After a discursive dalliance with d4 I’ve decided to go back to the King’s pawn openings, and am taking a crack at a possible repertoire. Needing to start somewhere, let’s look at the French defense.

I think I’d like to try the Monte Carlo variation in the Exchange:

Diagram of Monte Carlo variation

1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. ed5 ed5 4. c4

Why? Well it seems to take Black out of his comfort zone. Most of his time will be spent studying the Advanced, Tarrasch, Winawer or Classical. And it prevents some of the shortcuts like the Fort Knox. It also breaks the symmetry typical of the Exchange, leading to (hopefully) less dull positions and games.

Although he is not blogging anymore (a serious loss to amateur chess on the internet), Michael Goeller has kept his extensive archive online, and he has a nice overview of the Monte Carlo through sample games.

Now I need to find some Master level model games and play through them until I feel confident enough to play this OTB.