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Everything else being equal, they can hurt you.
If your opponent is unfamiliar with the opening, then it can help you.
If it's trappy enough, then it can really help you!
... but it's a gamble :)
Thats the point!
Yes if you know what your doing. I mean as long as you fulfil the three objectives to openings: protect the king, dominate the center squares, and develop pieces, then you should be doing fine.
I like how you miss Grandmaster Hasten's comment that it is unsound. but having fun is the constant excuse for fanatics.
If you're not having fun you'll lose anyway.
I like you miss the point, that i dont care if its sound or not...but you cant tolerate it...am i right?
Is it unorthodox openings valid ?
All I can say to that is, if that is so, my 8 years of playing chess is all invalid! haha :)
I do tolerate players all the time. The point is your putting a lot of effort into something that does have educational value,... to a point. Once you have experimented with that move on to a new opening. The ideas will cross over (look at the rubinstein variations in the Queen's gambit exchanged for instance) where you sacrifice nothing but end up with similar attacking ideas.. you seem to think this is about a specific opening and I am talking about a mental approach,... having fun can be used as an excuse to not admit to the facts.
Take a few months and study some of Ivanchuck, morozevich, shabalov, shirov games in the QG. There is a lot of bais that certain openings are boring because we see top tier gms play them against other top gms and the games are very controlled and many ideas are totally avoided. Look at games from Large open events and see how GMs and IMs play your so called boring systems and things get wild and crazy.
Are these boring?
What though if you are an unhealthy pawn up?
OK, thanks for the advice, if i have time, i will look into these openings a little bit deeper. Maybe i come to the same conclusion. Before i started playing the BDG, i played the London System as White and i was very successful (on the other side i was very bad with the black pieces in this period). Although most people think, you cant attack with the London System, i won most of my games in attacking style. Do why not attack with the Catalan or the QGD. The problem is, i have a lack of time to begin the study of a complete new system, but thanks alot for your hints.
Unorthodox openings are sound enough to use as a surprise weapon, but I wouldn't recommend making this your main line. I played the Sokolsky (1.b4) for 2 1/2 years, and it really stunted my chess growth.
Play mainstream openings, but if you have a player that you've played frequently (i.e. a local opponent) and you need a surprise weapon, don't be afraid to throw it at him.
I did exactly that a couple of Saturdays ago. My opponent in the 3rd and final round of a 1-day tournament was someone that has faced me at least 5 times in the last half year. He crushed my Ruy Lopez a couple of months ago. While my overall record with the Ruy is still very high, I felt the need to get him with some home prep. The night before, just in case I faced this guy, I prepared the Belgrade Gambit (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.d4 exd4 5.Nxd5). However, I would never make the Belgrade Gambit something of a habit. I might throw it at somebody again in a couple of years, but the Ruy Lopez is truly the sound way to go, and the best way to get better at planning, strategy, and tactics.
Out of every 100 to 200 games I play as White, I'd say I play 1 game with some sort of unorthodox opening. I wouldn't go beyond this ratio of playing unorthodox openings.
London has been the death of many chess players. It was very common with a group of local scholastic players and the would whip out the first 10 moves or so then look to see what was going on. once players learned to deal with it they ran into a wall and had no flexibility of thought to direct their pieces or plans in another way. just d4, Bc4, e3, c3, Nf3, h3, Nbd2 , 0-0. they would get sick of chess around 1200 then quit or beat their head on awall trying to obtain a small edge. Some finally broke out of it but it makes a lot of sense to pick something the diametric opposite of the london to break that mental habit and explains why you feel queens gambits are boring. if you want wild stuff play Bg5 lines and castle long, look at shablov g4 stuff and aronians recent h4 ideas.
remember your knowledge base is there if you played london and BDG. you get the basics and patching in a few more ideas to your current base will probably jump you up about 100 rating points.
Any "reversed opening," played from the white side, is as legitimate as starting 1) e4 or 1) d4. And your time saved on opening study is immense.
Kamsky plays the London (a reversed Slav) with some regularity. But you certainly don't need "celebrity power" to chose your opening repetoire.
Under USCF 2000, arguably the best opening is the one you know and your opponent doesn't. But your first order of business should be getting good with the black pieces. Can't win games or tournaments without good defensive skills.
And if you want to play into big theoretical openings from the white side, and garner all the (alleged) benefits from playing into a blizzard of complications, you can always buy Tony Kosten's book, The Dynamic English, and play the Botvinnik Formation in the English, against everthing that black can throw at you. Same is true for the Nimzo-Larsen Attack.
You'll get all the tactical and strategic practice you might need from just one opening. But that's true of any opening on which you spend time, and learn to play it well.
