Psellos
Contemporary Development With Functional Programming

The Schnapsen Log

June 25, 2012

Desperate Straits

Martin Tompa

And it’s on to the very next deal against your arch-enemy Itell Reding at the Black Eagle Club’s weekly tournament. Is there to be no end to this single match? You are having some trouble holding it together.

Unseen cards:
TQ
T
♣ AQ
K

Your cards:
AKJ

♣ T
T

Trump: J
Stock: 1 face-down card
Game points: Itell 1, You 2
Trick points: Itell 48, You 13
On lead: You

Things are not looking good on this deal. It seems as though Itell has been one game point from sending you home for weeks, and you’ve been desperately clawing your way towards him. But on this disastrous deal he is only 18 trick points from winning, you have collected so few trick points, and you don’t see a whole lot of potential in your hand, other than your one master trump. Meanwhile Itell goes on grinning at you, reaches for his Becher, and takes a healthy swig of Altbier. You have to remind yourself to focus on your predicament and not on his stare, because one small lapse and you’re done.

Plan your play. When you think you have a good plan, you are welcome to read my analysis.

© 2012 Martin Tompa. All rights reserved.


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About the Author

Martin Tompa

Martin Tompa (tompa@psellos.com)

I am a Professor of Computer Science & Engineering at the University of Washington, where I teach discrete mathematics, probability and statistics, design and analysis of algorithms, and other related courses. I have always loved playing games. Games are great tools for learning to think logically and are a wonderful component of happy family or social life.

Read about Winning Schnapsen, the very first and definitive book on the winning strategy for this fascinating game.

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