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alice02 10 ( +1 | -1 )
Robatsch defence Can someone please tell me about this. What it is, when it is used and how effective it is. Thanks
chrisp 125 ( +1 | -1 )
Robatsch The Robatsch defence is named after an Austrian master K.Robatsch who first analysed it seriously.

It is also often (in UK at least) referred to as The Modern defence.

In essence it is:

1. e4, g6
2. d4, Bg7

I suspect that white would have the better of the games with the opening, but this is true of most openings.
The major virtue that this opening has as black is it's flexibility. Black has choices over advancing his d pawn 1 or 2 squares, same with his c and b pawns, even sometimes the a and e pawns.

Often the games starting this way can end up as pirc defence games, if black plays Nf6 reasonably early.

However, the major difference between this and the Pirc, is that Nf6 is not played early and the extra tempo is used by black for queenside play.

The obvious downside to such an opening, is the completely free hand that white is given regarding the centre of the board in the first few moves. Black will always have to consider doing something in the centre at some point, but often white has this area of the board well controlled by then.

It's an interesting opening and certainly playable at any level of chess.

Hope this helps a bit.
alice02 29 ( +1 | -1 )
thanks thank you for your very comprehensive answer. I am playing this game as white elsewhere so I dont want to discuss individual moves. I was told Black (rank 350 higher than me) was playing Robatsch. I just thought it was the strangest opening i had ever seen


1. e2-e4 g7-g6 2. d2-d4 d7-d6

3. b2-b4 f7-f6 4. c2-c4 e7-e6 5. a2-a4
wellhairedbeast 29 ( +1 | -1 )
Well the initial opening moves were the modern defense but then it strayed into some weird variation.


for more information on this opening.
alice02 32 ( +1 | -1 )
wow fantastic site Thanks so much

Yes it is unusual. As I said the game is still in progress so I am not asking to discuss it. But it said in another thread that the knight should be behind a pawn so I thought well why not experiment with all the pieces being behind a pawn - but they are not properly supported. still, it is a good learning experience

1. e2-e4 g7-g6 2. d2-d4 d7-d6

3. b2-b4 f7-f6 4. c2-c4 e7-e6 5. a2-a4 Ng8-h6 6. h2-h4 Nh6-f7 7. f2-f4
dysfl 76 ( +1 | -1 )
g6 and Bg7 alice02,

I play this opening a lot as black. In most cases, black's second move is Bg7, and it would be the most reasonable sequence. And d6 could be delayed to 3rd or 4th move, and often, it could be replaced by c5. So, the example you gave me does not look like Modern Defense or Robatsch defence as I play it.

I don't think this defense is suitable for a 1000-1200 player as it has too many traps for both sides. Many games could end in 10 moves or less. Maybe it is not suitable for higher level. However, at my level around 1500, it is playable. As it is a 'system', simplicity and flexibility is the strength, but it has weaknesses of defending the King and regaining spaces.

It is not a trash opening to surprize the opponent. So, as White, just play your game while pay attention to the Bishop at g7.