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Subject: Are you playing GO? rss

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Dennis Hansen
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Is there Any People in here playing Go Im considered buying it. But is the game worth it?
 
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Gianluca Casu
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The gamne is indeed worth it, that said, before buying it, BE SURE you have a steady group of GO player that you can join.

In all other cases those classics are just the next dust collectors on your shelf.
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Christian K
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You can easily make your own set to try it out before buying. I like the game but it is quite hard to learn (especially learning when the game is over). I prefer chess from that category, I find it more intuitive.
 
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Russ Williams
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It is a great game. Of course if no one you know is interested in playing, then there's little point in owning a set, but if you know some people to play with, then it is wonderful to play with a real set. If there is some convenient Go club near you, even better!

Either way, you can also play online at many sites. And since it's a classic game there are many tutorial websites and software, books for beginners, etc.
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Bryan Thunkd
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Go is the best game by a large margin. If you don't have local opponents you probably don't need to buy a board. You can play online at KGS and decide how much you like the game.
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Martin Larouche
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I like abstracts. I also like old classics like Chess, Backgammon and Shogi.

I tried Go. Played a lot of games. Never could find it interesting.

With a Go board, i prefer to play Gomoku or Pente. Are they lesser games? probably... but i still prefer them to Go.

back to Hive it is.
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Brandon
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Not as much as I'd like to. Need to get back on dragongoserver

It's an amazing game, but be prepared to lose and lose and lose and lose before you start getting good (I still haven't reached the "getting good" part). If you do get into it, I recommend reading at least a little bit about the strategy. No need to memorize opening moves as in Chess, but it's important to understand some important basic concepts that are not overtly encoded in the rules.
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Russ Williams
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One of the great things about Go is that even if you suck, you can play a fair game with a stronger player via the unusually good handicap system. That's something I like about Go culture (handicap games are a normal ordinary thing, unlike with many games).
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chris thatcher
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I tried it, didn't like it. I do like chess however (im just not very good at it)
 
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Brandon
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russ wrote:
One of the great things about Go is that even if you suck, you can play a fair game with a stronger player via the unusually good handicap system. That's something I like about Go culture (handicap games are a normal ordinary thing, unlike with many games).


True, but most of my experience is on dragongoserver, where I have a (dismal) ranking, so it usually pairs me with other n00bs. I would probably learn more by playing with a handicap against stronger opponents, though.
 
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Madison
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Never did. At least, I don't think so.
 
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Chris
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I tried it for a few weeks about ten years ago. It seemed combinatorically interesting (and vast) but I couldn't shake the feeling that, a substantial amount of the time, people who play it are engaging in pareidolia (that is: reading patterns into randomness, reading intent into the arbitrary). That's not to say there's nothing to it (the skilled will beat the less skilled -- mostly); it's just that a lot of the reasons offered for things happening in certain circumstances seemed to be correlation-causation fallacies, at best. In other words; I couldn't escape the feeling that, combinatorially, it was *too* big.
 
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TPoG
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Absolutely worth it! Best game around.

However, jumping into the ocean without knowing how to swim may be overwhelming.

If you have no experienced go players around I would recommend online play combined with reading an introductory go book to get a feel for the basic game play.

I myself had great benefit from reading: "Go for beginners" by Kaoru Iwamoto. There is a Danish version "Go for begyndere" which probably is out of print but likely available at the library. It is an easy read and really nails the basics for a complete noob like I was when I read it many years ago.
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J R
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The gameplay is absolutely worth it. I have a cheap 9x9 set that I play with my son: the handicap system is excellent.

However, for me it's much easier to find opponents online. Turn-based games may be a bit long at LittleGolem, but there are lots of realtime games at OGS (and other servers). It's been much, much more instructive for me to play against humans rather than against computers.

You don't really need high-end equipment to play on. I'd recommend getting a set with full-size stones—many of the cheaper sets you see have miniature stones that are too small. Lots of people make their own boards, too.

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Kevin Anderson
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I will if you give me $200
 
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Greg
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There are few games out there that I consider lifestyle games. Games that the more you put into it, the more it gives back. The games that instead of feeling old and tired after hours and hours of play and study, they actually feel more alive.

These games have people who make their entire living playing the game. They have entire books written on one aspect of their strategy and you know, that no matter how much you learn, you probably will never be able to compete with the professionals. This is not meant to be a discouragement, but just a comfort to know that you can study to your heart's content and not worry about ending your journey or "solving" the game.

I've always felt it's good to have one of these to sink your teeth into over the course of one's life. Go might not be the only game that fits that bill, but I feel like it's one that is definitely worth it.
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Bryan Thunkd
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Triboluminous wrote:
I tried it for a few weeks about ten years ago. It seemed combinatorically interesting (and vast) but I couldn't shake the feeling that, a substantial amount of the time, people who play it are engaging in pareidolia (that is: reading patterns into randomness, reading intent into the arbitrary). That's not to say there's nothing to it (the skilled will beat the less skilled -- mostly); it's just that a lot of the reasons offered for things happening in certain circumstances seemed to be correlation-causation fallacies, at best. In other words; I couldn't escape the feeling that, combinatorially, it was *too* big.
If you ever study Joseki (set sequences that are generally considered equal for black and white) you'll very quickly be disabused of this idea. The placement of a stone in one spot versus the spot immediately next to it will have huge consequences, causing a sequence of play to either work or fail miserably.

