Feedback and Suggestions
 
AuthorMessage
Mark
27 Jan 2009 10:14 AM
Right now I have it so that if you are playing a game with someone and nobody makes a move for twenty minutes, the game ends. I like it that way when I'm playing, but since this site is pretty new and there aren't many people here yet, I'm wondering if it might be better not to have that restriction, at least in the short term.

Thoughts?
Sir Pent
27 Jan 2009 10:22 PM
I'm looking forward to when playing the computer becomes possible.  I'd also like to try playing someone else when that opportunity arises.
Mark
28 Jan 2009 12:55 PM
It should be working now. Thanks for your help. Let me know if you see any other issues.

BTW, the computer is really not that smart at this point so don't get your hopes up too much. :)

Someday I'd like to make the algorithm more sophisticated.
Sir Pent
30 Jan 2009 2:30 AM
Yep, seems to be working.  And you are right about the computer not being very smart yet :)
Mark
06 Feb 2009 7:57 AM
As far as the OP goes, I am thinking about allowing both ways. Whoever starts a game can decide whether to have time limits and play the game all at once or to have no limits and people play moves whenever they like.
jamatz
18 Feb 2009 8:00 PM
It looks like I can use the forum now. The problem I was experiencing yesterday was that it thought I was a guest, even though I was shown as logged in elsewhere on the site.

Is this project open source? I'd be curious to see the source and possibly help with bug fixes/feature enhancements. There could stand to be some smarter A.I, and when I was playing the computer today it declared me victorious when I hadn't yet connected fully.

Josh
Mark
19 Feb 2009 6:09 AM
The forum has its own session and when you log in to the site it also logs you in to the forum. It could be that there are problems logging in to the forum in certain circumstances or it could be that the forum session is expiring sooner than the main session in certain circumstances.

The forum is SMF, which is free and their license is sort of like an open source one. The rest of the site was developed by me. I can share the source code privately with people.

The computer can tell when it is completely blocked from being able to connect and the other player is not, which means the other player is guaranteed to win, so the computer resigns in this case.
twixter
31 Mar 2009 8:46 PM
First, a big *thank you* for creating this site. As a total Twixt fanatic, I am always glad to see more access to the game on the Net.

I am having some issues with Silverlight on my Linux system, but I realize the people to talk to about this are at http://www.mono-project.com/Moonlight


**Rules suggestions*[size=14pt]Rules suggestions[/size]*

First and foremost is the *swap rule* also known as the *pie rule*. After the very first peg is placed on the board, the second player has the option *at that moment only* to swap sides. With a physical set, where all the pieces are in the same box, this is accomplished by turning the pieces box end for end. The player who made the first move as Red is now Black, and makes the next move. Sides may be swapped only once per game. If the second player chooses not to swap immediately after the first move, then sides may not be swapped at all that game.

This is called the pie rule because it is like when two people want to share the last of the pie. One person cuts the pie into two parts and the other chooses which slice to eat.

This rule was not part of the 3M edition, but all later editions included it. This makes the game much more balanced and interesting. Without it, the first player has a significant advantage. This is often cited as a reason why some people don't like to play Twixt. So, I hope you will remove any such reason for complaint.  :)

There are two different ways to implement this rule. You could either swap sides, or the first peg could change color and move to it's "mirror image" location reflected along the A1-X24 diagonal. For example, if the first player plays E3 and the second player swaps, the red E3 peg turns black and moves to C5. The red player stays red and black stays black. This is effectively the same as swapping sides. The first method is preferred by many players, but there may be some programming issues with swapping sides after the game has started.

Another rules issue is *link removal*. On your move, you are allowed to remove as many of your own links as you wish, prior to placing any. You are also allowed to add a link or links between two pegs of yours which were already on the board before you placed your peg. Usually, this is not necessary. Strong players could play several games in a row without ever removing a link. But sometimes you need the "elbow room" to avoid a draw or even a loss. I would be glad to provide some images illustrating the occasional need for link removal if you wish. This is *much less important* than the swap rule, but it is still part and parcel of the game of Twixt as envisioned by its inventor, Alex Randolph.

