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Subject: Isolating marbles... rss

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Mark Crane
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Orem
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Ok, just wondering about what constitutes a "free" ring.

Say, for example, I put a marble down, then I am supposed to take away a free ring.

There is a cluster of three marbles/rings, connected to the larger body of rings by a narrow "bridge" of three rings. Can I pull a ring out of the middle of the bridge, isolating and thereby capturing those three marbles?

Thanks for any clarifications!

I ask because my nine-year old stomped me with this move!

 
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Eli Smith
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A "Free" ring is a ring that does not hold a marble and can be "Freely" slid out of the structure. Isolating a marble or small group of marbles is a capture method.

In practice I find it very difficult to capture marbles in this manner, it's easier to manipulate my opponent into jumping a favorable direction than breaking off an island.
 
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Mark Crane
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thesama wrote:
A "Free" ring is a ring that does not hold a marble and can be "Freely" slid out of the structure. Isolating a marble or small group of marbles is a capture method.

In practice I find it very difficult to capture marbles in this manner, it's easier to manipulate my opponent into jumping a favorable direction than breaking off an island.


welll, it was our first game

It says something in the instructions about the rings having to be on the edge of the board, methinks. I'll go play the computer version and see what it allows.
 
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Frank Teplin
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La Mesa
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If you can slide the empty ring out without disturbing or touching any other rings, it's allowed. For example,

Ring R can be removed here:
__X X X X
_X X X X R
__X X X X X
___X X X X

But NOT here:
__X X X X
_X X X X R X
__X X X X X
___X X X X

Yes to removing R here:
__X X___X
_X X X R X X
__X X X X X
___X X X X

But NOT here:
__X X__X X
_X X X R X X
__X X X X X
___X X X X

In this example, with marbles on M, you should certainly add a marble to A and remove R, thus capturing three marbles for your turn.
__X X X X
_X X X X
__X X X__M
___X X R A M

Also, there's some great strategy and training at:
http://www.scat.demon.co.uk/zertz/strategy.htm
 
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Mark Crane
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Thanks for the examples and notation model, very helpful! I will check out the strategy page as well, thanks.
 
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fteplin wrote:
In this example, with marbles on M, you should certainly add a marble to A and remove R, thus capturing three marbles for your turn.
__X X X Y
_X X X Y
__X X X_._M
___X X R A M

It seems to me that this situation cannot arise, because the ring at . could never have been legally removed. If you additionally remove the rings Y the resulting position becomes possible.
 
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David Scott
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Surbiton
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I have a simple rule for determining whether a vacant ring can be removed or not:

If a vacant ring has two of its six possible neighbors missing, and those two missing neighbors are adjacent to each other, the ring can be removed.


Regarding your comment on 'cutting off the bridge', bear in mind that you can only capture the isolated marbles if the isolated island is completely filled with marbles. Otherwise the island stays on the board and remains in play (until it is filled).

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