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Subject: Newb players initial thoughts on strategy rss

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Gary Bradley
United Kingdom
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1. Try to delay playing more than one card to a given flag as long as you can, to keep your options open.

2. Try to leave 1 flag untouched as long as possible in case you draw a really nice formation into your hand near the end of the game - seems to happen all the time to me.

3. Try to play to a flag that the opponent has already played to, but always place a card of higher denomination if possible.

Thoughts?
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Justin Borges
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Personally, I agree with 1. and 2. From the get-go I try to spread out, but not too haphazardly - you have to work with what cards you have, and don't paint yourself into a corner too early on.

As for 3, I only do that when I know I've got a formation that I'm sure will beat the opponent's there.
 
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Joe Stude
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1. I don't think delaying universally all the time is a good idea. There are plenty of times where delaying without situational consideration can result in losing flags without a single card played or disruption/prevention of a strong formation you might have otherwise had. If an opponent leads with two 9's into a flag, holding back to hope for a phalanx of 10's or a wedge is usually futile without the use of tactics cards. Even if you ultimately lose that flag, it's better to play cards into it and complete a formation than it is to lose it with nothing played.

2. again, falls into the delaying category. It's wonderful if you've got the quality of cards necessary to be able to leave an entire flag wide open without harming your position, but too often I've been forced to fill every flag with at least one card to keep from really hosing myself.

3. Good suggestion. Of course, if you do this without further backup for that high card in-hand, if your opponent continues on his way to a wedge at that flag you may find yourself permascrewed there.

I'll add a few more, a couple that I mentioned in my review and alluded to here a little.

4. It's often extremely hurtful to your overall game to lose flags without playing to them. The endgame often comes down to who's got the most free slots to play in as that player will generally do the least weakening damage to whatever formations he's working on. This is even more important when cards you might play to those already-lost flags won't fit anywhere else.

5. Avoid using Tactics cards in desperate situations, i.e. when an opponent is on the verge of winning or hurting your position badly, as in this type of situation the Tactics cards usually result in "tit for tat" scenarios where you gain little to no ground anyway.

'sall for now.
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Rob Bradley
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Jowjow wrote:
1. I don't think delaying universally all the time is a good idea. There are plenty of times where delaying without situational consideration can result in losing flags without a single card played or disruption/prevention of a strong formation you might have otherwise had. If an opponent leads with two 9's into a flag, holding back to hope for a phalanx of 10's or a wedge is usually futile without the use of tactics cards. Even if you ultimately lose that flag, it's better to play cards into it and complete a formation than it is to lose it with nothing played.


I find the opposite to be true. If your opponent has already started or even completed a nice formation, the longere you wait to commit cards to that flag, the longer you deny your opponent from gaining that flag. As soon as you commit cards to that flag, it may provides a means for your opponent to claim that flag.

Jowjow wrote:
2. again, falls into the delaying category. It's wonderful if you've got the quality of cards necessary to be able to leave an entire flag wide open without harming your position, but too often I've been forced to fill every flag with at least one card to keep from really hosing myself.


This again is a similar situation. If you can hold back in your hand a nice wedge, your opponent will almost never be able to claim a flag that you have not commited cards to.

I am pretty new to this game and I may be way off, but it seems to me that the clearest path to victory is to maximize your formations by exploiting your opponents weaker formations while at the same time denying him flags where he has strong formations.
 
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The key to Battle Line is beating your opponent to the punch but always trying to maintain flexibility. A mixture of aggression and delay - but not delay necessarily but keeping your options open. E.g. by not playing a second card, leaving a flag open, playing special cards but trying not to put yourself in the position that you can't.

I love the game for these reasons.
 
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Von Cougar wrote:
Personally, I agree with 1. and 2. From the get-go I try to spread out, but not too haphazardly - you have to work with what cards you have, and don't paint yourself into a corner too early on.

As for 3, I only do that when I know I've got a formation that I'm sure will beat the opponent's there.


Number 3 is correct since it gives a player an extra formation that can win - ie the same one.

However, much is dependent on what cards a player has and what has been played.
 
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Rob Bradley
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I had a couple other thoughts:

1. Even though I still think holding back is generally a good strategy, I have come to see the power of finishing a formation early. Especially if you can win the flag before your opponent has layed three cards there. In this situation, You have prevented your opponent from using that flag as a disscard pile and forcing him to play a card elsewhere. Later in the game, you opponent will be forced to play a cards in spaces that aren't ideal b/c he has no where else to lay.

2. If you are forced to lay some less than ideal cards, start them on the outside edges. The outermost flags are less valuable than the interior flags due to a lesser chance of them belonging to a breakout. In addition to this fact, your opponent is also most likely aware of this and you may still win that flag even with a host.

3. Don't play that wild right away. If you have a wild tactics card, keep it until nessecary. First of all you almost never want to use it for a card that may still be in the deck, because there is still a chance you will draw it. This, however is a double egded sword as if you opponent draws and plays that card, he may prove he wins the flag before you can play your wild. I will generally hang onto the wild unless my opponent will win the game if plays that card.

There isn't alot of strategy articles for this game here at the geek, I hope we can keep up this discussion going as I want to get better at this excellent game.
 
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Brad Engels
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Spacehulk wrote:
3. Don't play that wild right away. If you have a wild tactics card, keep it until nessecary. First of all you almost never want to use it for a card that may still be in the deck, because there is still a chance you will draw it. This, however is a double egded sword as if you opponent draws and plays that card, he may prove he wins the flag before you can play your wild. I will generally hang onto the wild unless my opponent will win the game if plays that card.

I like this tip. It happened to me today. I played Darius as 'Orange 6' then later drew the card.

I believe the Advanced rule (you may only claim a flag at the beginning of your turn) eliminates the risk you pointed out. It doesn't eliminate the risk of your opponent responding to your leader with a deserter or some similar tactic.
 
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