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#1 Dobby125

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 01:12 PM

Here's the link to my Stratego youtube channel.  I do after game analysis commentary to show common mistakes/blunders that most players make.  I try to pick interesting games that highlight 1 or 2 specific Stratego concepts/tactics/strategies that should help most beginners begin to think like a competent Stratego player.  That's the goal anyway.  

 

Here are the latest 2 video links:

 

https://www.youtube....h?v=aIqW_fKcJ2k

 

https://www.youtube....h?v=rolbBKrb7IM

 

Watch the games at 1.25x or 1.5x speed to save time.


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My Youtube Stratego Channel: https://www.youtube....cGDvlZZkGbgq0LA


#2 TemplateRex

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 09:28 PM

Very nice videos. Just a few questions about the 2nd one (2 Tactics).

 

I liked how you came 3 times (first miner from E3, then scout from F3 then finally with the general from E2 at his cluster of high ranked stuff in the center lane. What did you think of his defense? E.g.: 

  1. At 5:31, you come at his just revealed major with a piece from E3. He's up a cap for a lieut, but with marsh+major known, and colo suspected. Wouldn't it be better for him to move the major forward, and his general behind it? At worst, he loses the major against gen/marsh, but he gets high valued info, and if the piece on E3 is a colo, you either sac a colo/major exchange for a gen-info, or you block the major without revealing your piece.
  2. At 5:53, he hits the piece on E7, which seems questionable to me. Let's just assume you would only put a marsh, gen or bluff piece (at most a sarge) on E7 between his 3 pieces. Gravon stats say it's 75% times a bluff piece, 15% a gen and 10% a marsh. If it had been the marsh, then hitting it with the gen would have guaranteed him the loss of the suspected colo on your next move! OTOH, if your piece had a been a marsh, you would have had to estimate his willingness to gamble with a spy blindly hitting that unknown piece. How should you weigh 90% chance of losing the spy (and the ensuing 15% chance of also losing the colo in case the spy dies on your gen) versus the 10% chance of getting a marsh? Maybe it's +EV to hit with the gen, because you wouldn't risk the marsh, but it sure seems a big gamble.
  3. In any case, instead of taking  a big gamble (even if it was +EV) with the gen, he probably should have moved the major forward at 5:31 to intercept your incoming piece, covered with the gen so that he loses the major in 25% of the cases, with valuable info in return. Would you agree?
  4. At 6:57, he stands pat with his gen, and moves his marsh in front of his suspected colo. This seems another big risk to me. By now, you knew his gen, and you could have come with any unmoved piece from D4, D3, E2 or F3, with a 20% chance of it being the marsh according to Gravon. So here he risked a 20% chance of losing the gen, instead of moving the gen aside, and shifitng the burden of gambling to you, by letting you decide whether the major/gen on E8/F7 were covered by a spy on F8.
  5. At 10:15, he played his marshall D7-C7, but shouldn't he just have moved colonel C8-B8 to swap the both known colonels?

Anyway, it's at least very instructive to see that you were putting difficult questions to him by repeatedly charging at his high pieces. Even if he could have done better somewhere, you were never risking anything and he was, so nice game :)


Edited by TemplateRex, 14 June 2018 - 09:41 PM.

I hereby grant explicit permission to all my opponents to record and publish my games as they see fit.


#3 Dobby125

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Posted 15 June 2018 - 03:06 AM

Very nice videos. Just a few questions about the 2nd one (2 Tactics).

 

I liked how you came 3 times (first miner from E3, then scout from F3 then finally with the general from E2 at his cluster of high ranked stuff in the center lane. What did you think of his defense? E.g.: 

