Queenside Gambits: Blackmar-Diemer Main Starting Position - 1.d4 d5 2.e4 dxe4 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.f3 exf3 5.Nxf3
We're looking at Queenside gambits starting with 1.d4 d5. These QPGs are a follow on from the Queen's Gambit. The Blackmar complex contains more than just the seed gambit itself. First you have the direct descendent, the Blackmar-Diemer.
Even inside the Blackmar-Diemer you have more gambits which arise in individual lines. The Ryder Gambit has interesting variations that you can work on.
Or you can transpose to the Hubsch Gambit or the Steinitz Countergambit. Let's start with the Hubsch and the Steinitz before taking on the Blackmar family.
The Hubsch Gambit is a great response to the Blackmar-Diemer when you play as Black. You can by playing 3...Nxe4 take the game down your road and away from the kind of positions that White is playing for.
This has two main points. Firstly you are avoiding all that theory that White was itching to throw at you. Secondly the frustration stemming from not being able to play his pet lines may lead to mistakes in your opponent's game. That's the psychological value.
You can be the one to decide how the game goes with at least an equal position. After 4.Nxe4 dxe4 5.Bc4 there are 5 main continuations. You have 5...e6, 5...Bf5, 5...g6, 5...c5 and also 5...Nc6 to choose from.
The Steinitz Countergambit poses an interesting question to White as he puts the London System into motion. If as you hope the gambit is accepted you can get a big center and a central majority.
You will get free and easy development and lots of space on the Queenside. You even gain back the pawn in the Main Line. Then with your King safely tucked away on the Kingside you can advance on the Queenside. Your development advantage on this wing may give you some impetus.
White has reached his first major crossroads in the game. He must choose between accepting the gambit or shoring up his d4-pawn with e3 and c3 in either order over the next two moves. He will then continue with the London plan.
Both of you will castle Kingside and the battle will shift to the Queenside. You will be trying to use your advanced pawns to create an advantage there.
The Blackmar Gambit was developed by Armand Blackmar late in the 19th Century. The idea is to give up a pawn in order to gain a huge lead in development.
What you really want is for Black to accept the gambit with 3...exf3 and you will play 4.Nxf3 or even 4.Qxf3. You are down a pawn but you have a piece developed and both Bishops opened and ready to come into the game.
This gambit caused excitement for a short while. Then Black made an important discovery to stop it dead in it's tracks. 3...e5! curbs any dynamic advantage that White can hope to get from this opening. It was not the end of the concept however. Emil Josef Diemer found a great modification to resuscitate the gambit.
The Blackmar-Diemer Gambit was the solution to 3...e5! in the original Blackmar Gambit. You play 3.Nc3 Nf6 before proceeding with 4.f3. Now 4...e5 isn't so effective as it was in the Blackmar. 5.dxe5 kicks the Knight and Black finds himself in a passive position.
The Main Line continues 3...Nf6 4.f3 exf3 5.Nxf3 and then the game can go down several different roads. 5...Bf5 takes the game into the Gunderam Defense. 5...Bg4 is the Teichmann Defense.
Black can try the Euwe Defense with 5...e6 where you may end up facing a kind of French Defense situation. The Bogoljubow Defense with 5...g6 and the Ziegler Defense with 5...c6 are also possible.
The Ryder Gambit is an option you can take within the wider Blackmar-Diemer Gambit. Play continues in the Main Line with 3...Nf6 4.f3 exf3 and then you come to a fork in the road.
Your main option in the Blackmar-Diemer is of course 5.Nf3. There is another less obvious move here though. You can recapture with the Queen instead of the Knight. Yes, 5.Qxf3 is a move!
You're developing your Queen early instead of your minor piece. You're also dropping your remaining central pawn. This must be suicidal right? No because after 5...Qxd4 you have 6.Be3 developing with tempo and preparing to castle long. You are down two pawns but you do have a big lead in development.
The Blackmar-Diemer complex is a nice way to keep your game fresh. The Ryder is waiting inside to be unfurled should the opportunity arise. The Hubsch and the Steinitz Countergambit are weapons Black can use to confuse White in these openings.
These lines have great value as the most common response to 1.d4 is 1...d5. If you want to play gambits on this wing then these ones should be high on your list for study.
Here we concentrated on QPGs with the opening moves 1.d4 d5. Any game that starts with 1.d4 is a QPG. In this next section coming up we will be looking at Black's alternatives to 1...d5. What other answers can you give to 1.d4?