A Question for All the Go Players

Discussion in 'General Game Discussion and Questions' started by polyplay, Dec 3, 2008.

  1. polyplay

    polyplay Well-Known Member

    Aug 13, 2008
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    Being a fan of Go, and seeing that iGo ($3.99) was just released, I wanted to know if there are any Go apps that are really necessary to have. None of the ones I've found are "complete," but I don't really know if I've found all of the ones available and was wondering if there were other Go fans in the English-speaking app realm. :)

    SmartGo Touch ($9.99) looks like the most complete, with over 6000 (!!) games to study, a few thousand problems, and the ability to make/play/record your own games. There are two issues, though: the price, which is really steep, and no AI to play an on-the-go game versus the CPU. I understand AI is tough to program, but even a minimally competent AI would be nice.

    Tetsuki (Free) is worthless to me, because I don't have constant access to WiFi and don't really care about playing online.

    Go Player ($3.99) looks minimally interesting, with a bunch of games to study. But for the price, I would frankly rather get a piece of cheesecake.

    I have Stones (Free), which is just a simple interface to plunk down the stones.

    iGo looks alright, but are any of these others worthwhile or are there any other Go apps?
     
  2. VeganTnT

    VeganTnT Moderator
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    Jul 19, 2008
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    I have smartgo but I deleted it fairly quickly

    I had hoped with the higher price tag I would get a tutorial to teach me to play/give me tips =( no such luck
     
  3. currymutton

    currymutton Well-Known Member

    Oct 16, 2008
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    GnuGO is ported to JB iPhone/iTouch, fyi. I am still waiting from a Go game to play against with.
     
  4. polyplay

    polyplay Well-Known Member

    Aug 13, 2008
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    Yeah, GnuGo is good stuff, but I'm not willing to JB my iPod for it.

    The thing with iGo is that there's an AI to play against, but I don't know how the mechanics of the game will work on the iPod. I kind of wish there was a lite version, even with the weakest AI. $4 is a lot for a gamble.

    The ideal program would have a lot of pro games to study, problems with tutorials and explanations, and the ability to play the CPU.

    I suppose I'll just have to get by with reading PDFs of strategies on the iPod for the moment.
     
  5. Maythius

    Maythius Well-Known Member

    Nov 3, 2008
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    If you know how to play Go and you want to further your ability, then get smartgo. I learned a lot of different skills by watching the professional games it provided. I also love the amount of problems it has that you can solve. Just keep in mind that it is just a study tool and its worth is determined by the amount of time you are willing to put into it.
     
  6. currymutton

    currymutton Well-Known Member

    Oct 16, 2008
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    I see iGo released too, and it has just dropped in price...

    AFAIK this one has the option to play a game against CPU and another player. May be this is what I am looking for.

    Is it good? Is the CPU stronger than GNUGo? Any review or thoughts?

    TIA.
     
  7. polyplay

    polyplay Well-Known Member

    Aug 13, 2008
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    I'm strongly considering biting, but based on one of the reviews, I'm worried about the accuracy of stone placement. The free app Stones has a system whereby stones appear above your finger, and it works great. I'm just worried that if I play on a 19x19 board it will be too inaccurate.

    I would assume with 10 difficulty settings it would get to at least Kyu in the upper-teens, but I doubt it's as tough as the 8-10 Kyu strength of GnuGo.

    I'm going to agonize about this for a while. If I bite I'll give a quick review.
     
  8. currymutton

    currymutton Well-Known Member

    Oct 16, 2008
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    I was on the verge of biting this one...well I am more concerned about the AI rating, even though I am very much a beginner, a tough opponent would give me growth and a sense of achievement.

    Well, may be, I dunno, USD2.99 is not that steep, I may bit it in my sleep...
     
  9. polyplay

    polyplay Well-Known Member

    Aug 13, 2008
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    I think I'll probably get it tomorrow and forgo a meal or two.

    I should be able to give some impressions by this time tomorrow.
     
  10. Itsu Demo Doko Demo Dekiru Igo - AI Igo DS
    Daredemo Kantan Chou Chikun no Tsumego
    Asonde Igo ga Tsuyoku naru Ginsei Igo DS
    Umezawa Yukari no Yasashi Igo
    http://mrbass.org/nintendoDS/japanesegames/
    has link to official homepages of those games if you can navigate around in Japanese.

    Those are the ones I liked the best on Nintendo DS. Tsumego was awesome. It presented a problem where it asked you to capture stones in x amount of moves. I learned a lot from playing that one. Would love to see something similar to that on iphone. AI's never will be any good except for beginners. Dekiru Igo one was also really nice I enjoyed playing.