  1. At 5:31, you come at his just revealed major with a piece from E3. He's up a cap for a lieut, but with marsh+major known, and colo suspected. Wouldn't it be better for him to move the major forward, and his general behind it? At worst, he loses the major against gen/marsh, but he gets high valued info, and if the piece on E3 is a colo, you either sac a colo/major exchange for a gen-info, or you block the major without revealing your piece.
  2. At 5:53, he hits the piece on E7, which seems questionable to me. Let's just assume you would only put a marsh, gen or bluff piece (at most a sarge) on E7 between his 3 pieces. Gravon stats say it's 75% times a bluff piece, 15% a gen and 10% a marsh. If it had been the marsh, then hitting it with the gen would have guaranteed him the loss of the suspected colo on your next move! OTOH, if your piece had a been a marsh, you would have had to estimate his willingness to gamble with a spy blindly hitting that unknown piece. How should you weigh 90% chance of losing the spy (and the ensuing 15% chance of also losing the colo in case the spy dies on your gen) versus the 10% chance of getting a marsh? Maybe it's +EV to hit with the gen, because you wouldn't risk the marsh, but it sure seems a big gamble.
  3. In any case, instead of taking  a big gamble (even if it was +EV) with the gen, he probably should have moved the major forward at 5:31 to intercept your incoming piece, covered with the gen so that he loses the major in 25% of the cases, with valuable info in return. Would you agree?
  4. At 6:57, he stands pat with his gen, and moves his marsh in front of his suspected colo. This seems another big risk to me. By now, you knew his gen, and you could have come with any unmoved piece from D4, D3, E2 or F3, with a 20% chance of it being the marsh according to Gravon. So here he risked a 20% chance of losing the gen, instead of moving the gen aside, and shifitng the burden of gambling to you, by letting you decide whether the major/gen on E8/F7 were covered by a spy on F8.
  5. At 10:15, he played his marshall D7-C7, but shouldn't he just have moved colonel C8-B8 to swap the both known colonels?

Anyway, it's at least very instructive to see that you were putting difficult questions to him by repeatedly charging at his high pieces. Even if he could have done better somewhere, you were never risking anything and he was, so nice game :)

 

The player in the Tactics game was really easy to read.  He just gave up too much info too easily.  Going after the unknown Captain and revealing the Marshal was bad, bad, bad.  Once he had my Capt. pinned he should have bluffed attacked with his Scout instead of the Col.  Even if I took the scout with the Captain, his Colonel wouldn’t have been “revealed” and his bomb wouldn’t have been revealed.  I probably knew it was a colonel once he revealed his Major.  It didn’t make sense to be a General.  I would hope a 398 ELO player would know not to reveal a Marshal and a General so early in the game for just a Captain.  It was interesting that this player had his Mar/Gen in a symmetrical pattern just like in the Stats game.  The only difference was they were both behind the inside lakes in this game.

  1. Moving forward was a good option.  He knew my Captain on F4, so he could have tried to attack that and maybe get some info too.  Players have to know when their Marshal is revealed and out of position and he’s revealed some good targets(Major, possible Colonel) that the counterattack with the General is likely to come.  It’s so hard to play defense when your opponent knows your top pieces and they don’t know yours.  I think OuweSok said when you’re in that situation, every piece coming your way seems like a marshal or spy.  Marshals and spies everywhere!
  2. The General attack on the unknown piece was a dangerous move.  If it was my Marshal, the game is probably over.  In situations like that, the masses probably rush up with the General, so it probably wasn’t so risky for him to attack with the Gen.  He probably was expecting a General attack.  Some players rush up with a General and some rush up with a Marshal.  A lot of times, in past games, I would rush up with a Gen or Mar, and it would get scouted before I could do any damage.  In this game, my Mar was out of position to attack right away.  If it was on D4, I might have charged with it.  I don’t think I’d be concerned at all of a spy attack on an unrevealed Marshal.  I bluffed charged with the miner to see what he would do. I like testing to see what players do.  You know it would reveal the Gen.  Plus, it freed the lane for my General.  I bluffed again with the scout.  I wanted to test to see if the revealed Gen would be as brave and attack as the unrevealed Gen was.  Looking back, I probably should have moved my Spy up instead of the scout.  That would have been the bold move.  I think it would have worked.  The lanes were blocked, so scouts wouldn't have been a problem.  My problem is I bluff too much, way too much.  I really like running tests on my opponents.  I think Unladden Swallow is right when he said in chat that I was more of a researcher than a player.  
  3. Once his major was revealed, I would have moved forward to get my Captain on F4 and kept the General hidden.
  4. That was a major blunder by him at 6:57.  It if was my Marshal, he loses his General and probably the game.  I should have moved my Scout away on the next move.
  5. That would have been a good move.  I would have backed away with my Colonel.  Probably would have bluffed charged with the sergeant on A3.  :)

Not sure why he attacked my General with his major at 10:21.  He must have thought it was a spy I guess.  Or maybe he thought I was bluffing for a third time.  


My Youtube Stratego Channel: https://www.youtube....cGDvlZZkGbgq0LA


#4 TemplateRex

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Posted 15 June 2018 - 12:19 PM

Another question: you mention that you always prefer to attack an enemy rank-R piece with an R+1 ranked piece of your own. I wonder if that isn't too predictable. If the target piece is covered by an R+2 piece you'll lose your attacker for minor info.

