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 Post subject: Counter this non-conventional opening
Post #1 Posted: Sat Jan 26, 2019 9:22 am 
Lives in gote

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I've played a game where my opponent made an odd opening. It caught me unaware and I got slaughtered in that game.

Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$B Moves 1 to 10
$$ ---------------------------------------
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . 2 . . . . . 7 . . . . . , 6 . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . 3 . . . . . , . . . . . 1 . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . 4 , . . . . . 5 . . . . . 8 0 . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ ---------------------------------------[/go]


After taking the initial star points on the sides, he continued to invade the 2 3-3 points.

In retrospect, I think maybe I should've taken a side as well, instead of the 4 corners.

What do you think about this strategy for black and how would you fight it as white?

Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$B Already starting to mess up, so early
$$ ---------------------------------------
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . O . . . . . X . . . . . , O . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . X . . . . . , . . . . . X . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 . . . |
$$ | . . O , . . . . . X . . . . 7 O O 5 . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 1 X . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 3 6 0 . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 . . . . |
$$ ---------------------------------------[/go]

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 Post subject: Re: Counter this non-conventional opening
Post #2 Posted: Sat Jan 26, 2019 12:08 pm 
Honinbo

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There are a few variations, so I made an SGF file. :)


_________________
There is one human race.
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At some point, doesn't thinking have to go on?

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This post by Bill Spight was liked by 2 people: Elom, sorin
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 Post subject: Re: Counter this non-conventional opening
Post #3 Posted: Sat Jan 26, 2019 5:35 pm 
Lives in gote

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Ian Butler wrote:
I've played a game where my opponent made an odd opening. It caught me unaware and I got slaughtered in that game.

Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$B Moves 1 to 10
$$ ---------------------------------------
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . 2 . . . . . 7 . . . . . , 6 . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . 3 . . . . . , . . . . . 1 . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . 4 , . . . . . 5 . . . . . 8 0 . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ ---------------------------------------[/go]


After taking the initial star points on the sides, he continued to invade the 2 3-3 points.

In retrospect, I think maybe I should've taken a side as well, instead of the 4 corners.

What do you think about this strategy for black and how would you fight it as white?


You should be able to win with white if you play against someone at the same level, as long as you can stay cool-headed.
Black's plan with this opening is to drag you into unexpected fights, so playing tight extensions to keep your corners strong, and avoiding fights when outnumbered should lead to peaceful games where your opponent will fall behind in territory (and in confidence).

Of course, this is just in theory :-)
In practice, if you make a mistake like you did in the lower-right corner (departing from the joseki in a way that is bad even without black's special opening) will ruin the game quickly, but that's a discussion about tactics, not about strategy.

One more idea about this type of unusual opening: you can experiment and try to play this with black in a couple of games, to put yourself in the other's shoes, that should provide maybe interesting learnings!

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 Post subject: Re: Counter this non-conventional opening
Post #4 Posted: Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:43 pm 
Lives in gote

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Reminds me of this opening a high dan level player showed me at our local club:

It assumes white takes the corners, but of course, white could (and probably should) play something other than 4 4-4's:

Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$B Moves 1 to 9
$$ ---------------------------------------
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . 2 . . . . . 3 . . . . . 6 . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . 7 . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . , . . . . . 1 . . . . . , . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . 9 . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . 4 . . . . . 5 . . . . . 8 . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ ---------------------------------------[/go]

(I also may have the move order wrong, but this is the board position following black 9.)


According to what I was told at the time, the best strategy for black is usually to pick fights. But black can also easily build territory in the center if white gives up influence for side territory. They also seemed to think that white should start taking 3-4's in the corner after move 2.

I've tried playing it a few times. It is surprisingly playable, and I have indeed had the most success when I've managed to start fights.

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 Post subject: Re: Counter this non-conventional opening
Post #5 Posted: Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:54 pm 
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BlindGroup wrote:
Reminds me of this opening a high dan level player showed me at our local club:


Ah the great wall opening. A very fun way to play. I strongly recommend players in the 10k-5k range try it a few times.

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 Post subject: Re: Counter this non-conventional opening
Post #6 Posted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 7:45 am 
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Rank: Bel 2d KGS 3d TG 4d
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Tygem: Knotwilg
Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$B Moves 1 to 10
$$ ---------------------------------------
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . b . . . . |
$$ | . . . 2 . . . . . 7 . . . . . , 6 . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . 3 . . . . . , . . . . . 1 . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . 4 , . . . . . 5 . . . . . 8 0 . . |
$$ | . . . . a . . . . . . . . . . . 9 . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ ---------------------------------------[/go]


By move 8, Lizzie already gives White 70-75% chance to win the game. Instead of B9, Black should play the corner approaches of a or b.
The following are some steady corner patterns to maintain that advantage.

Click Here To Show Diagram Code
[go]$$B Moves 1 to 10
$$ ---------------------------------------
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . 7 9 5 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . 8 3 4 . 1 . . . . . . . 3 2 4 . . . |
$$ | . . 6 O . . . . . X . . . 5 1 , O . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . 2 . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . 0 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . X . . . . . , . . . . . X . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . 4 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . |
$$ | . . O , 3 . . . . X . . . . 6 O O . . |
$$ | . . . 2 1 . . . . . . . . 5 2 1 X . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 4 3 8 0 . . |
$$ | . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 . . . . . |
$$ ---------------------------------------[/go]


In each of those, White ends in gote, but in all of them, one of his side star points becomes ineffective.

I haven't seen the game but I think the reason why you got slaughtered may be that you thought such foolish opening should be punished and got into fighting mode, whereas the foolishness of this opening is that it punishes itself when the opponent keeps it simple and avoids fighting.

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 Post subject: Re: Counter this non-conventional opening
Post #7 Posted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 8:44 am 
Lives in gote

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Some interesting comments and variations, thank you for that!

Quote:
I haven't seen the game but I think the reason why you got slaughtered may be that you thought such foolish opening should be punished and got into fighting mode,


No, I never take my opponent as a fool and I treat every opening as a valid way of playing. With this type of opening, I realized fighting would be bad and I would win if I stayed calm and just took territory.
I did want to "punish" his opening, but by taking territory and not getting provoked into moyo building or fights.
But with the two star points and him invading the 3-3, I guess I couldn't figure out how I'd use that thickness to win the game, freaked out a bit and played bad moves.
Also, my opponent often finds fights even where I want to avoid them :)

But I try to never underestimate my opponent and to never disregard strategies because they may seem "odd".

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 Post subject: Re: Counter this non-conventional opening
Post #8 Posted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 10:42 am 
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Ian Butler wrote:
Also, my opponent often finds fights even where I want to avoid them :)


As an exercise, you can try an approach "give the opponent what he wants" and resist any urge to fight. It's usually not good because you may end up following him around and be bullied into a loss, but there are ways. Tenuki is always an option; and forcing the opponent to take the stones he's going for, is often a good way to avoid big fights.

When I tried to play this way, I discovered I was more of a hack-and-slasher than I wanted :)

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 Post subject: Re: Counter this non-conventional opening
Post #9 Posted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 11:16 am 
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A bit off-topic: there is a guy on OGS who makes much funnier openings. Here is a game I played in 2017.

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