« AnteriorContinuar »
swer is, he cannot so demand, and his adversary is not bound to play on this point, and the hopeless or abandoned stones are removed without further play. We might call such groups “dead.” They may be distinguished from stones that are “taken,” because these latter are removed at once, whereas “dead” stones are removed only at the end of the game.
As a corollary to the rule for surrounding and taking stones, it follows that a group of stones containing two disconnected vacant intersections or “Me” cannot be taken. This is not a separate rule. It follows necessarily from the method by which stones are taken. Nevertheless in practice it is the most important principle in the game.
In order to understand the rule or principle of the two “Me,” we must first look at the situation shown in Plate 3, Diagram 1. There, if a black stone is played at F 15, although it is played on an intersection entirely surrounded by white stones, it nevertheless lives because the moment it is played it has the effect of killing the entire white group; that is to say, a stone may be played on an intersection where it is completely surrounded if as it is played it has the effect of completely surrounding the adversary's stones already on the board. If, on the other hand, we have a situation as shown in Plate 3, Diagram II, a black stone may indeed be played on one of the vacant intersections, but when it is so played the white group is not completely surrounded, because there still remains one space yet to be filled, and the black stone itself is dead as soon as it touches the board, and hence it would be impossible to surround this group of white stones unless two stones were played at once. The white stones, therefore, can never be surrounded, and form an impregnable position.
This is the principle of the two “Me," and when a player's group of stones is hard pressed, and his adversary is trying to surround them, if he can so place the stones that two disconnected complete “Me” are left, they are safe forever. It makes no difference whether the vacant “Me" are on the edges or in the corners of the board, or how far from each other they may be.
Plate 3, Diagram Vi, shows a group of stones containing two vacant “Me” on the edge of the board. This group is perfectly safe against attack. A beginner might ask why the white group shown on P'ate 3, Diagram v,
not fe. The difficulty with that group is, that when sack played at S 9, there are no “Me" in it at all as tht wor is used in this connection, not even a “Kageme” as shown in Plate 3, Diagram ini, because a “Me,” in order to be available for the nursnse of defense, must be a vacant intersection that is surrounded on four sides, just as a captured stone must be su roiand therefore on the sides of the board it can be made by three stones, and in the corner of the board by two stones, but it is absolutely necessary, in addition to the minimum number of surrounding stones, to have helping stones to guard the surrounding stones against attack. This bung. us to what the Japanese call “Kageme.”
In actual play there are many groups of stones that at first glance seem to have two vacant “Me” in them, but which on analysis, will be found vulnerable to attack A “Me" that looks somewhat as if it were complete, but is, nevertheless, destructible is called “Kageme.” “Kage'
means “chipped” or "incomplete.” Plate 3, Diagram ili, is an illustration of this. A beginner might think that the white group was safe, but Black can kill the upper six white stones by playing at E 3, and then on the next move can kill the remainder by playing at G 2. Therefore, E 3 is not a perfect “Me,” but is “Kageme.” G2 is a perfect “Me,” but one is not enough to save the group. In this group if the stone at F 4 or D 2 were white, there would be two perfect “Me," and the group would be safe. In a close game beginners often find it difficult to distinguish between a perfect “Me” and “Kageme.”
Groups of stones which contain vacant spaces, can be lost or saved according as two disconnected “Me” can or cannot be formed in those spaces, and the most interesting play in the game occurs along the sides and especially in the corners of the board in attempting to form or attempting to prevent the formation of these “Me." The attacking player often plays into the vacant space and sacrifices several stones with the ultimate object of reducing the space to one “Me”; and, on the other hand, the defending player by selecting a fortunate intersection may make it impossible for the stones to be killed. There is opportunity for marvelous ingenuity in the attack and defense of these positions. A simple example of defense is shown in Plate 3, Diagram iv, where, if it is White's turn, and he plays in the corner of the board at T 19, he can save his stones. If, on the other hand, he plays anywhere else, the two “Me” can never be formed. The beginner would do well to work out this situation for himself.
The series of diagrams commencing at Plate 3, Diagram V, show the theoretical method of reducing vacant spaces
by the sacrifice of stones. This series is taken from Korschelt, and the position as it arose in actual play is shown on Plate 1o, depicting a complete game. In Plate 3, Diagram V, the white group is shown externally surrounded, and the black stone has just been played at S 9, rendering the group hopeless. The same group is shown on the opposite side of the board at Plate 4, Diagram 1, but Black has added three more stones and could kill the white gro'ıp on the next move. Therefore, White plays at A 12, and the situation shown in Plate 4, Diagram 11, arises, where the same group is shown on the lower edge of the board. Now, if it were White's move, he could save his group by playing at J 2, and the situation which would then arise is shown on Plate 4, Diagram ili, where White has three perfect “Me,” one more than enough. However, it is not White's move, and Black plays on the coveted intersection, and then adds two more stones until the situation shown in Plate 4, Diagram iv, arises. Then White must again play at S 8 in order to save his stones from immediate capture, and the situation shown at Plate 5, Diagram I, comes about. Black again plays at J 18, adds one more stone, and we have the situation shown in Plate 5, Diagram ii, where it is obvious that White must play at C 1 in order to save his group from immediate capture, thus leaving only two vacant spaces. It is unnecessary to continue the analysis further, but at the risk of explaining what is apparent, it might be pointed out that Black would play on one of these vacant spaces, and if White killed the stone (which it would not pay White to do, Black would play again on the space thus made vacant, and completely surround and kill the entire white group.