Paul & Sue Hazelden
- Go Page -


Introduction

Until April 1999, Paul managed to play Go most weeks.   He played at the local club, which conveniently met in Guildford.   For a while, he occasionally managed to get to the Bristol club; but more recently, this has not been possible.

Go is the simplest and yet the most difficult board game yet devised.   It originated around 4,000 years ago in China.   It is now very popular across most of Asia, and is increasingly played all over the world.

How to Play

How do you play?   Each player has a supply of pieces, all the same, called 'stones'.   One has black stones, the other white.   They play on a board marked with a 19x19 grid.   They take it in turns to place one stone on one of the intersections, and at the end of the game the player who has surrounded most intersections entirely with his stones is the winner.

And that, very nearly, is the entire game.

The other rules?   A stone, or connected group of stones, which is entirely surrounded by the other player's stones, is captured, removed from the board, and counted as territory by the capturing player.   You cannot commit suicide.   You cannot repeat the same position on the board twice in a game.   And that is the lot, until you get to the really obscure rules about how to score very unusual positions.

So you simply take it in turns to place stones on the board - they never move.   Occasionally you may capture a few stones.   And when neither player wants to place any more, the game is over.   A weaker player is given some stones on the board to start off, so even in an uneven game each player has a fair chance of winning.   The handicap system is really effective, so you can get a good game no matter who you play - one of the biggest advantages over games like chess where a strong player will simply wipe the board with the weaker player, who does not learn from the experience.

Why Play?

The game is fascinating from a number of perspectives.

Links

There are many web sites which promote the game.   Here are just a few.

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http://hazelden.org.uk/l3_go.htm was last updated 2 March 2011
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