Home > Publishing Schedule > The Electrifying Elephant Gambit

The Electrifying Elephant Gambit

First of all, check out the fantastic cover design for this book!

We have received a number of draft chapters from our Danish friends Michael Agermose Jensen and Jakob Aabling-Thomsen, the Elephant enthusiasts – that is, 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d5. They are doing excellent work and I can see the finished book having a ‘Mayhem-in-the-Morra-esque’ effect, whereby people realize the gambit is much better than its reputation.

Having seen snippets of the work, I have not been able to resist experimenting with the Elephant every now and then. I tried it in two rapid games against lower-rated opponents, both of whom accepted the gambit. I went slightly astray in the opening (the relevant chapters have not been delivered yet, so I had to rely on my own guesswork rather than the authors’ expertise) but won both games after some adventures. Perhaps more significantly, I played the Elephant in two local league games against guys in the 2250-2300 range. Both of them were too fearful of the Elephant’s tusks to accept the gambit pawn, and opted for a more timid line involving an early queen exchange. In both cases I equalized quickly and pressed for an advantage, eventually eking out a win in one game and settling for a draw in the other.

Obviously I won’t be playing the Elephant in every game, but so far it has been a delight to get it on the board and force my opponents to think hard at such an early stage. What do our blog readers think? Can you see yourself adding the Elephant to your repertoire as a 6,000 kg surprise weapon?

Categories: Publishing Schedule Tags:
  1. JB
    December 10th, 2018 at 16:14 | #1

    Great cover (see previous thread!) and I’m glad that QC has lowered the threshold from ‘play the main lines ‘ to include this and other ‘dodgy’ openings.
    Like Smerdon’s Scandinavian it might be slightly unsound but you can almost guarantee to get it on the board and you’ll know it back to front. Sveshnikov had a similar approach with his blitz repertoire with eg Alekhine against e4 to get your prep in early. Think Caruana was much better able to get his prep in too during the WC and that was a major part of his success eg 7.Nd5 against Sveshnikov and the rare …Rd8 line against the Bf4 QGD- I’m sure Magnus was super prepared in the main lines but as he never got the chance to use it some mug will get it both barrels in the future.
    I’d bet your opponent would be similarly unprepared for the Elephant (I know one brief line myself that probably isn’t deep enough) and with a bit of work eg learn the plans for resulting endings it will probably be as 0.00 as any other opening in the real world – maybe not the best choice against an engine though!
    Best of luck to any future rogue elephants- if they don’t hit you between the eyes you’ll trample all over them!

  2. King of hears
    December 10th, 2018 at 16:39 | #2

    There was a time when Quality Chess wrote only about main lines. I’m happy with this change but please, now give us a repertoire on Alekhine defense and many other slightly inferior variations.

  3. JB
    December 10th, 2018 at 16:42 | #3

    PS Forgot to say I play the 3. Nxe5 as white rather than exd5 line which most books I know recommend as ‘safer’- black often takes with his queen on g2 after playing qg5 but loses f7 pawn- be interesting to hear what the authors think what black does here and what other readers of this blog play
    PPS Is Michael Jensen related to the Niels Jensen that wrote a book on the Elephant in the 80s?

  4. Ray
    December 10th, 2018 at 17:02 | #4

    I would be quite surprised if this opening would turn out to give black equal chances, but if, so, I think an update of John’s 1.e4 tome is on order 🙂 .

    By the way, an easy way to avoid it altogether is 1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Nf3 Nc6 4.d4, and black has no easy way to complicate things…

  5. Thomas
    December 10th, 2018 at 17:14 | #5

    @Ray
    4.- exd4 5. Nxd4 Nxe4!?

  6. Andrew Greet
    December 10th, 2018 at 18:09 | #6

    @JB
    3.Nxe5 was played against me in the two league games I mentioned, and 3…Bd6 4.d4 dxe4 was my reply, following the authors’ recommendation.
    I don’t know if Michael is related to Niels.

  7. Andrew Greet
    December 10th, 2018 at 18:15 | #7

    @Ray

    No one is claiming the Elephant equalizes in all variations. The authors are quite open about the fact that White can get at least a slight advantage with optimal play, but they will show how Black can still get an interesting game.

