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Comparing Abstract Strategy Board Games

Aug 5, 2008
Abstract strategy games are different types of board games which many of the world's favorite games classify as. They are games that are considered to have "perfect information," which means that everything that the other player does is instantly known. This allows for no misunderstandings due to a lack of communication and assures that every action will have a reaction. No parts of these games are left up to chance, meaning that no part of the game will rely on the effect of rolling dice or flipping a coin. Every action that is done is chosen by the player according to the circumstances and the player is in charge of every single action that takes place.

The games usually have either two players or two teams and are considered to be a head to head challenge. Checkers, Chess, Go, and Mancala are all considered to be great examples of abstract strategy games.

Some of the best abstract strategy games work as a series of puzzles that one player poses to the other. In a game that doesn't have random elements or hidden information, all there is to play off of is the direct opposition that one player presents to another. For this reason, some abstract strategy games are considered superior to others for the simple fact that they present more opportunity for opposition than others.

Tic-Tac-Toe could technically be considered as an abstract strategy game, but it's value is placed rather low for it does not present much difficulty during game play. Others, such as Chess, are considered to be some of the highest quality abstract strategy games available. Chess, with a clearly defined set of rules, a number of pieces to manipulate, and a rather large playing space, allows for nearly endless possibilities when playing a match against another player.

Othello, also called Reversi by some, is a game that brings two forces, black and white, into a battle of wits and strategy to find a victor. Played on an 8 by 8 grid, players either play as the black or the white tiles and try to change the face of their opponent's tiles by strategic placement. The game starts with two tiles of each color being placed in the 4 central squares, each token being directly diagonal to the match.

The first player to move will then take a token of their own color and place it on the board next to a token of the opposite color, trapping the opponent's colored token between two pieces of the first player's color. When a colored game piece becomes trapped between two opposite colors, that player gets to flip the trapped piece and change it into their own color. By doing this, they start to claim game tokens for themselves. When the second player gets a chance to play, they place one of their own tokens onto the board, trapping one or more tokens of their opponent and therefore changing those colors to their own.

Game play continues in this fashion, changing as many of the opponent's colors as possible, until no possible moves are left on the board. When this happens, the game is over and the tokens on the board are counted. The player with more colored tokens on the board is declared as the winner of the match. It is another prime example of an abstract strategy game. Nothing happens that isn't immediately know and everything can be reacted to with ease.
About the Author
Victor Epand is an expert consultant for board games, chess boards, and dungeons and dragons miniatures. You will find all these things and more if you visit abstract strategy board games, chess boards, and dungeons and dragons miniatures.
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