The annual tournament started in 1960 sponsored by a group of local newspapers which has consisted of Shimbun Sansha Rengō (Three-Newspaper Association).[a] With the addition of Ōi, there were four major shogi titles along with Meijin, Kudan (Ryu-oh), and Osho.
The challenger for the title is determined by three-step preliminary round that comprises 1st heat, league competition and final playoff. Top eight players in 1st heat and top four players of previous year are divided into two six-player leagues. Top one of each league advances to final playoff, and the winner of one-game match becomes the challenger.
The player that wins four games out of seven first in the championship will become the new Ōi title holder. Each championship games assign players a six-hour playtime during two days.
Lifetime Ōi (永世王位 eisei Ōi) is the title awarded to a player who won the championship five times in a row or ten times in total. Active players may qualify for this title, but it is only officially awarded upon their retirement or death.
Only three professionals have qualified for the Lifetime Oi. They are as follows:
|1||1960||Yasuharu Oyama||4-1||Masao Tsukada|
|2||1961||Yasuharu Oyama||4-1||Yuzō Maruta|
|3||1962||Yasuharu Oyama||4-0||Motoji Hanamura|
|4||1963||Yasuharu Oyama||4-2||Hifumi Katō|
|5||1964||Yasuharu Oyama||4-2||Tatsuya Futakami|
|6||1965||Yasuharu Oyama||4-0||Daigoroh Satō|
|7||1966||Yasuharu Oyama||4-1||Michio Ariyoshi|
|8||1967||Yasuharu Oyama||4-1||Nobuyuki Ōuchi|
|9||1968||Yasuharu Oyama||4-2||Michio Ariyoshi|
|10||1969||Yasuharu Oyama||4-2||Kazuyoshi Nishimura|
|11||1970||Yasuharu Oyama||4-1||Kunio Yonenaga|
|12||1971||Yasuharu Oyama||4-3||Makoto Nakahara|
|13||1972||Kunio Naitō||4-1||Yasuharu Oyama|
|14||1973||Makoto Nakahara||4-0||Kunio Naitō|
|15||1974||Makoto Nakahara||4-2||Kunio Yonenaga|
|16||1975||Makoto Nakahara||4-2||Kunio Naitō|
|17||1976||Makoto Nakahara||4-2||Osamu Katsuura|
|18||1977||Makoto Nakahara||4-2||Kunio Yonenaga|
|19||1978||Makoto Nakahara||4-1||Yasuharu Oyama|
|20||1979||Kunio Yonenaga||4-3||Makoto Nakahara|
|21||1980||Makoto Nakahara||4-0||Kunio Yonenaga|
|22||1981||Makoto Nakahara||4-3||Yasuharu Oyama|
|23||1982||Kunio Naitō||4-2||Makoto Nakahara|
|24||1983||Michio Takahashi||4-2||Kunio Naitō|
|25||1984||Hifumi Katō||4-3||Michio Takahashi|
|26||1985||Michio Takahashi||4-0||Hifumi Katō|
|27||1986||Michio Takahashi||4-0||Kunio Yonenaga|
|28||1987||Koji Tanigawa||4-1||Michio Takahashi|
|29||1988||Keiji Mori||4-3||Koji Tanigawa|
|30||1989||Koji Tanigawa||4-1||Keiji Mori|
|31||1990||Koji Tanigawa||4-3||Yasumitsu Satō|
|32||1991||Koji Tanigawa||4-2||Hiroki Nakata|
|33||1992||Masataka Goda||4-2||Koji Tanigawa|
|34||1993||Yoshiharu Habu||4-0||Masataka Goda|
|35||1994||Yoshiharu Habu||4-3||Masataka Goda|
|36||1995||Yoshiharu Habu||4-2||Masataka Goda|
|37||1996||Yoshiharu Habu||4-1||Koichi Fukaura|
|38||1997||Yoshiharu Habu||4-1||Yasumitsu Satō|
|39||1998||Yoshiharu Habu||4-2||Yasumitsu Satō|
|40||1999||Yoshiharu Habu||4-0||Koji Tanigawa|
|41||2000||Yoshiharu Habu||4-3||Koji Tanigawa|
|42||2001||Yoshiharu Habu||4-0||Nobuyuki Yashiki|
|43||2002||Koji Tanigawa||4-1||Yoshiharu Habu|
