Mastering the Game: Connect Four

I’m trying to increase my appreciation of different games. One game I’ve always enjoyed is Connect Four. I invented my own annotation system to keep track of the games I play as I grow as a player.

In my system, the rows are numbered 1-6 from top to bottom, and the columns are labeled A-G from left to right. The reporting player’s left. I can see how you’d use another system. Maybe they do in Europe. Did you know that deaf people in the US and England speak different sign languages? But everyone around the world uses the same notation for chess. As far as I know this is the first standard system for Connect Four for America, at least. One advantage of having a system like this is you can play by email, as I recently did with my friend Amit.

Here’s how the game went:

RICHARD: D6

AMIT: D5

R: C6

A: E6

R: B6

A: A6 (I wasn’t fooling Amit that easily)

R: E5

A: D4

R: C5 (I’d read a lot about V patterns)

A: C4

R: E4

A: B5

R: D3 (nice try Amit)

A: G6

R: B4 (in retrospect this was really my big mistake)

A: B3

Amit wins.

Lessons:

1)    Pay attention to diagonals.

2)    Don’t just play offense, pay attention to defense.

3)    Don’t just think about your next move, think about the move after that.

I look forward to improving.

Next time on Mastering the Game: the simple trick that will help you win Parcheesi every time.