Friday, August 1, 2014

A simple maximum die skill puzzle

I don't have much experience with "Maximum" dice -- dice that always show their maximum value. I sort of think I don't like them very much. But I have to admit they make this decision a little more interesting. I think there's only one attack I can make with any hope of leading to a winning situation (and even that hope is slender)

Game #764  •  ElihuRoot (Jose) vs. glassonion (Randarch)  •  Round #1
Your turn to attack


M(3) M(4) M(6) M(8) M(T)
Button: Jose
Player: ElihuRoot
W/L/T: 0/0/0 (3)  •  Score: 20.5 (-2.7 sides)
Dice captured: (10), M(6)
M(3)
3
M(4)
4
M(T=2)
2
M(6)
 6 
6
M(6)
7
(10)
5
(X=5)
Dice captured: M(8), M(6)
W/L/T: 0/0/0 (3)  •  Score: 24.5 (+2.7 sides)
Player: glassonion
Button: Randarch
M(6) M(6) (10) (10) (X)

Friday, June 13, 2014

Buttonmen 101



This is pretty easy to calculate, but I thought it was interesting because my instinct was that it almost didn't matter which one I did, but when I stopped to think about it, I realized that one attack was clearly better than the other. (technically, there are three  attacks I could make, but one of them is absurd).

Game #441  •  ElihuRoot (Von Pinn) vs. Boot2daHead (Jorgi)  •  Round #5
Your turn to attack


(4) p(6,6) (10) (20) (W)
Button: Von Pinn
Player: ElihuRoot
W/L/T: 2/2/0 (3)  •  Score: 25 (-0.7 sides)
Dice captured: (20), (4), (8)
p(6,6)
5
(10)
9
(4)
 2 
1
(6)
6
p(X=6)
Dice captured: (20), (W=5), (4)
W/L/T: 2/2/0 (3)  •  Score: 26 (+0.7 sides)
Player: Boot2daHead
Button: Jorgi
(4) (6) (8) (20) p(X)

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Exception to the rule

Konstant dice seem like one of those good ideas that must not have been  playtested much; in practice, they are nearly useless, and the usual optimal strategy when opposing them is to ignore them completely. In the situation below, however, the konstant die seems to have some value -- just not to its owner. It's  usually a wasted move  to capture a die that isn't a threat, but in this case the benefit outweighs the waste.

[Some people might claim that Null dice are equally useless and worth ignoring. Such people are very very wrong.]



Game #694  •  ElihuRoot (Brigid) vs. Patman (Pythagoras)  •  Round #1
Your turn to attack

(8) (8) (X) (X) (X)
Button: Brigid
Player: ElihuRoot
W/L/T: 0/0/0 (3)  •  Score: 33.5 (0 sides)
Dice captured: (12), (8)

1
(8)
4
(8)
1
(X=11)
6
k(6)
10
(10)
3
(Z=7)

Dice captured: (X=11), (X=11)
W/L/T: 0/0/0 (3)  •  Score: 33.5 (0 sides)
Player: Patman
Button: Pythagoras
k(6) (8) (10) (12) (Z)

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

another focus die contest

I can't win the initiative here: if i. chooses to contest it, he'll beat me.  And I can't turn down my d20 to a  safe value while temporarily gaining initiative. Yet I think there may be another very good reason to turn down my focus dice here, do you see it? Do you agree?


Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Focus dice ----ing contest

[warning: this is not *quite* how the game appeared, I modified one die's value to make the puzzle interesting.  OK, I'm in battle to get the initiative, but I'm bound to lose it, am I not?

Should I just skip it altogether and pass, rather than waste my relatively large die rolls? Or should I turn down my dice to either get initiative or at least make L.  have to turn down his big dice and gain initiative?

Or... is there something else I might do?



Game #364  •  ElihuRoot (Naga) vs. Limax (Phoenix)  •  Round #3
Your turn to try to gain initiative using die skills

Player: ElihuRootPlayer: Limax
Button: NagaButton: Phoenix
W/L/T: 1/1/0 (3)W/L/T: 1/1/0 (3)
RecipeValue
f(6)
(8)2
(8)5
(8)5
f(20)
RecipeValue
(4)3
(6)1
f(8)7
(10)8
f(20)7

Friday, March 14, 2014

Beta Testing the buttonmen web site, Also Auxiliary Dice Theory

(1) If you don't know, yet, you should: the Button Men web site is now in beta testing at www.buttonweavers.com   Remember  that it's still a work in progress,  with new features to be added and some rough edges here and there  -- but it's getting very playable, and the game is always fun!

(2) Auxiliary Dice -- when a game involved Auxiliary dice, both players must agree to use it -- if not, the extra die is not included in the game.  As a matter of game theory, then, it should never appear since whichever player it penalizes in the matchup should decline it -- so if it DOES appear in the game, someone has blundered. (I suppose there are some very rare cases in which the Auxiliary die is equally good for both players. Also, it's perfectly legitimate to want to play with it for fun even if you think it hurts your net probability of winning.)

Sometimes it might be subtle to really calculate who benefits from  gaining an Auxiliary Die. But sometimes, I think it's very clear.

For example, suppose the matchup is  Patience (Recipe: 2,2,8,12,X) vs. Lancelot (10, 12,20, 20, X) . If both players agree, they'll get an extra X-swing die (X-swing: 4-20, and if you have two X-swing, they both need to be set to the same size).

Who do you think benefits if the auxiliary die is used?

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

not too hard, but a characteristic problem.


if I take the d10, my d20 has a  65% chance of rerolling safe from immediate attack, but he gets to reroll his d20 and may outroll me -- which reduces that survival chance substantially. [is it as much as a 50% reduction? Why or why not?
if I take the d20,  I have only 45% chance of rerolling safe from immediate attack.

In either case, I still have to capture both his remaining dice on the subsequent turns.





Game #136  •  ElihuRoot (Rubeus) vs. jimmosk1 (Tuxedo Mask)  •  Round #3
Your turn to attack


(4) (4) (12) (12) r(6) r(10) r(20) (20)
Button: Rubeus
Player: ElihuRoot
W/L/T: 1/1/0 (3)  •  Score: 22 (-16 sides)
Dice captured: (6), (4)

1
(4)
18
(20)
6
(6)
10
(10)
3
(20)

Dice captured: (12), (12), (4)
W/L/T: 1/1/0 (3)  •  Score: 46 (+16 sides)
Player: jimmosk1
Button: Tuxedo Mask
(6) (6) (10) (20) (4) r(8) r(10) r(12) r(20)