Shin Fuseki - Periphery
(from Igo Hyakunen 2/286 - posting to r.g.g. by John Fairbairn)
The July 1934 issue of Kido gave stats for the main part of the Oteai, from 1933 Autumn to Spring for New Fuseki.
In Autumn 1933 there were 72 games and New Fuseki appeared as follows:
In Spring 1934 the figures for 70 games were:
The old style ruled the roost. Hoshi appeared in almost every game and there was also a strong disposition to use takamoku and mokuhazushi or wider shimaris. The majority of games were therefore an eclectic mixture of old and new.
Also the Oteai were the most serious games and pros were more prone to experiment in newspaper games. 5-5 appeared several times there.
A good half of the new books of the time were on New Fuseki. E.g. published in 1936 were:
- Igo Kakumei Shin Fuseki-hou
- A Go Revolution - New Fusekis; by Kitani Minoru, Go Seigen and Yasunaga
- Igo Kakumei Jissen Shin Fuseki
- New Fuseki in Actual Games - same authors
- Fuseki to Jouseki no Sougou
- Integeration of Fuseki and Joseki; Kitani
- Tengen to Shin Fuseki
- Tengen and New Fuseki; Kubomatsu
- Sente Yuusei Fuseki Hou
- Fuseki Method to retain Superiority of the Initiative; Go Seigen
- Shin Fuseki no Jissai I
- New Fuseki in Practice I; Igo Kensei-kai
- Shin Fuseki no Shinro
- Guide to new Fuseki; Kitani
- Datou Shin Fuseki
- Down with New Fuseki; Takahashi Shigeyuki & Murashima Yoshinori
Related closely to this were:
- Gote no Sente
- Sekiyama Riichi
- Chou-jouseki to Chou-fuseki
- Ultra Joseki and Fuseki; Kato Shin
Heibonsha also published a year book of games, and amateur research groups such as one for "Mathematical Investigation of Go and Shogi" sprang up.
There has never been before or since so many books on fuseki published at one time. Needless to say the newspapers were also in on the act.
In June [at least] 1934, Kitani Minoru, Go Seigen, Yasunaga et al visited Manchuria as a Go mission from the Nihon Ki-in. New Fuseki appeared in games there, although as these moves appeared in old Chinese Go it was hard to say it was because of new fuseki.
The Go mission set off from Tokyo on 18 May 1934 via Nagasaki, from where they set sail on 25 May. Taoka Keiichi was the reporter. Around the time stories called Neko mo Shakushi mo (Every Tom, Dick and Harry) were popular. In the book Chikusou Kiwa by Inoue Takuji he offers seasonal tales where san-san is likened to a submarine, tengen to a bomber, hoshi to an artillery piece, 5-5 to a tank. These words also appeared in senryu:
- Long nights, the array of regimented stars
- With no concern for grinding tea, "the stars sell!"??
The New Fuseki craze began to abate only about 1936 and what emerged was what began to be called Integrated Fuseki - Sougou Fuseki. This trend was consolidated by the increasing interest in moving towards komi games.
In 1935, Hochi Shinbun tried to achieve the "perfect game" by sponsoring a consultation game with Kitani and Go Seigen as Black and Suzuki and Segoe as White (BWB handicap as Kitani and Go were 6-dan and White was 7-dan.) It took place in March 1935 and it was expected to be a clash between old and new. To help, they were given 16 hours each. To add lustre, the referee was Hashimoto Utaro 6-dan, the "Genius Utaro" as he was called. In addition it was a game of masters v. pupils (Suzuki and Kitani, Segoe and Go Seigen). Black won by 1 after winning a half-point ko. Furthermore, the two old men were called in on "urgent business" by Yahata Kyousuke, Nihon Ki-in, for 30 minutes at a point when the Black side had only 10 minutes left. It was felt that the extra time helped them to read out the yose to a win.
This game was seen as proof that the old style could defeat New Fuseki, which view was given added impetus by consideration of komi. New Fuseki was seen as just too difficult.
Kitani's Shin Fuseki no Shinro was published in February 1936 to mark his elevation to 7-dan. In it he said the following, which showed the seed that made him revert to old fuseki:
- "In the end the outcome of a game is determined by the quality of each individual move. Therefore, in a broad sense irrespective of old and new, the basic problem for new fuseki at present is to discover good moves taking into account each move. Efforts to discover the best moves have led new fuseki, as yet incomplete, to where were are today. Things that were considered bad while New Fuseki was being invented and its various patterns launched have been weeded out one after the other and the many pros who have tried it have assessed its quality, [so that] the good things remain and good moves are born afresh continuously. When you look at what you played first, it has changed to the extent it feels like a different world."