# Tsumego Battles on Foxy

As was pointed out on reddit and elsewhere Foxy now has tsumego battles.

To play you press fist 死活题对战 on the left. On the right it’s you tsumego history 我的题库. In top-right it’s number of first place you’ve taken 冠军. I specifically won some to not show embarrassing zero.

Here’s how the game looks like:

There’re four players of similar strength. 8 tsumego in total. You can see the progress of opponents. Always black to play, and maximum 60 seconds to solve. If you fail, you get like a 6 seconds penalty (you have countdown before you see next problem).

Winner is whoever got more correct answers until the end of the competition. I think there’s no tie-break you just divide the places.

Here’s the trick though. Competition ends whenever one of the players gets through all the problems.

Here’s me getting first place:

I finished all problems so the competition ends with me at the first place as player with most correct answers. Maybe the second player could’ve solved the two remaining problems correctly and jump ahead but it doesn’t matter, competition ends now.

This creates additional incentive to solve problems quickly, like 20 seconds per problem or faster. If a player solves 5 and fails 3 faster than you solve 4 correctly they win.

And it doesn’t matter which player finishes all problems to stop the battle. Here’s me just clicking tengen as soon as I can, and since I got through the set, competition ends. This is a bit dumb, bottom player who is worse than everyone gets to stop the battle?

As I said, I think there’re no tie-breaks. Here’s example with all of us getting first place. Right, it says before the name “1”.

After the match the right button is something like asking for another game with the same players or something. I think.

And the left button takes you to your library to the page with the problems you got wrong so you can solve them in a calm environment.

All in all, I really dislike the fact that it ends when one player finished the set. I think it incentivizes players to not really read the tsumego and go with instinct, and click through tsumego. It really resembles mindless clicking to me, although I’m a slower player, blitz isn’t something I do.

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A similar feature would be so great on OGS, and we have already quite a stock of puzzles.

Nice review.

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It would be better with +1 pt for each correct answer and -1 pt for each mistake, to discourage mindless clicking.

I mean it makes sense to me that one might want to discourage doing it fast and it ending when one person finishes.

On the other hand if you solved the 8 puzzles in 10 seconds each and someone else is still taking the full 60 seconds on each puzzle do you want to wait around for them to finish before moving on?

If you let someone start a new game before the old game finishes, one can imagine a troll just starting 20 games in a row and not playing in any of them. (Just some things one has to think about with such a feature).

Similarly I think it’s less like mindless clicking if you only get one attempt at the puzzles than if you got multiple attempts.

That said one could game the system a bit by solving 3-4 very quickly and intentionally failing the rest. I do imagine the 6 second penalty is an attempt to discourage this type of behaviour, but if you just want to troll like in one of @S_Alexander ‘s examples then one could still do it, ending games prematurely for everyone.

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In any case, I don’t think people really “solve” them too. You know, as in thoroughly reading out where you’re sure of your solution.

Have you guys tried it? Or just speaking theoretically?

Burnaevsky said that the tempo is good for him.

I don’t want to try it, as I am trying to overcome my bad habit of clicking without thoroughly checking my solution.

Realistically one can say that about everybody doing tsumego. Does everyone read out every line of every tsumego, or do they discard the silly moves or the weaker responses in favour of the strongest ones.

Dually from the prospective of designing such a game, do you really want the computer responding in a weak way to some players and the strongest resistance to others?

I think it’s just a general limitation to such a tsumego type puzzle game. You have to sacrifice something in order for it to be either fun or competitive etc. I mean one could make a different game where you aren’t allowed progress until you beat the puzzles with the computer answering in every possible reasonable way, but there’s a chance that game wouldn’t be fun as much as it would be tedious.

I’m just speaking theoretically, but I appreciate the write-up on the feature itself I’m also half speaking in the sense of what @Groin was saying

OGS has been needing a bit of a puzzles revamp anyway, so it’s just one of the ideas how one could do it

To be honest some of these are quite hard even without a timer. Maybe I should lose couple of ranks and sandbag a little to get something more reasonable. Or make a new account.

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