10 Simultaneous One Color Go Games: Interview With Camí Levek

10 Simultaneous One Color Go Games: Interview With Camí Levek 1

How many of you have tried one color Go or blind Go? You might have heard about Bao Yun , who on 19th December 2015 won 5 simultaneous blindfolded Go games. Blind Go or one color Go, they are both truly amazing, but also very hard to play, although they are a lot of fun. Today we have a special guest who looks like a genius to me, because she can play up to 10 simultaneous one color Go games and finish them until the end !

One Colour Go (Japanese: mekura-go) is when both players play stones of the same colour, and have to remember which stones belong to which player. It really tests one’s memory as well as the ability to analyse the shapes in the game. (Source Sensei Library)

Take your time and read her interview! Big respect for Camí Levek and I hope that one day I could get to play one color Go with her !

10 Simultaneous One Color Go Games: Interview With Camí Levek 2
Photo from EGC 2018

Q: Tell us more about you?

A: I’m 26 (old to start Go !), I was a teacher in agriculture, my specialty is the strategy of agricultural territories (that’s not Go ahah). Today I am an illustrator and videographer, on the agricultural subject, but also sometimes for the Go (“Stoned on the Goban“)

Q: How long have you been playing Go? What is your Go level?

А: I play Go since August 2017, so a little over a year. I am today 3k EGF, and 2 Dan KGS. I had known about Go for a few years, but I really wanted to play when I heard about AlphaGo. I learned to play with the club of Toulouse, in France, as well as with very good players and teachers (Vincent Godivier 3d, Mathieu Delli-Zotti 4d, Christopher Annachachibi 1d (a french youtuber « fulgurogo ») and many other talented and generous players).

Q: When did you start playing one color Go?

A: I started playing a one color Go during a tournament with a friend, to have fun. I immediately found that very nice. The next tournament, in May 2018. Stefan, another friend, for fun challenged me to do two at a time, because we are bored between two rounds. While laughing, we tried, and very surprised, I managed quite easily to manage the two games. At the end of this tournament, He challenged me, play 10 simultaneous games in one color before 1 year. We were both convinced that it was impossible, except perhaps for professional players… So, Never tell me never

Q: Are you good at blind Go or other Go varieties?

A: I’m trying to play Go blind right now, but it’s really difficult. I still accepted the challenge of playing 3 simultaneous games (ahah, thank you Stefan), but for the moment I can only play one, it will be training me, the most difficult is to say the coordinates of moves. I do not know if it’s the same in other countries, but the French are very fond of variants of Go: Go ghost, go magnetic, petanque-go, one stone go, tsunami on the Goban … I like to decompress by playing like this. We even imagined variations to the single color, mixing the stones to further disrupt the vision of the game, or by changing “colors” of stones every 50 moves (see even both at once!), Go leaves so much freedom! Now, my boyfriend can play 2 simultaneous one color games, I’m very proud of him.

Q: Why do you like one color Go?

A: I like the mystery of the one-colored go, the fact that a spectator who arrives, does not understand the game while both players play very seriously. And now, it’s a bit my specialty, people spontaneously ask me to play it, and often help them make their first single-color game. I am very happy to introduce them and help them if they forget moves.

Q: How many one color Go games have you played most at once?

A: Thanks to the great French players, always ready to follow the challenges, I was able to train at the simultaneous during the federal internship in summer 2018. Each noon, I could play with 2, 3, 4 … each day we added a Goban, and I tried to limit my mistakes as much as possible. The goal was not to win the games (I was only 6k and often played against stronger players than me), but to finish them all. That was difficult also because that was approximately my first simultaneous games (normal Go !) I thought it would be harder and harder, but I was never stuck, the necessary concentration had become a pleasant routine A week later, I was able to play at the European Congress, with the very kind agreement of the organizers, a simultaneous of 10 single-color games, which we finished at yose with all the participants (thanks to them!). It was very difficult, because the games lasted 2h30 for the longest ones, whereas I play very fast so as not to make the players wait too long! Today the limiting factor is more playing time than the number of games, I can probably play more games.

Q: Is this helpful for your normal Go? Is your reading skill improved due to one color Go?

А: I do not really know if the single-color go has made me progress. On the other hand it revealed that I could be in part an Eidetic memory for the game of Go … What I did not suspect at all! Thus, I remember a very large number of parts, and that probably influences my game today and my way of studying.

Q: What advice can you give to people who play one color Go? Is concentration the most important?

А: The main advice is not to be afraid to try! Seeing me play, players convinced not to have the ability to try, even in 9 * 9. Even novice players have been able to go very far in the games without being mistaken, and sometimes just a boost helps them remember. It must be played without pressure, and its not bad if we do not go to the end! I think that the one-colored go develops the memory of the forms, and obliges the players to play properly, not to add the difficulty of memorization. On the other hand, when we are not used to it, we have to concentrate. Discussing with an observer can be fatal! Today I regularly do simultaneous one color games, on KGS or tournaments nights.

Q: Do you teach Go to young kids or players?

A: I do not teach, simply because I did not start Go a long time ago, I have no perspective on my knowledge. But I initiate many players, especially because I live today in a rural area, located 2 hours from existing clubs! So we created the Aurillac Isshoku-go club (=onecolor go!) And I spend a lot of time today to accompany the players in their progress and I am very happy to discover the go around me.

Q: What are your views on Go?

A: I do not think I can have a philosophy of the game, I’m just too young in this world. Go is in my eyes infinite and powerful, it’s what hypnotizes me and makes me think about it constantly. The subtle balance it requires is often divine, and I am dazzled by the creativity of the great players as well as by the mysterious magic that creates movement from stones that do not move. I am especially grateful to have been able to enter, and to have been so well surrounded by the French Go community, but also European. I try to give newcomers what I was offered upon arrival. I pay particular attention to the promotion of Go, and to that in the remote areas of cities and therefore clubs. For example, I introduced the Go to my former students, future farmers … some were passionate, and probably never had access to the game. I also try, through my illustrations and animated films to help make the game more visible. After the 2019 EGC, I’m going to Canada, I hope to continue all this, and of course, improve my game even more !

Wonderful interview, thank you a lot Camí !

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