See the Power of the Stones: Takeo Kajiwara’s Direction of Play

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direction-of-play

Introduction

“I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.” – Bruce Lee

I once read somewhere that reading 100 Go books once is inferior to reading one Go book 100 times. Like in martial arts, Go requires different skills before one can become formidable in the game. We players of this complex game can train and enhance our knowledge by reading books. Hopefully, the knowledge we consume will manifest into a skill that, hopefully, we can use in our matches. However, training one skill 1,000 times may not be sufficient to compensate the lack of training in other skills.

The best reply I read about the parable of one Go book read a 100 times is that reading ten books ten times each might be better. I agree on this proposition.

I believe that the principles of Go are as simple as its rules. The necessary skills needed in Go can be distilled in only 10 (or even less) skills, but that is for another article.

If I were asked what are the ten books I will read ten times, or even 100 times, Takeo Kajiwara‘s Direction of Play will be in my list. Continue reading

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Learn to Play Go with Learn to Play Go (Part 4)

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Learn to Play Go 4

Introduction

A Master’s Guide to the Ultimate Game, Volume I of the Learn to Play Go Series by Janice Kim and Jeong Soo-hyun, introduced Go to the absolute beginner. The Way of the Moving Horse, Volume II, showed readers how to play Go from start to finish. The Dragon Style, Volume IV, focused on the player’s mindset during a game.

Volume IV, Battle Strategies, as the title implies, will focus on fighting techniques and concepts often encountered during the middle game. Continue reading

Learn to Play Go with Learn to Play Go (Part 3)

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Learn to Play Go 3In Volume I and II of the Learn to Play Go Series, Janice Kim and Jeong Soo-hyun teach beginners all of the essentials and gameplay of Go.

In Volume III, The Dragon Style, Kim and Soo-hyun move the scene of battle from the field of knowledge to the actual Go board and one’s inner self. Continue reading

The Flow of Go: Beginner’s Guide from Start to Finish

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FlowofGoLast time, I said that Janice Kim and Jeong Soo-hyun’s “The Way of the Moving Horse” (Volume II of the Learn to Play Go Series) was the only book I know that discusses the process of Go from Opening to Middle Game to Endgame. Another good source that describes the stages of Go and the objectives a player must keep in mind at each stage is Antti Törmänen‘s “Ten’s Guide to Studying Professional Games”.

I will combine the knowledge from the book and the essay to make a general guideline for beginners regarding the flow of Go. Continue reading

Learn to Play Go with Learn to Play Go (Part 2)

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Learn to Play Go 2“The Way of the Moving Horse” is the second volume of the Learn to Play Go Series by Janice Kim and Jeong Soo-hyun. I reviewed Volume I: A Master’s Guide to the Ultimate Game before.

After reading Volume I, beginners learn the basic rules and some necessary and simple skills in the game of Go. However, rules are not enough. A game of Go starts from an empty board. Every stone added on the board changes the prevailing attitude a player should take. In other words, one must understand the proper flow of each phase of the game and the corresponding intentions of each carries. Continue reading