="_blank">http://geocities.com/~blackmar/">http://geocities.com/~blackmar/

     It looks slightly dubious to me but I like to grab pawns in the opening.

     Crash

  • 7 years ago · Quote · #6

    Fromper

    Maybe at the master level, it's not quite sound, but I'm just trying to work my way up from 1343 USCF right now. Sawyer's book claims that playing this gambit is a good way for anyone to work their way up to 1800, as you not only learn attacking and tactics, but you also learn to tell when white has compensation for the pawn and when he doesn't. For us newbies who think entirely in terms of material, that's a useful skill to develop. That's part of the reason I wanted to start playing gambits instead of just any open games to get better at tactics.

     

    As I said, I've done well with this so far, but I think I'll have a tougher time with it when I start facing tougher opposition. I've been playing players on this site with relatively low ratings (1300-1500) while I establish my rating here. I figure I'll probably end up with a rating on this site around 1700, and then I'll continue to challenge people slightly above me to learn and improve. Playing the guys with higher ratings will be the real test of the gambit and my skill at playing it.

     

     --Fromper

  • 7 years ago · Quote · #7

    Fromper

    So searching on the web tonight for the BDG, I found these two links:

     

    http://uscfsales.com/item.asp?cID=15&PID=1879

    http://www.jeremysilman.com/chess_bits_pieces/110103_blackmar_dmr_gmbt.html

     

    What's wrong with this picture?

     

    --Fromper 


  • 7 years ago · Quote · #8

    3point141592654

    If Black plays correctly, he gets a clear advantage. Here is the refutation (remember to use the move list):

    Your welcome in advance! ;)


  • 7 years ago · Quote · #9

    Fromper

    No offense, but that "refutation" doesn't really scare me. You might be right about it giving a small advantage to black, but it's a small enough advantage that players at my level (both myself and my opponents) probably wouldn't even realize black has an advantage. It's a playable position for both sides.

     

    Looking up that specific line in The Blackmar-Diemer Keybook II by Tim Sawyer, it gives 5. Nxe4 as the mainline for white instead of 5. Bc4. There's one example game in the 5. Bc4 line in which Botvinnik scored a draw as black in a simul in 1962.

     

    Actually, I'd say the way to really scare a BDG player as black is the Lemberger Counter Gambit: 1. d4 d5 2. e4 dxe4 3. Nc3 e5. It's well known enough that most BDG players should be prepared for it, though.

     

     --Fromper


  • 7 years ago · Quote · #10

    Fromper


    You know, I didn't even see 11. Qa4. Looking at it now, I'm not sure exactly where it would lead. His e5 pawn looks like it was his weakest point at that point in the game, and that would have relieved some of the pressure on that pawn, but putting the pressure on his queen side instead. I definitely should have noticed it as a possible move, but I think I probably would have stuck to my plan of attacking up the e and f files, anyway.

     

     --Fromper


  • 7 years ago · Quote · #11

    DeepNf3

    I used to play the BDG gambit against different defenses, the Qxf3 line with the double pawn sac is the worse of them all, if you like to base your opening repertoir on hoping that your opponents fall into your traps I guess there is not much future for you in chess, most expert level players don't fall for any of the traps in any of the BDG lines, I think chigoring was the one who first played the Qxf3 line long time ago, I think that then nor the dutch or anybody in New Orleans new about that BDG, so I don't know why it is called BDG anyways, chigoring used to play many things that are just inferior today believe me I ve tried most of his ideas including his 2.Qe2 agains the french, no many of his ideas work nowdays
  • 7 years ago · Quote · #12

    likesforests

    If Black plays correctly, he gets a clear advantage. Here is the refutation... Your welcome in advance! ;)  -- 3point141592654

     

    White scores 52% in this line, so it's not obvious how to exploit Black's advantage. But add 5...b5! 6.Bb3 e6 and anyone can see White's in bad shape. Of course, most players are not booked up on these tricks and traps.


