Move Assessment Questions for a Newbie


I haven’t been able to find anything on this, but is there a sequence of question you run through as you search for a potential move.

Like in chess… you ask did my opponents move threaten any of my pieces directly? Did it weaken any of his own pieces/pawn structure? Why did he/she make that move? etc, etc

Just wondering if there was something similar for go?

1 Like

The best process I’ve seen is from I’ll reproduce the three questions here below:

Am I ok? (How many weak groups or important stones do I have? Count them and defend the weakest one.)

When defending:

  • Don’t get surrounded in sente (you get surrounded and it’s still his turn).
  • Don’t run with the knight’s move (or any other easily cut move).
  • Do contact strong stones. Touching a stone helps both to settle. It helps him, wasting his time – he’s already strong.

Is he ok? (How many weak groups or important stones does the opponent have? Count them and attack the weakest one.)

When attacking:

  • Attacking usually means to remove one of his running directions – the one that gives you most profit or that makes it hardest on him.
  • Chase with the knight’s move. (You don’t care if you’re cut. He’s the weak one).
  • Don’t contact weak stones (touching a stone helps both to settle).

What’s big? (How many big areas are there? Count them, compare them to find the biggest, then play in the biggest area.)

  • A big area is an open area, which is not yet solid territory for either player, but which has the potential to become territory for one player or the other.

These three questions are recursive, meaning that when a question is answered, go back to the top of the list, and continue going through the list again. Try to find moves that accomplish more than one purpose.


That is perfect… thank you… anybody else have something similar?

I like this list, too:


Awesome thanks!.. that is very helpful also