The best Go player in the world

I’ve recently covered Hikaru no Go series, so I feel it’s only fitting to introduce you the best Go player in our current era.

The current best Go player is Lee Chang-Ho who holds a total of 21 titles. Interestingly, number 2 guy with 18 titles is also a Korean. Looking at the overall chart on Wikipedia, Japan appears to be far off. They aren’t even close to the top.
Please do note that I am basing this on only international titles which I value higher than other titles such as national and continental.

As of 2022, he is 46 years old and has two daughters.

Now, if you are a native Korean who grew up in Korea, I am sure you’ve heard of the name, Lee CHang-Ho (이창호), pretty often from news. The guy was hailed as a Go genius from a very early age and turned pro at an age of 11.
For your information, Shindo Hikaru from Hikaru no Go turns pro at 14.

Lee Chang Ho is known to be a quiet guy. He doesn’t talk a lot unless spoken to. He has spent pretty much all of his child & adulthood to play Go games.

He is also known not to smile. Grin is the best he can do. He basically shows hardly any emotions which actually made those close to him worry for a reason. He is basically too stoic to find a woman.
As he grew older, those close to him was becoming worried that he’d choose not to marry, but he eventually found his mate, a fellow Go player who works in the same office as his. She is 11 years younger, but that much of an age difference is pretty norm nowadays.

A Go player of such a caliber is heavily respected in Korea. He is literally a celebrity. Actually, probably better than being a celebrity in a fact that he won’t be displaced. He was hailed as a national hero as he beat renowned Chinese and Japanese Go players left and right when he was active. He has left many mesmerizing memories as a Go player who represented Korea.

There was even an incident where he beat everyone else in an international tournament while his teammates all lost. That event probably cemented his status as a national hero.

As of 2022, he is now retired or semi-retired. He is still young as a Go player, but I do not blame him for his retirement. He has literally played professional Go games since he was 11. I am sure he had to work his way up years before turning 11 years old, meaning he has spent his entire life playing professional Go games.

If anyone deserves an early retirement to enjoy what has been lost to him, it is him. I am actually very glad that he is now retired. Let him enjoy his life with his wife and kids. He really, truly, deserves some peaceful years.

Those who wish to read his full history, sadly only in Korean, you can read it up @

Go game is played by everyone. Age doesn’t matter. Gender doesn’t matter. Kids can play against elders. Women can play against men. It’s all fair game.

However, top level Go players are all males. As I explained in Hikaru no Go review, it is probably because Go players tend to spend their entire time studying Go games, and women cannot generally do that; they have other responsibilities.

There are places where you can play Go games against strangers. It’s called 기원 in Korean. You have to pay a membership fee, but it’s where those who enjoy Go games go.

However, women do not generally go to such places. I can see why women don’t go there. At the same time, those who are serious about Go games don’t go there, either. Such places are for hobbyists. If anyone is deadly serious about climbing up in Go game society, one has to join an academy.

Well, that is all for this.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s