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 Post subject: Choice of opening and progress
Post #1 Posted: Fri Oct 07, 2016 4:10 am 
Dies with sente

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I would like your advice on choosing openings with a view towards improving my skill.

Right now, I am about 8kyu on ogs and I played the majority of my games there (with some RL games and tournaments in between).

From 25kyu to "16kyu", I played quick 9x9 games only. When I switched to 19x19, I just learned that it would be a good idea to play the corners first, and since all of my opponents started with 4x4 points and low approach-slide-extension, I copied this for a while to concentrate on other issues of the big board.

At about 13 kyu, I tried out the low Chinese opening without reading up on it beyond the defnition and immediately gained a stone. At 10 kyu or so, I actually read up on the follow-ups of the low Chinese opening and learned to sucessfully harass premature invasions.

Now I could start to learn even more about the Chinese opening, but I feel that I should mix it up with another opening, possibly something oriented towards territory (because I really love to build moyos which means that I lack practice on other options) or even some sunjang baduk style start to improve fighting skills.

Do you have some particular advice what could be beneficial choices to develop skills in the rest of the game? Do you have some experience that the choice of opening improved your skill?

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Post #2 Posted: Fri Oct 07, 2016 4:16 am 
Judan
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Hi, :)

  • Sooner or later, we'll be exposed to all kinds of openings, as Go takes two, and our opponent has a mind of their own.
    Eventually we'll have to deal with them anyway; we can only "avoid" certain openings, up to a point (compromise).
  • If we cannot fight, it doesn't matter what's the opening -- as soon as a fight breaks out, we fall into pieces.
  • Which brings us back to the fundamentals. With good basics, we can better handle all kinds of situations, including "strange" openings. With bad basics, once again we crumble.
  • Play what you enjoy. If you enjoy moyo and crazy fights, try as B the Chinese, or Sanrensei, or their variations. If you feel like experimenting with different openings, go ahead ! :)
  • The game is not decided in the opening. Esp. at these levels, sometimes even with an early blunder, the game is still open.
  • The fundamentals. Basics, basics, basics. Vital to improvement. :mrgreen:


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 Post subject: Re: Choice of opening and progress
Post #3 Posted: Fri Oct 07, 2016 6:08 am 
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If you want something territory oriented play san-san twice.


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 Post subject: Re: Choice of opening and progress
Post #4 Posted: Sun Oct 09, 2016 9:03 am 
Oza

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I think it can be valuable to play outside your comfort zone for the sake of growth. If you play territorially, try to keep your eye open for moyo making moves. If you fight a lot, try to play steady moves sometimes. If your play is slow, push yourself to leave unsettled shapes.

I think I gained some fighting strength by playing the one space jump around tengen for a year or so. I played many games where I had no idea what to do, but I learned from always having to confront a territorial disadvantage.

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 Post subject: Re: Choice of opening and progress
Post #5 Posted: Wed Oct 12, 2016 12:49 am 
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You could try the mini chinese opening. It's more easy to grab territory with this opening than the san ren sei and at the same time it's not "fully territory" oriented.

Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$c Mini chinese .pening
$$ ---------------------------------------
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . 4 . . . . . , . . . . . 1 . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . , . . . . . , . . . . . , . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . 6 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . 2 . . . . . , . . . . . , 3 . . |
$$ | . . . . . 5 . . . . 7 . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ ---------------------------------------[/go]

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 Post subject: Re: Choice of opening and progress
Post #6 Posted: Wed Oct 12, 2016 2:45 am 
Oza

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For a long time it was very popular as black to play a keima shimari in the top right and a komoku in the lower right. If black prevents the shimari then shift to the Shusaku opening. This is still the opening I play the most often as black. It is much more territory oriented than most of the modern openings and would be a learning experience for you.

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 Post subject: Re: Choice of opening and progress
Post #7 Posted: Wed Oct 12, 2016 3:11 am 
Oza

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DrStraw wrote:
For a long time it was very popular as black to play a keima shimari in the top right and a komoku in the lower right. If black prevents the shimari then shift to the Shusaku opening. This is still the opening I play the most often as black. It is much more territory oriented than most of the modern openings and would be a learning experience for you.


It's still a very popular professional opening (over 50 in 2016), for example this recent game from the Samsung cup. So plenty of pro game study material.



Or this one:


Or of course the famous Lee Sedol vs AlphaGo game 5 (which is probably a major reason behind the current popularity of the attachment to outside of shimari as in above game).

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 Post subject: Re: Choice of opening and progress
Post #8 Posted: Wed Oct 12, 2016 3:20 am 
Oza
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As Ed said, the opening choice at our level has little bearing on who wins the game. I think that if you are interested in the opening, it is worth thinking about what the intention is of a particular opening (read books about it). Then you can look at games in which that opening is played and see how it works out in practice, and also compare the intention with your own results. One place to start is the Chinese opening, which aims to draw the opponent into one's sphere of influence and then make a moyo while attacking the invasion.

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 Post subject: Re: Choice of opening and progress
Post #9 Posted: Wed Oct 12, 2016 3:37 pm 
Dies with sente

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Thanks for all your advice. I will report back when I have tried them all out.

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 Post subject: Re: Choice of opening and progress
Post #10 Posted: Wed Oct 12, 2016 5:42 pm 
Dies in gote

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When I'm playing to win, I play openings I'm familiar with.

Other wise if I'm playing to learn, I usually play unfamiliar openings (which might or might not be unusual) to make myself learn from the resulting chaos to train fighting/moyo building.

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