The details have varied over time. Around 1970 the Nihon Ki-in rules were as follows:
Each year, 1-3 dans play (at most) 12 times, 4-dans 10 times, 5-8 dans 8 times (and 9-dans do not participate since they cannot be promoted any further).
The players are divided in two groups: 1-4 dans and 5-8 dans, so that the rank difference in a group is at most 3. A player of rank r earns points as follows:
When the random draw of opponent pairs selects a pair of players, they play each other in three successive years. Such a series of three games is aborted if one of the players is promoted. The handicap depends on the rank difference.
|0||tagaisen||players alternate in color|
|1||sen-ai-sen||the weaker player has Black twice and White once|
|2||sen||the weaker player always has Black|
|3||senban||the weaker player always has Black|
In earlier times the handicap for a rank difference 3 was sen-ni-sen: the weaker player got a 2-stone handicap one out of three games. The above table was extended by two lines for the case a 2-stone handicap was received or given.
As can be seen from the above tables, each game has a total value of 120 points, shared between winner and loser. If a player has a sufficiently high point average over a sufficiently long series of games, he can claim promotion. The player can choose the start and length of the series.
|minimum game series length|