    And sure, White can play stuff like 2.Nc3 and 2.Bc4 (not to mention 2.f4!?) to avoid the Elephant, but 2.Nf3 remains by far the most popular choice, so anyone intending to use the Elephant will have a good chance of getting it on the board.

  8. RYV
    December 10th, 2018 at 19:51 | #8

    i am quite suspicious about this gambit. I am sure there are lots of lines with much fun for black…but as usual there is probably one line (just one is enough) that cut everything leaving black with no counterplay and a difficult game ( bishop pair vs permanent weakness or Something like).
    So white just have to read a few pages and you will be in trouble.? yes or no?
    I have a quite recent book by J.Watson about ” wild chess openings” where the elephant gambit is called Bad black opening: 4 pages for Nxe5 and 4 more pages for exd5 giving white an advantage. How does this new book deal with it ?

  9. Hard Truther
    December 11th, 2018 at 03:31 | #9

    If the book lives up to the cover it will be quite impressive.

    I know people are suspicious but after seeing what ALPHA ZERO has cooked up I have changed my mind from my initial reaction and am now highly intrigued.

    And since somebody mentioned AZ … wow…. really shows how UNLIMITED chess still is for us carbon life forms and really how little we understand.

    As far as Equality ? HIGHLY OVER RATED

  10. michael Stewart
    December 11th, 2018 at 04:39 | #10

    I can’t wait for this book!!! I play the Elephant in all my blitz games when allowed.

  11. michael Stewart
    December 11th, 2018 at 04:40 | #11

    Best cover I’ve seen!!!!

  12. Thomas
    December 11th, 2018 at 05:17 | #12

    RYV :
    How does this new book deal with it ?

    Very good question. A hint for the answer could be to buy the book and have a look.
    But I’m afraid this is another book that QC won’t give you for free.

  13. Ray
    December 11th, 2018 at 06:40 | #13

    @Thomas
    🙂 That’s a Sunny start of the day, thanks 🙂

  14. RYV
    December 11th, 2018 at 09:10 | #14

    @Ray
    you have a problem with information?
    you have a problem with free books ?

    In fact Andrew G already give me part of the answer: Black is worse . The only point is now, does JW gives the right refutation?

    By the way , i dont have any problem with such a book on “strange” openings and everyone can play what he wants ( i play 2..Df6 in king’s gambit !) .

  15. Andrew Greet
    December 11th, 2018 at 10:25 | #15

    @RYV
    I don’t have Watson’s book so I have no idea how effective his recommendations are. However, I’m confused as to why he devoted four pages to each of two separate replies to the Elephant. If the opening was so bad, then one ‘refutation’ should have been enough.

    In any case, you can’t expect me to reproduce the authors’ analysis of critical variations on the blog. However, I think 3.exd5 is the critical test, and after 3…Bd6 White has a number of ways to hang on to the extra pawn. It is reasonable to assume that Black will objectively not have full compensation for the pawn, but he will reach a complex middlegame with active pieces and the initiative, which could be used to build an attack.

  16. JB
    December 11th, 2018 at 11:06 | #16

    @Andrew Greet
    Andrew, Watson classes them both as bad in his ‘Good bad and ugly’ theme but his book isn’t a repertoire so he covers a load of different lines from a variety of openings . He says 3.Nxe5 is still better for white but 3.exd5 is safer.
    Hopefully the editor looks at the lines he proposes if you haven’t looked at his book yourself- sounds like it’s someone else if you have only seen snippets

  17. Andrew Greet
    December 11th, 2018 at 11:43 | #17

    @JB
    Thanks for the info; we will make sure the authors check the Watson/Schiller recommendations, as well as those of other prominent 1.e4 repertoire books.

  18. John Shaw
    December 11th, 2018 at 12:05 | #18

    King of hears :
    There was a time when Quality Chess wrote only about main lines. I’m happy with this change but please, now give us a repertoire on Alekhine defense and many other slightly inferior variations.

    I would also like an Alekhine repertoire, but the problem is getting the right author. I know one GM who would be ideal, and I have asked him a few times, but he is too busy with other things.

  19. Ray
    December 11th, 2018 at 12:14 | #19

    @RYV
    Absolutely not, I love free books.

