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If i play the london system D4, Nf3, Bf4. I dont really ever have to change the move order no matter what my opponent plays correct? its always the same moves for me? and what are the ideas behind the system
and one potential problem is your already starting on the path with the idea that you want to play a system where you can play the same moves no matter what your opponent does. While it does seem nice on the surface it leads to problems later when you need to make changes and are used to playing on autopilot.
A lot of scholastic kids used to play the london locally and one thing that was discovered later was around 1500-1600 they ended up having a problem in dynamic semi open or open positions and just stagnated. The counter punch to the opening was not a refutation but just that the london players were not used to the situation they were placed in. (we used a king's indian or benoni type setup to 'refute' the london. it doesnt refute it but white couldnt handle the change in pace and most players just collapsed because they couldnt think on their own.
My advice is to just play 2.c4 and get used to the more challenging systems of mainline queens gambit.
Ok my rant over....
if you want a good book on the London IM Cyrus Lakdawala put one out recently and deals with the above "refutations"
I played the London for years, I got a lot of draws as I wasn't aggressive enough. I found it made me a bit lazy in my thinking, but that's probably just me.
I would look at Black playing the early c6/Qb6 variations to take advantage of your Bishop being on f4, also the Kings Indian type systems can be problematic.
I think you have to beware of playing any opening "automatically", we have to adapt to our opponents style of play or miss opportunities.
I had some good games with the system V higher rated opponents so enjoy it, but try to look at the choices available and be flexible.
Playing London is about spending only 10% of your time on openings, and 90% on the endgame (or middlegame, and tactics).
WHo cares if you only get +0.15 instead of +0.20 in move 11? The game goes on. After 50 moves starting with 1.d4 2.c4, you make a grave error in the engame and black promotes ...
A flawed argument if applyed to <2000 players.
Boringidiot, at our level playing the open sicilian (random example of theoretical opening) is about spending 1% of ther time on theory and 99% on middle and endgame. And the London is exactly the same. It's all about ideas at this level!
Play the London if you like the resulting positions, but don't expect to save 1 second of opening study from this choice; it's an illusion. If anything, the roughly 1500 rated London players i know spend more time on openings than i do, since to have some bite it needs to be played with great expertise.
The great advantage of the London-System is, that you dont have to spend much time in opening studies and against the most replies to 1.d4 you can play YOUR opening, except of 1...f5, 1...c5 and 1...b5.
That makes it a really flexible opening, but, as in any other opening, you have to study the plans and ideas against the different replies of black.
The disadvantage is, that black can equalize very easy and in some variations, game is really dry for white, f.e. in the variations with an early Qb6.
Yes but playing the london every other game is so soul-sapping
Why? 50% of the time you can play the King's Indian and the Sicilian, if you like.
And, I truly never understood why Queen's Gambit would be more "fun". I tried mainlines for many years, and I don't see that I get more attacking chances in Tartakower or Ortodox QGD than in London.
Really not. I think it is superficial to way that London is "boring". Sure, it is not as dramatic as a King's Gambit, or an Evan's Gambit.
A flawed argument if applyed to
Boringidiot, at our level playing the open sicilian (random example of theoretical opening) is about spending 1% of ther time on theory and 99% on middle and endgame. And the London is exactly the same. It's all about ideas at this level!.
Well, this is certainly not true. I do respect that other people will have other preferences, that is fine with me. Don't play London, if you don't like it.
But don't imagine for a second that you get even a equal game versus a booked-up sicilian player (say, 1800 in rating), if you only spent 1% (or 10%) of your studying time to it. I played 1.e4 myself for a long time, and constantly got those dynamic counteratacks that required PRECISE move orders.
When you play the moves in slightly the wrong order, you often instantly lose. It is the same in severeral other main lines after 1.e4.
I swithed to "boring" London after got tired of reading up and memorising variants. Now I get almost always reasonable positions after 5-8 moves, Houdini seldomly find that I lose due to the opening.
I think this is certainly a sound advice, to focus on the endgame and minimizing the opening study as much as possible.
Very often, when the endgame is reached (equal players), I win because the opponent make idiotic errors (like pushing the wrong pawns, or not knowing about opposition, etc).
