Secrets of Nim (Multi-board Notakto)

Published on Sunday, May 06, 2012 in , , , , ,

NIM is WIN upside down!Last month, I posted about a tic-tac-toe-like version of Nim known as Notakto.

That post only discussed how to win the game on a single board. What about winning on more than one board?

Whether or not you've practiced the technique from the previous Notakto post, try the game for yourself. You can play it either online here or download the iPad app here. If you're not familiar with the game, here are the rules, excerpted from the iPad app homepage:

Notakto is a two-player game that is similar to Tic-Tac-Toe, except that both players make X's, and whoever completes three-in-a-row LOSES the game.

For a challenge, play a multiboard game of Notakto. On your move, make an X on just ONE of the boards. The computer may respond on the board you played on, or on some other board. A board that already has a three-in-a-row configuration is considered out of play. To win, force the computer to complete the last three-in-a-row configuration on the last available board still in play.

Even when you catch on how to win at 1-board Notakto, figuring how to win with 2 or more boards can still be tough.

To make the strategy for multi-board Notakto clearer and easy to follow, I've added 2 new posts to the Mental Gym. The first Notakto post teaches you the basics, and how to win 1- and 2-board games specifically.

The second Notakto post reviews what you've learned, and then expands upon that to show you how to properly apply what you've learned to games using 3 or more boards. This part also includes how to present it as a game to play, and adds some other tips and resources to explore.

The tutorials are set up so that you learn a concept, practice it, and then move on to the next concept. Ideally, this helps make each part clearer, and easier to learn and remember.

If you have any suggestions or questions about these tutorials, or even if you want to share any fun stories relating to the game, post them in the comments!

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