Taxonomy of Joseki

    Keywords: Joseki, Index page

Please note that this taxonomy is far from complete.

Here is a taxonomy of joseki, which means an organized list of the main joseki, grouped according to how the lines of play branch.

Table of contents


#3 #2 #1 gonogo #5 #4 ootakamoku oomokuhazushi
Overview of starting moves  



3-4 point Josekis

Overview of approaches by White

3-4 point distant low approach 3-4 point low approach 3-4 point distant high approach 3-4 point high approach 3-4 point distant very high approach 3-4 point low approach from the wrong direction 3-4 point approach from the wrong direction 3-4 point very distant high approach from the wrong direction
komoku approaches  

Details of 3-4 point approach joseki

enclosure by Black

3463 enclosure 3453 enclosure 3443 enclosure 3454 enclosure 3437 enclosure
komoku enclosures  


4-4 point josekis

Overview of approaches by White

4-4 point very low approach 4-4 point daidaigeima kakari 4-4 point distant low approach 4-4 point low approach 44 point inside contact 4-4 point 3-3 invasion 4-4 point distant high approach 4-4 point high approach 44Point55ShoulderHit#1 4-4 point 5-5 shoulder hit
hoshi approaches  

Details of 4-4 point approach joseki

developments by Black [101]

4473Enclosure 4463Enclosure 4435Enclosure 4434Enclosure 4433Enclosure 4474Enclosure 4464Enclosure
hoshi enclosures  


3-3 point josekis

Overview approaches by White

3-3 point very distant low approach, tenuki 3-3 point distant low approach 3-3 point low approach 3-3 point distant high approach 3-3 point high approach 3-3 point shoulder hit
sansan approaches  

developments by Black [102]

3363 enclosure 3353 enclosure 3364 enclosure 3354 enclosure
sansan enclosure  


3-5 point josekis

approach by White

3-5 point distant low approach 3-5 point low approach 3-5 point 3-3 approach 3-5 point high approach 3-5 point very high approach
mokuhazushi approaches  

Details of 3-5 point approach joseki

3-5 point enclosure josekis by Black

3453 enclosure 3554 enclosure
mokuhazushi enclosures  


4-5 point josekis

Overview of approaches by White

4-5 point 4-3 approach 4-5 point 3-3 invasion
4-5 point approaches  

Details of 4-5 point approach joseki

enclosure by Black

3554 enclosure 3454 enclosure 3354 enclosure
Takamoku Enclosures  

Side patterns

Shoulder hit

Shoulder hit  

W1, diagonally approaching a stone on the third line, is know as a shoulder hit. Black has several options for dealing with this move, the most important of which are a and b. Playing elsewhere is generally a bad idea in this situation.

Capping play


W1, approaching a stone on the third line from above, is know as a capping play. Common responses include a and b. Ignoring this move is less serious for black than ignoring a shoulder hit.



The approach W1 is common when dealing with a stone on the fourth line.



There are standard sequences on the side when invading a position, see Three Space Extension Invasions

Taxonomy of Joseki last edited by Dieter on May 11, 2022 - 13:43
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