Implementing this could be a real bear, but if you are willing to implement it, here is a suggested GUI scheme:

Click on the center of any link of yours to remove it. It will still be your turn.

Click on any peg of yours already on the board to automatically add all legal links to it. It will still be your turn.

Click on a vacant hole to place your peg. All legal links will be added to it, and your turn will end.

You might also have a "cancel partial move" button which appears when ever you begin removing links.

There's also the issue of what text syntax to use for recording such a move. I have suggestions about that as well. I should mention there is an alternate approach which has been used by the most popular Twixt server on the Net, www.littlegolem.net Twixt was originally a Paper and Pencil game. In Twixt PP, as it is called on Little Golem, Links are never removed, but a player's *own* links are allowed to cross each other. Of course *opposing links may never cross*. So, for example, a winning path might loop across itself. Crossed links are not inherently connected. To win, you must still form a chain of pegs, each linked to the next, which connects your border rows. There have been tens of thousands of Twixt PP games played, and of those, about a tenth of one percent could be pointed to as games where the outcome would probably have been different if link removal had been implemented. Another possible point in favor of link crossing is its simplicity. Just place your peg and don't worry about clicking on links. I personally dislike PP and call it radioactive mutant Twixt, but other players prefer it.

There is a third alternative, which is to do nothing about implementing either link crossing or link removal, but this would have a significant impact on game outcome. In other words draws would be more common. I'm not sure how much more common, and like I said this is much less important than implementing the swap rule, but I hope you choose to implement either removal (YES!) or crossing (better than nothing.)

One more rules issue has to do with autolinking. I believe your server automatically adds all possible legal links to the peg just placed. I don't know for sure because it isn't working on my machine just yet. As an experienced player, I very much like this feature and hope you will keep it. Others might argue that it is the player's responsibility to add links, not the computer's. Sometimes the computer surprises me by adding a link I didn't notice, but since this is just as likely to happen on my opponent's turn as it is on my turn, it could be argued that the game is still implemented fairly.



** Display suggestion*[size=14pt] Display suggestion[/size]*

Diagonal guide lines are eight lines on the board which extend from the corners of the common playing area:

[IMG]http://img180.imageshack.us/img180/6841/gm771056aks4.png

These provide a frame of reference for the eye on this huge grid of holes. They help you see who will win a corner battle. But some players don't like them, so maybe they could be available as an option. Of course they should be some neutral color, not overpowering, not close to the color of either player's pieces. Of course they get covered by the pegs and links. They needn't extend as far as shown here. For example, the lines from B2 could stop at P9 (where a peg is) and i16, and the rest could be symmetric to this. That is the minimum length to create the interior octagon shape.


** Links you might be interested in*[size=14pt] Links you might be interested in[/size]*

www.iggamecenter.com  real time server for many abstracts, including Twixt with link crossing and optional row handicapping

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twixt  rules and general strategy tips

http://www.ibiblio.org/twixtpuzzles/ interactive puzzle site which uses Javascript

Thanks for bearing with me!
Mark
05 Apr 2009 1:50 AM
Hi twixter. Thanks for you feedback. I wasn't aware of the swap rule. It might be something I would consider adding at some point. What do other people here think about that? Either way, the fairest way is to play an even number of games with each player going first an equal number of times.

Link removal already works here. Just click the link you want to remove before placing your peg. The way I have I have it set up you should never need to go back and add an additional link later.

What do other people here think about having guidelines? Do you like it better with them or without? Maybe I will add a poll.

Edit: poll added here http://twixtlive.com/forum/index.php?topic=5.0[url=http://twixtlive.com/forum/index.php?topic=5.0]here[/url]
twixter
05 Apr 2009 4:28 AM
Well yes link removal is possible, but when I try to place my peg I get an error message which crashes the game. A screen shot is attached.

http://img223.imageshack.us/img223/9642/tlerrorj.png

Another visitor to this site reports the same problem, and he uses Windows. Also there is no way to add a link to a peg *other than* the peg being placed. Example positions where this would be necessary could be provided if you wish.

