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Sun, May. 21st, 2006, 11:20 pm

Tringo is a very interesting new game, sort of a cross between bingo and tetris. (Play it here.)

Since one's immediate instincts about how to play Tringo are dead wrong, I'll give a quick overview of basic strategy:

  • If you can form a 2x3 rectangle, take it

  • If you can't form a 2x3 rectangle, do not jump to form a 2x2 rectangle, only do that if you are in danger of not being able to place your next piece.

  • When placing pieces without forming rectangles, try to keep your pieces lined up against the edges, and try to avoid enclosing empty squares so that very few shapes can fit into them.

I believe that with sufficiently skilled play one can consistently get over 200 points.

The theory here is that you're trying to get as many points per square placed as possible. 2x2 squares only get you 1.2 points/square, while 3x2 rectangles get you 2.5. You can get more from 3x3 rectangles (3.33) and obviously you should take those if you can, but those occur so rarely that they don't impact strategy much.

My suggested improvements to Tringo are to make 2x4 rectangles be worth 25 points (getting rid of them as two 2x2s severely penalizes good play, while making them worth only 20 would give them the same per-square point value as 2x3s, even though they're much harder to make) and add a pieces left countdown so you can see how many pieces are left towards the end, since that impacts strategy a lot.

When there are many people playing bingo-style it of course makes sense to be a lot more aggressive, mostly in the form of trying to avoid 2x2s even more than normal, since a very high score is required to actually win. Since Tringo is mostly a game of skill that doesn't completely change the game though.

Strategy aside, the story of Tringo is quite an interesting one.

Mon, May. 22nd, 2006 07:25 am (UTC)

That's quite an interesting story; thanks for pointing it out.

Tue, May. 23rd, 2006 08:13 pm (UTC)

ok, you ruined my life two times. first one when I discovered about that new bt protocol, now pointing to this game...

thank you :)

Mon, May. 29th, 2006 10:59 am (UTC)
e1000ien: Revolution

Hi Bram,

The purpose of my comment isn't related to tringo..sorry...even though the subject was interesting...I really needed to contact you and it is the only way I found...I am currently doing a research project for a French Academic Organisation about the music industry in France. I am particularly studying the impact of new technologies,of innovations like Torrents...I would be really interested to ask you few questions 'cause I think you have a great vision of the way consumers'needs change. I won't need a lot of your time and if you want I am willing to send you my final work which could be of interest to you.

I look forward to hearing from you. Have a nice day. Please contact me through e1000ien@gmail.com

Thank you,

Emilien Moyon

Mon, May. 29th, 2006 06:40 pm (UTC)
arfff: A simplifying step

I'd agree with you on the scoring. Actually there are a large number of other scoring possibilities (5x5, 4x4, etc.) that you ought to be properly rewarded for. Most likely it was just an effort to minimize the computational cost of evaluating the possibilities. Or laziness..

Sun, Jun. 4th, 2006 12:16 pm (UTC)
cyberdoggy: Removal

Hey Bram, sorry to bother you - but could you please remove my comment located at: http://bramcohen.livejournal.com/4563.html as it reveals my e-mail address publically and I have been getting weird programming e-mails since.

Thanks Bram,

Wed, Jul. 19th, 2006 12:06 am (UTC)
dianash77: It was quite simple

It was quite simple to get 200+ even taking 2X2. That is actually without any strategy.


Thu, Aug. 10th, 2006 03:52 pm (UTC)

230 on my second try. What a fun little twist on the usual puzzle game. :D

Sat, Nov. 18th, 2006 09:41 pm (UTC)
arto1337saari: i know it bothers you

...but i have a question.
i'm in an apprentieceship for software developer and actually i have to do some work about filesharing and internet piracy and i'd really like to do an (email besed) interview with you, but i found no other way to contact you.
if you agree, please send me an email to: coorip[at]hotmail.com

i'd be very happy if you do

greez arto