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Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 03:09:27


professor dead piggy 
Level 59
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Looks a bit like this:
Picks

To get a set of decent safe picks work down the list until you have made 6 picks. Any pick in a bonus with a wasteland is considered 'not available to pick'
small FTB
small double picks,
large double picks,
medium double picks
when double picking, pick the territory in the smaller bonus first, if theyre the same size, pick the territory on the outside first.
i̶f̶ ̶y̶o̶u̶r̶ ̶3̶r̶d̶ ̶a̶n̶d̶ ̶4̶t̶h̶ ̶p̶i̶c̶k̶ ̶a̶r̶e̶ ̶a̶ ̶d̶o̶u̶b̶l̶e̶ ̶p̶i̶c̶k̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶n̶ ̶y̶o̶u̶r̶ ̶5̶t̶h̶ ̶s̶h̶o̶u̶l̶d̶ ̶b̶e̶ ̶a̶ ̶c̶o̶u̶n̶t̶e̶r̶p̶i̶c̶k̶ ̶t̶o̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶m̶
your 6th should work with your 3rd or counter your 4th and 5th.
none of your 3 picks should be in adjoining bonuses
small bonuses
medium bonuses


*key
small= territories with 4 territories that give 3 income eg antarctica
medium= territories with 5 territories that give 4 income eg south america
large= territories with 6 territories that give 5 income eg australia

Play rules
. STOP KILLING NEUTRALS
. when you deploy most of your income in a territory make an attack with everything from that territory sometime during that turn
. Take your largest bonus by the end of turn 2.
. complete your 3 starting bonuses and then work out where you think your enemy is and make a 4v2 towards them every turn.
. if you are in contact with your opponent do not attack any neutrals anywhere and use reinforcement cards as soon as you get them
. use 3v2s and 7v4s against neutrals, with the exception of completing a turn 2 bonus and taking a territory that your opponent is probably on the other side of.
. do not expand in more than one bonus at once.

Edited 5/17/2014 06:59:25
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 03:12:30


professor dead piggy 
Level 59
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This is what zaeban introduced to the ladder a couple of years ago, now most top players do this to some degree most notably summer and ruthless bastard, everyone else simply has another layer put on top, timi focuses on tactics, sze focuses on map balance, gnuff focuses on countering this etc. I dont know if this interests anyone, i just keep thinking about it and its annoying me, hopefully writing it down will let me think about something less boring.

Edited 5/17/2014 03:17:09
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 04:19:11

Good Kid 
Level 56
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"small FTBs
small double picks,
large double picks,
medium double picks"

"none of your 3 picks should be in adjoining bonuses"

Those seem to contradict each other, no?

What's a double pick if not two picks on adjoining bonuses?
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 04:36:04


szeweningen 
Level 60
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"do not pick in wastelands"
There are exceptions

"small double picks,
large double picks, "

That order depends mostly on the proximity of enemy, the closer you are to bordering enemy at the start, the more true that statement is.

"large double picks,
medium double picks"

Very generalised, not true in most cases I think.

"when double picking, pick the territory in the smaller bonus first, if theyre the same size, pick the territory on the outside first"

Nope, if the territory in bigger bonus already borders the smaller bonus, while the contrary is not true it seems counterproductive.

"none of your 3 picks should be in adjoining bonuses"

I guess you meant all 3 picks. One exception, good players maybe 10% of the time try to triple pick in africa for surprise value, that can be a viable strategy if you expect enemy to focus first on sa bonus.

"your 6th should work with your 3rd or counter your 4th and 5th."

Primarily it should work against your 5th or be a safe bonus far from action if you picked 3,4,5 counter since you can be sure you won't get 5 and 6 together.


Small,medium,large should be generalised in terms of income/territory ratio, since on most maps/templates the bigger the bonus, the better the income/territory ratio is, if that is not true on a specific template, you should adjust your strategy.

"
. STOP KILLING NEUTRALS
. when you deploy most of your income in a territory make an attack with everything from that territory sometime during that turn
. Take your largest bonus by the end of turn 2.
. complete your 3 starting bonuses and then work out where you think your enemy is and make a 4v2 towards them every turn.
. if you are in contact with your opponent do not attack any neutrals anywhere and use reinforcement cards as soon as you get them
. use 3v2s and 7v4s against neutrals, with the exception of completing a turn 2 bonus and taking a territory that your opponent is probably on the other side of.
. do not expand in more than one bonus at once."

All of those have multiple exceptions and they need context, otherwise people might get bad mechanic habits.
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 04:39:14

Nauzhror 
Level 56
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Not sure most top players would condone west china triple picking (whereas you mentioned Africa explicitly), but have won a handful of games when doing so (against opponents that don't just roll over and play dead that is). Tried to do it recently on the laddr, but lost my first pick. Did do it to gnuffone about a year ago. Probably have done it other times, but would have to dig to find those instances.
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 04:50:46


professor dead piggy 
Level 59
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OP isnt supposed to describe good play, its just a very basic framework for one style. People sometimes ask me to give feedback after a game or teach them, and i often find myself repeating some of these fundamentals. If you follow the rules on this list you are playing a very basic safe style. I tried them out in this game http://warlight.net/MultiPlayer?GameID=6262409 and i could revise them a little but theyre sound. I would say that the rules all come with the advisory "where tactics allow".

The title is *safe* so yes you can pick in a wasteland or triple pick, is that safe, defensive and balanced? Id say no.

Also obviously this only works on strat 1v1, at this point that goes without saying.

Edited 5/17/2014 05:00:25
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 05:01:37

Nauzhror 
Level 56
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I tried them out in this game http://warlight.net/MultiPlayer?GameID=6262409 and i could revise them a little but theyre sound.


