I will occasionally post Go games. I started out with Go in the beginning of 2011 and, after a rapid rise to about 9kyu, I’ve been gaining around 4kyu a year since then. I can really recommend chess players to do this for a number of reasons. First, if you are too tactically inclined a player, then by playing Go you will be forced to think about things like “structure” and “plans”. Secondly, if you work as a coach, reliving the struggle of being a beginner at a difficult game (like Chess – or Go) will definitely improve your understanding of those you are coaching. Thirdly, there are few things that let you appreciate the “nature” of what you have learned as a chess player and learning Go will make it obvious that you know stuff that transcends the chess board. I can go on like this, but let’s call it there. My current Go rating is around 1kyu and therefore it is a bit like a chess player rated around 2000 commenting on chess games, so do not take what I write below too seriously 😉 If you feel like visiting a more serious Go-site then I recommend gogameguru; especially solving the weekly problems is a great source of learning (and joy). If you find my vocabulary somewhat alien it is because I sometimes use the highly specialized Go vocabulary. The majority of these expressions can be found at Sensei’s library.

Swedish Go Championship

The Swedish Go Championship starts on Saturday and I’m looking forward to playing in my second go tournament ever. Due to go-federation regulations (which I’m all for) I will start at a 2kyu rank, which makes it virtually impossible for me to win the tournament even if I win all my games. My ambition is to play some nice games and perhaps be able to comment on one or two here.

The best part of it is that Catalin Tartanu 5p, is visiting and will help us with our games. Here are a couple of lessons that Catalin held at the 52:nd European Go Congress, in Leksand:

I will be back with more in a few days.

Posted in go

Where’s the Go board?

We had to move to a new host, so updates and upgrades (and new security SSL) borked the Go plugin showing the go board and games. Not quite sure what nuked the plugin, but we’re working on it. As soon as we know what, we’ll move on to the how and then, the when. Unless we get very lucky, it won’t be tomorrow — but maybe the day after … ?

Sorry about the bother…

And we’re back! A very big thank you to François Mizessyn, developer of the maxiGos plugin, who fixed the problem!

An amazing go game

Today’s game is a go game that I found on the WorldBaduk Server the Friday before last. When I read my first book on go, “Fundamentals of go” by Kageyama Toshiro, I managed to follow most of what he wrote, but then there was this concept “thickness”, that he describes in rather lyrical words. I came to understand it in theory, but to go from there to actually using it in my own games has been quite difficult. In this game Park Junghwan makes wonderful use of thickness:

Dang Yifei (B) – Park Junghwan (W)

So, I guess I’m officially back to writing more. For some time there was very little info on go in english, apart from at gogameguru and Dwyrin’s stream on youtube. However, in the last few years, things have changed and now there are quite a few new places where one can learn a few things about go. I specially recommend Haylee and the American Go Association on youtube. Also, LongstrideBaduk, Littlelamb Go and Lightvolty are very good. All these are far, far stronger than I am.

I write mostly because it is a good thing, while learning a complex game, to put words on ones thoughts. It maintains focus and makes it possible to go back and check how you have developed. I have told many a young chess player to write about that which they want to learn. So, I’m merely following my own advice.

Posted in go

Saint Petersburg match against Alexander Morozevich, part 2.

…and the match continued. My hopes were slightly higher when it came to the go games, so it didn’t bode well for me to lose the first one like that. Now I had to win the second chess game in order to stay in the match:

Mmmm, however beautiful that was, it didn’t feel too great to be crushed like that and I didn’t look forward to losing the match 0-4. I had to get my stuff together and play my best:

It was a relief to win the last game. In the evening I celebrated with another five games of go.

After my return back to Sweden, Alexander Morozevich continued to play in the open group of the tournament and managed to score an impressive8/9. (The system for go tournaments is completely different from chess tournaments and you mainly play those at or around your own strength) Even more impressive, he managed to beat a 2dan opponent in the last round. In a later mail I got from Alexandre Dinerchtein, who wrote that Morozevich will likely be promoted to 1dan. So, although I still haven’t played a single turnament game in go, I feel it is reasonable to say that I’m close to 1 dan and lately, for the first time in a year, I have experienced an increase in my rating on the servers. Considering what I did in Cellavision Cup last weekend (which I will write about next), it is nice that some things go well.