Learning the joseki moves is (somewhat) easy. Learning why those moves make sense, and how other moves can be taken advantage of, is hard, but proves the point that there are really important reasons why a stone should be in a particular spot.

Or to put it another way, when you looked at the board and couldn't find meaning in someone's moves, it wasn't that they were reading patterns into randomness... it was that you didn't have the skill to distinguish random spots from good ones. It'd be like looking at a Chess game and presuming that the players are just randomly moving pieces around because you didn't understand the purpose of what they were doing.
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Chris
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Thunkd wrote:
Triboluminous wrote:
I tried it for a few weeks about ten years ago. It seemed combinatorically interesting (and vast) but I couldn't shake the feeling that, a substantial amount of the time, people who play it are engaging in pareidolia (that is: reading patterns into randomness, reading intent into the arbitrary). That's not to say there's nothing to it (the skilled will beat the less skilled -- mostly); it's just that a lot of the reasons offered for things happening in certain circumstances seemed to be correlation-causation fallacies, at best. In other words; I couldn't escape the feeling that, combinatorially, it was *too* big.
If you ever study Joseki (set sequences that are generally considered equal for black and white) you'll very quickly be disabused of this idea. The placement of a stone in one spot versus the spot immediately next to it will have huge consequences, causing a sequence of play to either work or fail miserably.

Learning the joseki moves is (somewhat) easy. Learning why those moves make sense, and how other moves can be taken advantage of, is hard, but proves the point that there are really important reasons why a stone should be in a particular spot.

Or to put it another way, when you looked at the board and couldn't find meaning in someone's moves, it wasn't that they were reading patterns into randomness... it was that you didn't have the skill to distinguish random spots from good ones. It'd be like looking at a Chess game and presuming that the players are just randomly moving pieces around because you didn't understand the purpose of what they were doing.


I played it enough to understand that you haven't burst the bubble, you've simply moved it two degrees to the left. When you understand that, you'll attain enlightenment.
 
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Chris Robbins
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I got Go as one of the 3M bookshelf games. It's a fine addition to the classics (Checkers, Chess, Backgammon, etc.) But as others have suggested, computer AI or connections can let you test the waters. A fine wood board and quality stones might be a bit expensive.

It may have the simplest of rules, but mastering it ... I think this is the game that phrase was made for.
 
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Greg
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Triboluminous wrote:
I tried it for a few weeks about ten years ago.

Triboluminous wrote:
I played it enough to understand that you haven't burst the bubble, you've simply moved it two degrees to the left.


No, no you haven't. I'll be the first to admit that Go has a ridiculously steep learning curve. I would even admit it is a negative of the game and I completely understand someone giving up after a few weeks and deciding it's not worth it.

There is a Go proverb that states, "Lose your first hundred games quickly." They say this because it takes about that long to really start getting traction in the subtleties of the game and understanding the implications or your moves.

In the beginning you will feel lost, but if you keep working at it, those seemingly random patterns and arbitrary moves will begin to make sense. Rather or not it is worth it, is up to you.

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J C Lawrence
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Triboluminous wrote:
I played it enough to understand that you haven't burst the bubble, you've simply moved it two degrees to the left. When you understand that, you'll attain enlightenment.


A story a friend told me as an ESL teacher in Japan:

His sponsor's son was a Go player and had strongly considered going professional but under family pressure had finally decided on a more, umm, substantial career. Meanwhile my friend was using Go as an ESL teaching tool in class. The class would play Go, discussing the game and each other's moves in English. During this process the sponsor's son visited the class, looked at one of the games in progress that the class was heatedly discussing the next move for and said simply and fairly quickly, You should go here. He was then asked Why that move in particular, why not this other move or that other move? The sponsor's son paused and stared at the board in silence for about 30 minutes and finally said, If you go here, then this happens, and then this and this and this and this and this and this and...about 20 moves later...this happens, and that's bad. But if you go here instead, then...a similarly long sequence of moves...and then this happens, and that's good. That other move over there turns into....this...which becomes this variation of the first case and is bad again. This other move does that, that, that, that, that, which is even worse. But this one, this one does this and that's good because...another long sequence of moves... This move you are making right now is deciding what will happen with this quarter of the board and depending on what happens here (and he pointed at a location nobody had yet mentioned), depending on what happens here and here will decide if that wins the game.
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Bryan Thunkd
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Triboluminous wrote:
I played it enough to understand that you haven't burst the bubble, you've simply moved it two degrees to the left. When you understand that, you'll attain enlightenment.
Go is a lifestyle game that some people devote their entire lives to learning. It's amusing that you think that you've got it figured out after a couple of weeks of play. But sure... your, what ten? twenty? plays was enough for you to completely understand the game and decide there's nothing there other than the illusion of patterns? Right.

