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Haggle Pente (and variants)
Posted: Nov 8, 2017, 5:25 PM

This idea is still a work in progress and is related to the idea of Pente and variants using handicap stones as described in this thread:

It seems to work most effectively with swap variants, so I'll start by describing it in relation to those and then follow with a possible idea of how it could also work for other non swap variants.

In a swap game, the proposer would set up an extremely unequal position - for example the ones shown below would work well:

Now the proposer says to the chooser, "What's the best handicap offer you're willing to give me in order to play this board from the side with the positional advantage?" The chooser names their best offer, let's say it's a 7 stone handicap in favor of P2 on the first board and a 4 stone handicap in favor of P1 on the second board. Now, the proposer can either accept the offer and the game gets played with that handicap or else the proposer can outbid the chooser by at least one stone (perhaps bonus rating points occur if the proposer outbids the chooser by more than a single stone?) and play the board from the positionally advantaged side with the overbid number of stones as handicap.

How could this translate to non swap variants? One idea is the following. Let's say two old time expert players in a capture stones variant game are tired of drawing sets against each other. A newer or less experienced player has challenged one of them to a turn based set. Expert one says to expert two - "I'd play a real time game against my challenger as P1 with a maximum of a 2 stone handicap." "Oh, yeah?" says expert two. "Well, I'd play a real time game as P1 against that player with a 3 stone handicap." In some variants that extra stone will make a difference, so let's say these are experts in one of those variants. Expert 2 plays the game against the challenger and if expert 2 wins the game, s/he gets some rating points from expert one. If expert two loses, expert one gets rating points from expert two. The challenger remains at the same rating regardless of whether s/he loses or wins the game, but gains experience from playing a real time game against an expert who is on the ropes but fighting hard to recover from a deficit.

Retired from TB Pente, but still playing live games & exploring variants like D, poof and boat
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