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Tuesday, January 3, 2017

He's dead, Jim.

 The promise of the future is a powerful thing. It can keep you pushing through hard times, bolstering your morale; because, just over the horizon is a better world where things will all settle into place and your hard work will be justly rewarded.

But, my post today is not a cheery exposition on the promise of the future. I'm here today to crush your dreams. Not the ones about moving into the woods to build a yurt and sustainable farm...those are perfectly valid :) The dreams of yours I plan on burying under a mound of cold reality are the ones involving that East/West road you continue to pour your heart and soul into...even though your opponent has 2 nobles hindering your progress and has managed to gain a stranglehold on the Western edge of the board.

I understand that these dreams and the promise of the future are hard to give up. I struggle with "letting go" myself. When you place your stones on the board to bring to life your schemes, you are investing a part of yourself into the game and are optimistic about the outcome. This is only natural as they are your plans; your ideas, your actions, attempting to reach their full potential and earn you a pile of just desserts.

So, the key is to fight back against the promise of the future with some guidelines to keep your optimism from losing you the game.

My wet blanket for your dreams:

    1. Give up and change taktics on a road if your opponent has >1 noble that can easily cut your road in twain.
    2. Chin up and move on if your opponent drops your tempo by 2 or more.
    3. Take a deep breath and find a new strategy if your opponent has gained a stranglehold on an edge you need to complete your road.
    4. Sigh and scrap your current project if your opponent makes a +3 (or greater) flat count differential move.
    5. Grumble and accept it if you need to scrap your road threat to stop a road to Tinue threat from your opponent.

    The above are just guidelines. Each specific game has instances where it is worth the risk to trudge onward towards your goal even with all the obstacles.

    Being flexible in your schemes (especially developing bidirectionally or playing offense/defense simultaneously) will be of much more benefit to your gameplay than continuing to beat a dead horse.

    And here is another tidbit along the same lines to take to heart:  Unless you are playing a bumbling newbie or a buggy bot, your initial road will go nowhere. So, stop taking it so badly when that first foray onto the board gets stopped cold. Just take out your thesaurus, find some synonyms for perseverance, and persevere!

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