My dad once tried to teach me how to play the game Go when I was in kindergarten. Staying home to work on his PhD thesis, he was easily bored, and seeing as how I was the only other person in the house, I was by default the most worthy opponent.
On the most basic level, Go is a game of surrounding your opponent’s pieces. In fact, the Chinese name for the game literally means “encirclement game.” Taking turns to place black or white stones on grid intersections, you work to surround your opponent’s pieces, thus capturing them and removing them from the board.
Sounds pretty simple, right?
Soon after starting, you’ll realize that Go can quickly become very complex. You and your opponent are simultaneously trying to surround each other’s pieces, making for an increasingly messy situation. Strategy, skill, and planning ahead definitely come into play, or else you’ll soon find the board slowly being taken over by your opponent’s color.
Similar to poker, there are expert Go players, and Go tournaments can award prizes of up to a quarter of a million dollars.
Never played? The best way to learn is to play. Beware: rules are easy to grasp, but the game is difficult to master.
Ready for a challenge? GO!