Benoni Defense comes from the Hebrew expression “Ben-Oni”, which means “son of my sorrow.” This might have given you melancholic impressions, but don’t let it deceive you. The Benoni Defense is one of the most aggressive chess openings. It leads to highly unbalanced positions, and players of all levels opt for it when they want to play for a win against 1.d4.
Nimzo-Indian Defence is probably one of the most common answers against 1.d4 nowadays.
The defense was introduced by Aaron Nimzowitsch, the founder of hypermodern chess. Black doesn’t occupy the centre with pawns right from the start and plays for quick development.
The center is controlled first by the pieces and only later on black will decide on the central pawn break.
Sicilian Dragon is one of the most complex lines of this opening. Black aims for a sharp, aggressive play and puts white under pressure right from the start. It is a line full of tactical ideas, perfect for those who want to play for a win with the black pieces. There are many ways of playing against the Sicilian Dragon with white, but no real refutation has been found against it after all these years.
Chess openings: How to learn them? One important step in improving your level as a chess player is having a solid, well-developed opening repertoire that stands the test of time. You shouldn’t have to change your repertoire often. Rather improve and update the lines you already have. A good repertoire will help you get good, playable positions after the opening without having to spend a lot of time thinking about the moves or plans you want to go for. If you have to spend time in the opening, the ideal situation is doing that in order to decide between the different lines and plans (that you already know) of your repertoire.
1.d4 Opening – everything you must know! Most of the chess players enjoy having the initiative, being the attacking side. It is good but hard to achieve in every game: in some positions, the best you can do is to trade pieces and go into an endgame or play against some positional weaknesses. Those who really enjoy attacking chess would love to avoid such scenarios. They should know that the attack is like a tree – first, you need to plant and nurture it. The opening stage makes a big impact on the chances of growing an attack. If you place your pieces more aggressively or manage to weaken your opponent’s king, it creates the potential for future actions.
Caro-Kann Defense is one of the most fashionable openings nowadays both at the grandmaster and beginner levels. It is a reliable weapon that does not require a lot of memorization and usually leads to calm positional games. The good thing is that it still allows Black to play for a win: the positions are not sharp but still quite lively.
Dutch Defense is characterized by the moves 1.d4 f5 when Black is using the flank pawn to control the center. It breaks the symmetry and gains space on the kingside. Later, this can provide good attacking chances against the White king. Such an approach usually leads to double-edged positions and is good for playing for a win. That is why many modern grandmasters opt for it when seeking a combative play.
Larsen’s Opening (1.b3) is quite enticing for White. It is getting harder and harder to achieve any advantage with White pieces in the main lines. Black seems to hold their own in most of the popular openings. Modern chess players of all levels have access to the strongest engines, and they use them for opening preparation. Usually, your best chance against such players is to play something they don’t know. This way you avoid playing against the machine moves in the beginning. In recent years, many strong grandmasters started using it with great success.
King’s Indian Defense is an aggressive opening with a rich history. In the middle of the last century, it was popularized by great Soviet chess players such as Smyslov, Geller, Boleslavsky, Bronstein, Stein, and others. Later, it became the main weapon of the greatest chess players of all time Robert Fischer and Garry Kasparov.
Chess is extremely popular nowadays. A lot of people participate in different tournaments all over the world. To get on top in such a competitive field, you have to win frequently.
The old strategy of winning with White and drawing with Black pieces does not work in open tournaments.
Benko Gambit is quite different from usual Gambits in chess which are usually associated with ferocious attacks, mating threats, and opening traps.
In Benko Gambit, Black does not get any immediate reward for the sacrificed pawn. Instead, the main idea is to clear files for their pieces for the future play on the queenside.