The Complete Chess Course From Beginning To Winning Chess! (2016)
How to Play the e-pawn Openings
As in the Bishop’s Opening, White gives Black a chance to counterattack with 2…Nf6. The struggle for control of the center is a very lively one. This opening always leads to interesting play because of the sharp clash of ideas.
(a) 3.f4 Variation
White - Black
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.f4 d5 4.fxe5 Nxe4 (D)
Position after 4…Nxe4
If now 5.Qf3 Nc6! 6.Bb5 (not 6.Nxe4? Nd4! 7.Qd3 dxe4 8.Qxe4 Bf5!) 6…Nxc3 7.bxc3 Qh4+ 8.g3 Qe4+ with a favorable endgame for Black.
5.Nf3 Be7 6.d4 0-0 7.Bd3 f5! 8.exf6 Bxf6!
If now 9.0-0 Nc6 and Black maintains material equality. Nor can White capture twice on e4 without losing a piece. The position is even.
(b) 3.Bc4 Variation
White - Black
1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Bc4 Nxe4!?
Leads to wild and woolly chess. A quieter and perfectly satisfactory alternative is 3…Nc6 4.d3 Na5 5.Bb3 Nxb3 6.axb3 Bb4 etc.
Threatens mate. The tame 4.Nxe4 is good for Black (4…d5! etc.).
4…Nd6 5.Bb3 Nc6
So far so good, but now White again threatens mate, forcing Black to give up the exchange.
6.Nb5!? g6 7.Qf3 f5 8.Qd5 Qe7 9.Nxc7+ Kd8 10.Nxa8 b6 (D)
Position after 10…b6
A very unclear situation, despite all the analysis that has been lavished on it.
After 11.d3 Bb7 12.h4 f4! (stops Bg5) Black has a powerful attack for his minus material. Thus, if 13.Qf3 Nd4 14.Qh3 Bh6 15.Bd2 e4 with a winning game for Black.
On the other hand, after 11.Ne2! Bb7 12.Qf3 Nd4 13.Nxd4! Bxf3 14.Nxf3 White’s material advantage should win for him.
One thing is certain: White’s repeated queen moves leave him with a dangerously retarded development.