I disagree that playing an even number of games without the swap rule is the "fairest way." Two imbalanced games are not as fair as one balanced game. The top ten players at Little Golem would probably be able to win most of the time against each other if they move first without the swap rule. But I can't prove my claim, because I doubt any of the top players would agree to play each other under such conditions.

I recommend you take a look at how Twixt is implemented in Javascript on the iGoogle Game Center gadget. See the above link. They have the swap rule, link removal, and a "show diagonals" *check box* just to the right of the board. If you uncheck it, the guide lines disappear. That way everyone who votes in your poll will be satisfied.

Sorry for being so fussy. I guess I'm spoiled. Thanks for your attention.
Mark
18 May 2009 1:37 AM
I fixed the issue, so link removal should be working again.
Mark
25 May 2009 6:09 AM
[quote author=Mark link=topic=4.msg5#msg5 date=1233036891]
Right now I have it so that if you are playing a game with someone and nobody makes a move for twenty minutes, the game ends. I like it that way when I'm playing, but since this site is pretty new and there aren't many people here yet, I'm wondering if it might be better not to have that restriction, at least in the short term.

Thoughts?
[/quote]

[quote author=Mark link=topic=4.msg9#msg9 date=1233892629]
As far as the OP goes, I am thinking about allowing both ways. Whoever starts a game can decide whether to have time limits and play the game all at once or to have no limits and people play moves whenever they like.
[/quote]

I updated the site to do this. Now, when you start a game, you have the option of having a timeout of 20 minutes for each move, 2 minutes, or no timeout at all.

poppy
08 Jan 2010 2:25 AM
Hello together, first of all I want to say "Great site"!!!
If only more people would know it, or at least, now Twixt. I learned it about 2 month ago, and i'm fascinated about it.
I got a suggestion too: I'd love to talk to my opponent in the games too. Wouldn't it be possible to set the chatbox beneath the gameboard, could be the general chat, or if this site gets more visitors, one chat for every game... That would be great I think, what do you think?

Poppy
Mark
08 Jan 2010 8:59 PM
That shouldn't be too hard to add, and it could be kind of nice.
FRQDO
02 Jul 2010 4:54 PM
Player profiles

When you look at a player's profile on twixtlive.com, there's a list of the most recent games the player participated in. However, the game's outcome (won/lost/...) is displayed depending on who's player 1 in that game, not depending on the player whose profile you're looking at. Maybe this could be changed. :)
Mark
03 Jul 2010 3:33 AM
ok, I see what you are talking about. now, it's just a matter of fixing it.
FRQDO
04 Mar 2011 6:30 PM
Suggestion:

There could be several game modes (you could maybe simply add another dropdown menu on the game setup page):
1) Standard: the way it is just now
2) Speed: board size is 12x12 instead of 24x24
3) Endurance: board size is 48x48
(names could vary depending on what you consider appropriate)

I haven't thought much about how to store the game progress on the server, as I don't know how you chose to do it,  but if you simply have a list of moves which each consist of a x and y coordinate for the placed pegs (and maybe list entries for link removals etc), then I guess that structure should be able to support any board size (However, I don't know how flexible the code of the actual game engine is). I'd be very glad if you'd consider this addition to the game :)



Also, you could add buttons to skip between the different moves (not to undo them, but for spectators or players to analyze the moves)



Another addition: You could introduce a "play again" button so that players who want to play another match together can do this directly from the game screen.


