This is the female-only equivalent of the Japanese Honinbo title. It was originally called the All-Japan Women's Championship for 27-terms. But since the All-Japan Women's Championship was unofficially called the Women's Honinbo, then after some time its name and format was simply changed to the modern, official Women's Honinbo. Unlike the Honinbo title, this tournament is conducted using the single knockout format to determine a challenger. The title is then decided by a best of five match (best of three prior to 1995) with the previous year's title holder. The winner's prize is ¥5,800,000.
The 16th Women's Honinbo tournament in 1997 involved huge press coverage at the time due to the fact that challenger Chinen Kaori was quite far along in her first pregnancy when the title match games were being played. Game four (which she won, along with the title) was actually played on chairs in the Yugen no Ma room of the Nihon Ki-in. As by that point in time, the baby was expected any day.