turn based Twixt game analysis

Wargaming Strategies and Tactics

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turn based Twixt game analysis

Postby twixter » Thu Sep 06, 2012 8:29 pm

Is Twixt a wargame? Well the 3M box has an image of soldiers climbing a hill in the Background:

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When Avalon Hill acquired the 3M line, they kept the same cover image. So hey! It's a wargame. I hope this thread is appropriate. You can read the rules on this site or on Wikipedia.

Here is an ongoing game against a very strong opponent. Each move might take a few days.

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It's my turn as white. The red dot indicates black's last move. I'm moving slowly, 36 hours per move, to give my opponent time to examine the position. My large group is able to connect to the top row in the left corner, but now the battle has shifted towards the bottom of the board. I have a difficult task facing me. If I try to simply connect to the bottom along the left, I believe my opponent will be able to cut me off. Similarly, if I try to scoot over to the right and reach the bottom that way, my opponent has too many threats for me to succeed. So, I will have to pull out all the stops and initiate a pincer attack. I will make threats on the left, and threats on the right. After my opponent has committed to a specific defensive pattern on each side, I will place a peg somewhere near the bottom row, likely somewhere in the middle, which will threaten to connect on the left and connect on the right at the same time.

As each move is played, I will update the position here and add commentary. PLEASE DO NOT SUGGEST ANY MOVES TO ME! This is an ongoing game. When it has finished, then we could discuss any sequence of moves you like.
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Re: turn based Twixt game analysis

Postby twixter » Fri Sep 07, 2012 9:15 am

I finally decided on a move, 23.G16:
Image
I might have played F16 instead, which would have been more securely connected to H11, but G16 makes slightly more threats to connect to the bottom.
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Re: turn based Twixt game analysis

Postby twixter » Fri Sep 07, 2012 7:43 pm

My opponent played at G14, attacking my connection between G16 and H11:
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I haven't moved yet. I want to give my opponent a chance to enjoy his weekend. But when I do, I will make the only move that works in this local battle, H14:
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As far as I can tell, there is only one move for black to keep me from winning on the left, and that is G20:
Image

If black plays anywhere else, I should be able to win quickly on the left side, unless I missed something, which is entirely possible. So I will let you know what happens in a few days.
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Re: turn based Twixt game analysis

Postby Whiterook » Fri Sep 07, 2012 10:33 pm

Love the commentary! What is the 8-pointed star 'graph'? ....I am assuming its for visualization, but is it printed on the server board or did you draw it on to help the viewers?

Two comments:

1. In answer to your opening missive....I see this game as a wargame in the same way as I see chess as a wargame. Though the pegs aren't artistically symbolic of cavalry and kings, etc....they are still 'soldiers' in a battle of wits and strategy. Flanks, pincers, etc....all militaristic, in my view.

2. You play on a level FAR AND ABOVE me, my friend! The too few times I've played this game (seriously, like maybe three or four times.....EVER), I placed a peg, looked at where my opponent placed his and plotted a best course for perry and thrust on the fly. Very Dumbed-down and beer & pretzel fashion. You play this like competition (Grand Master) level chess! Cool, to say the least, but way more engrossed than I thought it played by anyone. You've given me an appreciation and insight that this game can be far and above beyond Sunday afternoon pre-football/kill-some-time fare!

The odd thing about it for me is.....I'm personally not sure which I would prefer?...I love a good pretzel :P being serious, however....I think I'm more the casual pegger, rather than the intensity to which is obviously displayed here. Looking at the commentary above, I am in awe!

I am very glad to see this side of the game. :D
"The Golden Rule of War, Speed - Simplicity - Boldness"
"YOU ARE NOT BEATEN UNTIL YOU ADMIT IT. HENCE, DON'T..."
-- General George S. Patton, Jr
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Re: turn based Twixt game analysis

Postby twixter » Sat Sep 08, 2012 11:24 am

Thanks for the compliments! I'm glad you like this view of competitive Twixt.

Yes, you're right, those green diagonal lines are intended as a reference for the eye, to help read the position. Compared to most abstracts, 24x24 is huge. When a ladder chase occurs, those lines can help you see which wall the chase would run into. Some players find them more distracting than helpful. The server provides them as an option. Actually, my latest images are not from the Little Golem server, but an analysis site which provides a virtual board where I can examine any variation I want. Once the game is completed, users will be able to post public comments. So, all I do is click on holes to produce a position, capture the image, and upload it to the BoardGameGeek website. I still haven't figured out how to upload images here directly.

Twixt pretty much owns my soul. I have played well over 2000 games, mostly online. I have flown to England three times to compete in a F2F Twixt tournament, which I won each time. My car's license plate is TWIXT. So, there is much to be said for the beer & pretzels approach to Twixt. As a bonus, you get a "life," whatever that may be.
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Re: turn based Twixt game analysis

Postby twixter » Sun Sep 09, 2012 4:41 pm

My opponent played the only good move, G20. (See the previous image.) I told you he was strong. My reply will be R18:

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This could be regarded as the first pincer move. I'm threatening to cut black off on the right side, for example with R14. This peg also supports an attack from the left side, believe it or not, although that peg by itself is not enough. So, I have threats going on across the board. In some variations, I abandon my large group on the top left and instead punch through to the top on the right side.

I will soon find out if I am really winning, or this is all a delusion.
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Re: turn based Twixt game analysis

Postby twixter » Mon Sep 10, 2012 11:14 am

He decided to shut down all my threats on the left with J13:
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So, that's the end of my pincer attack. All my hopes now lie on connecting through on the right side. My opponent also set a trap for me. If I continue with R14 like I mentioned in the previous post,
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black will punch through in the center with N13!
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So, instead of R14, I played Q11.
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Q11 is now securely connected to the top, but that 6-1 gap between R18 and S12 looks big enough for black to drive a truck through. In Twixt, however, appearances can be deceiving. I'll let you know what he tries.
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Re: turn based Twixt game analysis

Postby twixter » Wed Nov 14, 2012 6:18 pm

Alright, sorry for the long delay. I made a big mistake in this game, and I lost. There is a lot of detailed commentary on the analysis site. You can click on moves in the commentary and see the position move by move. Continuing from the last diagram, my opponent crushed me with R15:

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I thought he could not play this, since I could then play R14, but I missed the shot Q13:

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Isn't that nasty? Black threatens either P11 or T16 (purple holes), and there is nothing I can do about it. I resigned a few moves later.

My mistake was earlier in the game, when I played R18, which is shown in an earlier diagram in this thread. I have a tendency to play "fancy" moves which are not necessarily warranted. I had a much more direct win on the left side with E20:

Image
This pattern is called the Medcalf defense, and I did look at it, but I thought it did not work here. I should have looked more deeply! Against this opponent I am lucky to get one chance to win, and I missed my chance. This position is discussed in detail on the analysis site.

Anyway, I would still like to play a game of Twixt here against anyone who wants to play. I could act as GM and play at the same time. I don't have Vassal, but I can generate images of the position all the same. I offer row handicaps, as described in another post of mine. Just tell me what handicap you want and make the first move.
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