Compromised King-side:
Part of the Advanced Beginner's Chess Guide (Section 1)

Compromised King-side


  • Point Count Chess: Compromised King-side [-];
If your opponent can attack your King's position, with advantage (being able to bring greater force to bear upon your King, or the squares immediately surrounding your King), then your Kingside region has been Compromised (putting you at a critical disadvantage).

The main culprits of your Compromised King side are the King Bishop Pawn (Diagram 1) and/or King Knight Pawn (Diagram 2) going absent, due to moving, capturing or being captured. They leave an open route down towards the King (if/when Castled). Not good.
Compromised Kingside, Image 1, Advanced Beginners Chess Guide
Diagram 1: White's King Bishop Pawn absent,
due to advancing = Compromised King-side.
Compromised Kingside, Image 2, Advanced Beginners Chess Guide
Diagram 2: Black's King Knight Pawn absent,
due to capturing = Compromised King-side.
If you have to move a pawn, the King Rook pawn is the best, followed by the KN pawn, then the KB pawn. Best not to move any pawn. According to the Summary, H&M-S deduct a point ("count a point minus") if ANY pawn is moved or doubled. But as we saw with the Mobile Pawn Wing, (see also PCC, p5, diagram XB), you can move pawns as long as your opponent cannot attack you. If he can attack you, it is a minus point.

One common example is if a Fianchettoed Bishop has gone missing and an enemy Bishop is on either b3, g3, b6, g6 respectively. The Bishop that is gone, would then be counted as a Compromised Kingside, such as in the following sequence:



H&M-S say, "... if your Bishop is swapped off, the Hole stands out in nudity. It is often a pronounced weakness when you have castled on that side" - see PCC, p125, paragraph 4. Otherwise, if the Bishop remains in place, it serves to protect the Holes around the King. It is the Holes that cannot be protected by pieces, which creates the point. Ken suggests rereading PCC p124-127, with the above in mind, will help clarify this.
Further Reading

Point Count Chess (Horowitz & Mott-Smith, 1960)
  • The Compromised King-Side, (p153)
  • The Doubled King Bishop Pawn, (p154)
  • File-Opening after P-KN3, (p157)
  • Loosening Up KN3, (p158)
  • Inducing P-KN3, (p159)
  • P-KR3: Pro and Con, (p159)
  • The Pin of the King Knight, (p162)
  • P-KR3 by the Book, (p165)
  • The Compromised King-Side SUMMARY, (p167)


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← Back to the Chess Glossary (Compromised King-side)
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