General rules

Tafl rules
Adam
Posts: 116
Joined: Fri Mar 20, 2015 1:28 pm

Re: General rules

Post by Adam » Wed Jan 17, 2018 10:20 am

I think adding the corner rule/trying it out on sea tafl is a good idea as it makes sense with the geography of the game, namely open sea.

I don't think we should implement this rule in historical hnefatafl for two reasons:

Firstly because the game is working so beautifully and is (Finally) in concordance with a historical rule set.

Secondly, the corners are a part of the geography of the tafl board (it could have been round and radial), used by players for strategic and tactical purposes, less so in edge tafl but I would venture the corners affect play. Removing these deadzones will affect the game. Better we see what long term effects such a rule has on sea tafl, or at least run a test tournament.

Regarding Copenhagen, I'm pretty sure we have been over the edge capture idea various times before. The geography of the board allows for the deadzones, creating opportunities to immobilise but not capture the king, forcing black to immobilise, surround or destroy all white soldiers. This makes the deadzone an attractive fallback tactic for white if their opening fails. Conversely a similar fallback tactic for black if the king gets out early and a capture is not possible. An edge square is not an open square, nor is it a throne square, so it has different effects. Otherwise we could take soldiers against the edge. Which I think was the key argument last time we considered this.

Xerxes
Posts: 13
Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2015 12:48 pm

Re: General rules

Post by Xerxes » Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:37 am

I think allowing King capture against the edge in Copenhagen would make a big difference to the game, and so would need some extensive testing (one of the problems with short testing (eg a one-off tournament with a few players) is that it does not allow strategies to develop against a new rule).

Hagbard
Posts: 437
Joined: Sat Mar 14, 2015 6:07 pm

Re: General rules

Post by Hagbard » Fri Jan 19, 2018 7:40 am

Adam wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 10:20 am
Regarding Copenhagen, I'm pretty sure we have been over the edge capture idea various times before. The geography of the board allows for the deadzones, creating opportunities to immobilise but not capture the king, forcing black to immobilise, surround or destroy all white soldiers. This makes the deadzone an attractive fallback tactic for white if their opening fails. Conversely a similar fallback tactic for black if the king gets out early and a capture is not possible. An edge square is not an open square, nor is it a throne square, so it has different effects. Otherwise we could take soldiers against the edge. Which I think was the key argument last time we considered this.
Xerxes wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:37 am
I think allowing King capture against the edge in Copenhagen would make a big difference to the game, and so would need some extensive testing (one of the problems with short testing (eg a one-off tournament with a few players) is that it does not allow strategies to develop against a new rule).

Indeed. The Copenhagen is extensively tested and serves us well, 5000 games now. It is necessary to be very careful about this game.

The Copenhagen is forked into the "Copenhagen unsafe-edge 11x11" for testing. It will take a lot of experience with that one. Perhaps the unsafe edge makes some sense, perhaps it does not work well enough and is discarded, or perhaps it would be another variant for a long time, like Fetlar and Copenhagen are.


Also casshern warned, in private chat:
casshern wrote: 2018-01-11 08:07:18 casshern: Hi, Aage. I read what you wrote about "dead squares" in the large forum and had some thoughts. The ability to capture a piece in a corner in sea battle and HH sounds like a good idea. Although, I like that HH has very few rules and this would complicate its simplicity a bit. Otherwise, it would be nice to be able to capture a piece that is in a corner. Though it is not a common situations, I am not sure how much the new rule will affect the game. If I had it my way, I would just leave the rules as they are with the dead squares. Since, white rarely needs to move a piece to the corner, I only see black moving to a corner and that would benefit white generally.

2018-01-11 08:21:06 casshern: In Copenhagen and Berserk, I would not have the king captured but 3 pieces against an edge. I feel like white is at a disadvantage in both variants, but I feel that way about most variants. Exit forts and shieldwall captures help balance the game, in my opinion, but if the king could be captured by 3 pieces against the edge then black would have an even bigger advantage. Generally, white naturally avoids the king being surrounded by 3 against the edge since that would make him immobile. However, tactically it would benefit white for example if the king was 2 squares from the corner with a black piece blocking the corner. White may still need to move some pawns around to be able to get through, but in the meantime black could move a 3rd piece to surround the king. The new rule would make this a win for black, correct? I don't think it should be that way. I think the game should continue.

Hagbard
Posts: 437
Joined: Sat Mar 14, 2015 6:07 pm

Re: General rules

Post by Hagbard » Thu Apr 05, 2018 7:27 pm

Adam wrote: I think adding the corner rule/trying it out on sea tafl is a good idea as it makes sense with the geography of the game, namely open sea.

I don't think we should implement this rule in historical hnefatafl for two reasons:

Firstly because the game is working so beautifully and is (Finally) in concordance with a historical rule set.

Secondly, the corners are a part of the geography of the tafl board (it could have been round and radial), used by players for strategic and tactical purposes, less so in edge tafl but I would venture the corners affect play. Removing these deadzones will affect the game. Better we see what long term effects such a rule has on sea tafl, or at least run a test tournament.
casshern wrote: Although, I like that HH has very few rules and this would complicate its simplicity a bit.
...
Though it is not a common situations, I am not sure how much the new rule will affect the game. ... Since, white rarely needs to move a piece to the corner
Ded Fomich wrote: But I think that there is no need to use that new rule about the corner capture because of its rarity. ... I’d prefer to leave HH rules as they are—simple, historical and well working. Maybe this rule can make sense in Sea Battle Tafl.
In all my test games with capturable corner pieces, there were even never pieces in the corners; I suppose it is because pieces tend to move towards the middle of the board or the edges, and not so much towards the corners.

Capture of corner pieces has turned out to be more a philosophical problem ("dead squares"). In reality there've now been played 150 games with this rule in function (both Sea Battle and Hist.) and no corner piece was ever captured at all. Capture of a corner piece turned out to be something which could happen only very very rarely. So the idea is dropped for the Hist. Hnef., and as an experiment kept for the Sea Tafl.

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