can i ask what is the reason behind having the unconnected tile to -1 point and on top of that each unconnect link to be another -1? I read that some players do away with it and simply -1 for each unconnected link, but i would like to know the original idea behind it so as to see if i would like to use it in my group. thanks!
You'll have to ask Gilad about that for sure, but I believe the idea was to force you to really think about taking such a tile, particularly late in the game. It makes it really difficult to close up and can really hurt you.
Without the -1 starting value the game can become too easy to just keep adding 2-point tiles with only one opening all day long.