Two years on Little Golem General forum
10 replies. Last post: 2017-03-06Reply to this topic Return to forum
mmKALLL at 2017-02-25
Suddenly a long post out of nowhere. (Let’s hope the formatting is ok.)
Exactly two years ago, I joined LG, and have been greatly enjoying the ride so far. As I want to know more about what kind of experiences the other players have had, I decided to post about how I ended up in here and what it has been like.
At first I was just interested in some place where I could play Connect6, and wasn’t really even aware of turn-based play still being a thing in this modern age, where real-time games are possible even across the oceans. So I joined and was wondering about why I didn’t get any games despite signing up, eventually figuring out how the site worked. While I wanted to play real-time as I usually did, since Connect6 was a fairly obscure game there were no good alternatives available. After a bit of pondering, I resigned to trying it out turn-based, since it seemed interesting and looked like a lot of fun. It was. Some of my opponents were very active and skilled Taiwanese players; I learned a lot by studying their moves and openings. The game is very aggressive and can be over in an instant if you make a mistake; it is also very strategic since opening up possibilities for middle game is crucial. One of my most notable games in Connect6 was this one; setting up the top board to have enough time for playing move 13 elsewhere was pivotal in changing the tide:
Forward a month or two, and I’m trying my hand at some other games on the site, registering for monthly cups and championships. I usually had around 10-20 simultaneous matches going on, and familiarised myself with the rules and strategy of all kinds of board games. Since I’ve been playing games a lot, and especially Go and a bunch of video games on tournament level, I felt like quickly figuring out effective ways to play is one of my strong points. Due to said competitive background, I enjoy looking at the tournament results and ratings, even though I realize that they are irrelevant to many players.
In late 2015, some of my favourites included Polyomino and EWN. I enjoyed playing Go on the site, but grew a bit tired of the long games and rereading complicated positions numerous times. Eventually I shifted my focus on Gofrom 19x19 to 9x9 and played a lot of interesting games in its monthly tournaments. One of the highlights can be found from the following link; there were five tournaments in August, but only I and Deep_Revelation won them despite strong opposition. The games were full of crazy comebacks overall.
In EWN, I achieved the longest win streak in 1-point game Infinity tournament wins, with a grand total of 19 wins in a row. Of course, that doesn’t say anything about skill – I started late, had practiced the game a bit, and got lucky in many decisive dice rolls. ;) Here’s how the page looked back then:
Another hype moment I decided to take a screenshot from was this exciting game against Kiwibill, where I eventually got extremely lucky and managed to get a point from a near-hopeless position:
In 2016, I started taking Polyomino a lot more seriously, and eventually reached 4th place in the ratings while maintaining a long #1 position on the Infinity board. This has been one of my high points on LG so far, and while I am no match to many of the top players these days, my endgame skills probably remain amongst the very best. Playing friendly games against Florian and Ray has been a great source of enjoyment as well—thank you very much for all the fantastic advice and analysis!
ConHex came along and I started analysing it and Hex materials a bit more. They are great games, so make sure to check them out if you haven’t already! Around this time the Morelli World Championships were held as well, and I fell in complete love with the game’s simple yet complicated strategies. Shoutouts to Richard Moxham for making such a great game, and stepanzo for becoming such a great player in it!
More recently, I’ve been a bit invested in analysing Japanese WYPS strategies, and so far have a +28-0=0~3 record. I find it very interesting, especially as I have been studying the language for almost 8 years now. Another variation I’ve come to enjoy a lot is Backwards Capture in EWN; it appears to be a lot more tactical and perhaps relies more on strategy than luck when compared to regular EWN.
