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TZAAR» Forums » General

Subject: Alternative setups for Tzaar rss

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Allen OConnor
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I've played TZAAR quite a lot now and I think it's a great game. Being a big fan of Abalone Classic, I am aware that changing the starting setup of a game can have a big impact on strategy. Have you ever used any alternative set ups?
 
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Russ Williams
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I use a different setup every time (random setup).
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Francis Bergeron
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I never used the proposed set-up... different set-up every time too, always random or manual.
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Rich Gowell
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Playing it quite a bit at boardspace lately.

Standard setup every time.....so I can decipher the bots' quirks and semi-fraudulently climb the rankings by KICKING ITS A**! devil

isn't working just yet....
 
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Allen OConnor
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Tchan wrote:
I never used the proposed set-up... different set-up every time too, always random or manual.
When you say manual, is that whereplayers take turn placing their pieces?
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Virginia Milne
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That is right. "Manual setup" means that the players decide where to set up their pieces. These are also the tournament rules.

For newer players the random setup is best because it exposes them to many interesting situations. The manual setup only makes sense when you understand the game well enough see how things at the beginning effect the end of the game. It is the "principle of back to front". You must know how the game ends before you now how to play a good beginning.

In chess it works this way. Newer players should concentrate on gaining the skill in checkmating the other player. But after a while, in well balanced games, unless someone makes a blunder, the game often goes to the player who first queens a pawn. Certain pawn formations give you an advantage in queening a pawn. Now we go back to the opening game. You seek certain pawn formations. eg. doubled pawns, isolated pawns are bad.

But this was only found out by chess players, after they gained knowledge about how most chess games end when played between evenly matched players who did not make too many blunders.

Motto: learn how the game ends, before you try to learn the best openings.
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Rich Gowell
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Great post. Yeah, the end game seems to suddenly present the crises of looming isolation or type elimination in such a way that early and mid game efforts can appear almost irrelevant. This because the goal you thought you were aiming for (eg elimination of his "totts") is routinely and abruptly "trumped" by a vulnerability you didn't see coming. The paths to these end game "tipping points" is challenging to discern early.
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Allen OConnor
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Thanks for the advice
 
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Marc Gaudet
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My friend and I play setting up 5 pieces at a time, allowing us to form some offensive/defensive positions that also happen to make the board look cooler
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K.C. Smith
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I had an idea for an alternate set-up, which I would call "war". It basically puts all white pieces on one side of the board and all the black on the other, totts nearest the "border" and tzaars furthest from it. It can be done with symmetry. I would love some feedback on how it plays. I haven't been able to test it much , but I feel like it is a substantial change from the standard set-up. Here's a picture :
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Allen OConnor
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That does look like an unusual set up, but one that will encourage an entirely different way of playing. That looks very interesting, I'll give it a try and let you know how it goes.
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