samedi 29 mars 2014

The "Might" syndrome.

Hello !

Last night, on KGS, I was somewhat bored. So I opened a few games, kind of randomly. Precisly, I opened the first 20 games I came across played by 3k --> 9k players, and thought I'd make a quick list of the basic issues that I could see.

I suppose I was a bit over-confident when I decided to make it "quick". Most games I opened were masterpieces. Masterpiece of bad shapes, greed, jealousy and the list goes long. I think most players below 10k and willing to reach dan level will be interested in knowing why "they can't break the 8k bar or the 3k bar". This is the whole point of this post.

Believe it or not, the basic "fundamental" mistakes were most always happening in the 3k games. Maybe the 9k's know the road to shodan is still long enough and are ready to struggle to reach it. The 3k's, on the contrary, know they are not so far away from it. That it can be made in a few months. They are impatient.
They don't protetct cuts (they think they are strong enough to cope with them ?), they over-extend (they think they can kill an invader ?) They play upfront of an opponent's wall. (they think they will survive somehow?) I will call this the "might syndrome". The 3k players know they learnt some stuff, they know their reading improved. And that's right. I've seen many times, 3k players play dan-like fights. But they are rare.

The 9k's, however, are still at the times they HAVE to think about their moves, because it hasn't become a reflex yet. They try their best. and the 3k's seem to not pay attention anymore.

The SGF I am sharing below is a short summary of what I encountered yesterday. They are all real-games examples, and are all taken from 3k games, specifically. Basically, I made it like this Issue#1, Issue #2 and so on, along with a "What a dan would play instead"

The list is obviously non-exhaustive and doesn't have as purpose to show how "bad" moves you play, but rather to make you understand why you are stuck and how to overcome that. Take note that the "dan-like" play as shown in the alternative variations are always simple. Simpler than what you play, that is.  Reaching simplicity is a long way, but I'm convinced that paying more attention will certainly pay off for most SDK players.


EDIT : You will notice I am trying another sgf-reader. I liked the idea to have the comments right in front of the board to avoid scrolling. Also I find it easier to browse variations with the new reader. Any feedback about it would be much appreciated :) If the majority likes it, I will change the sgf-reader in the old posts too :)

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