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Using a very outdated windows vist computer right now so the diagram once againn wont work. 1.e4/e6 2.d4/d5 3.exd5/Qxd5 I play this cause I hate going into the boring/drawish regular exchange lines. 4.c4 if white plays anything else it usually just ends up in Scandinavian lines which I dont mind. 4...Qd8 5.Nc3/Nf6 6.Nf3/c6 7.Bd3/Nbd7 8.Bf4.
The positional justification of the Scandinavian is that Nc3 blocks the c pawn. In addition, your Bc8 is locked. So don't play 3...Qxd5. You won't get anything close to the Scandinavian.
You better bite the bullet and play 3...exd5. For inspiration, look what strong GMs are doing to get a good game. I remember to have some nice games of Mikhail Gurevich but any other strong French player will have some antidote for the Exchange Var as well.
If you want to stir things up in the exchange then castle on the opposite side, ie.:
The exchange lines are symmetrical but not boring. You can actually have quite the exciting game if you play a certain setup. One of the best books I have read on this is Ullmann's Winning with the french. He has a chapter on the exchange variation I highly recommend. Infact I recommend the book as a whole. He says that while GMs use the exchange line as a peaceful way to end a game with out agreeing to a draw in 1 move this is not the case for amateurs. my favorite set up is
Doesnt look to promising can you give a example game.
Just turn it in to a Waite-Harrison Attack.
No simple as that do you have any other imput.
Granted, white's attack can go first if he plays accurately, but black still seems to score quite well:
The Waite-Harrison is probably the 4th best opening there is and the top 3 depend on black doing e5.
Already said I ownt play it so do you have any other suggestions.
Thanks both caught my eye I will try the set-up now.
Ignore anything and everything that whatupdog ver XXX and the gravinator say Their sole attempt is to hijack all forums and lead people down a path of their choice.
The exchange line is actually a great way to learn to play chess. GMs use it to draw but if you recognize fact that the open e-file is useless to both sides due to its lack of invasion points then other ideas become more critical. Its amusing to me when I see people play it and try to fight for the open e-file> I just use the tempi to push my 0-0-0 and launch my kingside pawns at the king a few tempi ahead before they realize the e file isnt where the action is.
I will agree totally with TonyH.
Obviously you have a weakness with symmetrical positions.Trying to hide that weakness is not the way to go.Try to improve.
The exchange Variation is indeed a very good line that will help you understand chess.There are 2 main ways of playing aggresively in Exchange Variation.One is with a quick ...c5 and the other with opposite side castling and attacking at k-side.That is not possible if white plays a quick c4 but if he does , the position stops being symmetrical so you have no problem with that.I will give you some of the French defense experts suggestions.
Let's see Moskalenko's suggestion:
In the folowing game we see how dynamic the game can be after an exchange of rooks at e4
Surprisingly Uhlmann's suggestion is almost the same(if not entirely the same) with Moskalenko's
The next game is also very interesting
Finally a suggestion by Korchnoi.If white doesn't play c4 breaking the symmetry , black will.
4...c5 seems very good against 4.Bd3 ,since the bishop seems misplaced in the positions with black isolated pawn.
The next game shows how chaotic exchange variation can be
I will repeat.Don't avoid exchange variation , try to understand it.You will face symmetrical positions in a lot of cases , you can't avoid them , so undertanding them wil make you a better player.
Oh and ignore completely whatupyodog's nonsense.
+2 on all Michael-G post and games. You can get Winning with the french for almost nothing online and it is a great book and the explainations will make you really understand whats going on more so than a lot of other books. My plan A approach was mainly just to keep things simple for you,... of course its not all that easy and the e file can become important but start with 1 then move on. Excellent post michael!
Black gets easy equality in the Exchange Variation with chances to create his own play for free. Alekhine, Nimzowitsch, and Spielmann all wrote the Exchange Variation actually favors Black! That's over-optimistic, but from a practical point of view, you should never fear it, and dedicate yourself to making White fear you if he plays it.
The basic setup described by several above - ...Bd6, ...Nc6, ...Nge7, ...Bf5 or g4, ...Qd7 and Black can castle either side - is very flexible and good, move order is sometimes important. It is also important to remember that the e-file is the drawing mechanism: either side can defend all the entry points, so it isn't likely to lead to a win, but if all the major pieces get exchanged along it the game does get drawish fast.
My attitude against the EV was always: "White is afraid of me, he's scared of my French and is trying to bug out with an even game early because he knows he will lose. I can't let him off with a draw by doing this, it will only encourage others and contribute to the breakdown of moral fiber in humanity." You have a moral duty to thrash him senseless.
FYI Viktor Moskalenko, a French authority, says in his books that his winning percentage in the exchange French is clearly superior to any other French variation. Of course he plays 3...ed5.
While this is partly because the exchange is mainly played by weak players, the truth is that having rough equality at move three AND chances to unbalance the game cannot be such a bad thing.
never thought about like thatand in fact im currently winning game usingthis exact train of thought do you have a example game of yours.
Not currently its been several years since I was an active player. did 1 tournament a year two years i a row and well rust made me suffer
At the class level, the exchange is typically played by white players who are hoping to avoid a complicated game. When I see that, I go nuts trying to complicate the game!! And it's really easy to do, as the above games show! Don't avoid the exchange variation - welcome it with open arms. Below 1900 or so, white players who play it generally are conceeding the game to you.
Kingpatzer over-estimates players at and above 1900.
There is no player at any level that doesn't welcome exchange variation.Black has no problems at all from move 3, can develop anyway he likes and has quite a lot of pleasant options.In high level if white plays exchange variation it is because the draw is usually pre-agreed in last evening's hotel dinner when the 2 players happened to meet and eat together.Next game was played in the 17th round(last) of the semi-finals of USSR championship.Both Petrosian and Geller had already qualified.The recipe is well known:We play exchange variation ,we exchange both rooks and queens on e-file , we exchange everything else we can and around 30th move(no too soon but in time for dinner)we agree the draw in a position that no one can deny it's drawish:
Geller was a 1...c5 and 1...e5 player and that was the first time he tried French defense(he played regularly French defense but only after 1952)and Petrosian had never played exchange variation ever again but I 'm sure these are just coincidences.
There are thousands games like this that make a lot to believe that exchange variation is drawish. All this "thing" about drawish lines and drawish openings is a myth.There are no drawish lines or drawish openings.There are just lines or openings in which we don't know what to do and we blame the symmetrical pawn structure for that(or something else).
There are worse than that.
For example, the very first instance of the Keene variation on the King's gambit is a prearranged draw, with Keene as Black, and Ulf Andersson as white. Needless to say, this is the first and last time Ulf has played the King's Gambit in his entire career!
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