Follow in the footsteps of Bobby Fischer and play the King’s Indian Attack chess opening, a dangerous opening system you can use against nearly any reply from Black!
In this system, White adopts a setup similar to Black’s in the King’s Indian Defense; but White’s extra tempo makes it even more deadly.
This is an opening you can play against the French, Caro-Kann and Sicilian, each time getting a dominant position full of powerful positional and tactical ideas.
In this exclusive video, a preview of his new 8 hour Deep Dive course, Grandmaster Damian Lemos explains the general strategy behind the opening, explaining its main ideas and why it’s an interesting and practical opening to play. The full course then goes on to give detailed instructions on how to deal with anything Black might try.
Through the analysis of instructive games, GM Lemos shows how these ideas play out in practice, making sure you’re ready with the most powerful reply!
One advantage of playing the King’s Indian Attack is that you always know where your pieces belong, you are familiar with typical plans and you quickly develop a strong intuition of the subtleties in this opening.
General Ideas in the King’s Indian Attack Chess Opening
In the King’s Indian Attack, it is essential to try to understand the key concepts and recurring themes of the opening. This opening is more about knowing plans and recurring ideas, rather than memorizing concrete lines. In general, in the KIA, White wants pawns on e4 and d3, the queenside knight on d2 and to fianchetto the bishop on the kingside. The kingside knight usually finds itself on f3, although there are some occasions where it ends up on e2 instead.
While some players prefer to begin with 1. Nf3, GM Damian Lemos recommends 1. e4. This is because with 1. Nf3, it offers flexibility to Black. For example, Black could respond with 1…d5 right away and look to play a quick …e5 – not the main lines of the King’s Indian Attack that we want to play. Why give Black the option to stray away from what you want to play? That’s why Damian prefers 1. e4.
After all, we know the common replies to 1. e4. 1…c5 Sicilian Defense, 1…e6 French Defense or 1…c6 Caro-Kann are all okay to play the standard KIA against.
What about some other options for Black? 1…d5 would be the Scandinavian, where White should not carry on with 2. d3 because White can gain even more by simply capturing with 2. exd5. Similarly in the Alekhine with 1…Nf6, White can consider 2. e5. What about 1…g6 the Modern or the Pirc? White can still play the KIA against these systems too.
The only response that makes the KIA not as powerful is 1…e5, but even this gives White options. For example, after 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6, White can choose not to play d3 immediately, but bring out the bishop to c4 or b5 first. You can see this in the diagram on the right.
These are just the very general ideas you should try to get to grips with when playing the King’s Indian Attack. To see these ideas explained in more detail, and to see them being used practically in games, watch the video!
Learn one of Bobby Fischer’s Favorite Systems
In many variations of the King’s Indian Attack, White gets excellent practical attacking chances. Although computers might be able to defend Black’s position, it is extremely unpleasant for humans to play these positions. If you prefer not to have to constantly update your openings against each of the popular responses to 1.e4, the King’s Indian Attack could be the right opening for you. The King’s Indian Attack is a universal opening system for White which saving you a lot of time learning theory and can be used against many Black setups. To learn everything you need to know to play this opening with confidence, check out GM Damian Lemos’ full 8-hour course. Get 50% off Deep Dive: The King’s Indian Attack here.