Learn Pafu's Beginner's Game - Move 9: Continuing Play After the Opening
(This post is part of a series on The Beginner's Game, an opening system by Pafu. It is written by Christopher Huff.)
Pafu summarizes: "The Beginner's Game is a fixed position reached after eight moves." ...But what about after those eight moves?
Here is an idea of what typical continuing play looks like, with excerpts from games we'll examine later.
Typical Next Steps:
Based on the fact that typical next moves right after the opening that occur often fall into a pattern, the author gives us a set of recommendations for beginners and one for experienced players:
Pafu's Recommended Next Steps (primarily for Beginners)
- "Push one or both rook pawns" Experienced players are advised to push only one.
- "Castle king side" The Queen side he reserves for experienced players
- "Push knight pawn if bishop can be attacked" This is really your only defense of the fianchettoed bishop, so heed this advice of his very well!
- "Push queen bishop pawn" The utility of this push will be discussed later.
- "Relocate Queen to Queen Bishop 2" A particular square for a beginner's Queen is advised by Pafu: (c2 for White, c7 for Black)
- "Relocate one or both knights" Most likely into the attack -- for a bishop exchange!
- "Relocate rook to Queen 1 or King 1" Centralizing and thus mobilizing rooks, a post-castle move common to classical chess theory too. (d1 or e1 for White, d8 or e8 for Black) Experienced players are just advised to relocate them.
- "Avoid center pawn exchanges" This can be done either by pushing past threats or, less often, reinforcing the squares. Experienced players are recommended by Pafu to exchange center pawns.
- "Keep pawns mostly in chains."
Normally YOU will attack -- after preparing solid defense
Directly after the opening moves, it's best to attack, says Pafu. This normally happens with pawn breaks, and often rook pawns first. Any central bishops of your adversary's need to get kicked around by your knight pawn. Both bishop pawns can advance to challenge the opponent's center. "Central pawn advances are always strong as well," writes Pafu; in Game #2 we saw Beginner's Game as Black and a pawn break was made immediately, imposing itself on a completely ideal center, dominated by white.
Examples of Continuing Play after Move 8:
In Game #1. White.
White here played "five of the most commonly seen continuation moves:" The first four are shown below. First we look into knight moves: