The Philidor Defense is an alternative move to the more common 2…Nc6 move from black. While very solid, it is extremely passive and thought to be a weaker option to Nc6. Because of this, it is rare to see at high level play.
1. e4 e5
2. Nf3 d6
At lower levels of chess and even club levels the Philidor Defense is common so even if you don’t intend to play it yourself it’s always important to understand how to play against it.
The main line is for white to play 3. d4 but 3. Bc4 is also an option and one that I personally enjoy as it also gives white the option to try out the Legal Trap.
If you do play 3. d4 be careful if your opponent plays the aggressive 3…f5 line as white can find himself in some bad positions if played incorrectly.
Check out the video below to learn more about all the different variations in the Philidor Defense.