Premature attacks in chess are very difficult to stop for beginner and intermediate players. But if you’ve got a technique and the chess concepts are in place, not only can you stop your opponent from gaining an advantage but also put them in the worst possible position with the right play.
One piece that is most commonly used in premature attacks is the queen. Principally it is wrong to bring out your queen before developing other pieces in most chess openings but people do it for 2 reasons, either the opponent is weak and unprepared or there is too much over-confidence.
In this blog, I will tell you how you can stop premature queen attacks and gain a significant advantage in development. Also I will tell you how and when to bring out your queen early on and fabricate an attack that is impossible to stop.
The most basic early Queen attack and How to stop it?
If you are an e4 e5 player with black pieces, the most basic early queen attack you will experience with black pieces is your opponent playing Qh5 on move 2.
If you play g6 here thinking that the queen will go back, the game is already lost. Because queen can take the e5 pawn with a check and the next piece coming off the board is your rook very soon.
Knight to c6 is the best 2nd move in this position. It protects your pawn at e5 and is a nice developing move to a natural knight’s square.
Ignore the opponent’s queen for a while and let’s see what the opponent plays next.
If the opponent plays Bishop c4, which is most likely to happen, you are forced to save the weak f7 pawn or it will be a checkmate.
The best way to do that is play pawn to g6. Qe7 and Qf6 are also good candidate moves but g6 puts you in the best counter attacking mode.
If your opponent is stubborn and doesn’t want to give up attack and try to attack your weak f7 pawn yet again by moving is queen thrice in opening with a move like Qf3, you can just keep developing your pieces by planting your other knight at Knight to f6.
Here white can play g4 to attack your knight in two moves, so you have to stop development for a while and play the attacking move knight to d4 attacking the white queen. This is where tables can start turning if you keep the technique right. You have blocked all the punches and now it’s time to hit back.
Qe3 here will be a blunder for white because you can fork queen and king by taking c2 pawn with your knight and opponent’s queen next when his king moves.
Instead of this blunder, if white protects his pawn on c2 by playing something like queen to c3, you can just grab the hanging pawn on g2 with your other knight or even better grab the e4 pawn with knight and attack the opponent’s queen once more.
If you want to see the moves on the board, I have created studies of it on lichess in different chapters. Watch them here.
In all these early queen attacks, you have to take care of not blundering at all, develop the pieces while defending your king and strike back just at the right time.
Don’t Memorize the Moves to stop early Queen attack
The point of showing you how to stop this early queen attack is not memorization. You just need to fix the technique and play sensible moves. As long as you are forcing your opponent to move the queen one more time, you are adding a squeeze in his camp and ultimately this pressure will lead to a significant advantage in your favor.
If your opponent is not attacking your king and plays Qf3 on 2nd move and keeps the queen just there, don’t worry, develop your pieces and it will be all fine transitioning from opening to the middle game.
Ways to bring the Queen out the right way
Some openings are exceptional. You can bring the queen out early and there won’t be any problem doing that, like in the Vienna system demonstrated on the board here.
Early Queen out in Vienna Gambit
One of the main lines in the Vienna system called Vienna gambit has a move order e4 e5, Nc6 Nf6, f4 d5, fxe5, Nxe4 and Qf3.
You can ask why is the queen coming out early and there is nothing wrong with it?
The answer is, queen can come out early because there is no direct threat to the queen. If the opponent plays Ng5 to attack the queen, you can just grab the pawn at e5 with your queen and the opponent is pawn down.
Another example is the London System.
Early Queen out in London System
In London system you can bring the queen out early with black pieces in a move order d4 d5, Bf4 Nf6, e3 c5, Nf3 and Qb6. You can see it on the board here.
Sliding the queen out to b6 with black and b3 with white is very common in many openings and queens are totally fine in those positions.
Another example of early queen out safely is the Sicilian defense.
Early Queen out in Sicilian Defense
In Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation you can bring the queen out as early as after e4 c5, Nf3 d6, d4 cxd4, Nxd4 Nf6, Nc3 a6, you can play Qf3 and the queen is totally fine there because the only direct attack Bg4 can be easily neutralized with Qg3.
One last example is the Scandinavian defense, played regularly by Magnus Carlsen and Daniil Dubov in online chess.
Early Queen out in Scandinavian Defense
Scandinavian is not scandi without queen coming out on move 2 in all it’s accepted variations. Even in the declined variation after d4 e5, d5 it’s still scandinavain but not relevant to our topic of early queens out…
The most famous line in scandinavian defense that is still played at top level is the Gubinsky-Melts variation where black after d4 e5, d5 plays queen to d6 and is totally fine there. If Nb5, you can play queen back to d8 or Qb6 and queen is totally fine out there.
There is one famous trap in Gubinsky-Melts variation that even intermediate players can fall for sometimes. You can check it on the board here named Scandinavian defense gubinsky trap.
That trap can happen in many move orders. One of them is: e4 d5, exd5 Qxd5,Nc3 Qd6, Bc4a6, Nf3b5, Bd3Nf6, O-O Ng4, b3 Bb7, h3Bxf3, Qxf3 Qh2#
That’s all in how to stop early queen attacks and how to play the queen out early. If you have any doubts, questions or suggestions, please write them in comments or reach out to us through email on the contact us page.