Weekly Go problems: Week 4

Here are the weekly Go problems for week 04.

Black plays first in all problems and all solutions are labeled ‘correct’. Have fun!

Easy Go problem


Download SGF File (Go Game Record)


Download the solutions to the easy problem as an SGF or PDF file.


Intermediate Go problem


Download SGF File (Go Game Record)


Download the solutions to the intermediate problem as an SGF or PDF file.


Hard Go problem


Download SGF File (Go Game Record)


Download the solutions to the hard problem as an SGF or PDF file.


Still want more Go problems?

You can find Go books packed full of life and death problems, tesuji problems and other valuable Go knowledge at the Go Game Shop.

Discuss other possible moves

If you have any questions or want to discuss any of these problems, please leave a comment below at any time. You can use the coordinates on the problem images to discuss a move or sequence of moves.

You can also download the solutions as a PDF or SGF file by clicking the links below each problem.

About David Ormerod

David is a Go enthusiast who’s played the game for more than a decade. He likes learning, teaching, playing and writing about the game Go. He's taught thousands of people to play Go, both online and in person at schools, public Go demonstrations and Go clubs. David is a 5 dan amateur Go player who competed in the World Amateur Go Championships prior to starting Go Game Guru. He's also the editor of Go Game Guru.

You can follow Go Game Guru on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Youtube.


  1. s2 p2 s1 leads to several interesting variations. Proving that none of them is better than original solution took a bit of my time -_-

    • David Ormerod says:

      That’s right. You can find the solution by just clicking, I imagine, but reading out why everything else isn’t (quite) as good makes the third one interesting.

  2. Cool problem. I kept finding great counters that don’t work, lol.

  3. Thanks for these problems. I was in the “Go” zone today and got all three on my first try, which made me feel pretty good since I’m still double-digit kyu (according to the server I play on anyway…) So yeah! Can’t wait till next week’s. Cheers!

    • David Ormerod says:

      It seems like you’re getting better every week :). Are you doing other problems (apart from the ones here) too?

      • I’ve been playing with a 6 kyu who has been introducing me to the game and working through the “Graded Go problems for beginners” book he got me. Along with goproblems.com and the Many Faces of Go program. So yeah, I’ve been doing lots of problems, when I need to be playing more games haha.

  4. Problem 1: see vital spot; know deficiency of shape in corner for variations; depth 2, width 2
    Problem 2: know shape; know vital spot, see miai; depth 2, width 2
    Problem 3: only 1 possible move to start, then some branching; width 3 depth 5.

  5. I have a fever and I’m out of practice, so I wasn’t in the mood to think too hard. I somehow solved all these problems on the first try without reading. I got lucky for sure.

    • David Ormerod says:

      I hope you’re feeling better soon. Your intuition must be ok then :). The difficulty in this week’s problems is probably most in reading out why everything else doesn’t work.

  6. richard turner (rick) says:

    hello david, i’m rick and i would like to find out if there are any go players in pompano beach, fl., u.s.a.

  7. Could somebody please explain why the first solution is what it is? Despite having known how to play for a while now, I’m not quite familiar with all the terms and strategies and such. Thanks!!

    • David Ormerod says:

      Hi Viz, it’s the only move that lets black separate the corner area into two separate parts. In Go, those separate parts are called ‘eyes’. In many Go problems you either have to make two eyes or capture some stones (or destroy two eyes/rescue stones depending on which player you are).

      Making two eyes makes it impossible to capture a group.

      If black plays any other move in this problem, white can play on the inside and stop black from making two separate eyes. Even if black captures some white stones, black will be left with one big eye and will eventually be captured. I’ll write more about this later, but you can also see this page: http://senseis.xmp.net/?eyes and the links on it.

  8. Hey, I got the easy one but found something interesting after considering another possibility:

    s2,r3,r2,s1,t1,r1….r1? I see it as an alternative because of white’s moves but don’t understand white’s suicide at the end!! 🙂

    • Working now :S White is capturing the t1 stone ^.^

      • David Ormerod says:

        That’s right David, and in this case it creates a situation called ‘ko’


        Black’s not allowed to recapture white’s stone by playing t1 right away, so white will have an opportunity to capture all the black stones by playing r1.

        Have a look at the link, and let me know if you still have questions about this.

  9. thinkman says:

    I really can’t see why W can’t just answer S2 with Q2.. Help please

    • Younggil An says:

      That’s a good question.
      You can try to solve the problem after White Q2. If you want me to give you a hint, there’s a good move on the first line. 🙂