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Subject: Komi on smaller boards rss

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Pedro Silva
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Hi;

This is probably replied in some other site, but I was wondering if the value of Komi is still 5.5 when the board is smaller. I was teaching a friend to play the other day and I told him that starting first was compensated by Komi, but I then started thinking that 5.5 might be a bit too much on a 9 by 9 board.

Am I being silly?
 
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Jon Grantham
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You're not being silly. But, discussions I've seen suggest that komi should be more or less constant across board sizes. On the smaller boards, there may be fewer points for black to gain to offset komi, but at the same time, the first move looms proportionately larger on a smaller board. So it sort of evens out.
 
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Billy McBoatface
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5.5 komi seems to be too small. 6.5 or 7.5 are values that will given today's top players a more even balance between white and black wins. As far as I know, all the major go organizations use more than 5.5 these days.

But yes, board size (for sizes 9x9 through 19x19) does not seem to affect komi very much. For board small enough to be perfectly solvable, the komi is different; but then, perhaps if 19x19 were perfectly solvable, we would realize that 6.5 is way off of the "correct" value!
 
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Pedro Silva
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Thank you.

I am, as far as I know, the only one that plays Go regularly (through LittleGolem for now) in my gaming group.
I have taught the basic rules to a few others, but they are still in that early phase when the concepts are just a bit disconcerting... Maybe when they have 'clicked' we will eliminate the handicaps and use Komi. I only hope they keep playing to get there.
 
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marc lecours
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the evidence from games from top players is that going first is a 7 point advantage. In a solitaire game between God/Goddess and himself/herself the game would end up as a 7 point victory for black. Therefore a 6 1/2 point komi favours black slightly and a 7 1/2 point komi favours white slightly.

On a smaller board... 13x13 or even 9x9 board the komi should be very similar since the opening moves are also on the 3rd or 4th line. On very small boards it varies.

For example on a 1x1 black passes then white passes. The result is a seki. The proper komi is 1/2 or -1/2 points depending on whether you want to favour black or white.

On a 3x3 board black plays the center space white passes... It is an 8 point victory for black. Therefore proper komi is 7 1/2 points or 8 1/2 points depending on whether you want to favour black or white. Therefore already on a 3x3 board the komi is almost identical to the komi on a normal 19x19 board. I haven't checked to see what the result on a 5x5 board would be. But if it is around 7 or 8 points that would support having the same komi for all sizes of boards.
 
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Mallgur wrote:
I am, as far as I know, the only one that plays Go regularly (through LittleGolem for now) in my gaming group.

If you sign up for DGS or KGS there are plenty of BGG folk who will play with you (teaching games also).

Another way to think of komi (on a 19x19 board) is to consider what sente in the opening is worth. Generally the first four moves will be in the four corners, then black will make a sente approach move on a white corner. I don't know enough about fuseki theory to evaluate it, but I imagine it's worth something.
 
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David Pugh
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6.5

I have read that the correct value for Komi is believed to be 6.5 whether the board by 9x9, 13x13 or 19x19.
 
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