Oh boy oh boy oh boy oh boy…
The ancient game of Go is the most complex and elegant game ever discovered. Though the rules are simple enough to teach a child, the complexity that emerges has inspired millennia of study. For three thousand years, master players in East Asia have handed down the game as an art form to foster patience, creativity, and self-reflection. Today in the elite world of the pros, international tournaments offer hundred-thousand dollar prize purses, and top matches are broadcast on 24-hour “Go TV” to millions of fans in China, Korea, and Japan. But in the West, most people have never even heard of the game…until now.
You’ll forgive our juvenile play on words in the title, n’est-ce pas? 1 But it seems apt.
We’ve mentioned before that Go is not as revered in Japan as earlier ages; it is considered an old man’s game. The Sudoku tweet below sums up the new era succinctly.
— うさぎしん。 (@usagi_shin) July 21, 2014
Japanese school girls, my ass. 2
- For the Go illiterate, Japanese players often mutter ah so desu ka during a game, which means –depending on context– “Is that so…?’, or ‘Really?’ or ‘I see’ or “Man, am I fucked.’ We tend to use that last meaning…a lot. ↩
- They are actually playing a much smaller, teaching version of Go, but the danged colored stones, in the shapes of hearts no less, thoroughly sets our nerves on edge. We feel like going all Tevye and singing “Tradition!” Still, they are learning the game… ↩
This is late in the day but if you dig the ’70-’80s OG video games – e.g. Asteroids, Tempest, Missile Command and Centipede et cetera et alis – you should run over to the App Store THIS INSTANT and download Atari’s Greatest Hits.
All 99 games can be yours for free.
But only until the end of today.