  • 7 years ago · Quote · #13

    jerzy0boy

    it looks ok but i think the advantage is to small for me. better to use it to attack though. as i think and look at it if not accepted or white uses its knight to attack e4 or e5 it looks risky, can open up can of whoop ass for me if you play it against me. better to use idian against it. which ever way the first pawn moves. lightly giving up center for the 8th or 9th move to gain control over it. yup idian would destroy it if use are a sneaky player... as i am.
  • 7 years ago · Quote · #14

    Fromper

    DeepNf3 wrote: I used to play the BDG gambit against different defenses, the Qxf3 line with the double pawn sac is the worse of them all, if you like to base your opening repertoir on hoping that your opponents fall into your traps I guess there is not much future for you in chess, most expert level players don't fall for any of the traps in any of the BDG lines, I think chigoring was the one who first played the Qxf3 line long time ago, I think that then nor the dutch or anybody in New Orleans new about that BDG, so I don't know why it is called BDG anyways, chigoring used to play many things that are just inferior today believe me I ve tried most of his ideas including his 2.Qe2 agains the french, no many of his ideas work nowdays

     Actually, I'm learning the BDG from a book called the The Blackmar-Diemer Gambit Keybook 2 by Tim Sawyer, and he goes into the history of the gambit. The original version was invented by a guy named Blackmar back in the 1800's or so, but he just played 1. d4 d5 2. e4 dxe4 3. f3, which is easily refuted with 3. ... e5. That's called the Blackmar Gambit. Another guy named Ryder came along and added the knight moves (3. Nc3 Nf6) before 4. f3, but after 4. ... exf3, he recaptured with 5. Qxf3, which is known as the Ryder Gambit. In the 20th century, Diemer came along and invented the 5. Nxf3 version, which is now known as the Blackmar-Diemer Gambit.

     

    As for its soundness, I agree that it's probably not good enough for master level play. But as Sawyer says in the intro to his book, playing it constantly is a good way to get to 1800 (OTB, not internet ratings), because you learn tactics, attacking, and learn to judge whether or not white has compensation for the pawn, which are all skills that will serve you well even if you advance beyond the level of playing this gambit. Since I'm rated below 1400 USCF right now, I figure this is a good opening to use while learning to be a better player. I can switch to sounder openings later.

     

    --Fromper 


  • 7 years ago · Quote · #15

    Akuni

    I do, but only as a last resort when my opponent plays the scandinavian. Then I play d4 and we've left my least favourite line in the King's Pawn Game.
  • 7 years ago · Quote · #16

    KingLeopold

    Playing the BDG has raised my rating to 1800 USCF. When I switched to more "Solid" openings, my rating has dropped. Guess what I'm playing now?

  • 7 years ago · Quote · #17

    billwall

    Hello Leo,

    Yup, you were good at more open, tactical openings.  When we played, you were an e4 player and we played several Sicilians.  In this game above, perhaps 5...Nxc3 is wrong and maybe Kf8 or g5 instead.  Black's position gets worse.  Perhaps 7...Be7 but 7...Ba5 may be just as good.  8...Bb6 looks bad.  Perhaps 8...d5 9.bxa5 c5, but you always have the Bh6 move.  The only alternative to 9...f6 is to sca the Queen and play 9...Qxg5 10.Qxg5 Bxd4, threatening 11...Bxf2+ 12.Kxf2 Ne4+, winning the Queen back.


  • 7 years ago · Quote · #18

    KingLeopold

    Bill,

    I have a large collection of books on the BDG including some old ones, but the one that has helped me the most is your 500 BDG minatures. I can get a feel for a pictular line, by going over 5 -10 mini games from your book than any other way.

    In the above mentioned game, of course Black should have not played 3...Bb4 to begin with. My friend Matt who is over 1900 ends up playing 3...d6 against me and ends up in many bad positions allowing me to win a lot of blitz games against him. You know, like how you used to pound me when we played blitz? Smile


  • 7 years ago · Quote · #19

    Fromper

    KingLeopold, that game is almost identical to the first game in The Blackmar-Diemer Gambit Keybook 2 by Tim Sawyer. I think 5. ... g6 is better for black. Even before that, though, he could have done something like 3. ... d6 to prevent 4. e5, pushing his knight around. This whole opening variation (black trying the Nimzo-Indian when the pawn is on e4 instead of c4) seems to very heavily favor white.

     

    --Fromper


  • 7 years ago · Quote · #20

    KingLeopold

    Tim Swyer's BDG Keybook II is where I learned the trap. Its amazing how many people fall for it. Even higher rated players.

Back to Top

Post your reply: