Sunday, March 13, 2011

KID me not!?

So, after talking to an experienced and very skilled chess player I am back to square one in the tricky maze leading to the openings you like to play. My new source of inspiration suggested a flirt with KID. The first few moves looks reasonable and fairly easy to understand but then? I have been looking at a few astonishing wins for Black using KID and I am totally and absolutely sure that I will never be able to play a game like that. Not only is the tactics and plans way above my limited skills but also is the flow of the game something completely different than my Grinding Caveman Chess.

So, Dear Readers! What is your take on the KID?


  1. I looked at the KID as well when I changed my black openings recently. I was looking for something more nuanced than the Centre Counter or Petroff's that I had been playing. I tried it for a while, but ended up with the French.

    French has lots of depth, good basis for getting a grounding of pawn structures, and the overarching ideas are reasonably straight ahead. I've really enjoyed it.

    (Which may or may not help your KID quest. :) )

  2. Igor Smirnov mentions in his Opening course that the World Champion Tigran Petrosian once said: “I have fed my family for about 15 years due to my opponents who played the King’s Indian defense.” :)

    Have you looked at the Queen's Indian instead? This could be more to your liking (as fan of the Owen) and it's a respected defense against d4.

    My other advise to you is: once you have selected an opening, stick with it for 6-12 months without considering another change. It takes time to understand a new system and there isn't something better waiting around the corner.

  3. Yes, I am still in the initial phase trying to figure out what to hang onto!

  4. "While many top players adopt it today, its most notable exponent has been Karpov, whose style is exactly like the opening itself - correct and safe, with possibilities for active play." MCO15 (p. 563)

    Sounds Great! I think it sounds very much in line with my modest personality and ideally, I would love to play: "correct and safe, with possibilities for active play"

  5. I'd tend to agree with coderyder about sticking with an opening for a while, but that apart, I would say that I enjoyed the King's Indian.
    I've played it twice in my 80-odd standard games on ICC and have a win and a loss. The loss arose following the unexpected response of 4.e3. I had a playable game but it was a mistake om my part that led to "difficulties" for me and my opponent dealt with them better.

    The other KID was again had a strange move order ( 2.h3 ? ) so I suspect that you need to know more than opening moves in the KID to know what to play when. How about against the early Bg5, as played by Smyslov ? The best defence there is not playing the King's Indian. ( see

    The good part about the King's Indian, though, is it shares things with the Pirc/Modern so with skill, usage and knowledge you have defences against both d4 and e4, which is a plus-point. You could probably play it vs 1.c4 as well, with practise !

    I used the very good "Starting Out: King's Indian" by Joe Gallagher, which was simply presented and perefect for my level.

  6. Yes, I share your belief in consistency. The problem is to figure out what to stick to. For my slow acting brain, it took some time to realize that the London System did the job for me.

  7. I play the KID and like it.

    I tried Nimzo as well as some silly gambits 1 d4 e5 but am now sticking with the KID. In general it is solid and offers some counter attacking ideas. The first 4-5 moves are pretty automatic.

  8. I love the KID. It is a solid defense and has a lot of attacking possibilities.