Harleqin/ Rules Classification

Sub-page of Harleqin



In this page, I'd like to try and classify both official and proposed rulesets with regard to their properties.

The most basic property is the type of scoring. This can be one of stone scoring, area scoring, hybrid scoring, or territory scoring. These will per se yield a rather similar result, with stone scoring possibly being most off. I will leave out sunjang baduk scoring, because it seems to behave totally different from normal go. "Hybrid scoring" is a term I use for scoring methods that are like area rules in some aspects and like territory rules in others.

Different from that is the choice of counting method. Examples for this are japanese fill-in counting, chinese half-counting, New Zealand half-counting, or Ing fill-in counting. Counting methods are often only applicable to a specific type of scoring. Sometimes, subtle differences in scoring are caused by application of one or the other counting method. Other than that, the counting method is not of great importance.

For territory scoring, the question arises how the stones that are to be removed at the end of the game are determined. Generally, this can be either a "life and death" method or some kind of "control" method. For "control" methods a further classification can be done by the number of playout sequences used.

The ko rule used may at first not seem very important, because it will only scarcely make a difference. As long as any "normal" ko rule exists, our everyday go life will not be affected much by its details. However, the ko rule sits at the core of all go rulesets. Flaws in the ko rule will emerge sooner or later, like a monster lurking in a dungeon under a big city.

For all these properties, it is noteworthy whether they are well defined. I will not engage in wordplays here, but "you know what I mean" is often best translated as "I can't tell exactly".

I will only include complete rulesets, not proposed rules that describe only one aspect of the game.

Stone Scoring

Area Rules I (Ikeda Toshio)

Ko rule
Positional Superko

Area Scoring

Area Rules II (Ikeda Toshio)

Ko rule
Positional Superko

Area Rules III (Ikeda Toshio)

Ko rule
Positional Superko

New Zealand

Ko rule
Situational Superko


Ko rule
Situational Superko

Territory Rules III (Ikeda Toshio/James Davies)

Ko rule
Positional Superko

Hybrid Scoring

Territory Rules I (Ikeda Toshio)

Ko rule
Positional Superko

Territory Rules II (Ikeda Toshio)

Ko rule
Positional Superko

Territory Scoring

Einfache Gebietsregeln (Svante v. Erichsen)

Ko rule
Situational Superko

Nihon Kiin 1989 (Sakai Takeshi)

Ko rule
Basic Ko. Long Cycles can exceptionally void the game. In the determination of life and death, a special pass-for-ko rule is used.

Nihon Kiin 1978

Nihon Kiin 1948

J2003 (Robert Jasiek)

Ko rule
Basic Ko. Long cyles will lead to an exceptional win, loss, or draw. In the determination of life and death, a special pass-for-ko rule is used.

Harleqin/ Rules Classification last edited by Harleqin on April 20, 2007 - 23:49
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