American Go E-Journal » U.S./North America

MingJiu Jiang 9P Wins Jujo Jiang Tournament

Monday January 17, 2011

Fittingly – and not surprisingly – it was the Brothers Jiang who battled it out for the top prize at the recent Jujo Jiang Tournament, held January 8 in San Francisco, CA. MingJiu Jiang 9P prevailed in the climactic 4th-round game against his brother — and tournament namesake — Zhujiu “Jujo” Jiang 9P (at left in photo) , winning the championship, which was sponsored by ZhiQiang Guo. “Mr. Guo participated in the tournament two years ago and enjoyed it so much that he decided to be a sponsor this year,” reports organizer Ernest Brown. The final was broadcast live on KGS. There were eight prizes in each of four divisions in the handicap portion of the tournament as well as four cash prizes in the open section. Matthew Burrall 6d took second place and tourney namesake Jujo Jiang 9P was third, while Qucheng (Roger) Gong 6d placed 4th and Hugh Zhang 6d was 5th; all had 3-1 records. Aaron Ye 2d topped the Handicap Division with a 4-0 record and Eric Su 3d was second, also with 4-0; Justin Shieh 4d took third place with 3-1.

The 19th-annual tournament “was well populated by youth dan level players,” Brown told the E-Journal, adding that “During the tournament go lessons were provided free to the public.” Next year’s 20th anniversary tournament is already being planned, and will again be held at the Chinese Culture Center in the Financial District Hilton Hotel in San Francisco.  “We look forward to hosting many of the professional players who have participated in the tournament over the years from around the world,” says Brown. Click here for tournament photos.

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YKNOT Tourney Launches Saturday on KGS

Monday January 17, 2011

More than 120 members of the American Go Association will vie for nearly $3,000 in prizes in the inaugural Young Kwon National Online Tournament (YKNOT), which begins this Saturday. The field includes AGA Life Members from Asia and Europe as well as AGA members in the United States – click here for complete list — and dan winners will be awarded Korean Baduk Association’s Dan-level certificates. Nearly twenty players applied or renewed their AGA membership to qualify to play YKNOT, and over a dozen players tested their web camera and Skype during the Q/A session last Saturday. With many players are new to online tournaments, co-director Zhiyuan ‘Edward’ Zhang is strongly recommending that all players familiarize themselves with the relevant software. “A reliable internet connection is critical,” Zhang adds. He notes that while it may seem inconvenient at first to have to use software and a web camera, “we are confident that the benefits of low costs, no transportation expenses, more supervision, and a quasi face-to-face experience far outweigh the drawbacks.” For details and complete YKNOT notices, click here. Tournament pairings will be announced soon. The tournament will be held over five days: January 22, 23, 29, 30 and February 5; game times are 1p ET for dan and 6p ET for kyu divisions.

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Torrey Tops MGA Winter Tourney

Monday January 17, 2011

Becci Torrey 1d (at right, in photo) won the January 16 Massachusetts Go Association’s Winter Handicap Tournament, topping a field of 32 at the club in Davis Square, Somerville. Players ranged in strength from 18 kyu to 7-dan, and in age from 14 to septugenarian, reports TD Eva Casey, “with every decade in between represented.”  The players traveled from Western Massachusetts and Cape Cod, as well as Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, New York, and  Rhode Island. “Seven women participated if you include the TD,” adds Casey. Gus Heck 2k and Doug Frantz 12k tied for second, while Laura Wu 12k came in third. Click here for photos. Photos courtesy Eva Casey.

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Yu Go & Santa Monica Clubs Team Up at LA Anime Convention

Monday January 17, 2011

The Yu Go Club and Santa Monica Go Club teamed up to teach dozens of anime fans the basics of go at the recent Anime Los Angeles (ALA) convention, reports Samantha Davis. “The interest from con-goers was amazing, and go at ALA was a huge success!” The clubs ran three go demonstrations and a panel over the course of the three-day convention. photo courtesy Samantha Davis

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School Teams Tourney Registration

Sunday January 16, 2011

Registration for the AGHS School Teams Tournament is now open. There will be four rounds: Round 1 (12 pm ET) and Round 2 (5 pm ET) will be on February 26; Round 3 (12 pm ET) and Round 4 (5 pm ET) will be the next Saturday, March 5. Players must still be in High School, or younger, and no older than 20 as of February 26. Schools can register a maximum of three teams, each with three players and one alternate. Returning players, please note that the rules have changed for the 2011 tournament: only learning institutions, where a subject other than go is taught are eligible. Regular go clubs are NOT eligible unless they are based at a school. Players are encouraged to form teams from their public/private schools. Registration closes February 12.

Redmond Cup Registration Opens

Tuesday January 11, 2011

Young American go players can now sign up for the 19th annual Redmond Cup Tournament. Preliminary games will be played on the Internet, courtesy of IGS-PandaNet, and the four finalists will be invited to the 2010 US Go Congress to play the final games. There are two divisions in the Cup; the Junior league for those aged less than 12 years and the Senior league for those 12 and older, but younger than 18, on August 1st 2011. Competitors in the Senior League must be playing at dan strength, in the Junior 5 kyu or stronger. The participants must be members of the American Go Association or the Canadian Go Association and either residents of the U.S., Canada or Mexico or citizens of the United States living anywhere in the world, provided that they are also members of the AGA. The tournament director for the Redmond Cup is Michael Bull; Ing rules of Goe for all games. To register e-mail youth@usgo.org with your name, address, phone #, date of birth, email address, AGA rating, and citizenship. The registration deadline is February 15, 2011 The Cup is sponsored by Michael Redmond 9P and his family, the American Go Association and the American Go Foundation. Photo: 2010 champions, Oliver Wolf 2d (l) Sponsor None Redmond (c), Henry Zhang 1K (r). Photo by Ling Shan. – Paul Barchilon, Youth Editor.