FRQDO
18 Jun 2012 3:49 PM
You could implement a new little feature in the chatboxes where a string like "#7303" is detected and links to the respective game in a new window/tab. That would make it easier to find a game people are talking about.
flmz
05 Sep 2013 10:52 AM
[quote author=Mark link=topic=4.msg9#msg9 date=1233892629]
As far as the OP goes, I am thinking about allowing both ways. Whoever starts a game can decide whether to have time limits and play the game all at once or to have no limits and people play moves whenever they like.
[/quote]

Seems like a good solution to me.

regards Flemming
flmz
05 Sep 2013 10:54 AM
[quote author=Sir Pent link=topic=4.msg6#msg6 date=1233080520]
I'm looking forward to when playing the computer becomes possible.  I'd also like to try playing someone else when that opportunity arises.
[/quote]

IMHO
I think it would be better to keep TWIXT alive a TWIXT only gamers place. To obtain focus and subsenquently high quality.

regards Flemming
Peyrol
07 May 2016 11:49 PM
[quote author=Mark link=topic=4.msg16#msg16 date=1242596257]
I fixed the issue, so link removal should be working again.
[/quote]
Links may be removed, yes, but it is not possible to add a link between two pegs if neither is the peg that player just placed. The whole point of link removal is to gain the elbow room necessary to establish a continuous chain of linked pegs. Sometimes this means removing a chain of links and replacing it with a different chain. Here's a contrived example on a 13x13 grid.
https://cf.geekdo-images.com/images/pic3007349.png
Yellow to move can gain a winning position by placing a peg at D4, removing the yellow links from D5 to F4 and F4 to H3, and then adding the chain of links E6-D4-F3-H4, which would result in this position:
https://cf.geekdo-images.com/images/pic3007350.png
But this is not possible to do on Twixtlive, because the F3-H4 link cannot be added.

This is a minor issue. I regard your omission of the pie rule, however, as a more serious problem, and the main reason I cannot recommend this site to other players.
honestabe
04 Jun 2016 9:47 PM
Dunno if any suggestions are being pondered, but the numbers and letters on the boards would be greatly appreciated as well as the diagonal lines mentioned by Twixter.
jgeis
04 Jun 2016 11:32 PM
I would second that motion on the Numbering and gridlines.
Would it also be possible to 'Resign' when it is NOT your turn.  This would allow you to clear a game that has been abandoned for a long time.
honestabe
19 Jul 2016 5:56 AM
I agree with Jgies.  Also, I second and third the pie rule suggestion.  For experienced players, the first player has such an advantage that it makes the game not much fun for the second player.  I play here for fun, but if Peyrol and I were to play, the first player would always win. 

How difficult would it be to make the change?
bob440
14 Oct 2016 4:34 AM
I vote a hearty yes on numbering and grid lines. Numbering, in particular, makes it much easier to discuss the game in the chat boxes. For example, if one is trying to introduce a novice to the game, it is very "handy" to be able to say something like "you should have played g5 instead of f4."

I'm rather tepid on the pie rule. It wasn't there when I 1st learned to play (on a 3M box set). That said, I'd use it if it were available. It does make the game more balanced.

I think I'd like to see you tweak your original timeout algorithm to implement a default timeout of, say, 30 days. You don't really have to change the user interface. Leave the selections as 2 min, 20 min or none. But, "none" times out after 30 days -- or 60 or whatever maximum period you think is reasonable. Those games where some clown either starts or picks up a game, then disappears after a move or two (or sometimes none) are annoying.
Scramp64
02 Nov 2016 4:49 PM
I made a suggestion in the new players topic then say this feed. Here is my suggestion, What if there was a way to link a cell phone so when your opponent plays and it is your turn you get a text.
BoredMan
13 Dec 2016 7:39 PM
It’s been said before but 2 things really needs to be added.

1. The pie rule. The first player advantage is huge in this game and at a high level there’s pretty much no point playing without it.
2. Diagonal grid lines and numbering. This would help a lot and give you a much better overview of the board.
cheezburger
26 May 2017 1:06 PM
Hello, i'd like to see the coordinates of the board, to talk about moves with my opponents, as in the pic at the url:

http://www.red-bean.com/sgf/images/twixt-blank24.gif
bob440
09 Aug 2017 7:23 PM
just a question -- does mail notification work for forum topics?
undefeated
06 Aug 2018 4:17 AM
Could we add an option to play both sides on your own computer for testing out new strategies and defenses?
 
 
 
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