Chess Opening Theory/1. e4/1...e5/2. Nf3/2...Nc6/3. Bc4

Italian Game
a b c d e f g h
8 a8 b8 c8 d8 e8 f8 g8 h8 8
7 a7 b7 c7 d7 e7 f7 g7 h7 7
6 a6 b6 c6 d6 e6 f6 g6 h6 6
5 a5 b5 c5 d5 e5 f5 g5 h5 5
4 a4 b4 c4 d4 e4 f4 g4 h4 4
3 a3 b3 c3 d3 e3 f3 g3 h3 3
2 a2 b2 c2 d2 e2 f2 g2 h2 2
1 a1 b1 c1 d1 e1 f1 g1 h1 1
a b c d e f g h
Position in Forsyth-Edwards Notation (FEN)
Moves: 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4
ECO code: C50-C59
Parent: King's Knight Opening
Responses:

Italian Game

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3. Bc4

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The Italian Game is very popular and one of the oldest openings in chess. White develops the bishop to a good square where it controls the centre and targets f7. This opening is very easy to study and one of the best choices for beginners. Black has a few responses here, but the most played are 3. Nf6, the Two Knights Defense, which ironically can lead to rather sharp lines, and 3. Bc5, the Giuoco Piano, which focuses on quiet play and developing pieces, though the Evans Gambit can subvert that.

Responses

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a b c d e f g h
8        8
7        7
6        6
5        5
4        4
3        3
2        2
1        1
a b c d e f g h
3...Nf6   (Two Knights)

a b c d e f g h
8        8
7        7
6        6
5        5
4        4
3        3
2        2
1        1
a b c d e f g h
3...Bc5   (Giuoco Piano)

a b c d e f g h
8        8
7        7
6        6
5        5
4        4
3        3
2        2
1        1
a b c d e f g h
3...Be7   (Hungarian)

a b c d e f g h
8        8
7        7
6        6
5        5
4        4
3        3
2        2
1        1
a b c d e f g h
3....d6   (Paris)

a b c d e f g h
8        8
7        7
6        6
5        5
4        4
3        3
2        2
1        1
a b c d e f g h
3....Nd4   (Blackburne Shilling Gambit)

a b c d e f g h
8        8
7        7
6        6
5        5
4        4
3        3
2        2
1        1
a b c d e f g h
3....f5   (Rousseau Gambit)


Theory table

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For explanation of theory tables, see theory table and for notation, see algebraic notation.

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4

3 4
Two Knights Defence ...
Nf6
Ng5
d5
=
Giuoco Piano ...
Bc5
c3
Nf6
=
Hungarian Defence ...
Be7
d4
exd4
=
Paris Defence ...
d6
c3
Bg4
+/=
Blackburne Shilling Gambit ...
Nd4
c3
Nxf3
+/=
Rousseau Gambit ...
f5
d3
Nf6
+/=
Other ...
a6
d4
exd4
0-0
Bc5
c3
dxc3
+/=

Statistics

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Estimated next move popularity Nf6 56%, Bc5 38%, Be7 3%, d6 2%, all else less than 1%

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References

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