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On a slow day, I'm gonna come out with something that hopefully forces people to talk about something, rather than only to read and soak it up. :-)

What's everyone's favorite openings and why? What makes for good play, or what do you try to avoid? Doesn't have to be complex, don't even need to put a name to it or anything.

I'm learning my openings right now. 1. e4 is pretty common for me when I'm playing as white, but I'm gonna start reading up on 1. d4 because I think it makes for some dynamic play opportunities and tends to throw off some lesser experienced people.

As of right now, I'm enjoying the Sicilian 1. e4 c5 opening for black. I like a few different variations for a few different reasons. The Accelerated Dragon is particularly intreguing to me, opening 1. e4 c5; 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 g6 looking to fianchetto (sp?) the bishop quite possibly before the knight moves to f6. I'm experimenting a bit at this point with a few different Sicilian openings, and really haven't determined which are my favorite.

One of the ways I'm intregued by is an opening I can't remember the name for (for white) in response to the Sicilian opening. 1. e4 c5; 2. d4 cxd4; 3. c3 dxc3; 4. Nxc3. White is immediately down a pawn, but is compensated by two open files to use for his rooks, and initiative. I've read this isn't popular in professional tournaments, but is pretty popular in the amatuer circles (which I would fit in). Something else I'm playing with as well.

Right now I'm still studying openings. Trying to get a good handle on what's what and what they tend to lead to in the middlegame and endgame. So let's open it up for discussion, cause I don't wanna be the only one talking about what I like. :-)

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