Byoyomi on Go Servers


Table of contents


On KGS, one may play a game using the Byo-Yomi time system. The game creator will set the following:

  • Main Time
  • Byo-Yomi Time
  • Byo-Yomi Periods

After a player uses his main time, that player must move within the set byo-yomi time or he will use a byo-yomi period. If he still does not move within that amount of time, another byo-yomi period will be used, and the timer will start for the next byo-yomi period. When all byo-yomi periods have been used, the player loses the game. It is possible to lose in this fashion on the first move in byo-yomi.

If that player moves within the allotted time, the timer is reset, but any byo-yomi periods already used will not be regained.

IGS Pandanet Style

On IGS, most clients use the match command. Among other settings, this command specifies an initial time and byoyomi minutes. In this case, the byoyomi is the amount of time to play 25 moves. After the initial time has elapsed, if a player does not play 25 moves within the specified time, that player loses on time.

Most games on IGS are played with this style of byoyomi, also known as Canadian Timing. A typical byoyomi of 10 minutes for 25 moves is reasonably relaxed. Games with a byoyomi of 7 or 8 minutes per 25 moves are also commonly seen. Blitz games use from 3 to 5 minutes per 25 moves byoyomi, while lightning games use byoyomi of 2 minutes or less per 25 moves. The PANDA-glGo client also supports a "seek game" function with options of either 5, 8, 10 or 15 minutes per 25 moves.

IGS Byoyomi Style

On IGS, some clients now support Byoyomi style time systems. This is supported with the nmatch command. At the time of writing, only PANDA-Egg and glGo support playing matches with the Byoyomi style time system.

Creating a match has the following time settings:

  • Initial time
  • Byoyomi
  • Overtime (KoryoByo in PANDA-Egg)
  • Periods (Koryotimes in PANDA-Egg)

Note that on PANDA-Egg, "Use Koryotime" needs to be checked for those settings to take effect.

After the player uses his initial time, that player has the amount of time specified by byoyomi to make a move. If a move is not made, an overtime period is used. The player has the amount of time specified by overtime, to make his move. If a move is not made in that time period, another overtime period is used. When all overtime periods are used, the player loses the game.

If a player moves within time, that player will again have his byoyomi time to play his next move, but any overtime periods used will not be regained.

This is similar to the KGS time system described above. There are a couple differences, though:

  1. The byoyomi period can be set to a different amount of time than the overtime period.
  2. The player will always have the byoyomi period for each move. The player only loses the game if the byoyomi period expires and no overtime periods are left.

See the [ext] glGo manual for additional information.

Ing Goe Clocks

Ing Goe Clocks are commonly used in Go tournaments. These clocks can be set to count down remaining time in English or in Mandarin when in overtime. The clocks can be set to use a time system similar to KGS and IGS Pandanet, but those time systems will not be described here.

Byoyomi on Go Servers last edited by axd on November 23, 2009 - 12:47
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