Please turn on javascript in your browser to play chess.
Only Chess Forum

Only Chess Forum

  1. Subscriber Paul Leggett
    Chess Librarian
    16 Oct '11 18:52
    I am thinking about converting to 1. e4 OTB to grow and improve my chess, but I have a very subjective but visceral distaste for facing 1. e4 d5.

    As I look through various books and other sources, I see why the Scandinavian is considered a sister to Alekhine's Defense, as many of the middlegame positions for black definitely resemble Alekhine positions.

    My problem is that I'd rather be black!

    Anyone have any thoughts or insights as to how you face the Scandinavian, or would if you played e4?
  2. 16 Oct '11 19:04 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by Paul Leggett
    I am thinking about converting to 1. e4 OTB to grow and improve my chess, but I have a very subjective but visceral distaste for facing 1. e4 d5.

    As I look through various books and other sources, I see why the Scandinavian is considered a sister to Alekhine's Defense, as many of the middlegame positions for black definitely resemble Alekhine positio have any thoughts or insights as to how you face the Scandinavian, or would if you played e4?
    not particularly the Scandinavian, but 1.e4. People are just too prepared for it with
    their computer aided preparation and pet lines. I played 1.e4 now for four years and
    have finally realised that I dont like it. Its too precise for me, one mistake and your
    history. Perhaps someone like you would relish it though, have you thought of a
    kingside fiancheto system against the Scandinavian, i recall a game and i remember
    white got a fairly decent position with it. If you like kingside fianchetto, maybe you
    could rig something up? just a suggestion though.
  3. 16 Oct '11 19:19
    I would stick to the Qa5 main line. I tried qd6 otb its ok but white is always at least equal, black has nowt..
  4. 16 Oct '11 19:24
    Paul,

    I have a similar aversion to 1. e4 d5. Have been looking at the position for a few minutes now. These are my main thoughts right now: after exd5, just abandon the pawn. 2. .. Qxd5 is not very good and after 2. .. Nf6, a natural move like d4 or Nf3 is best.

    Black has to choose at some point between capturing the pawn or staying a pawn behind and advantage in development. However, as long as the pawn is on d5, Black can't play Nc6, which is a downside. I don't think there is a longterm advantage for black, it's just an annoying first move.
  5. 16 Oct '11 19:38 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by Paul Leggett
    ...
    My problem is that I'd rather be black!

    Anyone have any thoughts or insights as to how you face the Scandinavian, or would if you played e4?
    But you are also considering, that you can draw a lot of strength from your like for black? I guess you can find good moves against them, since you have a strong feeling for what black is after in each position...

    edit: i believe, 'psychology' or 'mental strength' are very important, especially otb. in the end you are giving a public performance. knowing or 'believing to know' what the opponent likes is a nice mental backup...or pitfall...
  6. 16 Oct '11 19:49 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by Paul Leggett
    I am thinking about converting to 1. e4 OTB to grow and improve my chess, but I have a very subjective but visceral distaste for facing 1. e4 d5.

    As I look through various books and other sources, I see why the Scandinavian is considered a sister to Alekhine's Defense, as many of the middlegame positions for black definitely resemble Alekhine positio have any thoughts or insights as to how you face the Scandinavian, or would if you played e4?
    I've never really been too worried about facing the Scandinavian, it's definitely not blacks most fearsome response to 1.e4. In my opinion, if this is the only thing that's holding you back from 1.e4 (And not the Sicilian, French, Caro-Kann, Ruy, etc.) then you shouldn't be too concerned.

    As far as the actual lines against 1...d5, you have plenty of options. You can simply take the pawn and allow black to go into whichever line he chooses (2...Qxd5 with either Qa5 or Qd6 to follow or 2...Nf6 choosing to keep the queen put) and honestly, none of those variations seem to be too problematic for white from my experiences. Of course, if you're dead set on not letting black get to have all the fun you can very easily avoid those lines. For example, you can play gambit style with 2.d4 dxe4 3.f3, although I would view this gambit as somewhat suspect. If this doesn't fit your liking you can try to turn the tables on black and get into a reversed Alekhine-esque position with 2.Nc3 (2...d4 3.Nce2 e5 4.Nf3 Bd6 5.Ng3 Be6) I think this might lead to some pretty interesting games, although I feel like white has better objective chances from the mainline Scandinavian...

    Of course, if these options don't suit you there's always the chance to get really wild and play a move like 2.e5 or stay quiet with 2.d3. In any case I wouldn't let the Scandinavian be the opening that deters you from 1.e4.
  7. Standard member nimzo5
    Ronin
    16 Oct '11 21:56
    There is always going to be certain openings that bug you. Objectively, there is no reason to have a particular aversion to seeing the Scandy but if it bothers you at least you can be somewhat reassured since it is far less common than the Sicilian, e5, French or Caro.

    The best advice I can give you is to grab a bunch of master games in each of the core lines and play through them, after 20-30 you should have a pretty good feel for where you want to go with a variation. Stick with what makes sense to you and build on it.
  8. 17 Oct '11 01:07 / 1 edit
    First of all let's call it by it's correct name shall we. The Centre Counter.

    Scandinavia (Denmark, Norway and Sweden) all have a main line
    or a varition named after them. This is just being plain greedy.

    1.e4. Loads of good points about this move the bad news is that the main
    Black defences all act on the fact the e-pawn is undefened and lay siege to it.

    1...d5 robs Black of this counter play target so it takes a while for Black
    to get his teeth into a weakness, a target, form a plan. it's all suck it and see.
    It's more related to the Caro Khan than anything and the 2...Qxd5 with a later
    c6 can tranpose in CK type postions.

