Torben AEgidius Mogensen | 1 Dec 09:15 2008
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Re: Connect 4 AI


On Fri, 28 Nov 2008, Development wrote:

> Good day...
>
> I am implementing a connect-4 like game, and could use a good AI for
> the computer player. Does anyone know of good source implementation of
> this? Or an explanation of a good AI?

Andy had some excellent suggestions, though I would probably modify
min-max search to alpha-beta search.  They give the same result, but
alpha-beta is much faster and not much more complex.

For a much simpler (but not perfect) AI, you can use the observation
that nearly all four-in-a-rows go through the central column.  So a
good first approximation to a strategy is to always play the middle
column.  Obviously, you should not do this if you can win immediately
by another move or if the opponent wins in the next move unless you
play somewhere else.  So a second-order approximation to a strategy
is:

  1. If you can win immediately by a move, play this.

  2. If the opponent can win in one move, block this if you can.

  3. Otherwise, play the central column.

Obviously, the central column wil fill up pretty quickly, so after
this happens, modify step 3 to "play next to the central column".

(Continue reading)

Torben AEgidius Mogensen | 1 Dec 09:36 2008
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Re: Re: Connect 4 AI


On Sat, 29 Nov 2008, interformic wrote:

> There is a 2 player abstract game programming language called Zillions
> of Games (http://www.zillions-of-games.com/).  I have not had much
> experience with it.

I wanted to look at this a while ago, but was daunted by the lack of
freely available information about the language.  It seems you have to
buy the product to see how you program it.

What I could gather is that Zillions has a built-in AI engine, which
is probably just alpha-beta search, and support for graphics, sound
and network play.  So if you just want an AI, it is a bit of an
overkill.  In my experience the hard part is finding a good leaf-node
evaluation function, not programming the search.  And I doubt Zillions
will be much help here.

In any case, source code for alpha-beta search can be found on the
Internet for zillions of programming languages.  Just google
"alpha-beta search".  I found, among other things, these good tutorial
slides:

http://www.autonlab.org/tutorials/games12.pdf

 	Torben

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matthew horn | 1 Dec 15:37 2008
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Re: Connect 4 AI

Joe Berkovitz did an implementation in Flex here:

http://joeberkovitz.com/blog/2006/04/08/connect-four/

He explains some of his methodology, plus gives links to where he got
info about the AI.

hth,
matt

On Fri, Nov 28, 2008 at 7:42 PM, Development
<development@...> wrote:
> Good day...
>
> I am implementing a connect-4 like game, and could use a good AI for
> the computer player. Does anyone know of good source implementation of
> this? Or an explanation of a good AI?
>
> Thank you,
>
> Steve
>
> 

------------------------------------

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Rich Negrete | 4 Dec 02:57 2008
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New Board Game

I'd like tp welcome everyone to check out my new music trivia board 
game "Rock of Ages" at rockofagestrivia.com. 
This game is great for any music lover, it's a party game that plays 
extremely well in a large group and contains music trivia from the 
early '50s up to today.
I have a special flat rate of 5.00 shipping anywhere in the US (the 
game is just under 3 lbs and the same dimensions as Trivial Pursuit).  
At least check out the graphics, I think they came out fantastic!   

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George | 9 Dec 21:49 2008

Need Help Please!!!

I would like to thank the person that recommended Jack Saltzman and 
the Chicago Game and Card Company.  Thanks to you my Baseball board 
game will be released in late December or early January.  Not only 
was the company affordable but Jack is amazing to work with.  He 
responded to my countless questions and emails within minutes every 
single time.  I would recommend this company to anyone and I will 
definitely be using him again.

With that being said, I am having a minor issue I hope someone can 
give me advice for.  Included in my board game are all 30 MLB teams 
and players for every team, equalling over 1,000 different player 
cards.  Due to cost I am producing the player cards portion of the 
game myself.  I will be using heavy 100-110lb card stock and they 
will be printed on perforated paper.  I was going to use 
perforatedpaper.com but they originally quoted me the wrong price 
and now what they are quoting me is way too high.  I have found some 
cheap priced manual paper perforators and if I was going to make 1 
or 2 perforations per sheet I would definitely get one, but my 
dilemma is that I need about 4-6 perforations per sheet because I 
need to get 8 cards out of each sheet.  So I am wondering if anyone 
has any experience with these type machines and if they would work 
even if I had to do criss crossing perforations?  Any help in this 
area would be appreciated.

