Western Server Challenge 2024

Hello, this is my first year participating. Just to be clear, we aren’t required to play with the other participants in this server challenge? I’m also wondering how we will realistically be able to find enough blitz players, even with everyone on here playing more.

I’m 6k on OGS and use a rank range of +/- 6 I very rarely can match with anyone on blitz mode. That’s including all board sizes and with or without handicap stones and default scoring. I’m in PST zone.

So, can you please let me know if there are any settings or things I can do in order to find enough games to actually feel like I am fully participating in this fun challenge? Thank you


I am PST and ~6k too! How come we never play??

But I feel your pain. Certain times take forever. Even worse since I usually just play 9x9


Hi! I mostly play 19x19. Though I much prefer a faster game, I usually do normal time auto match since its the easiest way to find a game

However, within the last several months I have started playing the smaller boards so I am surprised we haven’t bumped into each other yet especially since I’m quite active on ogs too.

Feel free to friend me (QueenofKo) and we can set up a game sometime. :slight_smile:


I guess we just persevere, and then as more people join and play hopefully the automatch speeds up over the course of the challenge.

And if pairing isn’t great for some reason and we know we’re using it and should be paired then maybe we can ask @GreenAsJade or @dexonsmith etc if there’s anything that can be tweaked to speed it up :slight_smile:

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I played a blitz game using automatch ganada7 vs. jlt
and the time control was “Fischer: Clock starts with 30 seconds and increments by 10 seconds per move up to a maximum of 1 minute.”
Will it be counted for WSC?

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Could just be a typo in the OP, that’s the same time setting I recorded here

which was asked before the challenge announcement. I think the rest match exactly.


Where can I find the scoreboard (so that I can keep track of my progress)?

I think people don’t realize that with Chinese rules, handicap stones placement is free. Two of my games got cancelled because my opponent placed a stone and waited for my move instead of placing a second handicap stone, and then cancelled the game. After a while I changed my automatch settings to Japanese and was paired against one of those two players, who played the game normally this time.


That’s not even a Chinese Rules problem, that’s a way bigger problem, as plenty of Rulesets use Free Handicap, so even if they didn’t know Chinese did, it should be the first thing they check, especially now that the Handicap level is shown on the play screen

I’d stick with Chinese (or NZD), and just mention it’s free handicap if they place one stone and seem not to be doing anything else. I guess everyone has to learn free handicap exists at some point


It’s actually surprising the challenge uses blitz time, when normal time is probably a lot more common as a choice, and would have made sense to include in a challenge to promote use of automatch.

(I didn’t join in large part due to that and not playing blitz. Had the challenge included ‘‘normal’’ timesettings I would have, though.)

(Was going to post something about this before the beginning of the challenge, as I think that it’s good to include all automatch timesettings if promoting that and/or use ‘normal’ time as that feels probably more common site-wide, and had been busy.)


I think it makes sense given that the raison d’ être of the challenge to get players playing lots of games leads to a target of 100, and with 3-4 games required per day to meet that, Blitz would be a lot more feasible for a lot more people


Hm, true, but in various previous WSCs, correspondence and ‘‘normal’’ timesettings were included, also with their own categories, and it seemed to work fine, so between that and there very likely being a larger player base than those registered for the WSC playing on OGS using automatch anyway, I think that the use of both ‘‘normal’’ and blitz also may not be terribly distracting or diverting of player pools.

Besides, this year western means OGS only (another major change)

Didn’t the OP address that, saying that he wanted this year to be more focused?

Yes, however I think that this is actually probably not the case.

(or at the least, not necessarily so) :

(the player base on OGS using automatch being larger than only WSC participants, and that players will have their own preferences anyway, so choosing Blitz, Normal and/or Correspondence wouldn’t necessarily affect matchmaking time, and/or using only Blitz may even make it harder to find a match, as QueenofKo was describing.)

(WSC participants being spread across various levels and playing availability times meaning that I think even WSC players in a moderately-sized event may just run into non-participants who are simply other OGS players using automatch fairly often)

(I would suspect that Normal automatch timesettings is probably a fairly common choice across all levels, so I don’t think it actually makes sense to limit it to blitz, and probably actually the same in principle in some ways vice versa if it were limited to ‘normal’ settings – though it might make more sense to use them if only choosing 1 setting.

– l didn’t notice too much wait time using Normal + automatch and a wide enough rank range when I have used it, either, at a mid-high dan rank & suspect other OGS players using automatch who are not part of the challenge will simply choose their own preferences & create Normal + Blitz player pools anyway.)

I love the concept of having people play fast just to get in the groove of playing lots of games without worry of rank or time investment.

However, I was mostly surprised given we will be playing solely on OGS for this, since I tend to play blitz exclusively on Fox server since its way easier to match.

I truly only posted for helpful advice on how to get matches, like maybe I wasn’t aware of a certain setting or if the devs were doing something special for this event to aid in matching.
But like others have mentioned, we will just have to wait and see how it goes.

Just happy I finally get to participate this year, the last two years I missed it for various reasons.


Thanks for the response. That all makes sense. Just wanted to make sure I wasn’t missing an important setting for finding blitz matches. Hopefully we can all match quickly.

Good luck and have fun in your games :slight_smile:

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I think nothing special to aid in matching for the event, at least at the moment.

But, maybe it might be easier to find a match, just by posting a match with those timesettings, if the automatch queue isn’t very big, as it would be more visible to the public that a player wants to play, than the automatch queue, which is invisible ?

(although of course, this wouldn’t be using the automatch feature)

Edit : Actually, this leads me to wonder whether the Automatch queue would be used more if there were something like a way to see what rank settings/offers were available/players waiting in Automatch ?


If anyone is interested or needs a match feel free to contact me to set up a blitz game. Happy playing!

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Would that count for the challenge, though? I never use the automatch; I just make an open challenge and don’t usually have trouble finding a game, but my impression was that only automatch queue games would count here, because it’s meant to encourage use of that feature?

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