  20. Jay
    December 11th, 2018 at 12:37 | #20

    Hello Andrew / John.

    Your 1. e4 repertoire give some solutions vs the Elephant where White is better (which is fine) and Black seems to have little fun (which is a problem). Does this new book bring a significant improvement versus the already published antidote?

    Ty – Jay

  21. Bebbe
    December 11th, 2018 at 13:11 | #21

    The elephant gambit might be a good surprise weapon but not more than that.
    It is however of course nice with books on some offbeat opening.

    Still waiting for QC-books on the Classical Sicilian and the Leningrad Dutch.
    The Classical Sicilian is highest on my wishlist. Malaniuk already wrote a good
    and fairly recent (2014) book on the Leningrad Dutch.

  22. Andrew Greet
    December 11th, 2018 at 13:20 | #22

    @Jay
    As I mentioned in the original post, the authors have not yet delivered the chapters analysing 3.exd5 when White accepts the gambit pawn. Therefore I don’t know what they are recommending, but they are diligent researchers and will surely have some ideas for Black.

  23. RYV
    December 11th, 2018 at 14:19 | #23

    @Andrew Greet

    I dont think white should try to keep an extra pawn if it give black some initiative. In such situation,( as always) there will be a way to give it back and secure a long term plus letting black struggle for a draw.

  24. Andrew Greet
    December 11th, 2018 at 14:34 | #24

    @RYV
    This kind of outcome is certainly desirable for White, but Black also gets a say in how the game develops. I hope and expect that the Elephant authors will look for ways to remain a pawn down but with practical compensation instead of taking back the pawn and sacrificing all counterplay.

  25. Maik Naundorf
    December 11th, 2018 at 14:48 | #25

    Just a maybe little weird question…:

    Isn’t the eye of the might elephant covered too much with a name from one of the authors?

  26. Maik
    December 11th, 2018 at 14:51 | #26

    Maik Naundorf :
    Just a maybe little weird question…:
    Isn’t the eye of the might elephant covered too much with a name from one of the authors?

    I meant mighty elephant of course…too bad one could not edit afterwards…

  27. John Shaw
    December 11th, 2018 at 15:00 | #27

    Maik Naundorf :

    Just a maybe little weird question…:

    Isn’t the eye of the might elephant covered too much with a name from one of the authors?

    Not weird at all. We were discussing that in the office. I could see moving the authors’ names to the bottom of the page. And maybe putting “The” and “Electrifying” on the same top line, to clear our elephant. We might experiment with that. At this point the cover is more of a draft than a guaranteed final version.

  28. Maik
    December 11th, 2018 at 15:15 | #28

    John Shaw :

    Maik Naundorf :
    Just a maybe little weird question…:
    Isn’t the eye of the might elephant covered too much with a name from one of the authors?

    Not weird at all. We were discussing that in the office. I could see moving the authors’ names to the bottom of the page. And maybe putting “The” and “Electrifying” on the same top line, to clear our elephant. We might experiment with that. At this point the cover is more of a draft than a guaranteed final version.

    That is very nice tho hear, as this moving of the names to the bottom or something similar to clear the elephant would make the cover so much better in my opinion! 🙂

  29. Thomas
    December 11th, 2018 at 15:39 | #29

    Looking forward to nice book covers on the hippopotamus and the hedgehog.
    Is there an opening named after the anteater?

  30. RYV
    December 11th, 2018 at 15:48 | #30

    @Andrew Greet

    from your experience and knowledge, how would you compare Elephant gambit and 2knights defence ( 4.Ng5 d5 variation)? Is it the same kind of play ? is the elephant more or less justified/correct compare to 2N

  31. RYV
    December 11th, 2018 at 15:51 | #31

    @Thomas

    dont forget the orang-outan

  32. John Shaw
    December 11th, 2018 at 16:04 | #32

    @Maik Naundorf

    We tried moving the text, and updated the post. Which cover does everyone prefer? Original at the top of the post or updated at the bottom. Seems a clear choice to me.

  33. Thomas
    December 11th, 2018 at 16:26 | #33

    I clearly prefer the second one.

  34. Tom Tidom
    December 11th, 2018 at 16:41 | #34

    Cover no. 2 please.