Then 2017 came along. When Draughts or TZAAR were opened on the site, I didn’t really have the time to get deeply invested in them, but with QYPS I knew that there would be a chance to get ahead of the curve and become #1. Why would I want to take a game so seriously? Well, because it seemed interesting and that’s how I enjoy playing games. I made it my goal to join as many monthly cups as possible and try to learn as many strategies as I could before playing moves in the first championship. The championship matches went pretty well, and I’m looking forward to seeing how the rest of the games turn out! Lately I haven’t been able to put my full effort into the game anymore, but think that it is an intriguing WYPS variation with lots of potential. The UI could use a bit more work; especially handy would be a list of stones still in bag, or something similar. While I had an edge for a while, Richard’s play is superb. I simply can’t find enough weaknesses from his play that I would be able to overcome my own.
There is a lot more that could be said about a lot of things, but all in all I think that this somewhat sums my journey at LG up. I’ll be looking at the other games as well, when time allows. :) Recently I’ve had anywhere from 60 to 120 simultaneous games, and it’s a bit too much...
All in all, I have played 1118 games in 730 days. My Monster Rating is 1607, and placement is 185 – but it is lacking a few of the newer games. Here’s hoping for the next two years to be as eventful and plentiful as the past two have been. As always, many thanks to Richard for keeping LG running (at least most of the time ^_~ ), and to all the players who truly make this a great website to visit.
On a lighter note, this happens often:
z at 2017-02-25
Congrats on the second anniversary on LG! I was greatly impressed by your meteoric rise in Polyomino tournaments :)
Ingo Althofer at 2017-02-25
thanks foryour insightful and nice report. And one hint: One special game on Little Golem is played here in the main forum: The “Last post of the year”-game. Make sure that you do not miss the 2017 edition. Typically, we start recruiting new players in March, but the game heats up only during the last five minutes of the year ...
Ingo (designer of EWN, fan of “Last post of the year”).
Florian Jamain at 2017-02-25
Congrats !! And see you soon for some new battles my friend (-;
mmKALLL at 2017-02-25
Special thanks to z for the fantastic tools on trmph, and to Ingo for his work across a lot of board game related things. It’s awesome to see abstract strategy games get so much love!
mmKALLL at 2017-02-25
Another thing of potential interest; back when I started Polyomino, z was standing on the very top of the Infinity tournament, and this game against Dark Star happened:
I was clearly outclassed and decided to make it my goal to someday win against both of these two formidable opponents. It soon happened by some stroke of luck or an oversight in game 1710064 against Dark Star, and later in this one against z. I think that in these long battles taking weeks or even months, a certain type of determination towards victory often decides the result; perhaps setting a goal like this for myself allowed me to prevail despite at the time clearly being inferior to both of you in many of the skills of Polyomino. After facing z again, both of us at the top of the Infinity board, we had what I consider one of the best Polyomino games I ever played; an intense tie ending at a 71 71 score. While I can see some problems in the moves now, I feel like both of us were doing our very best at the time, edging out every single advantage as far as it could go.
I also fondly remember this early game against Florian. It taught me a lot! :)
mmKALLL at 2017-02-25
The formatting certainly didn’t go quite as smoothly this time around! Oh well.
Mirko Rahn at 2017-03-02
I like to read how the page opened up new horizons for you: You play more games now, you learned in the games you played before. I do share that experience to great extend with other games though and that is another string point of this page: This is a community of communities and whenever I look into other games, I find people playing very strong, being very serious about the game, but still light and friendly and helpful.
I am glad little golem exists and we all make it what it is.
Sighris at 2017-03-06
Hi mmKALLL ★, What happened often? People misspelled your name by one “L”? Are you ready for a game of Toroidal-Go? It is only 11x11, so not as long as a 19x19 game! BTW, when I saw the title of your post I thought "I think I’ve been on LG for about two years too... then I checked: 4.5 years in less than 2 weeks! Wow, time is moving faster than ever (IMO/experience)... & I agree with Mirko Rahn: I am glad little golem exists and we all make it what it is.
mmKALLL at 2017-03-06
Yup, people misspell the name by one “L” all the time. :)
Toroidal Go huh? Sure! I haven’t played it much, but sent you an invite. Let’s see how it goes!