Ckersch88 review requests - 3.5.18 (6k vs 7k)

I like to review one of my games every day or two, to see what I’m doing wrong. I’m making this thread to keep them all in one place, instead of just spamming up the review requests category.

3/5/2018 - 6k vs 7k (me):
A lost game, but a close game.

My opponent played high chinese, I think, and I don’t think I responded well. Most of my problems, I think are in the beginning of this game. I ended up giving my opponent a substantial top left, and didn’t get much in exchange. I played well in the late midgame/endgame, I think (or my opponent played poorly), and managed to recover, somewhat, to make it an 8.5 point game. I didn’t lose any big groups, which is always an accomplishment for me, but could have definitely played better, as always.

I think I wasn’t sure how to respond to my opponent, who took a huge framework immediately. I’ve been trying to play corners, then biggest sides, but I feel like I was on the back foot with that approach, here. I think I should’ve approached the top left instead of playing on the bottom, even though the bottom is the “biggest side”, since my opponent can either enclose or extend from there (as he does) if I play the bottom, after which I’m jumping in without any real territorial goals aside from the bottom of the board.

What else did I miss?

2/23/2018 - 7k vs 7k:
I won this game on time, from a lost position.

Usually, my strategy is to try to carve out some blocks of territory, ideally by trying to attack my opponent’s weak groups. In this game, I didn’t feel like I had time to do so. My opponent invaded everywhere. He didn’t really even try to make territory, just invaded everywhere I went. Unfortunately, fighting is probably the weakest aspect of my game, so I mostly got chased around the board. I got a small territory in the middle, where I captured a few of my opponent’s stones, but either got invaded or messed up the rest of my territories. I think my opponent would’ve won by 10 points or so if we’d finished the game, and that’s generously assuming that I can win the big ko fight that I blundered into without giving up too many points.

My main question is: what could I have done to carve out points a bit more solidly? Did I miss some obvious big moves, or do I just suck at fighting? Thanks for the reviews!

2/21/2018 - 8k vs 7k:
Here’s a game I won, but don’t feel like I should’ve won. I ended up with some territory out of the opening, but my opponent had influence over most of the board. He had a few weak groups, though, which I was able to attack for profit. I ended up heavily reducing him, and living in a bunch of places I feel like I probably should’t have lived.

Overall, this just feels far too scrappy. I feel like I screwed up early on, and started fighting everywhere in desperate hopes I could catch up, and managed to more because of my opponent’s mistakes than because of my own play. What could I have done differently in order to not have fallen behind so much?

2/17/2018 - 7k vs 5k:
This one hurt. I think I was ahead at the end but missed that he could successfully kill one of the edge groups on my big territory, and reduce me by a lot. I ended up losing by 19.5. He failed to kill something big that should’ve died earlier, though, so maybe it was karma.

I think my direction of play is improving since I spent most of the game pushing him around and making territory, rather than getting pushed around. I need to make sure I’m reading out the critical sequences, though. I failed on several of them.

What else did I miss? Here’s the game:

If I may say: I would prefer a post per review request.

The reason is that if you put them in a thread, then I have to keep visiting the thread to see what the next post is. It might be someone saying “I posted a review” or you simply thanking them.

It’s much better to have a concise title per review-request where we can all see, right there in the topic list, what exactly the game being reviewed is: the rank of the players and the size of the board.

I know that recently someone posted a suggestion that we deal with lots of review requests in a “thread for the person”, but upon reflection, I find this worse.


I left you some comments in I tried not to focus on obvious misread, but rather comment the decision making process.

All in all you do stretch your stones a little to hard. Catch up on good shapes and tesuji. Try to play more solidly. Going for the kill (even though it might have been doable) was an example of unnecessary overkill.


My intention was to always have the latest review in the title with the date of the game, and the latest game at the top of the post, with older games down lower.

It’s not a perfect solution, but I’ll give it a try for a few days before I go back to a post per request.

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My two cents:

I don’t know what happened with the misread, but make sure when you’re in a difficult fight to slow down and use your clock to the fullest. Always take three seconds to read your opponent’s strongest reply to your move before placing the stone, especially when your liberties are getting smothered.

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Thanks for the reviews on the last game, @mark5000 and @Jokes_Aside!

I’ve added a new game for 2/21/2018. Description and link at the top of the OP.

That bottom situation makes for exquisite tsumego study. For maximum effect, don’t look at my variations until you think you’ve figured it out. (Ideally, start on a fresh board, after move 126 - b to play, then w to play, note down the best result you can find for b and best result for w.)

If anyone finds any mistakes in my analysis, let me know.

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Partial review here (had to run to work):

I think you need a minor overhaul of how you think about attacking. I recommend this video by In Seong (8d European) for proper attacking technique as well as any other instructional material you can find about chasing weak groups for profit. Poking out eyes isn’t always the most beneficial play.

@smurph’s comments look pretty much correct, too. :wink:


Thanks for the reviews, @mark5000 and @smurph!

I also checked out the video you mentioned. I feel like, if I focus on problems, I can usually solve them, but in games, I end up playing fairly instinctive moves, without really thinking deeply about them. Do you have any recommendations for how I could go about reworking the way I think about my go games?

New game is also up, where I fight badly, get chased around, and then win cheaply on time. Definitely not my proudest game, but I feel like it’s got something to teach me!

Also: I’m going to start posting links to the games in my “new game” comments, as well as in the OP, in order to (hopefully) make it easier to find them.

I don’t think I could say it better than you just did. For improvement, it’s not enough to generate moves on instinct and choose your favorite one. You have to read through the likely outcome. You have to evaluate the outcomes. You have to compare the outcomes.

Take your own advice and start thinking deeply about your moves. This will take more concentration (higher attention span) than you’re used to, but most forms of practice kind of suck at first (no pain no gain). In time, the practice will become your new instinct and your level will improve.



im not sure how useful it is, since i am not so much stronger than you, but i tried anyway. there were too many weak groups in this game.

i really liked what you said about having trouble really working out the details and little problems of a position in game. i sympathize :slight_smile:. its easy to play an ok looking large knight somwhere, but it can all go to hell when you dont know what to do if your opponent just cuts through immediately xD. i hope what @mark5000 says is true, that with time and practice, the things we have to spend effort on now will become our new instincts in the future ^^.

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New game is up!

It’s been a while since I’ve posted a game, but perhaps it’s been a while since I’ve had a game I felt needed posting, as well :slight_smile:. I feel like I’m improving at not letting everything die, but shape/direction of play still need work.

Here’s the game (also in the OP):