Thursday, November 24, 2005

Pro Games

The usual way that I review pro games is to download them from a source such as and then review them at a later time. In doing so, I can review them at my leisure, with the handicap being that I don't take enough time between each move. The best way that I have found to study pro games is to watch them live via internet broadcast.
On the Oro Baduk server you can find many live broadcast games from all three great countries of Go (Korea, China, and Bhutan.. no.. just kidding.. Japan.) This evening I watched a Japanese game between a 7d and 9d pro. The pauses between each move give you plenty of time to think about why they played where they did, where the next stone might be played, and each players overall strategy. Of course, I am about a 29k player, so I can guess a few moves in the opening, and that's about it. The best part is that in the games I have watched, commentary is made by high-ranking amateur dan players. While the commentary itself is in Korean, Chinese, or Japanese, the commentary is followed by a link which opens a small Gibo, complete with interactive buttons, to view the possible moves to follow. As the game progresses, it is very interesting to see these possible strategic ideas and be able to replay them at your own leisure. The stones themselves are the universal language and one need not worry about the characters on the screen that aren't understood.
Here is the an example of the number of games being broadcast at the time I am writing this entry:

At some point, the pauses between each move may get a little long, but armed with the power of speakers, you may surf the web or study what you have seen in the game so far at and wait for the next stone sound the click.
While I was on the server, a 9dan Korean pro logged on, the user name starting with Cho, and at first I thought it was Cho Chikun. Alas, the name ended with a "B". If anyone knows who it may be, let me know (not that it is some great mystery like the hot dog bun/hot dog count... I was just curious.)

I thought I would finish this entry with a quote from The Korean Times article of Go Etiquette: The following is an example of how the old Chinese book Yi Lu (弈律, ``The Rules of Baduk’’) regulated the players’ manners.
``Telling lies by saying that a group will die, feigning joy or sadness, feigning surprise or entreaty, or disturbing the other person’s mood is punished by 50 light lashes. This type of trickery is about aiming to cause the opponent to make a mistake by thinking that there is no other move here so that he plays elsewhere. Lying by saying that `that group will die’ is referring to a group as dead when it is not clearly so and, in fact, is a trick to make him make the last move elsewhere. Feigning joy refers to saying `I have won, I have won’ when the game is not yet over, and is a trick to cause the opponent to lose his attention on the game. Feigning sadness is showing a loss of fighting spirit by saying `that is hopeless’ in a game one has not yet lost, and is a trick to reduce the opponent’s attention on the game. Feigning surprise is suddenly noticing something and exclaiming `Ah so’ and is a trick to make the opponent treat one lightly.’’

Try getting your online server to give you 50 lashes!

The Korean Times has, what I think is weekly- article on an introduction to Go in the Arts and Leasure section.


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