Edit: If there were only the illusion of patterns, then you wouldn't have some players consistently winning. The fact that some players do better than others points to the fact that there's skill involved and not just randomness. The fact that you couldn't see anything besides randomness just shows your lack of skill.
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Bryan Thunkd
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clearclaw wrote:
Triboluminous wrote:
I played it enough to understand that you haven't burst the bubble, you've simply moved it two degrees to the left. When you understand that, you'll attain enlightenment.


A story a friend told me as an ESL teacher in Japan:

His sponsor's son was a Go player and had strongly considered going professional but under family pressure had finally decided on a more, umm, substantial career. Meanwhile my friend was using Go as an ESL teaching tool in class. The class would play Go, discussing the game and each other's moves in English. During this process the sponsor's son visited the class, looked at one of the games in progress that the class was heatedly discussing the next move for and said simply and fairly quickly, You should go here. He was then asked Why that move in particular, why not this other move or that other move? The sponsor's son paused and stared at the board in silence for about 30 minutes and finally said, If you go here, then this happens, and then this and this and this and this and this and this and...about 20 moves later...this happens, and that's bad. But if you go here instead, then...a similarly long sequence of moves...and then this happens, and that's good. That other move over there turns into....this...which becomes this variation of the first case and is bad again. This other move does that, that, that, that, that, which is even worse. But this one, this one does this and that's good because...another long sequence of moves... This move you are making right now is deciding what will happen with this quarter of the board and depending on what happens here (and he pointed at a location nobody had yet mentioned), depending on what happens here and here will decide if that wins the game.
We have a 7 Dan player at our local club. When you ask him where to play, he'll give you a suggestion, but if you ask why, he often has trouble explaining it. He's played so many games that he's just developed a pattern recognition of what's good shape and what's not. If you really press him about it, he'll think about it and explain how the stone he put down relates to the local situation and the global situation, and can play out sequences to show why that move makes sense, but it's obvious that's not how he finds his moves usually.

As I've gotten better at the game I've seen some of this creep into my own play. When I teach a new player, they'll sometimes make a move and I instinctively know it's really bad. But when I tell them that, I have to think through why I don't like it and find the flaws in the move. As you get better you develop a feel for shape, weakness and strength, and how to handle them. It's interesting playing with a completely new player because you'll find yourself cringing as they put down a really bad move, and completely overlook much better moves. Of course, I remember being in that stage too and how nothing seemed to make sense.
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Greg
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Thunkd wrote:
clearclaw wrote:
Triboluminous wrote:
I played it enough to understand that you haven't burst the bubble, you've simply moved it two degrees to the left. When you understand that, you'll attain enlightenment.


A story a friend told me as an ESL teacher in Japan:

His sponsor's son was a Go player and had strongly considered going professional but under family pressure had finally decided on a more, umm, substantial career. Meanwhile my friend was using Go as an ESL teaching tool in class. The class would play Go, discussing the game and each other's moves in English. During this process the sponsor's son visited the class, looked at one of the games in progress that the class was heatedly discussing the next move for and said simply and fairly quickly, You should go here. He was then asked Why that move in particular, why not this other move or that other move? The sponsor's son paused and stared at the board in silence for about 30 minutes and finally said, If you go here, then this happens, and then this and this and this and this and this and this and...about 20 moves later...this happens, and that's bad. But if you go here instead, then...a similarly long sequence of moves...and then this happens, and that's good. That other move over there turns into....this...which becomes this variation of the first case and is bad again. This other move does that, that, that, that, that, which is even worse. But this one, this one does this and that's good because...another long sequence of moves... This move you are making right now is deciding what will happen with this quarter of the board and depending on what happens here (and he pointed at a location nobody had yet mentioned), depending on what happens here and here will decide if that wins the game.
We have a 7 Dan player at our local club. When you ask him where to play, he'll give you a suggestion, but if you ask why, he often has trouble explaining it. He's played so many games that he's just developed a pattern recognition of what's good shape and what's not. If you really press him about it, he'll think about it and explain how the stone he put down relates to the local situation and the global situation, and can play out sequences to show why that move makes sense, but it's obvious that's not how he finds his moved usually.

Yeah, this is why I prefer to play against someone who is only a few stones stronger than me, rather than someone much stronger. I feel like those who are in the higher ranks have converted so much of the more basic ideas into an intuition, that they can no longer explain it well. Whereas someone who is only a few stones stronger, remembers the mental hurdles they had to get over and how they did so and can thus explain the concept to me clearly.
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J C Lawrence
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I spent a long time playing 1830 with a skilled player...and getting most of nowhere. In short, every time I thought I saw something, thought I saw a way of doing something, I'd fumblingly try and he of course knew how to respond and how to exploit all my inefficiencies, exploited them and shut my larval exploration in quick order. Which wasn't clear to me at the time, but made learning rather difficult as I had no clear indicators of progress. It was only after I started playing with players closer to where I was, then started trying things again, suddenly saw them working and working well and could them optimise them etc that all the latent progress I'd accumulated suddenly emerged.
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