Young Kwon Online Tourney Registration Deadline Extended; KBA to Award Dan Certificates

Monday January 10, 2011

With large cash prizes and free registration, why not sign up for the YKNOT? Nearly 100 have already signed up, and the registration deadline for the Young Kwon Online Tourney (YNOT) has been extended to this Thursday, January 13. “All levels are welcome,” says organizer Edward (Zhiyuan) Zhang, adding that “There are only a small number of players 5k and below enrolled.” Click here for free registration; AGA life members who live outside of U.S. are also eligible. The five round tournament is scheduled for January 22, 23, 29, 30 and February 5; 1p EST for dan divisions and 6p EST for kyu divisions. Basic time is 1 hour for dan and 30 min for kyu players and overtime for both is 5 periods of 30 seconds. Sponsor Young Kwon 7d believes that “kyu players can improve their strength quickly by recognizing the shapes and patterns, rather than reading/solving the problems.” Thanks to Myungwan Kim 9P’s efforts, the Korean Baduk Association has agreed to award KBA certificates to winners in three divisions (KBA 1 dan for 1k-4k division; 4 dan for 1d-3d; 6 dan for 4d-6d). For first-time web camera users, the TD’s (Skype ID: AGATD1) offer a live Q/A and testing at 1-2 pm on Saturday 1/15. Players may try to connect (or video chat) with “AGATD1” on Skype by then.

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Wilde About Go

Monday January 10, 2011

Tron: Legacy actress Olivia Wilde was apparently the inspiration for the inclusion of go in the holiday hit. “That was my nerdy idea because Go is the one game that humans consistently beat computers at,” Wilde said in a December 16 interview in the Times-Union. Taking on an “excited nerd voice,” Wilde said “We should have something about Go, because people who know about it will know computers can’t beat humans and it’ll be this cool reference to what humans can do that computers can’t. So we had that line where I say, ‘Flynn usually beats me.’ I think that people who know might get a little bit of a chuckle out of that.” Wilde also references Buddhism’s “beginner’s mind” in describing her character, Quorra. Kudos to EJ reader “ptw” who noted that Wilde “doesn’t seem to be an AGA member, but having a spokesperson with her combination of intelligence and notoriety would be quite useful in promoting go in the US.”

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Seattle Tourney Honors Jin Chen 7d’s Memory

Monday January 10, 2011

More than two dozen go players recently celebrated Jin Chen 7d’s life by playing the game Chen loved. The Seattle Go Center hosted the 2011 Jin Chen Memorial Tournament on January 2, with 26 players from across the country competing in the 3-round event. Many more visited the Center to watch the tournament and to pay their respects to the parents of Jin Chen, “a near master of one of the most complex strategy games in the world,” who accidentally fell to his death in January 2009. The tournament was held the day before what would have been Chen’s 24th birthday. The event showed that “friends and family of Jin Chen are moving on and celebrating,” Shan Chen told the E-Journal. “The Seattle Go Center has a great history and cultural values, and we are proud that Jin is part of it.” Click here for the Bellevue Reporter’s account and here for more photos of the tournament.

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Xbox’s Path of Go The New Hikaru No Go?

Monday January 10, 2011

Judging by the flood of fan mail we received over the holiday break, The Path of Go — the new Xbox LIVE game – is quite the gaming hit, at least in the go community. “I just played The Path of Go with my 8 year old grand daughter and we could not get her to stop,” writes longtime go player and organizer Ernest Brown. “The three year old wanted to try also. This should be a great thing for promoting go.  In fact I believe we will get a bump in people wanting go lessons similar to the Hikaru No Go phenomena.  I think this beginning could attract more attention from the computer gaming community as well.  I hope it gets Bill Gates more engaged with go!”

Thanks to everyone who sent in reviews (Path of Go Available on Xbox 12/23/2010); “It’s a fun game,” wrote Joshua Ward. “It has a story mode that I was able to play through fairly quickly. The story mode is good for beginners as it plays entirely on a 9×9 board and teaches them the basics of the game. There is a multiplayer function to the game as well. You can go onto Xbox Live and play against other people on a 9×9, 13×13, and 19×19 board.” Here’s an edited excerpt of Christian Haught’s review: The game’s plot is interesting. You begin by being summoned to the residence of a wise old go master, who teaches you the basics of go. He then informs you of a twin you didn’t know of, who possesses go prowess like you, but who could never learn how to lose with grace. Leaving to pursue the Path of Go, he left his – and now your – master, who allows you to leave to look for your twin. This is an interesting setup for the game, as it hints to leading to a suspenseful final game between you and your twin, who has an odd habit of leaving games unfinished, which the masters you meet along the way ask you to finish. The control system for the game is relatively simple to understand, graphics were really well done and the three dimensional effects are impressive, adding a sense of depth and realism to the game. The insertion of your xbox live avatar into the game is also carried out quite well, as they make it seem as though your avatar belongs in the game, not just coded in. The settings in which the game takes place are also beautifully put together, and look like places you could find in nature. The computer that you play against is also decently strong, sometimes even forcing players who are more then just beginners into a corner. I wonder how that will work with players who are new to the game, but I imagine that this will force newer players to improve at a more rapid rank. Even if you have never played a game of go in your life, the game starts out with an excellent tutorial that introduces many of the beginning basics. These are, of course, added onto as the game proceeds, but these few beginner tips will allow you to get the basic understanding of the game and begin your journey into becoming a skilled go player. I imagine that most players will be at least 18k in rank, if not higher, by the end of this game.
- click here for the original version of this review