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Hello everybody!I decided to play the ruy lopez as white against 1..e5. But I have problem with the Berlin variation.
Black's idea is to play Nxe4 and open up the game as I know. But I want a more strategic position if I play the Ruy lopez. But if I play Nc3 or d3 then I can't play the usual plan c3-d4 at some point. Is the open Ruy lopez good for white? If yes, how?
You can play d3 and play for d4 later if you want to avoid the open lines.
No worries, Garry Kasparov had the same problem.
The Berlin Defense puts a premium on plans rather than individual moves. The player with the better plans will win. Black's play is extremely challenging.
Try this as white. Just worry about the first 10 moves or so, not the entire game. I provided the entire game to give you some context.
[Edit: ViktorHNielsen posted the same line while I was writing mine! Seems that like minds think alike!]
Addendum: Black has at least 9 different playable options on move 9. Again, plans are more important than individual moves in this opening.
Hmm, interesting, Black has two bishops but doubled pawns. Maybe a good variation. By the way, what would happen if black would play 5. exd4 instead of the Nd6? I mean is there a forcing line where white can have a better position?
Re1 the knight is pinned. Although it can't actually be won, you'll get a good position.
5...exd4 is the main line for players rated under 2100, and it's almost never seen in games between grandmasters.
There's a fairly forcing line that really does look pretty scary though. It's been repeated in several games. It may be worth looking at to see where you can find improvements. In order to get better at chess, you really have to do your own work at some point, but here's a game to get you started:
Not many openings are more strategic than the berlin defence. There are a lot of positional factors to take into acount.
The black bishop pair the white space advantage. The black king postion (can be good or bad) the crippled queens side majority.Whites kingside majority all of these are strategic themes
^ Ah, it's called the Riga variation iirc
If you don't like all these complication, after Nxe4 you can simply play Re1 and get your pawn back with some initiative. It's a less ambitious line but perfectly ok.
Also, like Scottrf said, you can play d3 and wait a bit before pushing d4. When I first started with the Ruy I never wanted to play d3, like it was an admission of defeat, but then I learned that this slower approach is really good: it is not an inferior version of the Ruy. You take your time, maneuvering your Q-kight in place before taking action in the centre.
Fun fact: in about 1 year that I play the Ruy Lopez, I have NEVER seen the Berlin endgame. I always play e4, I always play the Ruy, I always castle after Nf6. Never found somebody who knew the lines and was willing to get into them.
Korchnoi beat Bronstein's Berlin defense by trading Bxc6, followed by d3, Nbd2 and b3 -- interestingly not unlike some games in the last World Championship albeit in the Sicilian not the Spanish.
Here's that game:
Is the blockading 15. Be3 better than 15. Nc3
Guess we never played yet. I play the Berlin defence against spanish almost exclusively nowadays. The positions are based on positional knowledge and not on forced lines with complex positions. I tend to drop pieces in those lines ;) Also I tend to be fairly good with the bishop pair.
Pretty much no matter what white chooses black will have his hown positional strengths to play with and what follows is a battle where the best positional player has the best chances.
d3/Nd2 certainly is an enterprising way to avoid the berlin endgame and i do advice to play it against berlin players but dont expect and easy advantage for white (just like the d3 variations are not very scary versus the morphy defence)
The Riga variation is probably a draw, with best play.
But here it's NOT a proper Riga, as the moves a6 and Ba4 are not inserted. This means white can play 6.Re1 d5 7.Qxd4! Be6 8.c4! with a very comfortable advantage.
The best way to avoid the complex Berlin endgame is 4.d3.
Not an advantage, Black has the bishop pair. Overall the game should be equal.
all i can say is fischer was very successful with the ruy lopez he only lost 9 games lol
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