    It's rare at the top flight you just need a comfortable line v 2...Qxd5 or 2...Nf6.
    There is no outright bust to either.

    In m experience 2..Nf6 players tend to be more booked up than 2...Qxd5
    Just remember not try to hold the extra pawn with something silly like c4.

    2.Nc3 a popular way of crossing up Black.


    I would not bother with 2...d4 White is OK after that. You still have your e-pawn
    and he cannot hit it with d5 (again) which is the antidote v 1.e4 (after due preparation).

    If Black wants to he can stay in the Centre Counter theory which recs
    2....dxe4 3.Nxe4 Bf4.
    Or he can simply play 2...c6 which the Caro Kann.

    As always the best way to learn how to play against an opening is to play it yourself.

    I would not lose any sleep over it. You will face 1....c5 and 1...e5 more often.
  9. 17 Oct '11 01:59
    I don't play 1. e5 because i'm scared of 2. f4. I play that opening as white a lot but playing it as black gives me nightmares.

    Why play something you're not comfortable with?

    I quite like 2.e5 after d5 tbh, either that or just taking the d pawn and forgetting about my pawn but that leaves it difficult to push the f pawn.
  10. Standard member ChessPraxis
    Cowboy From Hell
    17 Oct '11 02:46 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by Paul Leggett
    I am thinking about converting to 1. e4 OTB to grow and improve my chess, but I have a very subjective but visceral distaste for facing 1. e4 d5.

    As I look through various books and other sources, I see why the Scandinavian is considered a sister to Alekhine's Defense, as many of the middlegame positions for black definitely resemble Alekhine positio have any thoughts or insights as to how you face the Scandinavian, or would if you played e4?
    One observation I have, is that "recent variations" for black include an early Pc6, which gives Black's Queen a great escape route.
  11. 17 Oct '11 03:18
    Originally posted by ChessPraxis
    One observation I have, is that "recent variations" for black include an early Pc6, which gives Black's Queen a great escape route.


    The sac isn't where the advantage is lost... I should have castled earlier and put my queen directly on e2 instead of going to e6 first.
  12. Standard member ChessPraxis
    Cowboy From Hell
    17 Oct '11 04:07
    Originally posted by tomtom232
    [pgn]1. e4 d5 2. exd5 Qd8xd5 3. Nb1c3 Qd5a5 4. d4 c6 5. Bc1d2 Qa5b6 6. Ng1f3 Bc8g4 7. Nc3a4 Qb6c7 8. Bf1c4 b5 9. Bc4xf7 Ke8xf7 10. Nf3g5 Kf7e8 11. Qd1xg4 bxa4 12. Qg4e6 Ng8h6 13. Bd2f4 Qc7d7 14. Qe6e2 Qd7g4 15. Qe2e6 Qg4xe6 16. Ng5xe6 Nb8a6 17. Bf4xh6 gxh6 18. O-O-O Ke8f7 19. Rh1e1 Rh8g8 20. g3 Rg8g6 21. Ne6f4 Rg6d6 22. Rd1d3 Bf8g7 23. c3 Ra8d8 24. Rd3f3 e ...[text shortened]... ... I should have castled earlier and put my queen directly on e2 instead of going to e6 first.
    Thanks Tom, I enjoyed that.
  13. Standard member Grampy Bobby
    Boston Lad
    17 Oct '11 05:34 / 3 edits
    Originally posted by Paul Leggett

    I am thinking about converting to 1. e4 OTB to grow and improve my chess, but I have a very subjective but visceral distaste for facing 1. e4 d5.

    As I look through various books and other sources, I see why the Scandinavian is considered a sister to Alekhine's Defense, as many of the middlegame positions for black definitely resemble Alekhine p yone have any thoughts or insights as to how you face the Scandinavian, or would if you played e4?
    Smile it off. Replies to this thread have already pretty much diffused any future shock. As white, tactically play 3. B1 C3... develop routinely and castle early as GP and Tom suggested. As black, strategically play 1. E4 D5 frequently. Go to school on any particularly effective lines by white for future use whenever 1... D5 rears its 'ugly' head again. Thanks for a great thread, Paul, and 'Go Bucs'. NFL Week #6 gritty TB-26 and high flying NO-20 (favored by a morning line of 4.5). Also, gotta love Texas (MLB).

    gb
  14. Standard member pdunne
    Badmaster
    17 Oct '11 10:49
    Originally posted by Paul Leggett
    I am thinking about converting to 1. e4 OTB to grow and improve my chess, but I have a very subjective but visceral distaste for facing 1. e4 d5.
    2.d4!! "Vom ersten Zug an auf Matt" (playing for mate from the first move; or, as Dr. Tarrasch would put it, playing for a loss -- take your pick!)
  15. 17 Oct '11 13:47
    In the 2.Nc3 variation we see in Wiabj v rchillcott RHP 2007 Black
    pushing the pawn to d4 and then walking into an unusal form of Legal's Mate.
    The mating Knight comes from g3 instead of c3.



    I use to play the 2..Nf6 variation with a fair amount of succes then one day
    it took me into an ending and I never played it again.

    N. Williams - G. Chandler Portobello v Bells 1994
    I nick a piece in opening (typical me) but my pieces did not co-ordinate
    too well (typical me) so I hit on the plan of running up my a-pawn, giving
    the piece back and winning the ending (very untypical me.)
    So that was that.
    2...Nf6 took me into an ending. I ditched it.



    This is how my 2...Nf6 games usually ended.
    An unsound Knight sac, offer a Quen sac then Rook sac and mate.

    H. Choudary - G. Chandler Castle Club Allegro 1982