    I thought the days I played such wacky openings were well behind me but I´m so curious about this book that I promise I will buy it as soon as it appears on Forward Chess.

  35. JB
    December 11th, 2018 at 16:44 | #35

    @Thomas
    I’m particularly looking forward to seeing the cover of the ‘Monkey’s Bum’ when QC agree to publish it.

    Frankenstein-Dracula Vienna, Kalashnikov and halloween gambit all deserve a decent cover too.

  36. Andrew Greet
    December 11th, 2018 at 16:56 | #36

    @RYV
    I consider the 4.Ng5 d5 gambit to be every bit as ‘correct’ as the Petroff or Berlin, and it would be unrealistic to claim the same level of soundness for the Elephant. However, there are similarities in certain lines; for instance, if Black meets an early Bb5+ with …c6 in the Elephant, the ensuing positions may start to resemble the Two Knights line.

  37. An Ordinary Chessplayer
    December 11th, 2018 at 16:59 | #37

    Everyone knows the elephant is terrified of the humble mouse. The book needs to have little mice in the margins to indicate variations where the elephant is running away.

  38. Andrew Greet
    December 11th, 2018 at 18:04 | #38

    @An Ordinary Chessplayer
    Good point! Fortunately, our Elephant is good friends with a cat, who steps in to help whenever the pesky mice start causing a ruckus.

  39. Michael Agermose Jensen
    December 11th, 2018 at 18:41 | #39

    @JB
    No relation. Jensen is the Danish equivalent of Smith in English.

  40. JB
    December 11th, 2018 at 19:48 | #40

    Andrew Greet :
    @Jay
    As I mentioned in the original post, the authors have not yet delivered the chapters analysing 3.exd5 when White accepts the gambit pawn. Therefore I don’t know what they are recommending, but they are diligent researchers and will surely have some ideas for Black.

    Very brave playing it without the notes to the main line! Were you just going to wing it if your opponents played exd5 or were you following some theory of someone else or your own?

  41. An Ordinary Chessplayer
    December 11th, 2018 at 21:09 | #41

    Mice *and* cats in the margins? Check out “The King, the Mice and the Cheese”.

  42. Ray
    December 12th, 2018 at 07:32 | #42

    @JB
    Other good book covers: the Vulture, the Rat and the Toilet Variation (Grand Prix Attack).

  43. Seth
    December 13th, 2018 at 07:03 | #43

    Alright, I’ve been able to resist asking so far…but tonight I cave in to temptation.

    GM Jacob Aagaard. You’re playing black and your opponent has opened with 1.e4. You’ve got three choices: The Elephant Gambit, the Classical Sicilian or death. Which do you choose?

  44. Jacob Aagaard
    December 13th, 2018 at 09:35 | #44

    @Seth
    The Elephant Gambit, at least it is not certain death…

  45. Maik
    December 13th, 2018 at 10:14 | #45

    John Shaw :
    @Maik Naundorf
    We tried moving the text, and updated the post. Which cover does everyone prefer? Original at the top of the post or updated at the bottom. Seems a clear choice to me.

    Yes, it is so much better with the elephant in full so to speak! 🙂

  46. RYV
    December 13th, 2018 at 14:16 | #46

    The concept is the éléphant shaking the white pieces so I would lire to see them also. Resize thé original image so to put title and authors names out of the white pieces…imo

  47. Andrew Greet
    December 13th, 2018 at 14:25 | #47

    @RYV
    Thanks for the suggestion but I don’t think it’s worth shrinking the entire image just for the sake of these few unimportant pieces on the periphery. The focal point of the cover is the Elephant smashing through the wall, and the updated cover shows this perfectly.

  48. RYV
    December 13th, 2018 at 15:28 | #48

    The éléphant running over all white’s central pawns & over the Nf3 was à good illustration. Just keeping the pachyderme is a bit too simplistic to me…..

  49. Andrew Greet
    December 13th, 2018 at 15:42 | #49

    Pachyderm – excellent word! (Despite the minor spelling mistake, which is certainly forgivable for a non-native speaker.) We’ll see if anyone else in the office likes your suggestion, but personally I think the cover is perfect as it stands.

