Books about early Middlegame Strategy

Hi! I´m a Beginner, and most of my games are slow games against the Computer Many Faces of Go. I startet in May with playing against 18kyu, and now I´m playing against 9 kyu.
A normal game is like this: After about 50 - 60 moves, I´m some points ahead ( if I analyse the game with AI Sensei), but then I simply have a lack of direction, I simply do not know what´s best, and slowly but surely fall behind.
Until today I mainly read something about the opening (but not Josekis by heart), I read about capturing Races - the book from Richard Hunter - and solve many tsumegos.
I think my main problem today is how to find the right path ore direction for the middlegame.
please give me some book recommendations.
Thanks a lot!

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I guess my first recommendation is: start playing real people. You’ll see a lot more different styles of play that way.

For direction of play there is the ‘back to basics’ series from Drywin:

Personally I find it hard to apply what I see there, but many, many people claim that watching those videos has given them a huge boost.


I asked a similar question on a BIBA stream (where do you recommend to study middle game? are there any middle game problem collections?) and pros’ answer was: “middle game problems are very rare…there are some strategy books like Kato attack and kill (there are some problems in the book how to attack in that exact moment… but actually you really need to learn from your games as Blackie mentioned… or you can watch pro games”

I think that answer by Diana was directed mostly at high kyu/low dan players. Attack and Defence by James Davies is a great book for an advanced beginner. You could also try “volume 4: Battle Strategies” by Janice Kim from “Learn to Play Go” series if you don’t want to skip any fundamentals before jumping into slightly more complicated theory. You can also browse ogs puzzle section for puzzles or guidelines, like this one:

However in the end, it’s about playing, fighting and reviewing/getting reviewed afterwards.


I recommend “Attack and defense” by Ishida and Davies. I think it is perfect for your level, and the first part of the book is all about early middlegame strategy (weak groups, creating targets, how to attack and defend them). I read it a long time ago, but I still think this is the book that made me progress the most.


I agree with all answers, I would add "lessons in the fundamentals„(same editor)
Books on middle game are targeted usually for stronger players and get materials from pro Games. Teachers do this Too. So I guess looking at them may be a way to go through direction and middle game.

If I understood what you are trying to correct, maybe a classical book like “The direction of play” by Takeo Kajiwara from Kiseido is the one that covers exactly the topic you are interested in.
Pocket format, 250 pages.

I understood a lot from this book at the beginning. You can buy it from Kiseido directly since its price should be around 20 USD or so plus shipping.

Another option - a little more difficult since it analyzes professional games to explain the theory - is Close Encounters with the Middle Game by Michiel Eijkhout always from Kiseido.

The middle game is where a game of go is most often is decided. Being strong at the opening will give you an advantage, and accurate reading and calculation in the endgame can gain you many points; but excelling at the middle game is the surest way to victory.
This book presents 32 crucial middle-game positions that arose in top professional games. It focuses on making clear what purpose is served by the moves played and which strategic considerations are at play. It tries to answer a question many amateurs may ask: Why do professionals play where they do?
Every position is discussed in detail, explaining what goes on in the minds of the players, showing the moves that are good, bad, or hard to judge. It makes for an entertaining journey through the realm of professional go and also gives an insight in what lies beneath many professional moves that at first may look strange.

Hope this help.


Try get some tutoring from stronger could be more efficient for what you need.
Meanwhile you can hang out in a bunch Of go magazine like goworld. Or lay down some old piece Of art (Shusaku- invincible, a goseigen collection with comentaries…)