Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Game of the Week: Go

Go is a member of a very select club of "lifestyle" games. Those who play Go, often play it exclusively. The game has its own clubs, magazines and books. It's really a hobby unto itself. (A few other games in this category include Chess, Bridge, Diplomacy and Advanced Squad Leader).
So all a casual player like myself can say is that I've been "dabbling" in Go lately, playing some beginner level matches on Yahoo! games. I took a peek at a couple of my Go books, and it helped a little against some of the equally clueless beginners I've played against, but I have to admit I haven't felt so much at sea with a new game in many years.
It's amazing really. The game is so very simple, really. The rules are spare and elegant. Indeed. the rules are so minimalist that it feels like Go was "discovered" rather than invented. I'm pretty sure that chess is only played on Earth, but I would not be at all surprised if we discover Go-like games played elsewhere in the universe. After all, its just a game of black and white pieces on a grid!
Just. Heh!
I like playing too many different games to ever be more than an indifferent player of Go, but If I ever do have some time to spend on it I would like to rise to the level of ineptness, at least. Maybe after I retire ... .

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