|44||2003||Koji Tanigawa||4-1||Yoshiharu Habu|
|45||2004||Yoshiharu Habu||4-1||Koji Tanigawa|
|46||2005||Yoshiharu Habu||4-3||Yasumitsu Satō|
|47||2006||Yoshiharu Habu||4-2||Yasumitsu Satō|
|48||2007||Koichi Fukaura||4-3||Yoshiharu Habu|
|49||2008||Koichi Fukaura||4-3||Yoshiharu Habu|
|50||2009||Koichi Fukaura||4-3||Kazuki Kimura|
|51||2010||Akihito Hirose||4-2||Koichi Fukaura|
|52||2011||Yoshiharu Habu||4-3||Akihito Hirose|
|53||2012||Yoshiharu Habu||4-1||Takeshi Fujii|
|54||2013||Yoshiharu Habu||4-1||Hisahi Namekata|
|55||2014||Yoshiharu Habu||4-2-1[b]||Kazuki Kimura|
|56||2015||Yoshiharu Habu||4-1||Akihito Hirose|
|57||2016||Yoshiharu Habu||4-3||Kazuki Kimura|
- Most titles overall: Yoshiharu Habu, 18
- Most consecutive titles: Yasuharu Oyama, 12 in a row (1960-1971)
- Despite its name, Shimbun Sansha Rengō is currently formed by six newspapers: Hokkaido Shimbun, Tokyo Shimbun, Chunichi Shimbun, Kobe Shimbun, Tokushima Shimbun and Nishinippon Shimbun.
- Game three ended in impasse after 178 moves and was officially recorded as a draw. This was the first drawn championship-round game in the history of the tournament. It was also the first time in 22 years that a championship-round game in one of the seven major title matches ended in impasse.
- 王位戦について [About the Oi Tournament] (in Japanese). 新聞三社連合. Retrieved September 26, 2014.
- 永世称号の規定はどうなっているのでしょうか。 [What are the requirements for lifetime titles?] (in Japanese). 日本将棋連盟. Retrieved September 26, 2014.
- 物故棋士一覧 （1955年以降） [List of deceased professionals (from 1955)] (in Japanese). 日本将棋連盟. Retrieved September 26, 2014.
- 棋士紹介: 中原誠 [Player introduction: Makoto Nakahara] (in Japanese). 日本将棋連盟. Retrieved September 26, 2014.
- 棋士紹介: 羽生善治 [Player introduction: Yoshiharu Habu] (in Japanese). 日本将棋連盟. Retrieved September 26, 2014.
- "Shōgi･Dai Gojūsanki Ōisen Fujii Shisutemu, Habu ni Oyobazu" 将棋･第53期王位戦 藤井システム, 羽生に及ばず [Shogi-53rd Oi Match: Fujii System no match for Habu]. Asahi Shimbun (in Japanese). August 28, 2012. Retrieved September 7, 2015.
- "Habu Ōi Sanrenpa Tsūsan Jūgoki" 羽生王位3連覇 通算15期 [Habu Oi wins title for 3rd consecutive time and 15th time overall]. Hokkaido Shimbun (in Japanese). Retrieved September 7, 2015.
- "Dai Gojugoki Oisen Habu ga Kachi Boei" 第55期王位戦 羽生が勝ち防衛 [55th Oisen: Habu wins and defends title]. Hokkaido Shimbun (in Japanese). Retrieved September 7, 2015.
- "Ōisen Daisankyoku wa Jishōgi ni Hisei no Kimura, Nebatte Seiritsu" 王位戦第3局は持将棋に 非勢の木村, 粘って成立 [Kimura hangs on in an inferior position as game three of the Oi match ends in impasse.]. Kobe Shimbun (in Japanese). August 6, 2014. Retrieved September 26, 2014.
- "Habu Ōi ga Bōei, Gonen Renzoku Tsūsan Jūnanakime" 羽生王位が防衛, 5年連続通算17期目 [Habu Oi defends title for 5th consecutive year and 17th time overall]. Asahi Shimbun (in Japanese). August 27, 2015. Retrieved September 6, 2015.
- "Habu ga Taitoru Bōei, Kimura Hachidan Yaburu, Shōgi Ōisen Dai Nana-kyoku" 羽生がタイトル防衛 木村八段破る 将棋王位戦第7局 [Shogi Oi Match Game 7: Habu defends title by defeating Kimura 8d]. Asahi Shimbun (in Japanese). September 27, 2016. Retrieved September 28, 2016.
- Japan Shogi Association, Tournament information: Oi Tournament (in Japanese)