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Revision as of 19:34, 26 October 2020 by Kevan (talk | contribs) (add the basic rules of the game, formatting)
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BoardGameArena uses the American Go Association's rules for this adaptation.

Basic rules

A summary from "The Rules and Elements of Go" (1977) by James Davies:

  1. The square grid board is empty at the outset of the game.
  2. Black makes the first move, after which he and White alternate.
  3. A move consists of placing one stone of one's own color on an empty intersection on the board.
  4. A player may pass his turn at any time.
  5. A stone or solidly via grid lines connected group of stones of one color is captured and removed from the board when all the intersections directly adjacent to it are occupied by the enemy. Capture of the enemy takes precedence over self-capture.
  6. No stone may be played so as to recreate a former board position.
  7. Two consecutive passes end the game.
  8. A player's territory consists of all the board points he has either occupied or monochromely surrounded.
  9. The player with more territory wins.


If players have equal points at end of game (draws), then white wins +0.5 point, because komi by rules 0.5 (without komi), 4.5, 5.5, 7.5 respectively.


A game may be played with a handicap to compensate for differences in player strengths. First player (administrator of table) plays white. Second player takes black, and either moves first, giving only 0.5 point compensation to white (this is known as a "one stone handicap"), or places from 2 to 9 stones on the board before the first white move. Handicap stones are placed on predefined intersection on the board automatically.)

Game options

Grid size

Game board size. Available values are:

  • 9x9
  • 13x13
  • 19x19

Method of counting

Method for counting the score. Options are:

  • Japanese (counting by territory and opponent's prisoners)
  • Chinese (counting by area only)

Although players' scores may differ under the two methods, the difference in their scores, and the game result, will be the same.

Komi and handicaps

Compensation points to white for first black move or handicaps. Options are:

  • Without komi (without compensation)
  • Normal komi (4 points for 19x19 and 5 points for 9x9, 13x13)
  • Big komi (for strong players: 7 points for 9x9, 13x13, 19x19)
  • Handicap: 1 stone
  • Handicap: 2 stones
  • Handicap: 3 stones
  • Handicap: 4 stones
  • Handicap: 5 stones
  • Handicap: 6 stones
  • Handicap: 7 stones
  • Handicap: 8 stones
  • Handicap: 9 stones

AGA Rules

A yes/no option for using the American Go Association rules.

When set to "No", paid passes occur only when playing out to the end after next series of passes. This is closer to the Japanese rules due to the absence of paid passes before a stage of designate dead stones (and therefore, you cannot put a stone to your territory without losing one point).