Handicap Games

When playing a handicap game of h stones, white should be compensated for each of black's handicap stones (excluding the final one). So white gets h - 1 points compensation.


Compensation in even games, (or komi as it is usually known - from the japanese), may be set to half a point (or zero), using the 'You cut the cake, I'll choose which piece' rule.
In other words, who plays black is determined randomly. Black plays their first move, then white chooses whether to play as black, or as white.

Game End

Ideally, the game should end after both players have played the same number of moves (including passes). So if white passes first, then black passes, then white should be forced to pass again (because black played first).
In some cases this may mean that white loses the game by half a point. I think that in this particular case, the result should be a draw.

Superko and board history

A superko rule implies the existence of a board history (even if only in the player's heads). The creation of a board history can be formalised as follows: After a player has moved, this board position goes into that player's board history.

Superko and passing

If a player passes, does that clear the board history? I think it should, but I think it should reset the board history only for the player who passes. So only those board positions where the opponent just played are kept in the board history.

Board Configurations

Taking account of symmetries, the total number of board configurations can be calculated exactly using Polya Enumeration. Its about 3361/8. exact number
The number possible if colour toggling is dreamt of, can be bounded using similar methods. exact numbers      do you want to know more?

Superko and symmetry

Is playing a move and rotating the board 180 degrees a way of avoiding superko restrictions? Some small board 'solutions' (1x5?) do not take this question into account.
eg. --x--  ->  -ox--  ->  x-x--  ->  x-xo-  ->  x-x-x  -?>  -ox-x

Superko and illegal moves

When the explanation of the rules becomes a battle of wits (and why not?), it is advisable to remark that ones opponent's stones may be removed only when that would not cause a previous board position to be revisited. Oh, and that counts as a pass.

A deeply perverted attempt at the categorisation of balanced forms