Derived from the Indian game of Chaturanga (Sanskrit: चतुरङ्ग; caturaṅga), chess has made quite a name for itself worldwide. It is a much-loved sport, and several championships and tournaments keep the fire alive. 

Almost every second chess enthusiast aspires to become the next Vishwanathan Anand in India. If you desire the name, you must master the following chess moves to surprise and beat your opponent. Then, practice the moves by playing chess online and become a pro.

English Opening 

English opening gets its name from Howard Staunton, an English player. He played against Pierre Charles Fournier de Saint-Amant during their 1843 match, and it caused a huge upset when Staunton beat the French chess master. 

The move caught on in the 20th century and is considered a solid opening. It was used by World Champions Bobby Fischer and Garry Kasparov, among others. 

Albin Counter Gambit 

Albin Counter Gambit is a move that gets its name from Adolf Albin, a Romanian chess player. Albin had used this move against Emanuel Lasker, a German World Chess Champion, in 1893. 

It is a strategic move that’s an uncommon defence against the Queen’s Gambit. Even though it was named for Albin, the chess move was first played twelve years previously, in 1881, by Mattia Cavallotti, an Italian master. 

The Queen’s Gambit 

One of the oldest known openings in chess is the Queen’s Gambit. It is mentioned in the Gottingen manuscript, the 1490 Latin text. Also, it has been the primary move in many Grandmaster’s opening strategies. 

The Queen’s Gambit was played in thirty-two out of thirty-four games in the 1927 World Championship match between Alexander Alekhine and Raul Capablanca. In honour of Aleppo-born Philipp Stamma, the move is also known as the Aleppo Gambit. 

Ruy Lopez 

Named after 16th-century Spanish priest Ruy Lopez de Segura, Ruy Lopez is one of the most famous openings in chess.  The move appears in Libro del Ajedrez (Book of Chess), Segura’s 1561 book. It is a move that previously appeared in the Gottingen manuscript

Chess Moves to Have Up Your Sleeve at All Times
Courtesy: Dutch National Library

In this move, the White’s third move attacks the knight, which almost all the top players have used during their careers. The move is also known as the Spanish Torture because it is difficult for Black to achieve equality. 

The Four Knights Game 

The Four Knights Game is a move that is part of the open game and utilizes the develop knights before bishops strategy. The play opens with e4 and e5.  The move was popular before the First World War and regained popularity in the 1990s. The play moved the knights into positional play. 

The Scotch Game 

The Scotch Game is a move that got its name from a correspondence match in 1824. During the game, letters were sent between Edinburgh and London. The letters contained the moves. 

But in reality, the move predates the match and it was mentioned in 1750 by Domenico Ercole del Rio, the Modenese Master, in his book, Sopra il giuoco degli Scacchi, Osservazioni pratiche d’anonimo Autore Modenese.  Kasparov and other Grandmasters have employed this move to counter the Ruy Lopez move. 

King’s Indian Defense 

King’s Indian Defense is known as a hypermodern move, and it comes from the school of chess that developed post-First World War. Here, the chess ideas of the central European masters were challenged. In this play, Black deliberately allows White control of the centre with their pawns.

The play owes its subsequent resurgence and recent decline in popularity to Vladimir Kramnik, the Russian Grandmaster. Kramnik devised this move to defeat Kasparov in the ’90s. Many players had abandoned this move, but it was revived in 2012. 

The King’s Gambit

The King’s Gambit has been a famous opening for over three hundred years. The play has recently become more divisive but has fallen out of favour in the professional game.  In his 1961 article A Bust to the King’s Grandmaster, Bobby Fischer wrote that the move is busted and players lose by force. 

But after the move was played in London in 1851 in the Immortal Game, the move made its way into chess history.  Adolf Anderssen, the German chess master, defeated Lionel Kieseritzky, the Baltic German player, by sacrificing a bishop, both rooks, and his queen to checkmate Lionel with just three minor pieces. 

Scandinavian Defense 

The Scandinavian Defense is also known as the Center Counter Defense, one of the old chess openings. It was mentioned in Scachs d’amor in 1475.  Written by Francesc de Castellvi and Narcis Vinyoles, the Valencian poets, the verse refers to their imagination of a game in which Venus and Mars are playing a game of chess using the rules devised by Mercury.

It is the first documented chess game played with modern regulations.  The move was used in 1979 by Bent Larsen, the Danish Grandmaster, against World Champion Anatoly Karpov. This saw the resurgence of the chess move in popularity. 

Giuoco Piano 

Giuoco Piano translates to a Quiet Game in Italian; hence, it has been called the Italian game.  The move is played as far back as the 16th century, and in modern times, it is overlooked in favour of Ruy Lopez.  Giuoco Pianissimo is an evolution of this move, and it is an even slower strategic opener that can give you an edge over your opponent. 

The Bottom Line 

These are some chess moves you must master to give your opponents a run for their money.