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posted by [personal profile] ptc24 at 08:57am on 06/06/2012
We were talking about Go recently, and I realised I had a file sitting somewhere with some useful links in it - in particular I remembered igowin being good and useful for getting off the ground. So here it is again, back from 2005:


Starting out with Go

Go can be a hard game to get started with. I myself had two failed attempts at getting started with the game, whereas now I think I've pretty much succeeded. Why? Partly through extra enthusiasm, generated by one of my friends getting into it, and by Hikaru No Go, but partly also through the current wealth of getting started resources on the web, which between
them have got me past the "what on earth am I meant to be doing?" phase.

1) The Interactive Way To Go

An excellent web tutorial, with lots of java boards, set up so you can try out the various ideas presented there easily, and see what the computer does in response. Very useful for learning the inital concepts.

2) Igowin

A very nice inital computer go program for windows. It plays on a 9x9 board, nice and quickly so you can learn fast. And it auto-adjusts the handicap, so you start off with five stones, and if you keep winning, you get progressively less stones. Eventually you'll be giving it a handicap, but I haven't got that far yet.

3) Basic Instinct

A very useful page on Sensei's library, a Go wiki. It's very handy for the "so what am I meant to be doing now?" problem. Also check out their Beginner Study Section.

4) GnuGo

A stronger and more flexible computer program, useful for getting onto the 13x13 and 19x19 boards, where some new concepts that didn't apply to the 9x9 board emerge. It also has the ability to review your games for you. The runes are: gnugo -l game.sgf -o replay.sgf --replay both.

5) The KGS

An internet go server, I found it to be much nicer than the IGS. There's a nice beginners area, which is good.

So there you have it. Oh, and don't forget to play humans in real life, and look out for books, and stuff. But the above should certainly help to get you off the ground.
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