To call a play honest is usually mild criticism. It means that it is too straightforward, too simple, that it is too easy on the opponent and does not afford enough opportunity.
Honest is also used to indicate the opposite of tricky, unsound play made in the hope of inducing an error. See hamete.
Honest move is often used in the context of teaching beginners or in high handicap games. What is heard is, "make honest moves," suggesting that one shouldn't really be trying to win, but to demonstrate good go moves to the learner. A dishonest move in this context would be a trick play. In trying to decide what moves I (nodog) should make in this context, I came up with my own definition.
- honest move
- a move one would make if one was also playing as the opponent
Honest move is also sometimes an incorrect translation of honte.