Hello again, Internet. The finals of the 2008 September Shogi Open has arrived and, as it turns out, it is a "3 wins match" which I assume means that the first player to win three matches will win the tournament. Since it would appear we're only playing one match at a time, this could go on for a while. :)
The first match is actually about to conclude quickly as I will checkmate my opponent after his next move. So that's the good news. The bad news is that I'm still baffled as to how I'm winning any matches at all. As I've mentioned before in this blog, I cannot beat even the easiest Shotest Shogi AI yet I'm winning matches against real humans. I've been subscribing to the same theory as I did with chess.com where I also won more matches than I expected...basically, I'm thinking that I am spending far more time per move than my opponents.
It certainly can't be due to study or practice since I have not been working on tsume shogi lately, nor have I been reading any shogi books or playing any shogi matches outside of this tournament. So, before I start to get a big head and think myself some sort of shogi savant I'd love to have someone put me in my place by taking a look at my matches and confirming that I'm terrible. :)
However, I don't know of any way to get that kind of help. The go community has a wonderful resource called the Go Teaching Ladder:
The online go servers like KGS also provide easy interfaces to review matches with better players. The chess community also seems to have similar resources along with outstanding software that can analyze games. It would appear that the english-speaking shogi community has none of that (at least as far as I can find).
Can anyone help or point me in the right direction? Thanks!