Kings Indian Attack

May 21, 2008, 12:00 AM |
6 | Tactics

The King's Indian Attack (KIA) is a chess opening system for white, most notably used by Bobby Fischer. Its typical formation is shown in the diagram to the right.

The opening is not a series of specific moves, but rather a system that can be played from many different move orders. Though the KIA is often reached via 1.e4 followed by d3, Nd2, Ngf3, g3, Bg2, and 0-0, it can also arise from 1. g3, 1. Nf3, or even 1. d3.

Image:chess zhor 26.png
Image:chess zver 26.pnga8b8c8d8e8f8g8h8Image:chess zver 26.png
a4b4c4d4e4 plf4g4h4
a3b3c3d3 ple3f3 nlg3 plh3
a2 plb2 plc2 pld2 nle2f2 plg2 blh2 pl
a1 rlb1c1 bld1 qle1f1 rlg1 klh1
Image:chess zhor 26.png

By its nature, the KIA is a closed, strategic opening that presents its practitioner with common themes and tactics and a comfortable middlegame against various defences.

The KIA is often used against the semi-open defences where Black responds asymmetrically to e4, such as in the French Defence, Sicilian Defence, or Caro-Kann Defence. Yet it can also be played against Black's more common closed defenses, usually through a move order that begins with 1. Nf3 and a later fianchetto of the white square bishop. For this reason, transpositions to the Réti Opening, Catalan Opening, English opening or even the Nimzo-Larsen Attack (after b3 and Bb2) are not uncommon.

The KIA is a mirror image of the setup adopted by Black in the King's Indian Defense. Yet, because of White's extra tempo, the nature of the subsequent play is often different from that of a typical King's Indian Defence.

The KIA is considered a solid opening choice for White, although less ambitious than many more popular openings. Though rarely used at the highest levels except to avoid certain pet lines, it is extremely popular at the club level, because it is easier to learn than other openings that require memorizing specific move orders to avoid outright losing positions.

White's most common plan involves a central pawn push, e4-e5, leading to a central bind, kingside space, and concrete attacking chances on a kingside-castled black king. Black's resources – more queenside space for example – are not to be underestimated. In fact, this asymmetry often leads to violent middlegames and neatly constructed mating nets involving the sacrifice of multiple pieces.

By ManUtdForever12

More from ManUtdForever12
Chess Champions 1

Chess Champions 1

French Defence

French Defence