WeiQi (圍棋/围棋), or most of the time this is referred as Go (English translation of Japanese), is a strategic game. It was legendary invented more than 4000 years ago during the era of Emperor Yao of Ancient China (~2300 BC). The game also vividly appeared in a book of Confucius (~500BC), and therefore, the game is at least with 2300 years of history. In our modern time, no super computer can defeat any Dan-Players on a 19×19 chess board. It is agreed by most of the players that luck is not a factor for winning the game, it all depends on how good the strategies being implemented throughout the game.
The game later on was brought to Japan, but the development of the game was minimal until the unification of Tokugawa Shogunal Government in the early 17th Century. There were lots of Samurai carrying their weapons which would in turn a major threat to the regime. In turn, Tokugawa hired Ming’s laureates to educate his officials with several “do”, or the ultimate way of truth, including KenDo (Way of Sword), ChaDo (Way of Tea), and now, added with one more —- the Way of Go! By then, China was still by far the leading country of WeiQi but slowly the paradigm shifted. Since the establishment of the Go-Official, Japan started its own development of the game with four families. Two hundred years later, Japan has profoundly studied the game, and established a system that being internationally adapted.
The development of WeiQi has been heavily based on Chinese culture and characters. It has incorporated with the Chinese heaven’s view and it was treated as a war simulator in Chinese and Japanese ancient time. Today, China, Japan, Korea are the leading countries of WeiQi. Americas and Europe are also very keen on the game over the last decades. Soon we will see WeiQi a phoenix rise from the ancient world.
Have a look at a scene in “A Beautiful Mind” with John Nash playing Go!