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Hikaru No Go is a 75 episode Japanese animated series revolving around the ancient Japanese game of Go, as well as the coming of age exploits of its protagonist Hikaru. Hikaru is a young boy who one day, while exploring the shed of his paternal grandfather, comes across an ancient Go board. This Go board happens to be haunted by the ghost of Fujiwara-no-Sai, a Go player from Japan's Heian period. Sai longs to play Go once more, having been dormant since the Edo period, when Sai's ghost appeared to Honinbo Shusaku, a supreme tier Go player of the time. Sai's desire is to reach the Kami-no-Itte, known as the "Divine Move" and proof of a perfectly played game. As Hikaru is the only person capable of seeing him, Sai nests within a portion of Hikaru's mind as a different personality, cohabitating, albeit not always well, with Hikaru.

Sai begs Hikaru to try playing Go, despite having no interest in the game. At first, Hikaru only moves as Sai tells him to, however Sai explains that Hikaru should try to understand the logic and reasoning behind each move. Within a Go parlor, Hikaru defeats Akira Toya twice by following Sai's dictation. Akira is a boy the same age as Hikaru but plays Go on a professional level. Akira's defeat at such a newcomer burns at him, dominating his life with the urge to learn how Hikaru is such a good player.

Hikaru, inspired by how deeply Go inspires both Akira and Sai, decides to play Go entirely on his own. Although his skills are initially no better than a complete beginner, he soon develops a basic understanding of the game and can rebuild a game play-by-play from memory. Through further exposure and practice within Go clubs, study sessions, and practice matches with Sai, Hikaru becomes an "insei," or Go apprentice, and even later, a pro. This experience is helped by the variety of ages and styles of his Go opponents. While Hikaru isn't quite up to Akira's level, he has plenty of natural talent for Go and remains dedicated to proving his own skills to Akira, Sai and himself.

Hikaru no Go is produced by Studio Pierrot with American distribution by Toonami Jetstream and ImaginAsia.

Hikaru No Go is a series that is currently running and has 5 seasons (125 episodes). The series first aired on October 10, 2001.

Hikaru No Go is available for streaming on the website, both individual episodes and full seasons. You can also watch Hikaru No Go on demand atAmazon, Hulu, Vudu, iTunes online.

VIZ Media
5 Seasons, 125 Episodes
October 10, 2001
Anime, Drama
Cast: Sanae Kobayashi, Reiko Takagi, Makoto Tsumura, Ken'ichi Suzumura, Keiji Fujiwara
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Hikaru No Go Full Episode Guide

  • Isumi returns to Japan a stronger and more focused player. He soons discovers what everyone else already knows: Hikaru Shindo is losing his games by default. In an attempt to solve this mystery, Isumi starts to investigate and figure out what is going on with Hikaru.

  • Still in China, Isumi decides to stay and to improve his game and boost his confidence. With the help of his new friend Yang Hai, he challenges the bratty Le Ping to a rematch. Meanwhile, Asumi runs into Hikaru, asking the questions that on everyone's mind "Why isn't he playing?"

  • While in Innoshima, Mr. Kawai stumbles into a Go Salon where, as a result of a misunderstanding, he finds himself owing a lot of money to Shuhei, a formidable Go player who is enormous both in size and talent. But when this top amateur recognizes Hikaru from Go Weekly, he decides to take on this reluctant neophyte pro.

  • The match between Hikaru and Akira comes to an end. Hikaru tells Akira that one day, he will tell him everything. At night Hikaru has a dream, with a surprise visitor! At the end, the song "Get Over"¬Ě is played as we see everyone throughout the series. The Go world is changing and a younger generation has arrived!

  • The game between Hikaru and Akira wages on. They are both into the game and excited about it. Meanwhile, Amano tells news of a junior Japan, China, and Korea Go Tournament. It's for experienced Go players under the age of 18. Everyone is worried because they have no one who could stand a chance against Korea, or even China, except for Akira. Amano says that they have Hikaru and the new wave that's coming...

  • The long awaited day has finally arrived. Hikaru Shindou V. Akira Touya! The two reminisce about the past and the last time they played. It was a little over two years ago. They have both grown stronger since then. They sit down. Hikaru places one black stone and Akira places five white ones. Hikaru is black and will go first. Akira is white and will go second. Hikaru places his first stone down on komoku. Both of them are excited and the match they have both been waiting for has finally arrived...

  • Hikaru has finally started to play Go again. He has found Sai within his moves, within his Go. But can Hikaru win his first comeback match against 2-dan Murakami? Everyone is watching. Meanwhile, what will become of the Haze Jr. High School Go club? After the year is over, only one boy will be left. Everyone else will graduate and move on.

  • Isumi returns to Japan a stronger and more focused player. He soons discovers what everyone else already...

  • Hikaru is still forfeiting his Go matches, and everyone round his is worried and confused. Can the young player's friends and familyconvince him to get his game back?

  • Still in China improving his game, Isumi challenges Le Ping to a rematch. Meanwhile, Asumi encounters Hikaru and demands to know why he has stopped playing Go.

  • In this flashback before Akira Toya met Hikaru Shindo, a young children's Go champion challenges Akira to a game at the Go Salon.

  • In order to rediscover his game, Isumi goes to China where he meets a young, impulsive player who bares a striking resemblance to a friend and fellow former Insei...

  • This episode shows us a young Hikaru, back from 7th grade before the Insei exam. When Sai is disturbed by the owner of a pottery shop, with a face like a toad, Hikaru/Sai must beat the owner who turns out to be a 5dan to prove to everyone what a cheat the owner is. But can he turn around his own play, and win a game someone else has already resigned to help a young girl?

  • Unable to locate Sai, Hikaru makes a vow to never play Go again without him.

  • The #1 Amateur Go Player in Japan, Shuhei, challenges Hikaru to a match while Hikaru is looking for Sai in Hiroshima.

  • Hikaru discovers that Sai is missing and searches all over him. Unable to locate him, he travels to Inno Island to visit Shusaku's grave in an effort to find him. Is it true? Is Sai really gone?