    Considering that we have the word ‘electrifying’ in the title though, I do have a vision of an alternative cover design with lightning bolts coming out of the elephant’s tusks. In one of the the Austin Powers movies, Dr Evil equipped his sharks with laser beams so an elephant with lightning tusks seems only natural.

  50. Hard Truther
    December 13th, 2018 at 16:19 | #50

    So long as the elephant is at least ill-tempered, that’s a start.

  51. Jacob Aagaard
    December 13th, 2018 at 17:20 | #51

    @Andrew Greet
    There is a reason why you are an editor Andrew 🙂

  52. Andrew Greet
    December 13th, 2018 at 17:32 | #52

    @Jacob Aagaard
    Evidently an evil editor.

  53. Michel Barbaut
    December 13th, 2018 at 20:08 | #53

    Too early to give a publication date ?

  54. Thomas
    December 14th, 2018 at 06:06 | #54

    I hope you included all the obligatory warning notices. “Don’t use the Elephant Gambit at home”, “Keep it away from kids”, “Electricity can be harmful”, “Don’t play it if you have a cardiac pacemaker” etc…

  55. Andrew Greet
    December 14th, 2018 at 15:11 | #55

    @Michel Barbaut
    It’s much too early for a formal publication date. However, since both the authors are Danish and involved in organizing the Copenhagen Open, it would certainly be nice to have the book published in time for that event, which takes place in late July 2019. So there are no guarantees – but that’s what we are aiming for.

  56. Andrew Greet
    December 14th, 2018 at 15:17 | #56

    @Thomas
    Yes indeed, these days we’d better include all such disclaimers to avoid getting sued. Elephants can be brilliant for trampling your enemies but they can also be dangerous for the rider, which is why everyone should read the instruction manual before jumping in the saddle.

  57. The Lurker
    December 14th, 2018 at 18:59 | #57

    Andrew Greet :
    @Jacob Aagaard
    Evidently an evil editor.

    Hey, you didn’t go to evil chess school for 12 years just to be called “editor”!

    • Jacob Aagaard
      December 15th, 2018 at 09:06 | #58

      🙂

  58. RYV
    December 14th, 2018 at 19:14 | #59

    It could be interresting to get a comparison between elephant & latvian gambit.
    As i remember, It was one of Jonny Hector’s weapon . He says (!?) : Objectively, white get the advantage …but the good new is that it is better than it’s reputation.

    maybe both openings are close or even twin Brothers ?

  59. Andrew Greet
    December 17th, 2018 at 10:06 | #60

    @RYV
    No doubt there are some similarities in the sense that both openings are objectively not fully correct, but could nevertheless be worth having up your sleeve as surprise weapons. However, when it comes to picking a surprise gambit for my own use, I’ll take the Elephant all day. Clearly I am somewhat biased due to the forthcoming book, but I will give three additional reasons:
    1) The Latvian leaves the black king too exposed for my taste. (This is by far the most important point of the three.)
    2) According to my database, the Latvian has been played in more than 2.5 times the number of games as the Elephant, so the latter is clearly a bigger surprise weapon.
    3) The Elephant has achieved a surprisingly respectable practical score of just 56.6% in White’s favour. Statistics don’t necessarily mean all that much, which is why I mentioned this point last, but it’s worth noting. For comparison, the more popular options after 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 are 2…Nc6 (most successful at 55.8%), 2…Nf6 (57.3%), 2…d6 (61.1%) and 2…f5 (59.0%).

  60. RYV
    December 17th, 2018 at 18:01 | #61

    From what you are saying I will take thé éléphant gambit as a training for playing with initiative.. for training games only.
    I cant accept to Play uncorrect moves Just in case my opponents doesnt know thé right variation.

  61. RYV
    December 17th, 2018 at 18:06 | #62

    By thé Way. I love your concern about King safety in an open game gambit. I though it should be a low priority.

  62. Andrew Greet
    December 18th, 2018 at 09:57 | #63

    RYV :
    By thé Way. I love your concern about King safety in an open game gambit. I though it should be a low priority.

    Why should it be a low priority? Don’t assume that just because one side offers the gambit, the other side can’t attack. Consider a line such as 3.Nxe5 (or even 3.Nc3) 3…Qf6 4.Nc4 fxe4 5.Nc3 against the Latvian, where White plays for a lead in development and initiative, and Black has to be careful to survive the opening. Nothing like this is likely to happen in the Elephant, unless Black seriously misplays it.

