Caro-Kann Defense

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From beginners to grandmasters, the Caro-Kann opening finds proponents at any level. This opening offers Black a solid game with a good pawn structure.

Use this opening if you like to get into endgames.

Video content

If you want to learn the Caro-Kann opening there are many YouTube videos you can study.

Hanging Pawns has created a video series about the opening. In 10 videos the ideas of the opening are presented, main variations are covered, and sample games are shown.

Caleb Denby also covered the Caro-Kann extensively in a series for the Saint Louis Chess Club. In six videos a lot of valuable information is given. He also introduced many plans for the middle game in the structures that arise out of the opening.

Sample lines

With his opening move Black plans the subsequent expansion in the center with 2 … d5.

In contrast to the Scandinavian Defence, where 1. … d5 is played directly in the first move, Black can now, after having captured the pawn (3. exd5), strike back with a pawn (3. … cxd5) and thus maintain his central position. The Caro-Kann follows the same idea as the French Defence, 1. … e6. Essential differences to the French defence are, among other things, that the white square bishop c8 can be developed on the diagonal c8-h3 and is not blocked by the pawn on e6. Furthermore, no symmetrical position is created after an exchange on d5. That the Caro-Kann Defence is nevertheless played less frequently than the French Defence is due to the fact that it is more difficult for Black to attack the white center than in the French Defence with c5, Nc6, Qc7/Qb6/Qa5.

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Caro-Kann defence
36 von Ja

Caro-Kann by Mr_Penings

gotham's caro-kann
22 von ozzion

gotham's caro-kann defense from the video and subsequent lichess study

Caro-Kann Study
14 von danwilkins7

Caro-Kann Study using Erwin L'ami's S+S course on Chessable and w/ more computer analysis.

Fantasy Variation vs the caro Kann
8 von alphadave

This is a study of the fantasy variation opening vs the caro-kann defense by gotham chess. Link to the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z_Q4LaR_ZVY

Caro-Kann Advanced
7 von RelationalBeing

In this study black can practice the different variations of the Caro-Kann advanced

Caro-Kann Exchange/Panov
7 von RelationalBeing

In this study black can practice the exchange Caro-Kann and defend against the deadly Panov attack.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Caro-Kann Defense?

The Caro-Kann Defense is a chess opening for black. In the Caro-Kann Defence, Black responds with pawn to c6 to White's opening of pawn to e4. It is considered a solid opening that gives Black a good game with a solid pawn structure.

Is the Caro-Kann Defense better than the French Defense?

In the Caro-Kann defence the white bishop is not trapped in by the e6-pawn. However, it is easier for black to attack the center in the French defence. So it is a matter of opinion on which you prefer in your games.