Subject: The odd strategy --- The power of counter-act
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Great AlanUser is Offline


09 Jan 2009 3:37 AM  

In Risk,many players usually fear someone growing too strong to threaten you.Face such strong emeny,most of the players would choose to "directly clash" with them.And consequently,they found that they have to pay the high price for weakening their rivals.

Well,many players may think that,"You're wrong,Alan.If we don't do anything to stop them,then their power will be unstoppable and shatter our force."Yes,we have to "do something" to "contain" these powerful opponents,but we have to avoid the "direct conflict" with them.Everyone may doubt,how to do that?Have you still remembered one of my story in Zizhi Tongjian?Indeed,I missed some parts of the story about how three weaker families defeated the powerful Zhi.

The arrogant count of Zhi asked three weaker families for terrtories.The monarch of Wei(one of these three families) wanted to refuse such unreasonable request.However,his wise ministers advised him not to do so and obey what the count of Zhi said.He quoted the words of one Chinese book(about "natural law" and "moral") to persuading the monarch.Now let us watch these passages,

"If you want to contain him,you have to expand him;If you want to weaken him,you have to strengthen him;If you want to destroy him,you have to prosper him;If you want to seize him,you have to give him.This is the expectation of wisdom,it means the way of the weak overcome the strong.Just like the fish can't leave the soft abyss,the great weapon can't be shown easily,to display your persistence."(Tao Te Ching,chapter 36)

This expectation is achieved in my example.The count of Zhi's proud and strong bring him more emenies,Han and Wei betrayed him when he striked Zhao.He was defeated and killed finally in the tragedy.Does Wei's victory costed him much losses?No,because all the suffer is attributed to Zhao.

=== Opinion Corner ===

Does anyone understand what is this strategy?Why should do so?Please share your views here.Later I will glad to discover the answer.

BruceUser is Offline


09 Jan 2009 7:11 AM  
That is a good strategy. I understand it too lol
TheDasuriUser is Offline


26 Mar 2009 8:11 PM  

Now I may be dense and unsure as to what the "true" meaning of the strategy is. I read the little anecdote and I didn't really think it had much to do with RIsk.

It sounded as though you were advocating giving up territories without a fight to a strong player in order to get other players to play agaisnt you. Now I doubt anyone remembers my previous posts (only have had 2 before) but I advocated a similar strategy before hand. If you want go and look at it in the Mind games thread, which isnt much under this one.

The strategy I talked about was essentially a "Pincer Move" or what the Zulu called "The Horns of the Bull" It consisted of letting an opponent overextend himself into your territory so you can encircle and cut him off. Now this seems similar because in both strategies you are letting your opponent stray into your territory. However in "The Horns of the Bull" you do so in hopes of false security to eliminate a large number of your opponents forces.

This strategy I think you are talking about, again it's tough to know exactly what you are trying to say when you just hide it behind an anecdote, consists of giving up territory to a larger opponent in hopes of getting other players to see he is a big threat and team up with you. That is silly and counterproductive.

Giving up territory to an opponent gives them advantages in Risk that do not apply to your story. Territory gains means more reinforcements. A smart player will take these reinforcements and use them to his advantage. Its like giving one guy a pistol and thinking that you and two other friends can kill him with spears. You are giving someone else your strengths to help them. Also the help of allies is never something you can rely on. For all you know the larger player will strike a deal and divy you up with another player. You are already weak from giving up territory, so why not?

I am not going to say that it is never a good idea to give up some territory to an opponent, each case needs to be assessed individually to determine that. I am saying that doing so in hopes of attracting sympathy from other players is not a good idea. Most risk players will probably figure you are giving up and rush to beat you down to get some easy territory.

Of course I could be wrong and have missed the point completely. While the anecdote was informative and I did enjoy reading it, in future would you please also say what you mean? It makes it simpler to understand.


Great AlanUser is Offline


28 Mar 2009 10:43 AM  

Thanks for your opinion,Dasuri.I think I have to re-clarify this strategy perception.

Though I quoted "If you want to seize him,you have to give him".This do not mean you have to "cede your own terrtories to him foolishly".Of course,we have to seize every territories as we can,and never abandon so easily.But at the same time,we can use the "soft diplomacy".Sometimes you may "let him take the terrtories that easily cause the conflict" between the other players.After that,you can take advantage of their contradiction.

The main purpose of exerting this kind of strategy is "avoid the direct conflict" and "encourage the rival to expand more actively".Don't forget that the more troops you have,it is also likely you will exhaust more troops.The same situation even happened in the current politics.The USA hegemony made it proud and even arrogant sometimes.Once George Bush ascended,he launched the wars to Afghanistan and Iraq,spending too much military budget and thus further weaken its position in finanical tsunami.And just a century ago,the British Empire fell,too.It clearly revealed that the powerful country is easy to conquer,but also easily fall into decline!I hope that China can learn from this.

I don't agree that what you said "allies is never reliable".When a superpower come to threaten every players on the board of Risk,will the inferior players likely to continue to fight among themselves instead of "concern" this great menace first?Thus,the emerge of "common emeny" is enough for you seek the trustful and reliable allies in much chance.And then you can shatter that superpower as you want,just like bring down the Napoleonic Empire with the anti-French coalition!

Let me give my wonderful example here:

Long time ago,I played a traditional Earth map,but with Antarctica(southern-tip continent with only 3 terrtories that connects SA and Australia).I occupied Africa,was just a second-rated force.Around this time,my opponent A had Antarctica and Australia,was my toughest rival and heavily threaten my domains with its "pincer encirclement" from Antarctica and Siam.I fought a bitter war with him.Luckily he couldn't fully exert the strategic advantage.And soon my alliance with opponent B who owned NA weakened him a lot.

Although I had a chance to capture SA in that time,I could hardly consolidate between two greatpowers.Thus I simpily leave SA to them,causing them fought fiercely around SA.After they're weakened severely,I swiftly conquered SA and extended to Western Antarctica almost without loss.This time opponent B was already "suicided and weakened" by the opponent C.So the result was "all of my opponents was weakened".After that,I easily won a victory.

In fact,this strategy is only "one of my strategies".I surely set my strategy depend on different situations,not solidly follow the strategy,that's meaningless.Also,I surely understand that "diplomacy is based on military power".Therefore,my general strategy is composed of "hard and soft",very flexible in various situations.

bdean97User is Offline


02 Jun 2011 2:01 AM  
In this case what I would do is not even go for control of any continent. Instead I would turtle in Northern Asia away from major powers and Just keep building up on one country and not attack anything. Eventually your numbers will grow very large and most wont attack you because, why would someone attack a large force of 20, 30 plus of armies and get no cards for it? It would not benefit anyone to take them out so usually when I do this I am left there and i just keep building up until i have close to 40 or 50 armies. While everyone else kills each other off see which player is weaker and then slowly invade and gain cards. This strategy has worked a lot for me in regular games with friends as well as online games. The only time you would lose is if someone wants to lose the game as well and weakin' their own forces to take yours out.
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