When to move up to larger board sizes?


I have a question. I’m roughly around 23-22k and I have been playing almost exclusively on 9x9 board.
When do you think its appropriate to move up to 13x13 or 19x19.

My noobish theory is that it is best to practice on small boards to learn to read short term, and to learn to find weaknesses and understand structures.
But I realize that one looses the strategic component when playing on a small board since the territories tend to get established early on and ones options for changing strategy becomes fairly limited?

I feel very lost and confused when playing larger boards? Is it something i should start working on right now or should i stick to 9x9 until I have developed an intuition and basic understanding of basic structures, cutting and reading a situation?

I’d try to play on 13x13, but I don’t like 9x9 that much, so take that with a grain of salt.

Honestly you can do whatever you want; have fun! But my suggestion is to get used to seeing atari’s and other really common patterns. Once you are comfortable with this, you can go to 19x19.


It’s really up to you. I had a look at your recent games, and I see nothing wrong with the idea to play some 30 more 9x9 games before switching to 13x13. Alhough I never was that patient myself and started to play on larger boards pretty early. :slight_smile:
If you are totally lost on a larger board you can try playing high handicap games. That way you’ll start with a whole lot of stones everywhere and will be playing an opponent who is not intimidated by a large board (even if he can be intimidated by all those black stones).


just give it a try and see how you like it! if you dont like it, play some more 9x9 then try again later :slight_smile:


You have only played 20 games. There is no reason to move to a larger size. There is also no reason not to move to a larger size if you want to.

I have played hundreds of very quick games on 9x9 in the beginning with the occasional 19x19 game to see if I still feel lost and unhappy there. I have played almost no 13x13 games and still dislike the size. Others dislike 9x9 or start directly on the 19x19.

I have looked at one of your games and you should try not to always play so close to your opponent. It doesn’t matter so much on what board size you learn to do so.


Agree… 9x9 teaches local tactics and life/death shapes… essentially, when you can avoid having all your groups captured, you’re ready to move up.

13x13 is really a different game… it’s main use, IMO, is in studying Joseki, because your choice of Joseki in one corner immediately influences the rest of the board. Overall, I haven’t played it much; I don’t think it teaches strategy, just a bit larger tactics… it’s a different game.

Don’t hesitate to move to 19x19, but do occasionally get someone of 6kyu+ to review your games or play teaching games with… below 6kyu, most are still learning strategy themselves… they can probably help you, but value will be case by case.

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