    Nothing yet has caught my attention yet for a nice Go program yet on iphone.
    I would be interested if you think iGo is worth the $3 though.
     
  11. polyplay

    polyplay Well-Known Member

    Aug 13, 2008
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    It's pretty late here in the Central Time Zone (almost 3:30 AM), but when I get home from work tomorrow I'll spring for it and give initial impressions.

    Unfortunately, I probably won't be able to give a good assessment of the AI strength, since I'm a pretty weak amateur. I, too, want a program that has Life and Death problems and/or "capture the stones" problems, as well as a bunch of professional games to study. I'm just not convinced enough to spend $10 for SmartGo and get those things without an AI, though.
     
  12. currymutton

    currymutton Well-Known Member

    Oct 16, 2008
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  13. iGewappnet

    iGewappnet Well-Known Member

    Nov 17, 2008
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    Mainz, Germany
    Is this the same? In that case it's the GNU engine.
     
  14. polyplay

    polyplay Well-Known Member

    Aug 13, 2008
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    Alright, I bought it. The pics below are basically everything, plus there's an Undo/Pass selection above the main board.

    Initial impressions: it's alright. You can create and maintain several games at once, which is nice, although the mechanism for deleting games confused me at first. I deleted a game I created and then tried to change games, and it remained on the first game. Eventually I figured it out.

    Options are pretty basic, with the selections you can see below. The pieces, thankfully, appear above your finger, so placement is accurate even on a 19x19 game. Some reviewers in the App Store have complained about the lack of magnification on the bigger boards, but I never really play anywhere where it would be awkward without magnification. :) The graphics are what you see; pretty basic stuff.

    As far as difficulty, I can't really say with accuracy. I'm ranked pretty weakly (about 17 kyu), and the toughest AI beat me on two 9x9 games and one 19x19 game. The easiest difficulty setting is pretty laughably easy, but that's to be expected.

    That's basically it. If you have $3 to spare and want a reasonably tough Go AI on the go, it's probably worth the money.
     

    Attached Files:

  15. currymutton

    currymutton Well-Known Member

    Oct 16, 2008
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    Okay, looks fine. I don't even have a rank, nonetheless, I may give it a shot tonight.
     
  16. polyplay

    polyplay Well-Known Member

    Aug 13, 2008
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    That looks interesting, but knowing absolutely no Chinese, I don't know how much I would be able to get out of it, especially if there are explanations and directions (capture this stone in x moves, create life as white, etc.).

    I took a look, but I have no idea how to use it. I presume it's for jailbroken iPods? If so, I can't use it.
     
  17. iGewappnet

    iGewappnet Well-Known Member

    Nov 17, 2008
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    Yes, of course. But I mentioned it just because it is also called iGo and has been existed as an "unoffical" App since 2007, so I thought the "official" iGo could be the same. In that case we would know about the strength of the engine, because this old iGo is clearly based on the well known GNU engine.
     
  18. polyplay

    polyplay Well-Known Member

    Aug 13, 2008
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    Ahhh, I get it. Judging from the screens on that site, it doesn't look like the same guy/team that programmed this one. GnuGo is great, but it looks like we'll have to wait a while before we get that engine into the app store. This one's AI seems tough enough for me, so it's entirely possible that the creator didn't just code his own AI but used one of the open-source programs out there as a base.

    The creator doesn't have a website or an email for support, and Googling got me nowhere, so I can't ask. But I can have fun with this for a while. :)
     
  19. paz

    paz New Member

    Dec 7, 2008
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    Hi Everyone,

    I'm the author of iGo. I'm glad to see folks are interested in the game.

    A few things: I am currently working on an update to address some of the UI issues/suggestions people have had. Also, I am going to put out a free light version some time in the next couple weeks (I may raise the price on the full version at that point). I'd like to also include a tutorial to encourage new players to check it out. So much to do!

    Since it seems like folks are worried about the price, I'll give promo codes to the first 5 people to send me an email at iphone.go.support@gmail.com. Hopefully you can convince everyone else they should buy it :)

    Thanks,
    Phil
     
  20. polyplay

    polyplay Well-Known Member

    Aug 13, 2008
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    It's always nice to see devs on here, especially when they respond to suggestions/criticism. :)

    After spending a few more days with it, there is no doubt that for what it offers it is worth the money. It is AFAIK the only one that offers AI, and that has been the primary reason to have portable Go.

    I've been pleased with it so far, and would recommend it for folks who want what seems like a solid AI for less than a large pop. :)

    One question: did you code the AI yourself, or use preexisting code?
     

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