  63. RYV
    December 18th, 2018 at 18:50 | #64

    Well, first priority is active pièces play When we play à gambit. Then unless we can convert the position to à stable advantage or equality , we should keep running for activité even if it implie weakening king’s position.
    Of course, if you have both initiative and king safety: great !
    But if you have to choose : activity first. The king will take care of himself alone.
    That’s my view of gambit play….but I rarely play gambit. I prefer safety and solid play .!

  64. Thomas
    December 18th, 2018 at 21:02 | #65

    Wìth sùch ádvìsè – whò nèèds QC’s ácádèmý ?

  65. RYV
    December 18th, 2018 at 21:15 | #66

    @Thomas
    it is not an advice, it is my view of chess.
    Maybe you have your own idea ? or you just prefer to criticize

  66. Mark
    January 5th, 2019 at 15:44 | #67

    I love your books but…Frankly, I think this type of book damages the reputation of Quality Chess.

  67. RYV
    January 5th, 2019 at 16:16 | #68

    a good book on a bad openning is not a problem ;
    a bad book on a good openning is much more damaging…

  68. The Lurker
    January 5th, 2019 at 18:45 | #69

    @Mark

    I remember a story about a GM who only wanted to write about “serious” chess openings. When pressed, he confessed that he only thought that the Ruy Lopez main lines and the Najdorf were “serious” enough to merit his attention!

    Imagine if QC had those standards! They’d really be in trouble, since it will probably be a year at least before Negi finishes volume 6 of his series (covering the Ruy), and they don’t seem to have an author to rewrite GM Repertoire 6 on the Najdorf.

    I don’t see a problem with books on sub-standard openings, as long as they are objective. If they sold the Elephant Gambit as equal to the Ruy Lopez, I’d have problems.

  69. Björn
    January 6th, 2019 at 07:05 | #70

    It’s a book I quite look forward to, there has to be space for good books on not fully sound openings. I thought the Smith Morra book was great and QC could have done worse than publishing something like Smerdon’s Scandinavian (which was nicely honest about where the problems are, but still instilled enthusiasm).

  70. Patrick
    January 7th, 2019 at 15:26 | #71

    @RYV

    But then the question becomes, what constitutes a good book, especially on an opening?

    One view is that Opening Books teach you the “right” way to play an opening, in which case, a book on the French written for Black would see 50 games where 49 of them are drawn or won by Black, but I think we all know that the French doesn’t score 80+ percent!

    Another view is that an opening book should match reality, and so a book on the French with 50 games should see Black score about 46 percent or so (haven’t looked up the actual percentage in any database) in those 50 games, or 23 points out of 50 games.

    Then there is the question of advertising. Take Tim Taylor’s book on the Budapest (I do not own it – have only seen the sample on Amazon). In the introduction, where you try to boost the morale of the reader, Black wins all 3 games. You get to the Introduction to part 1, and there is a game where White wins, and then in Chapter 1, White wins the first three games. Is this poorly written? Are you hoping the reader browses the introduction, buys the book, and then suddenly White starts winning every game?

    I don’t see how one can judge an opening book except maybe if there is outright bad analysis, like if it says that 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Bg5 Nbd7 5.cxd5 exd5 6.Nxd5 wins a pawn for White (which we all known is wrong). There’s too many ways to interpret how an opening book should be laid out, especially those with…

  71. Patrick
    January 7th, 2019 at 15:26 | #72

    … with complete games. A non-opening book is far easier to judge and rate.

  72. Robert R
    January 7th, 2019 at 22:23 | #73

    @Patrick
    >But then the question becomes, what constitutes a good book, especially on an opening?

    Good books force you to think and write down your discoveries. Consider the following task-driven structure, pioneered by Reinfeld in the 1930s.
    1.The author asks you questions at various points in a game (what is the idea?, calculate Bxh6 etc) but offers minimal commentary.
    2. You write own the answers and variations.
    3. After you finish the game you check the answers IN THE BACK. There the moves are explained.

