Move First, Kill First

Tafl rules
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Mark
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Mar 20, 2022 4:52 pm

Move First, Kill First

Post by Mark » Sun Mar 20, 2022 5:16 pm

So reading through the Internet, it's been a surprise to realize that no one else seems to be using the Move first, kill first convention that I've used for decades. Is that really the case? Or, has someone else played like this?

To clarify, under Move first, kill first, after any piece moves:
  1. any surrounded pieces on the enemy side are killed, and then
  2. any surrounded pieces on its own side are killed.
This means any piece (king or otherwise) can enter a space where it would ordinarily die, but, if it can kill those enemies who would be surrounding it, then it does, and survives on the space.

For example, a situation like...

WB_B

would allow white to move a man into the blank _ square, killing the man to the left, and then become...

W_WB

Draganov
Posts: 28
Joined: Fri Oct 30, 2020 2:59 pm

Re: Move First, Kill First

Post by Draganov » Wed Mar 23, 2022 9:46 am

I think this rule is more restrictive and will lessen the complexity of the game. Now, when the king or an ordinary piece can enter between two enemy pieces, the game is more complex and both sides have more tactical opportunities.

Mark
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Mar 20, 2022 4:52 pm

Re: Move First, Kill First

Post by Mark » Sun Apr 10, 2022 7:37 pm

Well, I have two responses to this.

So, the first response is that if I were concerned about complexity to the exclusion of everything else, I wouldn't play Tafl games. I'd play Go, and forget about how pieces appear out of nowhere. Hell, I'd play Chess, and not care about how the knights bound across the board like frogs, or how the pawns are too stupid to move backwards, or whatever it is that the queen does that allows her to soar across the board like an implacable Goddess of War.

I do care about those things; I care about an emotionally immersive experience. So whether or not complexity is lost, if someone dashes directly in between two enemies and stops there without being able to kill either of the warriors surrounding him, by any realistic appraisal of the situation, he should just be cut down.

But my second response is, OK, so you (all of you?) play a different way than I do. Do you have any sense of how this would change the balance of play? It's usually the defender who would want to move a piece safely to rest between two enemies, right? Would you say that my version then tilts the balance toward the attacker? Or, do you think it really would have no net impact on which side is stronger than the other?

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