Beginners Chess Opening TIER LIST Finale with Hikaru and Levy

GM Hikaru Nakamura and IM Levy Rozman ( @GothamChess ) use @tiermaker to rank chess openings from the point of view of a beginner (800-1300). (We will rank openings for club level players later)

Please watch and follow IM Levy Rozman of Gothamchess ➡️
Watch his live shows on Twitch ➡️

Watch my live shows on Twitch ➡️
Play chess on ➡️
Support/Tip/Donate to the channel ➡️
Join our Discord ➡️ to stay in contact and join our community
Become a fan on Facebook ➡️
Follow me on Twitter ➡️
Find me on ➡️

0:00 Intro
0:38 Nimzo Larsen Attack
1:36 Orangutan
2:36 Petrov
3:43 Philidor Defense
5:33 Pirc Defense
6:00 Polish Defense
6:32 Ponziani
7:41 Portuguese
8:56 Queen’s Gambit
10:15 Reti
12:09 Rossolimo
13:17 Ruy Lopez
15:33 Scandi
17:26 Scotch
18:49 Semi-Slav
20:47 Sicilian
21:36 Dragon
23:25 Taimanov
24:30 Slav
25:30 Smith-Morra Gambit
27:15 Sodium Attack
28:32 Stonewall
29:43 Tarrasch French
30:34 Trompowsky
31:51 Vienna Gambit

#gmhikaru #gothamchess #tiermaker


  1. when you say 1500..for what time of game? I find my rating is lower the faster the game I pick. I think I'm around 1200 in a 5 minute game, but 1323 in higher timed games.

  2. Just tell me what to play against 1. d4 as black, what is good and what's not…

  3. in the petrov, in beginner games one side always takes the pawn and loses the knight, its really easy to pin it

  4. This is the most awkward lack of chemistry ever captured on video.

  5. I don't know how someone can make this bad of a tierlist while considering themself good enough at coaching to make one.

  6. I've been trying the English, I don't like at all for my level, I end up every time in positions that I don't understand, and I don't have a good development.

    King's Indian, I love it.

  7. Hikaru saying Sicilian is legendary shows he does not understand beginners

  8. Sicilian is NOT legendary for beginners, way too hard

  9. Why do you keep saying "as you guys know", when this is for beginners like me? 😅

  10. Yall never brought up the simple fact of the taimonov
    D A R K S Q U A R E S

  11. 27:34 is sodium because na3. It doesn't make sense in english because of the sodium. First its the chemical element Na, then its 3 – tri. So na3 – natri. Lithuanian word for sodium is natris. Most likely nicknamed by a russian, as Na3 pronounced as one word in russian sounds exactly like the russian word for sodium. Also why no bishops opening?

  12. "I think It was 140",
    … Yeah buddy need work on that one

  13. You know I thought that chess GM are super smart and good at memorizing before I heard him say that "Na is 140"

  14. periodic table was made so we didn't have to memorize it, this is just a waste of time memorizing periodic table has nothing to do with knowing chemistry, great video though.

  15. didn’t mention the stafford when talking about petrov 🙁

  16. Isn't stonewall a defence for black… some of these seem quite different from the official definitions

  17. I am a huge supporter of the ponziani opening. Theres so many traps and so many easy ways for black to go wrong especially in begginer lvl.

  18. Honestly I call 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 d6 philidor. Is that wrong?

  19. Mieses Opening????????????????? Never saw it.

  20. 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. e5 c5 4. Bd3 Nc6 5. Nf3 Qb6 6. O-O Nxd4 7. Re1 Nc6 8. c3
    Nge7 9. Nbd2 c4 10. Bb1 Ng6 11. a4 Qc7 12. Qe2 Bc5 13. b3 cxb3 14. Nxb3 Bb6 15.
    Bd3 a5 16. g4 Qb8 17. Kg2 Bc7 18. Kh3 Ncxe5 19. Nxe5 Nxe5 20. Bb1 h5 21. g5 f6
    22. gxf6 gxf6 23. f4 Ng4 24. Qd2 e5 25. Kh4 Kf7 26. f5 e4 27. Qxd5+ Kg7 28. Ra2
    Bxh2 29. Rg2 Bf4 30. Rxe4 Bxc1 31. Re7+ Kh6 32. Qf7 Bxf5 33. Qxh5# 1-0

  21. With Levy being a Caro-Kann expert how can the Fantasy variation not be included!?

  22. I'm actually having high win rates as white with the polish opening: 1. a3 2. B4 3. Bb2

  23. Giuoco Piano is so low but Italian is so high? I always understood that after d3 in the Italian, c3 was probably coming anyway so why differentiate?

  24. The sodium attack should be renamed the basketball attack. It's N(b)a. Right? And for your next video add the canal attack eh?

