It is believed that playing as white is easier since you get the first move. White has the initiative and black is expected to react to all the moves and plans. A mistake made by white usually only makes the position equal. On the other hand, when you play with black pieces and make one or two mistakes, it can ruin your entire game. It is advisable for black to castle and develop quickly because, in the beginning, you are just fighting for an equal position. Once this is done, and you have neutralized whites’ opening advantage, then you can plan to stay one move ahead of white.
The first few moves should be the best chess opening for black in response to white’s move. There are some key principles that one should stick to when they first start playing. This includes controlling the centre, developing your pieces and not moving the same piece twice unless it’s necessary. So here are the top five openings that are solid and require less memorization. Even though black doesn’t get the benefit of choice when the game starts, these chess moves or openings can still give you an edge over your opponent.
King’s Pawn Opening
If you open the game by moving the front of the pawn of his king two steps ahead, it is advisable to mirror your opponent. As in, you should also move your king-pawn two squares ahead. This is not an aggressive chess opening for black, but it is straightforward. There are many defences for white to play here but their ulterior motives are more advanced than they seem. Now it depends on white’s move, whether it leads to becoming an Italian game or Scotch game.
Queen’s Pawn Opening
The game becomes significantly different when white opens by moving the queen’s pawn because unlike the king-pawn, this one is protected by the queen. So it is more dangerous to attack and capture this pawn. Most chess games start at a slow pace and then gradually pick up speed. The best chess move for black here is to push their queen pawn. One can also start with Queen’s gambit but it won’t fly in actual serious tournaments.
A Spanish priest, known as Ruy Lopez, was the strongest player of the 16th century. It is said that his opening which is called the Spanish game or Ruy Lopez opening was used in the highest-rated games. His technique was quite popular. In these games, black’s defending Knight is attacked by the bishop. Here the pieces are nicely developed and black is almost ready to castle. Black doesn’t have to worry about its e-pawn because the Queen can pin both the knight and pawn.
Since white plays first in chess, blacks moves are known as ‘defences’. All of black’s openings will depend on what move white decides to make. One aggressive chess opening for black is the Sicilian defence. The classic Sicilian defence begins when the queenside bishop pawn is placed on c5. This move is used by some of the best players in the world. The advantage of this defence is its boldness, it can make an unprepared white player back off. A variation of this defence known as Najdorf was used by both Bobby Fischer and Garry Kasparov, two world champions.
The French defence is also considered a wonderful opening for black. These moves challenge the white centre from the get go. It can also respond well to any of white’s moves. It was used by aggressive players such as Viktor Kortchnoj and Arthur Yusupov. This defence is played in the topmost levels and it has a near-perfect image.
Once you master these chess openings for black, you will be quite confident while playing with black pieces. Most importantly, make moves that you’re comfortable in implementing. Do not fall into the trap of playing outside your comfort zone, at least as a beginner. One can only begin to break the rules once they have mastered the art. As you do this, try not to limit yourself and keep experimenting while playing an online chess game. Best place to get started if you’re a newbie is to play chess on MPL app. Remember that a good opening allows you to develop your material, position your pieces for attacking and protecting the king.