Dance Little Marbles


Paris, June 23, 2018

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Middlegame situation.
The score is 2-2.
Whose turn is next? We don’t know.
Who may reach 6 the first?

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The “official” 4-player rule

After the “official” rule for 3 players, here is the “official” rule for 4 players, from the same board game box: Abalone+ multiplayers.

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THE 4-PLAYER GAME

This variant opposes two teams of two players. Each player has nine marbles, disposed as shown on the diagram 1.

Diagram 1

Any communication between players of the same team is strictly forbidden.

GOAL OF THE GAME

The goal of the game for each team is to push six marbles of the opposite team out of play, into the board’s outer rim. The ejected marble can belong to one opponent or the other.

THE MOVES

They are exactly the same as those of the 2-player rule. Each player can move in a same time 1, 2, or 3 of his marbles to a free point. All the directions are possible, forward, backward (“inline moves”), and even laterally (“side-step moves”).

You are not allowed to push more than 3 marbles of your colour in the same time. Marbles over 3 are not considered, so it is impossible to have Sumitos of 4 against 3, 5 against 2, etc. The maximum marbles of your colour which can be moved is 3.

THE PUSHING MOVES

You can push opponents’ marbles if you are in a Sumito position, as shown on the diagram 2:

Diagram 2

2 marbles of the same team can push 1 marble of the opponent team.

3 marbles of the same team can push 1 marble of the opponent team.

3 marbles of the same team can push 2 marbles of the opponent team.

To make a Sumito, to can count the marbles (1 or 2) of your partner, but the first marble has to belong to you. You can push 2 marbles of the opponent team regardless of their colour.

THE EJECTIONS

A marble is ejected when a push make it go out of the board by any of the 6 sides of the hexagon, as shown on the diagram 3:

Diagram 3

Please note that the first team who pushed off 6 marbles of the other team wins the game.

The “official” 3-player rule

You probably will not find it in English on the Internet: here is the “official” rule of the 3-player abalone game, translated from two documents in French found in boxed sets.

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Doc. 1

THE 3-PLAYER GAME


“Official” starting position for 3 players

THE GOAL OF THE GAME

To push six marbles (in all) out of play, into the board’s outer rim. The ejected marble can belong to one opponent or the other.

THE MOVES

They are exactly the same as those of the 2-player rule. Each player can move in a same time 1, 2, or 3 of his marbles to a free point. All the directions are possible, forward, backward (“inline moves”), and even laterally (“side-step moves”).

You are not allowed to push more than 3 marbles of your colour in the same time. Marbles over 3 are not considered, so it is impossible to have Sumitos of 4 against 3, 5 against 2, etc. The maximum marbles of your colour which can be moved is 3.

THE PUSHING MOVES

You can push an opponent’s marbles if you are in a Sumito position:

  • 2 marbles can push 1 opponent marble:

3-p2

  • 3 marbles can push 1 opponent marble:

3-p3

  • 3 marbles can push 2 opponent marbles:

3-p4

But you can push your opponent’s marbles regardless of their colour. For example, with 3 of your marbles, you can push 2 marbles of the same opponent or 1 marble of each opponent (diagram).

THE EJECTIONS

A marble is ejected when a push make it go out of the board by any of the 6 sides of the hexagon.

3-p5

Please note that the first player who pushed off 6 marbles of his opponents wins the game which stops at this moment. The two remaining players do not continue the game, because the winner’s marbles are still on the board.

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Doc. 2

GAME VARIANT FOR THREE PLAYERS

 SET UP:

Each of the three players have 11 marbles of one colour, placed in 2 rows, symmetrically disposed on 3 of the 6 bases of the hexagonal board.


“Official” starting position for 3 players

 AIM:

Push the marbles of your opponents.

The game stops when one of the players succeeded in pushing off 6 opponent’s marbles of one or the other of his two opponents.

DEVELOPMENT AND PARTICULARITIES:

The players’ turns follow on clockwise.

A group of 3 marbles of the same colour can push 2 opponent marbles of different colours.

Every ejected marble is placed in front of the player who pushed it off in order to make the scoring easier.

Excepting these particularities, the other points of the rule stay the same as those for 2 players.

To increase and to balance the games, the players may agree to play it in 3 rounds, each begun by a different player.

The gaps between opponent marbles ejected and lost marbles of each player are noted in order to determine the winning player in case of a tie.

*

In short:

The rules are the same as those of 2-player games, with these few exceptions:

– each player has only 11 marbles (see diagram above).

– with 3 marbles of their colour, a player can push 2 marbles of different colours.

– a player has to eject 6 opponent marbles, without distinction of colour.

Naturally, as always with abalone, you can adapt the rules as your fancy!

Material advantage vs. Positional advantage


Black has a material advantage, but White has a huge positional advantage.

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To the experienced abalone player, winning this game with White may be as easy as 1-2-3. But a beginner might have trouble…

And you? What are you able to do with this? Just test it with your friends (:

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Korean daisy, by Hyunmin Kim

Here is a highly interesting balanced variation! It was created by the young Hyunmin KIM, from South Korea, on Monday 20, August 2018, in London, UK, during the Abalone World Championship 2018:


(click to enlarge)

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(The original picture. Click to enlarge)

Please try it and tell us about it! (:

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Diversity is better!

February 11, 2018


Peter Kropotkin (Пётр Кропоткин), photographic portrait by Nadar.

“[…] variety, conflict even, is life and […] uniformity is death.”

(Anarchism: its philosophy and ideal, 1896)

Peter Kropotkin (Пётр Кропоткин),
Russian scientist and anarchist theorist (1842-1921)

All quotes in the Dictionnary of quotes.

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Abalone according to the official rule: a dull uniformity ):

vs.

Abalone according to the player community: a joyful variety! (:

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This series of quotes is about Anarchy, Freedom, and disobedience to the arbitrary imposed rules.

See also : Sons of Strategy

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