Author Topic: Simon blogs  (Read 32852 times)

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Offline grams88

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Re: Simon blogs
« Reply #210 on: March 12, 2019, 04:00:20 pm »
Mancala is a really good game. I first came across this game in hoyle board games but it got removed from the hoyle games in future series. There's a game called rummy squares in hoyle games which is probably technically rummikub an interesting little game. You have to get rid of all your tiles to win this one.

Rummikub itself actually brings up a certain debate, now the debate is how long can you have for your turn. Only reason it brings up this is because the longer you have for your turn you have a better chance of clearing your tiles I feel.

Have you tried Rummikub yourself Simon? It's a great game I feel.

Online Simon

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Re: Simon blogs
« Reply #211 on: March 17, 2019, 01:41:28 pm »
Quote from: mobius
Pit. Which is a turnless game that sort of resembles stock market transactions. THere are different types of cards; "wheat, gold, oil, sugar, etc." The goal is to trade cards until you're entire hand is composed of just one type.

Again vastly different from Mombasa in design, the only common feature seems to be that both games have cards.

But yes, Pit is excellent. Near-perfect simplicity, and it takes cunning to track dangerous trades. I lack a dedicated Pit deck, but I've played Pit several times with two bridge decks: Use all 8 tens, all 8 nines, all 8 eights, ..., until you have one octet per player. No wild cards. The winner scores as many points as printed on his octet.

Quote from: grams88
Have you tried Rummikub yourself Simon? It's a great game I feel.

I remember reading the rules of Rummikub, it's a rummy variant where everybody can rearrange any meld.

I enjoy Japanese Mahjong, it's the closest rummy-like that I play. Sadly, rules are so fiddly that it makes no sense to learn Japanese Mahjong unless one will play semi-frequently. Some interesting decisions, most importantly in the balance of offense and defense: You must discard one tile at end of turn, and if your discard completes somebody's hand, you pay the hand with your own points. Each player's discards remain open information. Still considerable luck.



Some hard problems in game design.

Starting positions/order. Lix has no randomness except for the shuffling of player positions at the beginning of a match. The server shuffles and transmits the shuffle in the start-game packet.

Chess colors are distributed at random, too, but at least tournament organizers will balance the number of times you get white or black throughout the tournament. Same for Go tournaments, and, in addition, the second player gets a compensation score bonus. Even Caylus, a boardgame for 2-5 players, shuffles the player order, pays compensation money to the later-positioned players, and has no other randomness.

In Bowling, every player plays 10 frames, and players alternate between frames. First player is typically random. You cannot affect the ball or pins of other players. Nonetheless, it is advantageous to go last: In the final frame, the last player may choose to throw straight to guarantee hitting some pins, or he may choose a more techniqueful, but riskier curveball to strike and get bonus throws.

Hmm, I said that you cannot affect other players in Bowling. Well. We were bowling recently with IchoTolot. Simon's ball knocks a pin backwards on the lane. On Forestidia's turn, this stray pin deflects her good ball into the gutter, then flies itself into the opposite gutter. On Simon's next turn, the stray pin in the gutter kicks his gutterball back on the lane, leading to some pins getting knocked over.

Some games have simultaneous play, starting position doesn't matter then. Those games quickly become physical and have other cans of worms that require de-worming.

Resigning with ≥ 3 players. With many players, if you leave mid-game, it will affect the other players' relative positional values and winning chances. Few games handle this gracefully. If allowed at all -- and computer games must allow for ragequits and network failure -- it's usually implemented as if the resigner defaulted on every decision. E.g., resigner's units sit around in real-time strategy games, resigner always discards the recently drawn tile in Mahjong.

Two-player games are not affected, the opponent wins immediately (Chess, Go, two-player Magic). Two-team games are also not affected: If all information is open anyway, the teammates may control the resigner's pieces (Axis & Allies, Scotland Yard); if some information is hidden, the resigner's opponents win immediately.

-- Simon
« Last Edit: March 17, 2019, 08:28:04 pm by Simon »

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Re: Simon blogs
« Reply #212 on: March 29, 2019, 03:10:59 am »
Backwards for scrutiny

If you want to copy a drawing, there is the upside-down method: Turn the source image upside down, then copy it, then turn both source and copy right side up.

The idea is that the upside-down source prevents your brain from interpreting what it sees. Thus you will copy all lines and details verbatim. You don't want to interpret, e.g., parts of a face in the source as a nose, then draw a nose guided by your reallife experience about noses, then realize that source nose and copied nose differ considerably in the details.

The same idea works for proofreading text. Read your paragraphs in reverse order. (Within each paragraph, read the words in normal order.) No earlier paragraphs will ever be in your short-term memory, therefore you aren't biased or expecting certain content, thus will stumble over even the subtle mistakes.

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Re: Simon blogs
« Reply #213 on: April 30, 2019, 05:43:51 pm »


Scotland Yard

A board game for 2 teams from 1983, I have the re-release from 1988. I've played it last week several times: 1v1 with Forestidia, and 2v1 with her and IchoTolot.

One player is Mister X and moves invisibly. Only every 5 turns, he must reveal himself.

All other players form a team of detectives and must catch Mister X by moving one of their 5 pawns on the node where Mister X is currently hidden. You can travel by taxi to the next node, by bus between green nodes, or quickly by underground between red nodes.

The rules aren't 100 % clear and differ from edition to edition, thus here are our
rule clarifications. (click to show/hide)

We had quality fun. We denoted by "wühlen" (burrowing, digging around, uprooting the ground with your nose to find food) Mister X's tendency to hide in a nest of yellow taxi-only nodes (away from green/red bus/underground nodes). Wühlen forces the detectives to either get stuck here, too, or loosely surround the nest, delaying capture attempts.

Some detectives would deliberately "counter-wühl", even speculatively, when they had no good nodes.

When IchoTolot deduced that I, as Mister X, would eventually have to come by a certain path, he quoted Schiller's William Tell: Durch diese hohle Gasse muss er kommen...

Detectives' strategy seems to be to force Mister X to use a double move. Then, detectives can retreat to fast-moving nodes (underground nodes, good bus nodes) and wait for Mister X's next revealing. Your chance to capture Mister X increases dramatically after he runs out of double moves.

Lucki, our Lix package maintainer for Arch Linux, likes Scotland Yard too. :lix-cool:

<Lucki> great game
<SimonN> Hnn
<Lucki> londonlaw is the game in python, sadly abandoned: https://github.com/anyc/londonlaw
<SimonN> Hah. The screenshot even shows no taxi connection between 132 and 126. The out-of-box map is not perfectly clear and we ruled that there is no connection here, glad that the app agrees. And 5 detectives.


-- Simon
« Last Edit: May 21, 2019, 10:07:11 pm by Simon »

Offline 607

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Re: Simon blogs
« Reply #214 on: May 21, 2019, 07:33:30 pm »
I'm pretty sure we've got Scotland Yard, but haven't actually ever played it since we got it. I should remember to try in Summer, using your rule clarifications.