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    All Courses|Novice|Intermediate|Advanced|Tournaments

    Starting Out with 1. d4

    This special 25-lesson opening course teaches you a complete queen's pawn opening system. Become an expert at opening with 1 d4, the weapon of choice of many great champions. You will learn to handle anything Black might try: good lines and bad, conservative defensive play or wild counterattacking systems.

    We begin with basic concepts then move towards the more complex lines and systems. This course is uniquely suited to both beginners and more experienced players, as the concepts are presented in practical terms, while also explaining their theoretical underpinnings, exposing the principles used by players while offering unique insights into the practical aspect of each variation.

    The course reveals 3 special pawn structures White can employ at will to create an easy game with good middlegame attacking chances, while serving Black with practical difficulties. Where applicable we offer you the option of either an easy solution, or a more theoretical or a sharp line, so you can match the opening to your own style of play. We expose Black’s plot in several variations that we can then avoid. While this course complements the “Starting Out with 1. e4” course, the positions resulting from 1d4 are entirely different from those White aims for when playing 1e4. Many of the lessons include a quiz to help deepen your understanding of the underlying positional principles, while sharpening your tactics as well. We do hope you enjoy the course and hope to see you win many wonderful games playing 1. d4. Good luck!

    --IM Levon Altounian

    • 1Chigorin Defense...
    • 13.5Old Indian Defense...
    • 2Introduction - inferior black ...
    • 14.5Gruenfeld Defense...
    • 3Tarrasch Defense...
    • 15.5Allowing the Benko...
    • 4Torre Attack...
    • 16.51. d4 g6...
    • 5Albin Countergambit 1. d4 d5 2...
    • 17.5Inferior Black Replies...
    • 6Budapest Gambit...
    • 18.5Fianchetto...
    • 7Two Knights Tango 1. d4 Nf6 2....
    • 19.5King's Indian Defense...
    • 8Anti-Benko...
    • 20.51. d4 d5 Part 1...
    • 9Queen's Gambit Declined...
    • 21.5Slav Defense...
    • 10Bogo-Indian Defense...
    • 22.5Allowing the Benoni...
    • 11Queen's Indian Defense...
    • 23.5Dutch Defense 1. d4 f5...
    • 12The English Defense 1. d4 e6 2...
    • 24.51. d4 d6...
    • 13Queenside Advance...
  • Author
    Levon Altounian

    IM Levon Altounian is on the list of the most prominent chess players, coaches and organizers in the USA. He was a participant of three of the most prestigious US Championships, winner of the 2000 National Open and 2011 G10 National Open, many Arizona and California State Championships, including the 2010 “Champion of the State Champions” title. He also holds numerous records on ICC (chessclub.com) where he recently played a match with GM Hikaru Nakamura. Under his leadership, his students from all over the US won more than 100 Individual and Team State and National titles, including the K-5 Nationals in 2004 (Tucson, AZ team) and Denker competitions. His organization, called Arizona Chess For Schools, works tirelessly to promote chess on every level and also specializes in organizing chess events, camps and providing private and group lessons. To find out more please visit Arizonachessforschools.com or contact Levon directly at laltounian@msn.com.