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Re: [Eliot-general] Eliot - duplicate-joker-game

From: Olivier Teuliere
Subject: Re: [Eliot-general] Eliot - duplicate-joker-game
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2013 21:24:52 +0100


On Sun, Nov 10, 2013 at 8:23 PM, Bernhard C. Maerz
<address@hidden> wrote:
>> Did it happen to you, for a randomly generated rack? If so, this is a
>> bug, and I would appreciate as much information as possible to
>> reproduce it and fix it. A savegame would be ideal.
> [...]
> So loading game1.txt and pushing some times on Random-button results
> in the attached screen.
> Same with doing game2.txt. (Still this happend before I've done
> loading, so it's not the case that loading causes program to forget
> about how to handle the jokers).

Thanks for the detailed bug report! I will have a look and keep you

> Maybe the "bug" happens only, because I'm not doing "normal" things, maybe
> pushing the button TOO FAST?

No, it should always work, no matter how fast you press the button :)

>> Given that it's a fairly standard variant, I don't think that adding
>> more variations would be so useful. In my opinion, variations too
>> similar would only confuse players, without much added value.
> I like to have a lot of opptions.
> Variing the game makes it interesting for me.

Fair enough :)
But unless you play only with AI, you will need other players to agree
with your variants...

> For example one thing: when you start playing scrabble, you have big
> tasks to do.
> So it's for example very hard to use the letter Y - in German of
> course, not in English ;-)
> So this letter has a high value.
> But later you've learned, that it could be simple used in the two letter
> words "My" and "Ny" and then also as plural "Mys" and "Nys".
> At this point it's VERY easy to use this letter and it's no longer a
> WORD-HANDLING-GAME for this letter and the value for it is much too high.
> So variing the rules could make THIS interesting.
> But I also understand about people don't like any changes.

If your objective is to learn how to deal with specific letters, or even
to get help to learn new words, I would argue that Eliot already
provides several (better) ways to do that:

1) The Training mode allows you to see all the possible solutions for a
   given rack and position. In your example, if your rack contains a 'Y'
   and you have trouble finding words, Eliot would list all the playable
   words and you could learn from that.

2) The "Dictionary Tools" window can generate lists of words
   corresponding to specific patterns. For example, to generate all the
   2-letter and 3-letter words containing a Y, you could enter the
   ".*Y.*" regular expression and specify the minimum and maximum
   lengths accordingly. Regular expressions are a bit cryptic at first,
   but they are extremely powerful and allow expressing a lot of things.
   You can find more information on Wikipedia if needed.

3) Changing the value of a letter is possible, by creating a new
   dictionary. But I wouldn't recommend it: the more you play with a
   fixed set of rules, the more you get automatisms that save you time.
   For example, after some practice you can quickly count the points of
   a word without even looking at the tiles, which is more difficult if
   you never know how many points a given letter has :)

> By the way: I strongly assume you are not planing to port Eliot to the
> android platform?
> In the meantime I don't like to play on my PC and use my Android
> tablet+phone much more.
> Still there are already a lot of scrabble games (I know 12 ones supporting
> German language), there is not any playing (the interesting) joker-game and
> even not the variation duplicate.
> (There is ONE supporting duplicate, but only with humans playing all on ONE
> device. So if you haven't any friends who like to play giving the device
> from-hand-to-hand, you can't play in internet and not even against an AI.)

I agree that it would be great to have Eliot on Android :)
Unfortunately, I cannot do it myself (not for technical reasons, but due
to contractual obligations).

If someone does it, I would gladly give all the support I can, and merge
their contributions.

> Oh, one more thing:
> look at the screenshots, please.
> What does the "+" mean in the Rack-column???
> Probably a bug. The "+" sign should be only in the Word-column, replacing a
> letter already on the board, or am I wrong?

The "+" in the Rack column separates letters remaining from the previous
rack from letters newly picked. For example, if the rack was FOOBARZ and
you played ZOO, the next rack would look like ABFR+XYZ, where XYZ could
be arbitrary letters.

Actually, it's a bit more complicated than that: the duplicate rules
stipulate that there must be a minimum number of vowels and consonants
at each turn: 2 of each during the first 15 turns, 1 of each afterwards.
If this condition is not met (not enough vowels or consonants), then all
the letters have to be rejected, and a new rack is drawn from the bag.
In such a case, the '+' sign disappears, and Eliot may displays a '-'
sign at the beginning of the rack to indicate the event.


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