  73. Ray
    January 8th, 2019 at 06:59 | #74

    I think the number one priority of an opening book should be that the analysis and accompanying explanations are first class. The rest is imo pretty much a matter of taste. Personally I prefer the ‘tree’ format, but many people will prefer the ‘illustrative games’ format. I think the result of a game is irrelevant, as long as the analysis of the opening phase is good. I like the way Chess Stars are trying to offer something for everyone by offering (in many of their books) for each chapter a quick guide, a more detailed analysis in tree format and a section on illustrative games. I also liked the ‘Easy Guide’ approach, giving just the basic knowledge and some good explanations of plans. With a little more work you can get the basics from the GM Repertoire books by just putting the bold moves + explanations in a database.

  74. Jimmy
    January 8th, 2019 at 07:39 | #75

    Any plans to publish something on the Leningrad Dutch?

  75. RYV
    January 8th, 2019 at 11:54 | #76

    Ray :I think the number one priority of an opening book should be that the analysis and accompanying explanations are first class. The rest is imo pretty much a matter of taste..

    agreed 99% ..

  76. Bulkington
    January 8th, 2019 at 12:26 | #77

    Jimmy :
    Any plans to publish something on the Leningrad Dutch?

    Well, there is the Malaniuk book on 7…Qe8 and there is the recent work by Karolyi on 7…c6. And then soon there will be Avrukh with an announced novelty on a serious Leningrad mainline. Should be enough for the moment for any Leningrader.

  77. RYV
    January 12th, 2019 at 21:45 | #78

    Hi
    I suspect the QC dongeon to be by now full of prisoners working hard on late books from the 2018 catalog. Can we get some news on the latest progress ?
    thx

  78. Thomas
    January 13th, 2019 at 09:04 | #79

    Chess Stars is coming up with an Alekhine book. Interesting.

  79. Ray
    January 13th, 2019 at 11:43 | #80

    @Thomas
    Another book by Kornev, the Russian Lakdawala 🙂 . But seriously, I like his other repertoire books, so this should indeed be interesting.

    I wonder if there is any news on the QC publishing schedule? It’s a bit silent on this blog lately…

  80. The Doctor
    January 13th, 2019 at 14:56 | #81

    @Ray

    Yes seems like the QC team are on ‘blog strike’

  81. January 13th, 2019 at 18:26 | #82

    Thomas :Chess Stars is coming up with an Alekhine book. Interesting.

    Plus the 2nd Volume on the English Opening…considering the high standard of the chess content of the Chess Stars opening series they do seem to be able to produce these books in a relatively short period.

  82. John Shaw
    January 14th, 2019 at 09:49 | #83

    The Doctor :
    @Ray
    Yes seems like the QC team are on ‘blog strike’

    No official strike: just busy with other things. We will give an update on our publishing schedule soon, including announcing at least one new book. But I want the front cover of that new book ready before I announce it.

  83. Ray
    January 14th, 2019 at 15:49 | #84

    @John Shaw
    Thanks! I guess it’s too early to ask for the 2019 brochure 🙂 ?

  84. John Shaw
    January 14th, 2019 at 17:15 | #85

    @Ray

    The leaflet we have out already is for 2018/2019. Quite a few books mentioned in it that we have not said much about yet. http://www.qualitychess.co.uk/ebooks/2018-QualityChess-catalog.pdf

  85. RYV
    January 15th, 2019 at 18:18 | #86

    Good game by Shankland today. Full of control and self control.
    ..Qd6 looks à bit strange… but it is theorical ? We need that QC GMREP on taimanov sicilian asap !

  86. Mstewart
    March 5th, 2019 at 01:44 | #87

    All,
    Any news on when ” The Electrifying Elephant Gambit ” will go to the
    printer?

  87. Andrew Greet
    March 5th, 2019 at 10:28 | #88

    @Mstewart
    The authors are making steady progress completing various chapters, but it’s too early to announce a printing date when we don’t yet have a completed book.

  88. Cowe
    March 5th, 2019 at 12:30 | #89

    @Cowe
    er. Theresa May 🙂

  89. RYV
    March 6th, 2019 at 18:26 | #90

    Andrew Greet :
    @Mstewart
    The authors are making steady progress completing various chapters, but it’s too early to announce a printing date when we don’t yet have a completed book.

    what kind of progress ?
    we are aware the whole variation is “incorrect” but with practical possibilities for black.
    the more analysis , the better for white. Don’t you think so ?

