# Anyone play Go?

Gold Member
Trying to learn the game Go. I have a question in regards to the uploaded pic. Why is the empty spot neutral? Couldnt white just place a stone there and capture all of the black stones since all of blacks liberties would be taken?

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Helios
No, the game is over and the counting of territory is taking place. No position will ever look like that in a real game, but if it did, then yes, white could just place a stone there and capture all of the black stones.
Go can be played on other grid systems. I've seen a circular board. Even though, Go is a boring game to me. It's like battle of the slime molds.

opus
Pratyeka
Because it's the "final" position, meaning no other stone will be played and the "final" counting of the points is taking place.

opus
Gold Member
Hi opus:

There is something seriously wrong with this picture. Perhaps the source of the picture might explain the how this pictured arrangement of stones occurred, but I doubt that any reasonable explanation is possible.

This picture looks similar to (but not exactly like) a configuration that occurs well after the end of the game. The game ends when both players pass because there is no move available to either of the players that improves the player's score. Then the players proceed with a process to count the scores of the two players. This involves a process with two stages.

Stage 1: All opponent's stones that are in a players territory are removed from the board and become captured stones.
Stage 2: Each player places his/her captured stones into the open spaces within the opponents territory. This is done to simplify the counting of the score. This does not change the score since each of your captured stones is worth one point for you, and each open space in your opponent's territory is worth one point to the opponent.

The picture shows no open spaces in any territory. Normally each collection of contiguous stones represents an area controlled by that color, however the three white stones is not such a territory. That is the problem. If all the areas of contiguous stones were alive areas which had had the interiors filled with captured stones, then The score would be a tie. The open square is not filled in with a move since the moves ended when the game ended. As the text with the picture says, the open square is an open space between live territories, and there is no advantage for either player to have filled it with a move.

The position in the picture could not possibly have occurred during the playing of the game. The "definition" text below the picture is wrong. This definition ignores captured stones.

Regards,
Buzz

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opus
Gold Member
Hi Opus:

I would recommend you read any book in the "Elementary Go Series", published by The Ishi Press, Inc., CPO Box 2126, Tokyo Japan. This address is very old, (1970's) and possibly may no longer be accurate. However, I found the following link to be reliable for used books.
One additional suggestion. Although the official game of Go is played on a board with a 19x19 grid, when I first learned the game as a teenager, my teacher taught the game on a 13x13 grid board. This reduced the time to play a game by a factor less than 1/3.

You will also want to learn about the handicapping system in Go.
This makes the game accessible for players with very a wide range of skill to play each other with approximately equal chances of winning.

Regards,
Buzz

Last edited:
opus
Gold Member
No, the game is over and the counting of territory is taking place. No position will ever look like that in a real game, but if it did, then yes, white could just place a stone there and capture all of the black stones.
Go can be played on other grid systems. I've seen a circular board. Even though, Go is a boring game to me. It's like battle of the slime molds.
Would the game be over because both player's passed, or because no one is now allowed to put a stone there?

Because it's the "final" position, meaning no other stone will be played and the "final" counting of the points is taking place.
Is it a final position because no other stone is allowed to be played, or because both players passed?

Hi opus:

There is something seriously wrong with this picture. Perhaps the source of the picture might explain the how this pictured arrangement of stones occurred, but I doubt that any reasonable explanation is possible.

This picture looks similar to (but not exactly like) a configuration that occurs well after the end of the game. The game ends when both players pass because there is no move available to either of the players that improves the player's score. Then the players proceed with a process to count the scores of the two players. This involves a process with two stages.

Stage 1: All opponent's stones that are in a players territory are removed from the board and become captured stones.
Stage 2: Each player places his/her captured stones into the open spaces within the opponents territory. This is done to simplify the counting of the score. This does not change the score since each of your captured stones is worth one point for you, and each open space in your opponent's territory is worth one point to the opponent.

The picture shows no open spaces in any territory. Normally each collection of contiguous stones represents an area controlled by that color, however the three white stones is not such a territory. That is the problem. If all the areas of contiguous stones were alive areas which had had the interiors filled with captured stones, then The score would be a tie. The open square is not filled in with a move since the moves ended when the game ended. As the text with the picture says, the open square is an open space between live territories, and there is no advantage for either player to have filled it with a move.

The position in the picture could not possibly have occurred during the playing of the game. The "definition" text below the picture is wrong. This definition ignores captured stones.

Regards,
Buzz

Hi Opus:

I would recommend you read any book in the "Elementary Go Series", published by The Ishi Press, Inc., CPO Box 2126, Tokyo Japan. This address is very old, (1970's) and possibly may no longer be accurate. However, I found the following link to be reliable for used books.
One additional suggestion. Although the official game of Go is played on a board with a 19x19 grid, when I first learned the game as a teenager, my teacher taught the game on a 13x13 grid board. This reduced the time to play a game by a factor less than 1/3.

You will also want to learn about the handicapping system in Go.
This makes the game accessible for players with very a wide range of skill to play each other with approximately equal chances of winning.

Regards,
Buzz
Thank you! That makes more sense. This picture was in the section on how the game is scored so maybe that's why. But knowing that's not a "real" outcome clears things up for me. I'll give that book a try. I've been watching YouTube videos but they mostly go over advantageous shapes and never really show them scoring the outcome. I play it on my phone for now and it automatically scores the game so I wasn't sure how it was done. Thanks for the help!

Buzz Bloom