2021 Australian Digital/Australian Open Tournament

Hey all! This year, due to reasons I cannot possibly guess at (taxes? No, I think something happened at a zoo… or was it a dentist? That’s right, I think a dentist didn’t pay his taxes or something) we’re not allowed to travel without doing six months community service painting park benches. So, because apparently not everyone enjoys that kind of painting like I do, the 2021 Australian Open Tournament, the premier national tournament, is being merged with the Australian Digital tournament, the premier international online Pacific-region tournament.

In an attempt to spread the love of bench-painting, we are very happy to sponsor this tournament, so entry is entirely free! (Also, it’s a Pacific-region Go tournament. PacifiGo is basically obligated to be involved. I don’t make the rules.)

It will be run as one game per week for 7 weeks, generally online. This is typical for the Australian Digital, but unusual for those who are used to offline tournaments. The advantages are that you don’t need to commit a whole day – or, if you’re a stronger player, two days – for a tournament, merely an hour or two a week. This is much easier for most people. In addition, because it’s online, you can much more easily play against people you wouldn’t have. I don’t know how many of your generally play at clubs or among a group of friends, but in my experience there tend to be certain sequences and patterns that come out. A local meta, if you will. Which is fine and all, but it can be really fun to play people who play differently – they have different tricks which you can learn, you see different responses to your tricks, it’s all great stuff. And if you’re a stronger player, you’re probably already finding it difficult to find other strong players to play against, and this tournament includes people from Australia and New Zealand, as well as other Pacific countries. And I don’t care how big or strong your club is – it is not bigger and stronger than the entire pool of players of that area!

Of course, it is online. Which, for me at least, is less fun than in-person play – there’s an element of interpersonal interaction, facial expression, body language and reviewing which is very hard to replicate in an online context. Unfortunately, until that dentist pays his taxes, offline play – especially involving cross-state travel – is difficult and uncertain.

So jump on in! Register, have fun, win! Crush all who come before you! Hear the lamentations of their loved ones! Enjoy cake!

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