Playing Go online is a real humbling experience. The game itself – at least from the perspective of a novice,
allows comebacks nearing the magnitude of Hollywood climbaxes.
What I mean by this is that, in one or two moves, you can go from a sure win, to catastrophic defeat.
There are still many, MANY things I don’t grasp – like “life and death” (within the game – this isn’t philosophy!), and what constitutes a good grouping from a bad one.
But one thing I am grasping is just how important it is to fail.
I’ve been barging into online lobbies, playing blitz games on a 9×9 board, and utterly losing. In 20 minutes, I lost 14 games. Each time refusing to back out and just watch a dreary professional game commentary – I wanted my mistakes to be my own.
This rapid failing technique began teaching me faster than any book I could have read. So much so, that, in a real bizarre experience, I started recognizing little “tricks” and move combinations which I later discovered had intricate Japanese names, like “demise ladder” and “tiger mouth”.
Now I think it’s time to fail on a tournament sized board.