No one ever said that "learning an opening well" meant memorizing the first 10 moves, and "then you look to see what was going on," as in the post above.
The post above sets up a straw man. He is easy to knock down. No surprises there.
But @TonyH has it right when he argues that Romantic 19th Century Gambits (from the white side) won't do much for your playing strength overall. You waste entirely too much time learning all the sharp combinations therein, and Black can very easily bypass all your opening prep, by simply playing an "unorthodox" defense.
Therefore it's a bad use of your study time. Better to study generic middlegame strategy, or generic endgame strategy, or even hire a coach (if you're that serious about the Royal Game).
And if you want wild and sharp tactics, study the games of a strong West Coast Master, Emory Tate. But don't be surprised if you go blind, from the complications.
IMO some of the best opening books have been speculative like Hardin's "Counter-gambits" and "Unorthodox Openings" by an English player. Very provocative and tactical. The "Tactical Grob" by Bloodgood is quite challenging.
There is something to be said when playing an opponent that you have had games against previously, as the OP had. Playing in an unorthodox way OTB against a frequent opponent could cause a case of the sweats and confusion, especially if you are prepared, and move quickly.
Obviously this has more effect the lower you go in the rating scale (why I'm commenting), but, it may still work in some instances among those that know the game.
"The tactical Grob" is a great book, written by one of the most controversial guy in the chess scene. 1.g4 is a surprise weapon, with many tactical variations. A good choice when you are in a must win situation at the end of the tournament, but it should not be your standard opening.
I also enjoyed his book about the "Blackburne-Hartlaub-Gambit"
R.I.P Claude F.Bloodgood
Mike Blechar who was an expert on unorthodox oppenings especially the Sokolsky, but also the Grob, sold me a book or two when we were both members of the Fairfield (Ct) club in the early 80s.
I'm sure I would be trounced by a higher level player when trying those unorthodox openings; they have surprize value and as I play quite a bit of under 5 minute chess here, they work as long as the opponent is not booked up. Even the Calabrese is effective as a surprize (f5 against the Bishop's Opening). Those who try to refute an opening the hardest often lose. Look at the Fischer game against Pupols playing the Latvian Gambit. Fischer lost that game in 1955 when he was a master.
Every opening is just as valid & sound as the level of preparation of the player who uses it. You can choose a popular variation which is widely believed to be strong (e.g. Sicilian, KID etc.), but only after 4-5 moves you have no clue what to do with your position, this is worse than having an 'unsound' defence where you are well prepared until move 20, know all the tactical and positional ideas etc.
So whether an opening is playable or not depends to 99% on how well the player who uses it knows his stuff.
In our local team competition league I know an old 60+ player, rated at ~2000 fide, who has been using the Krazy Kat Defence (1.e4 Nh6!) for decades and scores just as well as other players of this rating who use more popular openings. He has so much experience with this Defence that it's actually very hard for unprepared White players (and on our amateurish level of play really no player is ever prepared to 1...Nh6) to come up with new ideas he has not yet seen or where he wouldn't know how to play against it.
There'S also another player, also ~2000 fide, who also uses a very unorthodox opening against 1.d4, it's the Medusa's Gambit (really, he seems to be the only guy on the planet who uses this):
This is only an example game of his, and if you think this opening is bad, well ... there are dozens, if not hundreds of d4-players here who, in the course of many years, perhaps decades, have tried their luck at refuting this opening OTB (of course none of them was ever prepared) against this player, and enough of them have lost their games.
So it seems that with either very good theoretical preparation or with having many years of experience with an unorthodox opening all of them are just as playable as the more popular openings. It all comes down to the level of preparation/experience, no matter whether it's a 'sound' Sicilian/QGD or an 'unsound' Krazy Kat/Medusa/Latvian. My opinion. Every opening can be sound if it's used by a guy who knows the opening very well. And every opening can be unsound, even a Sicilian main line, if the player begins to blunder nonstop as soon as his book knowledge ends.
Thanks for sharing!
It depends who is using the gambit tool, not the opening itself! Many masters on up have employed speculative gambits, but most prefer to get to a middle game where they can break new ground with sacrifices not get into known problem positions if your opponent knows the best line against the gambit.
missing the point entirely, Yes if a player has experience in chess in general they will win. Look at older games where players would give material odds. the position is better but mistakes happen. THe problem is this crap opening is just that crap. players that are 2000 use it to confuse players. They get this trick once then their opponent studies it and they start to lose, and lose an lose, maybe eek out a draw..
the point of unorthodox is to find stuff that qualifies as good but just not often played. I got exposed to one just the other day and its valid and unorthodox (not considered mainline)
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