Well, I've been playing the hippopotamus since more than 20 years,
and I play it even against grandmasters. Against a 3-pawn center d4,e4,f4
I usually play f5, the right order of moves is important to reach the
following position: Kg8, Qd7, Rf8+a8, Bg7+b7, Ne7+b6, pawns h6,g6,f5,e6,d6,c7,b5,a6. Against a 3-pawn center c4,d4,e4 I usually
play f5 (no b6, bishop remains on c8) or d5. Against a 4-pawn center
I normally play f5, d5 or c5. I admit that the hippopotamus is a very
difficult defence and I often lost in the beginning (cause I didn't know
the strategies well enough).If many players think it's a bad opening it
makes me happy cause it puts them under a big pressure to refute my
"bad" opening. So each learning player should be patient: If you
have arrived at understanding the essential strategies of this opening
you have a very strong weapon.
Taimanov Sicilian.I play e4 too and the Taimanov annoys me the most.
Almost always play 1. ... e5.
If I'm feeling aggressive, I'll play the Sveshnikov, but usually just play the Caro-Kann.
1...e5 and the Sch*pleghm*eveningen
Any of the Sicilians.
Modern Defense, the most elastic opening with black.