  90. March 7th, 2019 at 11:13 | #91

    @RYV
    Not at all. The authors are quite open about the fact that Black cannot equalize in every line, but they give a lot of valuable information about how to deal with the critical lines, as well as how to capitalize on common mistakes that White makes when surprised by this opening. I think it’s shaping up to be a fine book, just on a different subject from our usual stuff.

  91. Mstewart
    March 8th, 2019 at 01:20 | #92

    Andrew thank you for the update.

  92. RYV
    March 9th, 2019 at 20:18 | #93

    this is Something i still dont get. Why will you volontary play an opening with the ONLY hope that if your oponnent will make a mistake, you will have a chance to play a game. Otherwise, you are in deep trouble.
    Where is the interest ?

    ps: my comment is not directed against the book. but i would like to understand where is the interest of such bluff

  93. barkis
    March 9th, 2019 at 20:59 | #94

    @RYV
    Most people make mistakes in all kinds of openings. It is a normal thing to hope for. If you get what you want out of a gambit, dubious or not, you might get a good attack and a nice win.

  94. Cowe
    March 9th, 2019 at 21:34 | #95

    Possible interests in this opening:
    – not everybody plays chess for a living. Some just wanna have fun 🙂
    – not everybody plays with or against computer.
    – some people enjoy gambits with either colour, or need chaos with Black. If the authors are honest (as it seems), we’ll see if this gambit has any merit.
    – I have no clear idea of the status of this gambit, presumably it will give Black some compensation for a material deficit. Amount of compensation typically depends on players strength and time (blitz, classical, corr). Maybe there is a window of opportunity !?

    It would be sad, though, if White could corner Black straight from the opening into a couple of depressing lines which could fit on the back cover. Say it ain’t so 🙂

  95. March 9th, 2019 at 22:13 | #96

    @RYV

    I tend to agree with you….you may catch a few by surprise at the club, or in a lightening event with an off beat line but after that I think those that you play frequently will be well prepared. Playing any off beat line still requires a lot of preparation, so isn’t it just better to spend this time on your existing repertoire or some other aspect of the game?

    Or perhaps I just lack the romance/spirit of adventure when it comes to risking playing an off beat line!!

  96. Andrew Greet
    March 11th, 2019 at 14:34 | #97

    @RYV

    In addition to the many valid points made by Cowe above, I would add that the Elephant may not be as objectively bad as you imagine when you talk about Black being in “deep trouble”. In the critical lines that I have seen, Black could be a pawn down with objectively insufficient compensation, but nevertheless he is likely to have some initiative and practical chances.

    And to address Cowe’s question, although I have not seen the full book yet, I am not aware of any line where White can force Black to regain the sacrificed pawn but suffer a positional crush.

    Moreover, while the authors are passionate about the opening, they advise the readers to avoid using it in every game, as obviously the practical effectiveness of the gambit will be greatest when the opponent has not spent all morning preparing for it.

    Obviously the Elephant is not for everyone, but we think the book has a right to exist and we are certain that those who do read it will find it interesting.

  97. Paul Massie
    March 11th, 2019 at 17:48 | #98

    My practical experience on the White side of this gambit probably reflects reality for many players. I faced it once many years ago played by someone around 1600-1700 rating (I was around 1800-1900 at the time). I had never seen it before and had no idea what to do, so I played passively but carefully. I came out of the opening probably slightly worse, which would likely not have been the case with a more mainstream opening. After the opening I continued to play carefully and eventually outplayed my opponent and won.
    My takeways are twofold:
    1) When played against someone who doesn’t know it you can get a much better position than you might by playing a mainstream opening.
    2) Playing strength still counts, and you have to be able to make good moves after the opening. Depending on your opponent to fall over and die in the opening isn’t good enough.

  98. RYV
    March 11th, 2019 at 20:50 | #99

    @Andrew Greet
    so white is forced to accept a tactical game where he is not better, or he can suffer from black lasting initiative. not so bad

    by the way, there is an anouncement for an other animal book : the hyppopotamus

  1. No trackbacks yet.

 Limit your comments to