Infiltrating 4-4 with 3-3


first time poster and beginner here. I have a basic question:

Let’s assume my opponent played on the 4-4 point. I’ve read in various places that this move is susceptible to invasion with 3-3.

Now assuming I don’t have any other stones in the area to assist me, will my stone at 3-3 survive with best play from both sides? Is this a recommended move, assuming all other corners are already parceled out?



Hello @kavau, and welcome!

I’m still a weak player, but I think, given that there are no other opponent’s stones around when you put your stone under their 4-4 stone, your invader should live, either small in the corner, or bigger with half of the corner and part of one side.

See for more.

HTH, Tom


Hello, @kavau!

The lore I have assimilated is as you suggest. An opponent can play under a hoshi stone on a 3-3 and live (almost whenever). However, if there are no other friendly stones nearby, the 3-3 invasion can be detrimental since it exchanges a tremendous influence for some (although not negligible) territory.

The key for a beginner such as ourselves is to try to weigh an outside influence against an inside territory.

Your question is open, because there’s a gazillion ways the corners can be “parceled out” depending on a strategy involved and corresponding josekis.

Explore @trohde’s link and maybe my humble review of one of my games starting with move 25 and ending with move 86.


another key point about the 3-3 is that invasions end in sente for the invader.

so, because of the influence issue, its almost never a good idea to play
the 3-3 right away, but in the midgame, its often a risk-free invasion that
somehow i never remember to play


One thing to keep in mind regarding 3-3 invasions is when exactly you want to invade the corner since there will be a price to pay, namely encapsulation in the corner —> the invader will (probably) be isolated in that corner while the opponent will gain outside influence and perhaps territory (beginning with a Moyo) in the centre.

Stronger players please correct me if I’m saying anything wrong or imprecise.

<edit> now I realize that @baelofoax and @yuri have already explained this :flushed: </edit>

Are the considerations the same for 13x13 as they are for 19x19? A corner is a larger percentage of the total 13x13 territory. Does that mean a 3-3 invasion is more valuable on the smaller board?

I think the right moment would be as soon as one has one or more “alive” (connectable) stones outside that can eradicate or reduce your opponent’s outside influence and chance to build territory, so you can bump from the outside AND bump from the inside, thus “kneading” their territory from all sides so as to reduce it. But this also strenghtens their walls, of course …

And as for 13x13 … [quote=“way2go, post:6, topic:7517”]
A corner is a larger percentage of the total 13x13 territory. Does that mean a 3-3 invasion is more valuable on the smaller board?
Well, I believe that in 13x13 the 4-4 point is of greater value as well—depending on what the diagonal corner looks like.

Note: When reading my comments please always bear in mind that I am ~10k–9k, so my view of the game is still quite blurry.


I think the territory matters more on 13x13, but I almost never play on 13x13 so what do I know. My opinion is based on the assumption that the less use for influence there is, the more valuable the (sealed) territory (and sente, usually) is.

We are all beginners here. :slight_smile:


@Yuri: don’t make this a rule. There’s a standard invasion that ends in sente for the invader, however if you watch games of stronger players you’ll often see the invader end in gote.
You still have a valid point: always take sente/gote into consideration when assessing the result of an exchange.

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