 

Why not try and win the piece outright by attacking with an R+2 piece yourself? If it's doubly covered it's perhaps a bit risky, since it's likely covered by an R+2 and an R+3 piece. But for singly covered pieces it seems worth the risk.

 

Say you hit a sarge with a lieut and lose against a cap. Is this really preferred over attacking the sarge with a cap yourself, with the chance of winning the sarge outright, or losing the cap against at least a major?

 

Also, if you mix up the ranks of your "value bets", the opponent will have to mix up his defenses as well (R+2 or R+3 cover) and/or spend more scouting pieces on your incoming attackers. Or maybe you find that mixing up real attacks with pure bluffs is enough to be unpredictable, so that your actual attacks don't have to speculate on winning the piece outright?


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#5 Dobby125

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Posted 20 June 2018 - 12:56 AM

Another question: you mention that you always prefer to attack an enemy rank-R piece with an R+1 ranked piece of your own. I wonder if that isn't too predictable. If the target piece is covered by an R+2 piece you'll lose your attacker for minor info.

 

Why not try and win the piece outright by attacking with an R+2 piece yourself? If it's doubly covered it's perhaps a bit risky, since it's likely covered by an R+2 and an R+3 piece. But for singly covered pieces it seems worth the risk.

 

Say you hit a sarge with a lieut and lose against a cap. Is this really preferred over attacking the sarge with a cap yourself, with the chance of winning the sarge outright, or losing the cap against at least a major?

 

Also, if you mix up the ranks of your "value bets", the opponent will have to mix up his defenses as well (R+2 or R+3 cover) and/or spend more scouting pieces on your incoming attackers. Or maybe you find that mixing up real attacks with pure bluffs is enough to be unpredictable, so that your actual attacks don't have to speculate on winning the piece outright?

 

You make very good points.  I’ve been thinking about this since FKS wrote his comment on my first video: If you see a piece that u know rule of thumb is u want to hit with 2 ranks higher instead of one. except for miners which u should always take with serg.”

 

I think when you start to play higher ranked opponents that it makes sense to vary your attack and become less predictable and more risky.  My youtube channel is really targeted for all the bronze/silver players.  I think they’d be much better off attacking one rank higher so they don’t get too far down.  The problem is they don’t know how to play from behind and how to plan ahead.  When they get too far down in their minds (it might only be a major or colonel or maybe 2 captains) then they start to think the games over.  Attacking +1 rank is not an ironclad rule with me.  Taking a guarded sergeant with a captain instead of a lieutenant at the start of the game is not that big of a risk.  A lot depends on the game situation.  Are you way ahead?  Are you way behind?  How many pieces are left on the board?  How well do you play from behind?  How well are you at planning attacks and counter attacks?  How well do you know your opponent? How many pieces are guarding the piece you are attacking and how many of those pieces have moved?  What opponent’s pieces are already revealed?  What position on the board is the piece you’re attacking?  Etc…

 

Attacking +2 in rank is not such a big deal with pieces ranked captain or lower, especially in the beginning of the game. I think deciding to attack +2 with majors/colonels/gens is a lot more risky.  I wouldn’t advise it for beginners playing other beginners.  Many of these players think the game is lost when they go down a major or colonel and they only captured a lieutenant and captain.  Plus, beginners are more likely to have mar/gen up front, so you’re more likely to get the info you want just by attacking +1 rank without the added risk. 

 

There are times when the game situation will dictate what you must do.  Here’s a game where FKS is being marshall blitzed on his left side.  https://youtu.be/GbCkSDG2ZHQ?t=4m38s He scouts a lieutenant in the middle.  He has his choice to attack with a captain or major.  He attacks with the captain, only +1 rank.  Why?  Because he knows the General is usually in the middle and it’s just not worth the risk to lose a major.  He just wants to find the Gen.  If he had found a captain on the far right side, it would make sense to attack that with a colonel, because the General is most likely near the center of the board when he's being marshal blitzed.

 

Stratego is a kind of a complex/weird game.  I think when you get really good and start to play better players, you have to change your style of play and become more random( your setups/bomb placements/flag placements/attacks), less predictable(lots of bluffs) and more aggressive.


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#6 Dobby125

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Posted 24 August 2018 - 04:05 PM

Here's my latest Stratego game analysis upload.  I made a huge blunder in this game. Watch the video and pause it when I talk about the mistake and see if you can figure out why the move I made was a potential disaster.

 

https://youtu.be/yXRoxrrkQl4 


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