41 ( +1 | -1 ) Does any response to 1.e4 lead to a closed game?I would describe my playing style as more positional than tactical. Consequently, I've enjoyed greater success since switching over to Queen's Pawn openings. As Black, however, how do I respond to 1.e4 in a way that will lead to a closed game? Responding to 1.e4 with 1. ...d5 just doesn't get me to where I want to go. My rating, if that matters, seems to hover around 1600. Thanks to all who reply!
66 ( +1 | -1 ) The Caro-Kann more so than the French (which often requires black to do tactical/sharp things like playing f7-f6 or sacrificing a knight on e5 or playing g7-g5 to get enough counter-play). Actually 1...d5 as a reply to 1.e4 is also interesting, too, after 2.exd5 Qxd5 3.Nc3 Qa5 black can try for a really solid (and fairly closed) set-up with moves like c6, Bf5, e6, Nf6 (maybe delay that until white has played Ng1-f3 himself), Nbd7, then possibly some move with the Bf8 and eventually 0-0 or 0-0-0 (not necessarily in this move order - it might well be advisable to play Qa5-b6/c7/d8 at some point, of course one has to do that if why does play Nc3-d5/e4/e2 while there is a bishop on d2).
37 ( +1 | -1 ) I agree with everyone here, except that I would say the difference between being a french player and caro kann player is a matter of taste. With the french you often keep more space, but with a rigid pawn center. With the caro kann you have less space, but you have the queen file and can advance c5.
76 ( +1 | -1 ) Closed or Positional??????While certainly the Caro is the most positional in nature, it is by no means closed, especially when you consider that the two main lines 1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 (or Nd2) dxe4 4. Nxe4 Bf5 or 4...Nd7 both lead to wide open centers as does the Exchange Variation (3. exd5 exd5). However, as I said before, the Caro-Kann is certainly the MOST positional response to 1. e4.
If you're looking for closed positions, the Alekheine's Defense may be to your liking as after 1. e4 Nf6 2. e5 Nd5 3. d4 d6 followed by ...g6 andf Bg7 the Center is closed but black is ready to put heavy pressure on it.
As with any opening, it is a matter of preference. If you absolutely want a closed position because you feel you work better in closed positions, choose the Alekheine. On the other hand, if positional solidness is most important, pick the Caro-Kann.
36 ( +1 | -1 ) For a Closed Position ...************************* ...the Pirc !, Modern/Robatsch !? And the Pirc especially, is also a strong opening. ****************************************** Guimard French if you enjoy being cramped and closed. Actually, IM/ccm Alan Savage won an APCT Rook tournament (their Championship), using it as BL but you really have to know what you are doing I think, to survive the crunch. Thats an impression, not an opening study, however.
24 ( +1 | -1 ) Thanks to all! I appreciate the thoughtfulness of everyone who answered my question. Having received so much valuable food for thought, I won't be needing any further advice on this topic. Now it's time for me to follow up on the advice that has been given.
80 ( +1 | -1 ) You can't get closed, if the White opposesI do strongly disagree with anyone that tend to believe the Black can close the game by choosing French or Caro. In French there are such strong lines favouring the White as coming after 1.Nc3!, for instance; in Caro, Panov Attack opens the game pretty easily. The only possible alternative would be to try Nimzovich 1...Nc6!? Then the game turns out to be closed more often than not. But why choose closed positions? The White tends to be pretty comfortable in them too; it's only a matter of time and chess skills how to explode. Lol! I really believe one has to play strong and solid openings to be able to equalise, i.e., Naidorf Sicilian or Rui Lopez to 1.e4 and Nimzo-Indian to 1.d4, and never avoid severe fighting, otherwise one will hardly have a chance to win with the Black.