The opening we are going to study is so sharp that it was the favorite opening in the romantic era (before 1900). At that time, players were looking for the attack almost at any cost, and thus playing very aggressive openings: the King’s gambit was at its peak. Then, the game of Chess evolved and players learnt to defend better against this opening and the success of the King’s gambit faded away.
Still, the attacking player can find in the King’s gambit many sharp, attacking lines that can confuse almost any player with Black. That is why the King’s gambit remains an excellent practical choice.
As with other openings in this series of article, only one line will be detailed. The goal here is to give you an overall understanding on the opening rather than a comprehensive knowledge on every line. Just remember that other moves are possible.
Anyway, in general, Black’s plan is to defend against White’s attack to try to get the advantage at the end of the opening. Let’s go back to our opening line now.
On top of that, the King’s gambit is an opening where strategic principles do not matter as much as concrete tactical lines, that is why each move should be considered from a tactical point of view first.
This is the King’s gambit: many possibilities to attack, but also a lot of traps and a sharp tactical game. This is one of the few openings where we can say that any little mistake can cost the game ! A very good choice of opening for those who are not afraid of complexity.
If you like the King’s gambit, you might be interested as well by similar sharp openings: the Vienna gambit, the Blackmar-Diemer gambit, the Smith-Morra gambit or the Wing gambit. With Black, the Budapest gambit and the two Knights defense may interest you. The truth is, there are many sharp lines playable and I only mentioned a subset of them.