Yeah, I am not exactly Kasparov, but this is true anyway
The London is strong against a passive player. If Black doesn't play ...c5, then generally White should play c4. If Black plays ...c5 and follows up with ...Qb6 then the queenside weakness created by Bf4 starts to become a problem.
Check out the 60 min by Danielsen (chassBase) and you will see that this is not true. It is far from easy.
(Try to get an edge against the Petroff, or Ortodox QGD, by the way. Even Khalifman's lines in his MASTODONT work on Kramnik's opening rep fails to give an edge. Just check it with Houdini. Why by 5 books expensively, memorising 10**8 variants, only to get =)
Yes? Give me a concrete variant. and lets see:
What i said is certainly true, for the simple reason that i know this from experience. I play the open sicilian and i have not the slightest clue about the contrete thoery behind it. All my knowledge derives from the open sicilian/english chapter in Soltis' Pawn structure chess. Not a single move is given there, just typical plan and pawn breaks connected with the various pawn structutes. when playing OTB i always analyze my games afterwards and it never happened to me to be worse out of the opening.
Your problem was not memorizing few variants, your problem was certainly not knowing the general ideas. Otherwise you would have scored nicely with 1.e4 just as with the London. And the vast majority of the serious chess teachers will confirm you this: at our level there is not a single "highly theoretical" variation in the entire game of chess. Play the London if you like it, play the open sicilian if you like it...i'm not saying anything against the london! Just be aware that the "studying less theory" argument is total nonsense. It's really not possible to study less theory than i do, and I play the open sicilian and the ruy lopez as the backbone of my repertoire. A rather theoretical repertoire? Not at all, for an average club player like me and you.
Bresando, I respect you and anyone who doesn't care about London, no worries.
It is also true that London surely isn't objectively a very strong choice for white.
But I don't quite believe what you say; well, I trust you when you say you don't study openings, but still get quite good positions as white; you mention that you play open sicilians using only your general knowledge.
But here is my point: how on earth can you get anything at all against the Petroff without having a long prepared (highly theoretial) line? If you play 'natural' aggressive moves using your 'feel' only, I can assure you that black equalizes (if he is prepared).
This is my point: let us measure the "usefulness" of London versus 1.e4 by 'measuring' how much advantage they give us. There is some paths where white get an equal game (e.g., KID). There are also some paths where 1.e4 gives an equal game (Petroff, Berlin)
I too got some nice positions with 1.e4 in the open sicilian. But there are systems where general chess understanding gives you nothing, just open some rep books for black.
Actually, a good example of troublesome mainlines is from the 1.d4 world. Look at the Meran; I played if as black a while and often crushed white when he didn't know the theory. On the other hand, when white is prepared, any mistake by black in the early middlegame is cathastrofic
Well, 4.c3 isn't a requirement of the London system. I play 4.Nc3. Now show me.
Why is the London always characterised as boring and passive? As with any opening, it is what you make of it:
No. There aren't. Under 2000 level a better understanding of the strategical themes alone is enough to get at least get a playable position out of the opening in every system, and usually a huge plus agains those who have just learnt the lines in great depth without understanding anything (a very common type of "player").
I don't see why the petroff (your previous post) should be a particular problem, i play 3.d4 followed by natural developing moves, and never failed to reach a good position with open piece play and chances for both players, but of course i could play also 3.Nxe5. Black has big chances of equalizing? Welcome to chess, a game where black always has chances of equality with correct play! Of course the second player is not going to lose because of the opening against me, just as the secong player is neve r going to lose bacause of the opening against a london.
You are again saying that "I don't care about the london". Let me repeat for the third time: i said nothing against the london, i care about it just as i care about any other opening. I just say that the very common "less theory than the mainlines"argument is completely false at our level (it's instead certainly true at a pro one, several titled guys play it in a declared attempt to avoid theory). The london might be an excellent opening choice for those who like the resulting positions, like you do (just as the, say,ruy lopez is excellent for those who like the resulting positions). There's no reason to attach other invented plusses to it.
"Well, 4.c3 isn't a requirement of the London system. I play 4.Nc3. Now show me."
1. d4 d5 2. Bf4 Nf6 3. e3 c5 4. Nc3 Qa5 would be the best way to try to take advantage of the weakned queenside. Ball is in your court.
(I would really classify this as a variation of the Veresov rather than a London)
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