Yo, I just started off playing Go really recently, in mid-October 2002. In other words, my experience in Go is virtually Nada!
My achievements(?) so far are:
- October 11th, 2002 : Played Go for first time on Yahoogames. Didn't capture a single stone in my first 2 games... slaughtered by over 60 moku on a 9x9 board... at least I learnt the basic rules though...
- October 17th,2002 : After actually LEARNING some Go basics other than Hikaru no Go and practising a little on Igowin.exe, won 7 in a row, before losing. A good day.
- October 18th,2002 : I think I'm addicted to Go or something... I played 28 games today... 14 wins, 4 losses. I suspect it's cause I'm making sure to keep to weak opponents...
- October 21st,2002 : Played my first REAL LIFE game today... won! And on a 19x19 game too... my opponent has been playing Go for a year or so, I'm pleased with my progress!
- November 3rd,2002 : I'm about 15 kyushu according to Igowin... wonder how long it'll take before it can't challenge me anymore? I'm hoping to surpass it completely in a few months. I think it goes up to 6 Dan though! Or so the designer claims... anyone here wanna test it out? In any case, it's only a 9x9 board, so maybe that makes a big difference.
- November 16th,2002 : Sadly, I have had my suspicions confirmed... Igowin is a poor estimate. Not only that, but my lack of playing has resulted in my rank according to Igowin actually getting WORSE... Nevermind, will play on, hoping to learn...
- November 20th,2002 : Good news and bad. Bad news is Confused confirmed that Igowin probably ranks me like 10 (TEN!) kyu stronger than I should be... (actually, he said 15...). Good news is, I have gotten IGoWin down to single digit kyu games, yay me! Bad news is that I have yet to beat it when it takes black (8 kyu and below). So far, 9 kyu game, me with black, I have beat it by over 10 moku. Sadly, when it takes black it trounces me by more than 10 moku too... I honestly feel that in an aggressive pushing battle on a 9x9, the komi should be higher! I hafta learn how to play defensively, me and Igowin throw ourselves at each other suicidally, all my games with it are either massive wins or massive losses. (closest ever was a 2 moku loss, no close wins)
I have decided I like 19x19 much better than 9x9, as the groups keep more or less separate for a while... More bad news, got a lot of criticism today on Sensei's Library, for blasting off my mouth when I don't know much. Well, I warned that I talked too much... As for LEARNING progress, I'm a LITTLE quicker on life and death... on (yes that again) IGoWin I can tell when I can kill a group of stones with nakade sometimes (only sometimes? boo... especially against IGoWin...) and I am learning to keep my stones alive... sometimes! I've learnt to recognise a few basic patterns during infighting. I used to get hit by this pattern all the time when I was starting out:
I used to know what a ladder WAS. And how to read the results of the ladder (once it was already too late...) Now I can actually set up Pre-emptive ladder positions as defense against cuts... much better. I've learnt to sometimes switch to the hanging defence against cuts instead of just filling the cutting space... heck, I didn't use to know about hanging defence. Or whatever it's actually called. I am getting a better feel of when to tenuki, and when not to tenuki. The proverb "urgent moves before big moves" is dangerous to newbies, EVERYTHING is an urgent move to us. Especially on a 9x9...
27th December: I am actually understanding how to count points and territory made by plays mid-game. Cool! Play the biggest move actually makes sense to me now! I can manage invasions a little, I've learnt how to build moyo, and break into weak ones, and the difference between corners, sides and middle. Evidently, you DO learn a lot more playing on larger than 9x9 boards... I played some 9x9 again, and couldn't figure how to apply my new found knowledge to it much though, sigh... I prefer playing stronger players with the handicap favouring me than weaker players on with a reverse handicap though, which probably shows that I don't know much about advanced fuseki in such situations.
Early January 2003 : Been playing Hikaru no Go 2 for GBA, I could add a proverb, play too much of this and lose 2 stones strength... it's so weak that you learn really bad habits, like playing big points before urgent points, relying on trick plays, etc. And weak players will do it over and over, especially in stone get mode, where you're trying to overcome like 9 stone handicaps on a 13x13...
26 March 2003 : Despite practically quitting go, barely playing any games, have somehow assimilated past knowledge enough to beat IGoWin in an even game... 56 moku victory! Though this risk taking attitude probably isn't the key to winning proper games... and I still stink at counting territory mid-game. Bleh. At least I've learnt something about keeping groups connected, stopping opponent from connecting, and my life and death and capturing races have improved. The last two thanks to goproblems.com, very helpful!
Despite my lack of skill, I find that I talk a LOT, so expect to see me pop up often on Sensei's Library!
Quacki:Hi there, sorry to interrupt. You said on WhyDidYouStartGo that you heard of shogi in "Ranma 1/2". Well, I own the manga series Ranma, but I never picked up any mention of shogi in there. Do you mean the anime series? Anyway, in the manga once you see Genma and Soun play Go (in the storyline where Ranma for a while is stronger than Genma).