My other question is that I will be shrink wrapping my player cards 
and my overall game board box for shipment or to sell in stores.  I 
have found plenty of shrink wrap machines which include the film and 
the gun for about 200-250 dollars.  Can anyone recommend a good 
shrink wrap machine in that price range or even less?

(Continue reading)

gontzagames | 10 Dec 01:24 2008
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Fwd: Need Help Please!!!


George, 

That would have been me! I used Jack for my two children's games that came out this past summer. You're
welcome, and I wish you the best with your game . Next time you talk with Jack, please tell him that I
recommended you. 

As for your other dilemmas..... you are exactly where I was 6 years ago when MINDFIELD, The Game of United
States Military Trivia, was being produced. I didn't use Jack then; I used Printing Productions in Macon
GA. (I had no problems with them, I didn't use them again because Jack's price was better, but the
experience with Lee Gaddis there was a good one, in case you were wondering). 

Anyway.... my original quote from a local printer was much better than anyone else's, so I made a few
decisions based on his quote. He turned out to cancel the contract .... long story. I had already purchased
one full ton of card stock, cut into 8 1/2 x 11 sheets, a guillotine cutter, and a shrink wrap machine. I
probably would have done this differently if I hadn't been lied to. 

Anyway.... my guillotine cutter cost about $600 or $700. If you're located anywhere near Phila PA, I'd be
willing to sell it to you for a lot less. At the time I did my research, buying paper and cuttng it was a better
deal than perforated. Of course, your labor time and effort will be considerably less with perforated. 

I don't remember where I got the guillotine; if you wanted me to, I could try to find my old paperwork. Same
with the shrink wrap machine. Mine was also more than $250. 

One more thing you need to think about.... as a suggestion.... I wasn't aware during the whole phase of
development how much heavier my game would be with large cards and how much more it would cost to ship out. My
game has an 18x18 inch quadfold board; an inner box containing 600 question and answer cards, my game
pieces, and a smaller set of 32 small cards; and the directions. The game is approximately 5 pounds.
Shipping to most places costs about $10 per game. 

(Continue reading)

George | 10 Dec 01:56 2008

Re: Fwd: Need Help Please!!!

Ann, 

Again thank you a million times.  Also thanks for the info.

I can get a paper perforating machine from Ebay for about $260.  This 
of course is a manual machine and I have a ton of cheap 100lb card 
stock.  My thought is to print out all of my cards then use the 
perforating machine.

This is by far my cheapest option but also the most work.  I do 8 
player cards per sheet and each game contains over 1,000 player 
cards.  So if I decide to do my own perforations I will be spending 
hours a night.  

This might sound silly, but, to us baseball board game nerds, half of 
the fun of opening our new game is to separate the 1,000 perforated 
player cards while we put them into piles with their teammates.

Thanks for your generous offer but I think for now I don't need a 
paper cutter, just a paper perforator.

My game will be pretty heavy.  I also have an 18X18 quad fold board, 
about 1,100 total player cards, a 5 page rule booklet printed on both 
sides, 3 pawns, 2 10-sided dice, a 20-sheet double sided pad of 
baseball score sheets, and 3 charts printed on both sides.

thanks again for the great info 

--- In BoardGameDesign@..., gontzagames <at> ... wrote:
>
(Continue reading)

chrisjynx | 11 Dec 17:25 2008
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The next step!

How do you truly make money on your idea? Do you sell it to a major 
company? Do it yourself? Is the rewards worth the trouble of having 
some other company do all the work i.e.publisist. I was told that the 
most an Inventor could hope to get is $1,000 up front and 5% residuals. 
WHAT!? Any insider knowledge on this topic?

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Donald White | 14 Dec 18:09 2008
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(unknown)

Hi Everyone,
    My Name is Gerry,75 Years old.
    Designed a BoardGame about a year ago.
    Tried it on Print&Play,No Luck.
    A lot of people I have talked to think it is a Good Game.
    But Being a Good Game,and Getting it Published is Two different Things.
    Any thoughts on anything would be Greatly Appreciated.
    Gerry

      __________________________________________________________________
Yahoo! Canada Toolbar: Search from anywhere on the web, and bookmark your favourite sites. Download it now at
http://ca.toolbar.yahoo.com.

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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R. Alan Monroe | 14 Dec 20:13 2008
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Re: (unknown)

>     Designed a BoardGame about a year ago.
>     Tried it on Print&Play,No Luck.

Is it listed on boardgamegeek.com? What's it called?

Alan

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Gmane