You wasteland picked that game. Might not be the best example :P
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 05:04:03


professor dead piggy 
Level 59
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Oh yeah, shit, im really bad at following these rules.

Edited 5/17/2014 05:11:03
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 05:06:25

Nauzhror 
Level 56
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Was sze's interpretation of my first post correct, that you actually meant all 3 picks shouldn't be in adjoining bonuses, not that no two should be?
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 05:16:48


professor dead piggy 
Level 59
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Yeah, but only once all the above criteria have been filled. If there are no double picks then space them all out as much as possible, its what hhh and timi and teddy have been doing for a long long time.
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 05:36:21

Nauzhror 
Level 56
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Hmm, my last 1v1 was picked similarly to how you're listing, though not intentionally so since it was played right before you made the thread (or at least before I saw it): http://warlight.net/MultiPlayer?GameID=6262140

and I think I misinterpreted your first post, till now:

"Picks, in this order of priority
do not pick in wastelands
small FTBs
small double picks,
large double picks,
medium double picks"

You're not suggesting making double picks, or ftb bonus picks, so much as locating potential instances of them, and picking half of the combos in question.

That was what confused me since you mentioning picking double picks ftb's, etc. and then went on to say don't make adjacent picks.
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 05:39:29


professor dead piggy 
Level 59
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nope, you understood it correctly first time. im making a flow chart now...
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 06:24:31


Norman 
Level 57
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Hello

your 6th should work with your 3rd
Why is that please? Is 1-2-6 as outcome more unlikely?


if your 3rd and 4th pick are a double pick then your 5th should be a counterpick to them
Dangerous if the counter is to aggressive and can't stand on his own. When there is a first turn bonus and an obvious 3-4-5 counter to it I like going for a counter couterpick by forcing the opponent to get his picks 4 and 5.
http://warlight.net/MultiPlayer?GameID=5969341 is a classic example. The best way to counter Scandinavia is by double picking Central America. So in this game I would have picked Scandinavia - Central America - South America - Southeast Asia - Indonesia as 1-5.

Regarding the matter of double picking an area I like to talk in terms of relative safety. Your first bonus you wanna expand into should be relatively safe. If you also pick a neighboring bonus then this can add some safety to that bonus since you get intel if the opponent is there. Same with a tripple pick. An Antartica - Australia combo can often be countered from Indonesia so you might wan't to also pick Indonesia to add safety to your combo.
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 06:37:53


professor dead piggy 
Level 59
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1/2/6 is very rare if you pick normally.

Im going to remove the 5th counters 3rd and 4th rule, its creating all sorts of problems and isnt very safe.

Please define relative safety in a way i can use to educate new players on basic 1v1 theory and ill add it in. if you cant then lik sze youre right but not helping.

Edited 5/17/2014 06:59:50
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 08:02:19


Kenny • apex 
Level 59
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Would people stop bickering over the specificity of the OP? The point of the thread is to introduce safe guidelines to keep floating in the back of your head when deciding how to pick and how to play. By no means is this a guide on how to play top-level. Of course things change at top-level because non-standard play is more common than standard play. Wastelands, triple picks, whatever gets the job done is the answer on how to play top-level.

'Standard picking strategy' as I call it typically follows piggy's guidelines. It's a term I coined for what most good players tend towards when playing an opponent they haven't played before or playing an opponent that isn't skilled. IE: It's a strategy that GENERALLY works. It's by no means the strategy that is best given the board.

If you're a player who is learning the game you do not need to immediately know how to identify the best picks on the board, you need to first understand the basics of map control and play. This is what piggy is trying to explain. Players need to discover the exceptions to the rules on their own.
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 12:08:41


Norman 
Level 57
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Hello

What I call "relative safety" is the most important thing that made my winrate in autogames rise from about 40% to over 80% nowadays. I remember thinking about the criticism the guy in following game gave me and finally I understood.
http://warlight.net/MultiPlayer?GameID=3892647
I think this game is a good example.

OK, let's define the meaning of gaining relative safety by a doublepick:
You want to first expand into the high ranked bonus A but the high ranked bonus B borders this bonus. The warlords are placed in a way that by picking A you don't gain immediate knowledge about B and in worst case the warlord in B has a double border on A. That way the opponent having the B warlord threatens your bonus in A. So you not only pick A but also B. If you get both picks then you know that A is relatively safe for you to expand into as your first bonus. I say "relatively safe" and not "safe" since there usually is this one badass counterpick that will still take you out. If the A-B combo isn't completely obvious then it's advised not to shit your pants.

In the linked game South America was a nice bonus but it was immediately threatened by Cuba in Central America. So if you picked both South America and Central America and you got both your picks you knew that South America was safe to expand into. Same goes for Central America. Picking South America doesen't let you take Central America faster but it adds safety to Central America.
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 13:45:22


professor dead piggy 
Level 59
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Youre right and that is an important observation. It took you 2 paragraphs explaining that one point and in 2 paragraphs I summed up my whole approach to safe picking. youve put your finger on the spirit of what i call picking for safety, but there must be a way to make it more concise.
Safe Picking And Play: 5/17/2014 14:18:34


slammy 
Level 59
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everything on your list should have an "unless" next to it. also, none of your picking strategy takes into account where you think your opponent might choose. if a player chooses strictly to your guide, they will lose at least half the time against average+ players.

my biggest problem is with your #1: small FTB

the "unless" should be: unless there is a counter that can hit it first turn.

piggy, i think you overgeneralize everything, and it's reflected in this list.
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