Controversial Go opinions

Thread to vent out all your go-related opinions that people shun you for.
I’ll start:

  • Hikaru no Go is not that great.
  • Due to the major influence of the English language, westerners should just start referring to Go as Baduk. It makes googling so much easier, and the title of this thread so much more ironic.

Give me all your hot takes!


Tengen is a bad first move.


Historically, the new assertion that “tengen is a good first move” caused more controversy.

Here’s another one, which I don’t agree with:

Meh, not as good as chess


A few years ago, early 3-3 invasion under the hoshi was popularized by new strong AIs.

This does not mean

  • that this move is difficult to play
  • that it is boring
  • that it’s “bleep-bloop” style unsuitable for humans.

In fact, the following variations are more varied and exciting than they were before.
Beginners should be taught 3-3 first as a local continuation in the corner, before the approach. Compare:


Ancient Chinese group tax rules should be used again, as well as fixed stone placements and cancel the “unnatural komi”.


The future of go


Handicap = automatic should be implemented site wide, without having the option to change it to handicap = none.



Michael Redmond has a direct 3-3 tutorial videos lectures on the official Nihonkiin youtube channel.


“Lessons in the fundamentals” is a bad book.

No specific skill range makes parts of it unsuitable for any level - from “how to read a ladder” (absolute beginner) to “specific 50 move double ladder variation to break mirrorgo” (dan level).

A good portion of the book falls into the category “entertainment”, not “education”. IRL stories won’t help you play better.

The absolute lack of doubt does not look good when one is wrong most of the time.


Now, these are some juicy hot takes.


Ancient famous players time travel to modern days can still beat today’s top players.


Secret bot players is not bad thing.
The only real problem is sandbaggers - players that only sometimes play too good. Players that lie about their rank.
If there will not be any max rank limit, good bot players just will fly above 9d and everyone is happy.


OGS Forums is a very polite society. Even the controversial go opinions are not very controversial and do not cause some heated discussions.
Anyone with a good old Q-Anon conspiracy theory about OGS being a cover for the dark web?
Otherwise this thread will dwindle to a boring end and people will read it just to fall asleep at night.

This post is not intended to be
(a) a controversial opinion about the world of go
(b) taken serious.


In Sente had a joke on that very topic in their latest video…

1 Like

Magnetic sets make more sense. It’s a game with small pieces that need to be on specific places.

Tradition should make way to simple logic.


The live commentaries use a lot of magnetic boards, so lets pretend this is MR agreeing :slight_smile:


Komi should not be used in friendly, non-competitive non-tournament games. And jigo should be a valid result.

  • It’s better for novices to play humans, on smaller boards, with handicap ofcourse.
  • Playing mirror go is not shameful. It’s even a viable strategy for white.
  • Setting a goal to reach dan level within some specific time period is harmful.
  • Focusing only on tsumego, excluding study of pro games is harmful.
  • Reviewing your games with AI is mostly useless for DDK players.

It’d be nice to have the option. But even for this ruleset, I would still support komigo as the default (default – not only!) setting.

_KoBa: jigo should be a valid result.

Again, it would be nice just to have the option of this on OGS.

Komi should not be used in friendly, non-competitive non-tournament games.

In my experience, club games in England are usually handicap games, and I can’t remember whether anyone cared about tiebreak komi. But that could just be because London clubs seem to be full of dans…


My “controversial” opinions:

Before money is spent on large tournament prizes or professional salaries, Go associations should ensure that wood boards and glass stones are the minimum quality of equipment at tournaments. Further, once that is achieved there should be a long-term plan in place to gradually replace those with yunzi or slate and shell, if even over a period of decades.

Also, being a higher rank, like a dan player, shouldn’t necessitate receiving a higher quality of equipment; if you want to “level up” your equipment at a tournament, you should have to pay an additional fee, and this privilege should be available on a first-come-first-served basis.

If you’re paying year-membership fees and tournament fees to the British Go Association, for instance, you shouldn’t have to play with plastic stones because you’re a “lowly kyu”.