About Weiqi

Having developed in China between 3,000 and 4,000 years ago, Go (called Wei Ch'i in China and Baduk in Korea) contends with backgammon for the right to be called the oldest game still played in its original form. Today it is played by millions in Asia and thousands elsewhere. Weiqi is an intellectual but fun game. It is much more complex than the Chinese Chess, thus usually takes quite long to finish a game. A game of Weiqi can take as quick as 15 minutes and as long as days to finish. Weiqi helps to improve one's concentration, calculation, memory and creativity. It develops one's systematic thinking skill and develop a good sense of judgement.

If you are interested, you may want to learn how to play weiqi and find out more about the courses offered by the Singapore Weiqi Association.


How To Improve

To improve your weiqi, the most important thing to do is to PLAY MORE!

Below maybe some tips to guide you when you play:
1) When you play a game, concentrate and focus on your game
2) Recall and record a game after you play (whether you have won or lost) and find out where are you mistakes
3) Try to go through the game you have played with your opponent and spot each other mistakes

To play weiqi, you can go to the Singapore Weiqi Association to look for players. There are more players on Saturday and Sunday afternoons where you have no worries of not finding anyone. If you are free, you can always play online too! Please view the @Html.ActionLink("clubhouse info", "ContactUs", "Home") and play online page for more information.

You can also read up on weiqi books and go through game records of professional players.


Weiqi History

GO, or otherwise known as Weiqi(directly translated from Chinese), originated from ancient China. There are a tangle of conflicting popular and scholarly anecdotes attributing its invention to two Chinese emperors, an imperial vassal and court astrologer.

One story has it that go was invented by the Emperor Yao (ruled 2357-2256 B.C.) as an amusement for his idiot son. A second claims the Emperor Shun (ruled 2255-2205) B.C. created the game in hopes of improving his weak-minded son's mental prowess. A third say that one Wu, a vassal of the Emperor Chieh (ruled 1818-1766 B.C.), invented go as well as games of cards. Finally, a fourth theory suggests that go was developed by court astrolgeres during the Chou Dynasty (1045-255 B.C.).

In any event, it is generally agreed that go is at least 3000 to 4000 years old which makes it the world's oldest strategic board game.

Go has not always enjoyed its current status as the world's most challenging and intellectually stimulating board game. In its infancy, go was said to have been used by astrologers to divine the future. Later, according to Chinese classics such as The Analects of Confucius, Tso-chuan, all of which was written no earlier than the sixth century B.C., it became the pastime of gamblers and other idlers.

While there might have been even the earlier references to the existence of go in ancient China, the books that contained were probably burned during the reign of Ch'in Shih Huang Ti, who in 221 B.C., ordered that all books be burned.

Beginning around 2000 B.C., go and poetry enjoyed golden age in China, until about 600 A.D.. Whatever its sources and early reputation, by this time go obviously occupied a prestigious position. For example, in the second century A.D, the poet Ma Yung is said to have made himself famous by celebrating go in his verses. Of the many anecdotes about go that have survived from ancient China, the two most popular are these.

Sometime during the late third or early fourth century A.D., a go player named Osan gained historical immortality for his amazing ability to replay entire games (consisting of anywhre from 150 to more than 300 moves) from memory, move for move.

Today, of course, all professional go players and many strong amateurs can do the same. In fact, the customary teaching technique used in Japan is for the teacher to reconstruct-play by play-games played with his students in order to criticize their moves. Nonetheless, this anecdote demonstrates that strength in go and a powerful memory go together.

The second anecdote illustrates the esteem in which go was held during its golden age in China. During the Chin Dynasty (265-420 A.D.), Hsieh An was at war with his nephew Hsieh Hsuan. After many bloody but inconclusive battles, these two warlords decided to spare their remaining soldiers and instead to allow the outcome of their war to be decided on the go board in a game played between themselves. Unfortunately, the result of this contest was not recorded.

No matter how many different story about Weiqi there are, it still remains the fact that Weiqi is a very enjoyable and challenging game. Not only it is intellectual, it is also very fun. In fact, Weiqi has become a language whereby different people from different countries who speak different languages, Weiqi seems to form a bridge between the people.