Building a ‘stronghold’
A lot of openings aim to occupy and control the centre of the board straight away, delaying castling for a short while. The purpose of this opening is: FIRST make your king safe; THEN plan your attack. The idea is that once you have built a secure and well-defended stronghold for your king, who will be safely tucked away after castling and well defended with a knight, a bishop and three pawns, you no longer have to worry too much about him, and can then get on with the job of attacking the enemy. This opening is called the ‘Barcza’ opening, named after the Hungarian grandmaster Barcza.
The bishop with a pawn on either side and a pawn in front is called a ‘fianchetto’ and is commonly used as a line of both defence and attack.
White or black or both can open by building a ‘stronghold’:
Example 1: White and Black
(Note: even if you don’t open by building a stronghold straight away, you can still build it later on. But the longer you leave it, the greater the risk to your king.)
Example 2: White builds