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How To Play Gomoku – A Step-by-Step Guide

How to play Gomoku
Image Source - Google Images

Introduction Gomoku, also known as Five in a Row, is a strategy board game that originated in Japan. The game is easy to learn, but difficult to master, and it provides hours of fun for players of all ages. The objective of the game is to be the first player to place five stones in a row, either horizontally, vertically, or diagonally. In this article, we will discuss the basic rules and strategies to know how to play Gomoku, along with tips for beginners and advanced players.

Setting up the Board –

Before playing Gomoku Game, you have to learn how to set up the Gomoku board. You can set up the board by these steps.

  • The Gomoku board consists of a 15×15 grid, which is used to play the game.
  • Players use stones of different colors to play the game, typically black and white.
  • The first player to play is black, followed by white, and players take turns placing their stones on the intersections of the lines on the board.
  • To set up the board, place the grid on a flat surface and give each player an equal number of stones.
  • The stones should be placed on the intersecatons of the lines, rather than in the middle of the squares.
  • It’s important to make sure that the board is positioned so that both players can easily access it and see the entire grid.
  • Once the board is set up and the stones are distributed, the game can begin!

Basic Rules

The basic rules of Gomoku are simple. Players take turns placing their stones on the intersections of the lines on the board. The goal is to create a row of five stones in any direction, either horizontally, vertically, or diagonally. The first player to create a row of five stones wins the game. If the board is filled with stones and no player has won, the game is declared a draw.


While the rules of Gomoku are straightforward, the game is complex and requires strategic thinking to win. Here are some key strategies to keep in mind when playing Gomoku:

Watch Out For Threats: When playing Gomoku, it’s important to be aware of potential threats from your opponent. This means watching for moves that could potentially create a row of five stones for them. You should also be aware of threats to your own and take steps to prevent your opponent from blocking them.

Control The Center: The center of the board is the most important area in Gomoku, as it provides the greatest number of potential rows. Try to control this area by placing your stones strategically.

Look Ahead: Gomoku is a game of strategy, and it is important to think several moves ahead. Anticipate your opponent’s moves and plan your moves accordingly.

Create Forks: A fork is a move that creates two or more potential rows simultaneously. Look for opportunities to create divisions in the game, as they can be a powerful tool for winning.

Double Threats: A double threat is a move that creates two potential rows that intersect at the same point. This can be a powerful move that forces your opponent to respond.

Tips for Beginners

If you’re new to Gomoku, here are some tips to help you get started:

Start With a Defensive Strategy: When you’re just starting, it’s a good idea to focus on defending your rows rather than trying to create new ones. This will help you avoid making mistakes and will give you time to get a feel for the game.

Practice with Different Opponents: Gomoku is a game that requires practice to master. Play with different opponents to learn different strategies and approaches.

Advanced Strategies

If you’re an experienced Gomoku player, here are some advanced strategies to consider:

Three and four moves patterns: Study common three and four moves patterns to help you anticipate your opponent’s moves and plan your own.

Five moves patterns: Study common five moves patterns to help you create new rows and defend against your opponent’s moves.

Endgame tactics: The endgame is the final stage of the game, and it requires a different set of tactics than the early and middle stages. Study endgame tactics to improve your chances of winning.

Gomoku is a game that offers endless hours of entertainment and challenge. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced player, there are always new strategies and tactics to learn and explore. By following the basic rules, implementing key strategies, and practicing regularly, you can improve your Gomoku skills and increase your chances of winning.

In conclusion, Gomoku is a game that is easy to learn, but difficult to master. By following the guidelines outlined in this article, you can become a skilled player and enjoy this classic strategy game to the fullest. Whether you’re playing for fun or competing in tournaments, Gomoku is a game that offers endless possibilities and rewards for those who are willing to put in the time and effort to master it.

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