The 10 Best Chess Traps
Discover the 10 best examples of chess tricks and traps.

The 10 Best Chess Traps

| 252 | Tactics

Chess tricks and traps have always caught the imagination and appreciation of chess fans as long as chess has been played. A nice trap shows tactical ideas, combinations, and fascinating concepts that capture our attention and stand the test of time. The traps in this article will give you ideas to try in your own games!

Top-10 Traps:

1. Noah's Ark Trap

The Noah's Ark trap is all about trapping White's light squared bishop after a series of forcing moves. This trap is for Black in the Ruy Lopez opening.

2. Legal Trap

This trap is all the way from the 18th century and named after Sire de Legal. The favorite trap for most chess players involves a beautiful queen sacrifice.

3. Cambridge Springs Trap

The Cambridge Springs trap comes out of a popular sequence of moves in the Queen's Gambit Declined. 

4. Lasker Trap

The Lasker trap is named after the second World Champion Emanuel Lasker. The best part of this trap is that involves the rare under-promotion to a knight. Black plays the Albin-countergambit to face White's queen's gambit. 


2nd World Champion Emanuel Lasker

5. Rubinstein Trap

The Rubinstein trap is named after another chess giant Akiba Rubinstein. This subtle trap at the very least wins a pawn, but also can trap the black queen if Black is greedy.


Akiba Rubinstein

6. Siberian Trap

This trap in the Smith-Morra Gambit has claimed many victims of all levels! It seems as though White is just making natural developing moves and then all of the sudden loses the queen or gets checkmated!

7. Fajarowicz Trap

This sneaky trap comes out of the Budapest Gambit opening. Black ends up sacrificing two minor pieces in order to win the white queen.

8. Blackburne Shilling Trap

In this trap, Black violates all the basic opening principles in order catch White off guard. At first, it looks like Black is paying careless moves but after 5...Qxg2 you can see who is really in trouble! This trap comes out of a variation of the Italian game, or Giuoco Piano.

9. Englund Gambit Trap

Black bravely (or carelessly!) meets 1.d4 with 1...e5?!, entering the Englund Gambit. This is about as provocative as you can get when playing an opening as Black! This trap has several neat tactical ideas and ends in Black checkmating White despite not that many pieces being exchanged.

10. Fishing Pole Trap

Ending this series of traps with another fun move against the Ruy Lopez. The knight on g4 is the bait, and the pawn on h5 is the fishing pole waiting to catch someone off-guard! This trap is fun to try in your online or in-person blitz games.

What are some of your favorite chess tricks and traps? Please leave them in the comments below for everyone to enjoy! You can use our brandly new GIF maker to share the games!

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