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Subject: countering "luck of the throw" rss

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david voegele
United States
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Many people enjoy the use of dice in CORX because it is an equalizer for players of different ages and skill levels (which is important for family play)- and because it injects both surprize and suspense into the game (e.g., waiting to roll a "1" in order to capture a base). However, sometimes a newer player will feel frustrated by the dice and conclude the game is "all luck". I often refer that player to Master Corx (that does not use dice), but the reality is that strategy abounds in the dice version as well. Key strategic considerations for the dice version (as well as Master CORX)include:

1. Form blocks, and methodically move them across the board. Avoid advancing an unprotected cork across the Board.

2. Control Center Space if you are able. Note that you can land on Center Space with any number on the die. A "1" on the die is needed only if you are trying to remove someone from Center Space.

3. Keep your corks off the BaseLines. Remember that even if you have 2 corks forming a Block, if one of those corks is on a BaseLine it remains unprotected (despite the other cork having Block protection).

4. Make a mental note of each capture made by an opponent. Since the corks that come off the board are supposed to be placed upside down in front of the captor, it is up to you to remember whether those corks were captured or sacrificed (because a captured cork is work 2 points and a sacrificed cork has no value - thus the importance of controlling Center Space when possible.

5. Because a CORX match consists of 3 games, it is important to keep the big picture in mind. The unique scoring for both games and the match mean that someone can lose 2 out of 3 games but still win the match (since total points for each game provide addiitonal "match points".

6. Because CORX allows you to move each piece in any direction, and because of the unique game design, there are virtually infinate move possibilities. So even when you don't get the "roll of the dice" that you want, you have options. In many ways, CORX reflects how we live our lives. Resourcefulness and perseverence will often help you succeed - and sometimes they aren't enough.

The bottom line is that there is a lot more strategy involved in this game then meets the beginner's eye. There are layers of strategic knowledge that one learns by playing many times. I am often amazed at how i am continually leaning "new tricks".
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