I was playing a rare game of chess tonight–okay, not too rare–I’m still a chess addict even though I have much less free time on my hands these days. I was playing a blitz game on Chess.com, and after my opponent’s second move, I already knew I’d be posting it to the blog. We had a King’s Pawn game, and my opponent surprised me when he played Qe7 on Move 2 with the Black pieces. This is apparently called the Gunderam Defense. Here is the position after Move 2:
This is very similar to the McConnell Defense (aka Greco Defense), where Black plays Qf6 on Move 2. Similar patterns can also be seen in a certain line in the Philidor Defense, where Black plays an early Bg4 and gets into trouble (there is an old Morphy game in this line).
In any case, now that I’m not in the heat of the game, I can stop and think a bit about this. Why is Qe7 a bad move? Or perhaps it is not a bad move, and the better question is what are the drawbacks to Qe7? I can think of a few pretty quickly:
- Qe7 blocks the development of the dark-square Bishop.
- Qe7 potentially takes a square away from the Kingside Knight if it wants or needs to go there.
- Qe7 leaves the defense of the weak c7 pawn.
- Qe7 is one Knight jump away from being attacked, so Black might have to play c6, which will further impede development by taking the classical square away from the Queenside Knight.
So what should we do as White? It seems that developing normally and not wasting time is a great start: Bc4, Nc3, followed by castling and beginning to open lines. The video below shows the details of some lines. Although you will likely not come across this opening much, you might see some patterns in other positions, and some thematic ideas are covered, such as opening lines.
Game Link here.