Akira Touya’s stoic father. As the holder of five titles (Meijin, 10-dan, Tengen, Gosei and later Ouza), he’s regarded as the best Go player in the world, and, among the Japanese, is believed to be the only player capable of holding his own against the Go Saint Shusaku (aka Sai). Like Sai, his ultimate goal is to reach the Kami no Itte (Divine Move), and Sai, recognizing his strength since the first times he returned to the living realm, wholeheartedly desired to play against him.
He first met Hikaru during a children’s Go tournament and set his eyes on him after he heard that Hikaru (actually Sai) solved a difficult Go problem at one glance and played a few moves against Hikaru (actually Sai again) before Hikaru ran out on him. Through his son Akira’s growing obsession with chasing after Hikaru after his two losses against Sai, Touya Kouyou started to share in the curiosity concerning the mystery behind Hikaru’s identity. He played Hikaru during the Beginner Dan tournament and won, but still noticed the strength of the true player behind Hikaru’s game, Sai, as well as the 15 moku handicap Sai placed against himself to prevent his strength from being too ostensibly shown. Later, when he was admitted into the hospital due to heart problems, Hikaru arranged for a match between him and Sai on the Internet, on a bet that Meijin would retire if he lost to Sai. Transpired after this challenge was a legendary match that shocked the entire Net Go world, which ended in Kouyou’s defeat (and to Sai’s astonishment, Hikaru’s discovery of a move that would turn the table around in Sai’s loss, which in a real game would count as a Divine Move). Following the match, Sai disappeared and Kouyou retired as a professional. Still seeking a rematch with Sai, he started traveling around the continent to play in international tournaments and talented amateur players to hone his skills. To everyone’s observation, Kouyou is now even stronger than when he was a pro.