  25. Caro Kann feels confusing to me. I accidentally end up in Slav or semi Slav when I try to do it…

  26. Can you both @GothamChess and @GMHikaru do this for Intermediate level players please? 1300-2200 or so.

  27. They're roasting Hess for teaching Hafu some of the more tricky openings. I didn't watch the pogchamps but seems like if anyone can learn advanced chess right off the bat, Hafu can.

  28. Levy being nice about the Sicilian: 😀
    Hikaru: 🤨🤨🤨🤨🤨🤨

  29. The pirc defence Czech Variation (Czech defence) is better than the main line. I have played it a lot and got success as a beginner.

  30. Si I'm a new player. Don't know any openings, just to try to get to the.middle of the board. Does this video mean that Evans gambit is the first formal opening I should learn?

  31. I'm glad to hear a grandmaster admit he doesn't know the difference between the pirc and the modern either.

  32. Such a good video. Love the energy between big bro Hikaru and levy. Really awesome! Might just be emotional wreck 2 AM comment but happens

  33. Every time Hikaru says 'opening ____, which of course everyone knows is…' like stfu dude, no we don't, that's why we clicked on the video, it literally says beginners on it. I know he's not intending to be condescending, and normally he seems like a cool guy. But like, we get it, you're smart. Talking like this is very off-putting for people who don't understand a concept as well as you do.

  34. = OPENING TIMESTAMPS FOR 800s-1300s (PART 3: THE END) =

    + Legendary Openings +

    – (White, Giuco Piano Game) Evan's Gambit
    – (White, d4 & Bf4 against "anything") London System
    – (White, e4) Advanced French
    – (Black, against e4) Caro-Kann Defence
    – (White, e4, e5) Danish Gambit
    – (Black, against d4) King's Indian Defence [KID]
    31:51 – (White, e4, e5, Nc3) Vienna Gambit
    15:33 – (Black, against d4) Scandinavian Defense
    – (Black, e4, c6) Sicilian Defense

    + Unreakable Openings +

    10:15 – (White, Nf3) Reti Opening
    – (White, e4) Fried Liver
    – Jerome Gambit
    25:30 – (White, against the Sicilian) Smith-Morra Gambit
    – (White, e4, Nf3) Italian Game/Opening
    – (White, e4, Nf3) Four Knights Italian Game
    13:17 – (White) Ruy López [Spanish Game/Opening]
    – (White, against the Caro-Kann) Caro-Kann Defence, Advance Nc3+g4+Nge2
    8:56 – (White, d4) Queen's Gambit
    17:26 – (White, e4, e5, Nf3, Nc6) The Scotch Game
    21:36 – (Black, against e4) Sicilian Defense: Accelerated Dragon

    + Legit Openings +

    – (White) Closed Sicilian
    – (Black, against d4) Englund Gambit
    – Modern Defense
    – Pirc Defense
    – Alapin Sicillian
    – Grand Prix
    – Stonewall
    – Trompowsky Attack
    – Dutch Defense
    – Nimzo-Indian Defense
    – Exchange Caro-Kann
    – French Defense
    – NImzo-Larsen Attack
    – King's Gambit
    – Rossolimo
    – King's Indian Attack
    – Tarrasch French

  35. Love you guys to bits, but gotta tell you:

    As a beginner, I am looking for an opening, where I get to reap the benefits of learning it. No use learning Neo-Arkhangelsk, if most Ruy Lopez setups evolve into exchange. No use learning Ruy Lopez, if half the time; the bishop doesn't move all the way to b5, but stops at c4, giving you Italian. But if you play Center Game, you can have your way as white, most of the time. As black, when you meet 1.e4, you can by the next move initate French. You cannot initate Ruy Lopez, four knights, whatever. But you can initiate French every time.

    It would be more helpful if you ranked openings according to how often they occur, and whether learning them pays off in some way. To me, it looked like you had an easy time ranking all the one trick ponies, like the Grob, the Gambits, etc, but then you struggle back and forth between what perspectives you should put an emphasis on. Like, Levy made a video about Ruy Lopez, claiming "why on earth is a beginner learning the Ruy Lopez." And then you have a video where the two of you ranks it at the top front of openings a beginner should learn. This makes no sense.

    And like people say, there should have been separate videos for "as white" and "as black".

  36. "of course everyone knows" no Hikaru we don't know lol 😂

  37. Hikaru and Levy are awesome personalities. Would love to spend a day around these two.

  38. So what are beginners supposed to do against the queen's gambit if every popular defense against it is considered too complicated for them? Especially when I just started, I played queen's gambit as white all the time.

  39. F*ck me bro I'm just starting out on chess and trying to figure out which openings to learn but there is SOOOO much to learn before you can even play a game it seems. I'll learn an opening and the opponent plays something unexpected and BOOM I'm f*cked and have no clue what to do

  40. I was using the Ponziani until I watched this video XD

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.